Fans meeting favorite dancers
Posted 18 June 2003 - 08:39 AM
What was it like for you meeting a beloved dancer for the first time?
Posted 18 June 2003 - 08:43 AM
Posted 18 June 2003 - 09:01 AM
Elsewhere on the board, I recalled a bus ride when I boarded, and the only other passenger was Mme Danilova, seated in the front. I gave her a smile and nod of recognition and took a seat near the rear door. We did not exchange any words, but she spent the rest of the ride preening and posing for me, apparently happy to have an audience. I was enchanted.
Posted 18 June 2003 - 02:50 PM
I had heard Irina Mishura an Moldavian born mezzo in many roles in several venues throughout the midwest--had become just a bit obsessed with her.
Carmen, Amneris, Azucena, Adalgesia--all the big dramatic mezzo roles.
And then there was Samson and Delilah, an opera with three arias that are top-forty hits for this voice.
I was at five of the six performances of S&D at the Michigan Opera Theatre in Motown and went backstage after one of them. I was prepared--I had both her CDs with the booklets out for signing, the program folded to the page with her picture for another autograph and a few well chosen words memorized.
Once backstage, accompanied by a chorus member who we knew, we spoke with a few of the other singers in the production, then came upon Ms. Mishura's dressing room. Her husband (also her manager) was in a chair outside the room--a friendly type--formerly a Detroit area resturant owner--he told us to go right in.
The star dressing room backstage at the Detroit Opera House are actually small suites. One room has couch, a few chairs and an upright piano. The next room is the dressing room proper, with a sink, big mirror, etc. As it happened, Ms. Mishura was sitting the dressing room part of the suite, still removing her dark "Delilah" make up. She was not terribly happy that her fans had been sent in to see her while she was still recovering from the performance. I almost turned and ran.
She was as gorgeous in person as onstage, and after shooting a look at her husband was graciousness itself. She signed everything and, while it took a while, I was able to get my all purpose speech out:
"We saw you as (here fill in roles you have seen the singer and where) and you were wonderful in all of them. But tonight you even outdid those performances--I have never seen anything so good. We hope to see you again in (whatever is coming up)."
I have found it always works to tell an artist that you have seen her in several roles and love them all.
Posted 18 June 2003 - 07:34 PM
During the mid 90s I worked with someone who was well connected to New York City Ballet. One night my wife and I got an invitation to sit in Balanchine's old seats. We were then invited back stage during intermission where we met Sean Lavery, Nick Hubbe and Judy Fugate. For someone not connected to the dance world it was quite an experience.
My big moment was meeting Merrill Ashley in the Green Room a few years later. She is as wonderful in person as she appeared on the stage. Very unassuming and nice to talk to. We chatted for several minutes. She has always been one of my favorite dancers and I regret not having seen her dance until late in her career.
Nick Hubbe is very charming. I understand he is fun to be around even when he is being serious.
Sean Lavery is one of the most decent people I have ever met. My understanding is that he has never complained about his career being cut short. Anyone who has attended any of the talks dancers periodically give knows that they all speak highly of him as someone who has helped them in their careers. I regret that I have seen him dance only on video tape.
We also met Alessandra Ferri through a friend, but it was a quick how do you do and that's about it.
Posted 19 June 2003 - 09:05 AM
Posted 19 June 2003 - 05:28 PM
carbro - LOVELY story about danilova.
i am NOT overawed by meeting dancers. (i have met lots, including 'big names' - as have quite a few posters here, i believe.)
EXCEPTIONS (i.e. the times i WAS overawed):
- i WOULD have been overawed by dudinskaya, Mme. Hermine ...but the opportunity didn't come up! (from my teacher's perspective, i regard her as a teaching legend, more so than as a dancer.)
- when i was young i got fonteyn's autograph, but i was too embarrassed to say it was for me, so i said it was for my sister, when handing the programme over to an assistant. DIDN'T see fonteyn herself, at the time.
- only time i recall being overawed by meeting someone 'famous' was when i worked at a 'new age' fair in covent garden, and kylie minogue came in, apparently un-noticed. she came straight up to my counter (i was selling swarowski cut-crystal hanging window ornaments), stayed about 5 minutes selecting things, and we exchanged a few lines - but i deliberately acted like she was just anyone else, for her sake, as she was clearly trying to just 'be normal'. when she told me she was looking for gifts, as she was going home to australia for christmas, i SHOULD have had the presence of mind to say "i should be so lucky...lucky, lucky, lucky...", (since she had acknowledged that she recognised my australian accent) - but it only occured to me AFTERWARDS. damn! ;)
Posted 19 June 2003 - 05:35 PM
nothing to do with dance - sorry.
Posted 20 June 2003 - 05:04 PM
Posted 20 June 2003 - 07:41 PM
After he hung up, he realized the name mentioned: Meryl Streep. He thereupon called me at work saying, "I think I blew it. Meryl Streep wants private lessons and I said no, but she could come down to the hall!"
So, because I work at a school with some celebrities' kids, I asked around and someone knew Streep well enough to tell her why husband was so short with her secretary. Streep called back and the upshot is that he gave her private dance lessons twice a week all summer long in preparation for her "Dancing at Lughnasa". She had said she wanted to be well-prepared for the dancing scene but also mentioned that she didn't tell the director she was taking lessons because she was afraid he wouldn't like it. Turns out when she went to Ireland to shoot the movie, she knew way more than she should.
But if you ever see the rerun of Streep on "Inside the Actor's Studio", she does about 20 seconds (if that) of "Irish dance". She'd forgotten mostly everything by then but it was still a little recognizable.
Years later, I was flipping TV stations and Bette Midler was on either Oprah or Rosie O'Donnell. Something Midler said caught my ear as I was about to change the station, "I got a call from Meryl Streep. You know, when Meryl calls, you don't say no!"
Posted 21 June 2003 - 07:26 PM
now i'll keep an eye out for 'Dancing at Lughnasa'.
Posted 21 June 2003 - 08:12 PM
Ah, well . . .
Posted 22 June 2003 - 06:59 AM
Posted 22 June 2003 - 08:59 AM
Posted 24 June 2003 - 06:50 PM
The other was several years ago when she was dancing with Miss Farrell. We were out and when we got home there was a message on my answering machine. It was Suzanne Farrell leaving a message for my daughter to call her back. I didn't want to erase it!
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