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Special moments


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#1 Guest_ballerinaDEDG_*

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Posted 02 December 2001 - 01:58 PM

Hello. I was just wondering if anyone can recall and times when they have met, worked with, etc. any famous dancers. These moments seem to inspire us to keep dancing no matter what and to try to achieve what our idols have achieved. Any memories? biggrin.gif

I remember one time when my mother called me up at a friend's house and told me that I could meet Maria Tallchief that evening if I wanted to. It was not a public meeting. Maria was coming to see something at my mother's theatre. I called my two best friends and of course they were eager to come with me. When we met her she was very very nice and she asked us about our dancing and where we wanted to go for the summer. She also signed a pair of pointe shoes (unfortunately they were ours) for each of us. It was a wonderful experience. cool.gif

Of course it is also wonderful to work with the amazing dancers in the company attached to my school. What a treat around this time of year.

So share all of your fun times. They are special moments that you should always remember. tongue.gif

[ December 02, 2001: Message edited by: ballerinaDEDG ]



#2 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 02 December 2001 - 06:14 PM

What a lovely idea for a topic, DEDG smile.gif I have lots of memories, but I think the two most special might be my experiences with Violette Verdy and Dame Margot Fonteyn.

Dame Margot was guesting with ABT when I was a there, and meeting and talking to her was very special because she was such a gracious LADY, in the true sense of the word. She seemed to have a genuine interest in all of the young dancers and spoke to them easily and willingly, not at all condescending nor concerned whether she was talking to a principal, soloist or corps member.

As an even younger dancer I had the wonderful opportunity of working closely with Violette Verdy for several months. I was 19 years old, and the understudy for her role in a ballet we were performing in London. She worked with me daily and coached me in the role. She was the most musical dancer I have ever known, and also most generous in imparting her knowledge and giving of her time to work with me.

#3 Estelle

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Posted 02 December 2001 - 08:06 PM

Victoria, you might be interested in knowing that a documentary about Violette Verdy by Dominique Delouche (who has already made many documentaries about dancers like Chauviré, Loudières, Peretti...) will be released in France on Dec 19.

#4 vrsfanatic

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Posted 02 December 2001 - 08:45 PM

Looking forward to seeing the documentary on Violette. I too must say that as a student, meeting and working with Violette was one of the most influential experiences I had. I was a child when she had an achilles operation and fortunate enough to have her as my teacher for my second or third year of ballet. I was all of 9 or 10, had no idea who she was, but I remember to this day many of the things she would say about music. Her description of the dynamics of frappe were fantastic. As an older student, age 16, I had the fortune to be also coached by her in Syllphide. Having had strictly Balanchine training it really must have been a challenge for her, but she was kind, patient and very giving.

As a dancer and teacher, I would have to say Lupe Serrano was the one who had the most affect upon me. A very strong, intelligent and straight forward person, who is able to make it all seem so logical. I have many fond memories and things to thank her for.

Also on the list I most definely should add Benjamin Harkarvy, Barbara Weisberger, Jurgen Schneider and Janina Ciunovas. All brilliant teachers or directors who have given their souls to the art form of ballet and the development of teachers.

#5 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 02 December 2001 - 09:51 PM

Estelle, thank you for that information! I will definitely look forward to seeing that documentary!

vrs, actually Violette was trained in Paris, I believe primarily by a teacher named Madame Rosanne, or something like that. I used to know, but it's been a long time. And she danced with ABT even before working in NYCB. I never really thought of her as a Balanchine dancer, as I think she was very rooted in French training. That may have changed over the years but not at the time I worked with her.

#6 Estelle

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Posted 03 December 2001 - 05:45 AM

Yes indeed, from what I've read Violette Verdy was trained by Mme Rousanne (1894-1958), a very famous teacher from Armenia. Koegler's dictionary says that she was trained by Clustine and Volinine, gave very few performances because she started her training too late, and opened her studio in Paris in 1958. The list of her students also included Lycette Darsonval, Serge Peretti, Yves Brieux (himself a famous teacher, who died in the early 1990s), Yvette Chauviré, Youly Algaroff, Alexandre Kalioujny, Peter Van Dyk, Jean Babilée, Roland Petit, and Maurice Béjart (and also, I think, Pierre Lacotte). Surely a very influential teacher!

Verdy started her career when she was only 13 with Petit's Ballets des Champs-Elysees, and created his ballet "Le Loup" when she was 20. So she had already had a long career before joining the NYCB when she was 25... smile.gif

#7 vrsfanatic

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Posted 03 December 2001 - 06:57 AM

Sorry I was not clearer in my description. I truly meant to imply that I must have been the challenge for Violette with my background being strictly Balanchine. I had not one clue, as the students say today. I was well aware of her background by that time in my life and was quite confident that she was more than capable to guide me. She never once faltered or sighed in frustration. She persistantly pursued the differences in port de bras, usage of the body and dynamics until I suppose we ran out of time! She danced with Royes Fernandez, to my waltz girl. I hope I measured up somehow. I know at the time I thought I did, so I suppose that is what is important.

#8 Pamela Moberg

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Posted 03 December 2001 - 05:28 PM

In the summer of I think it was 1959, Violette Verdy took classes at the Rambert Theater in London. With Madam herself of course, but also with Eileen Ward and Angela Ellis. I was there too, so I could really observe her at close quarters. Another very, very tiny and very skinny girl was there, Lucette Aldous.

#9 Jameth

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Posted 10 December 2001 - 05:14 PM

A couple years ago Aurthur Mitchell came and taught a couple classes to us at the School Of Oregon Ballet Theatre. it was a great class he is a very responsive teacher...

James


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