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#301 whetherwax

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Posted 07 May 2008 - 10:01 PM

Guiltily I confess to an absolute wallow in Terry Pratchet land. In particular Wintersmith. I love the way he weaves folk wisdom and witty connections into his stories. Making witches into village social workers was pretty good. I seem to be off serious stuff at present . Its all kept for my ballet DVDs.So sad though to hear that he has alzheimers.

#302 dirac

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Posted 08 May 2008 - 05:25 PM

Thanks, whetherwax. I like a guilty wallow now and then, myself. I'm not familiar with Pratchet's work, unfortunately.

#303 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 19 May 2008 - 10:23 AM

I started two new books. First, the fascinating Villella's autobiography "Edward Villella: dancing for Balanchine in a world of pain and magic" and then the school related "Combined neuroleptic malignant syndrome and the central anticholinergic syndrome" by J Neurol.

#304 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 09 June 2008 - 08:50 AM

I started two new books. First, the fascinating Villella's autobiography "Edward Villella: dancing for Balanchine in a world of pain and magic" and then the school related "Combined neuroleptic malignant syndrome and the central anticholinergic syndrome" by J Neurol.


And i'm done with those. Now i got hooked on the Balanchine/NYCB topic!-(its really fascinating)...so after reading first Joan Brady's "Unmaking of a Dancer" and then softer Villella's "Prodigal Son", it seemed logical to me next just to get my hands on Kirkland's "Dancing on my grave". I must say that after reading the book's own thread here, curiosity kills me on her memories. Will report back.

#305 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 07:12 PM

I gave up Suzanne's "Holding..." for a while-(honestly, due to some boredom)-and just got my hands in Alexandra Danilova's autobiography, which I'm enjoying tremendously...
Then, i'm still working on my DSM-IV copy...

#306 vagansmom

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 07:28 AM

Eeks, the DSM-IV has been a bedside "friend" of mine for years. Certain parts are quite outdated though. I've been anxiously (uh-oh, bad word choice given the book's content :dunno:) awaiting #5, but its publication keeps getting pushed back. In the meantime, along that vein, I'm reading The Clinical Neuropsychiatry of Multiple Sclerosis and, thanks to Treefrog :D, The 36 Hour Day (about dementia). Another book on my "to read" shelf is Daniel J. Siegel's The Mindful Brain: Reflection and Attunement in the Cultivation of Well-Being, but I haven't yet started it. I'd already read his The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are. Most of his writings are about the interplay between genetics and environment. Although his language can get bogged down (at least for me) in technical jargon, I love the spirit of his writings, their hopefulness and belief that so much about who we are can be improved. Time and again, in my work with children, I find that he's right. When I bought the book from Amazon, I discovered that he took time off from med school to "pursue drawing and dancing." :)

Cristian, I loved Farrell's book. I think it's because it was my initiation into the world of ballet dancers. With a daughter headed in that direction, all I wanted at that time was to understand a little bit more about the life of someone in ballet, and it provided what I needed. I didn't find it boring or dry at all; in fact, I really loved the aura of distance that's cultivated in her book. I found it fitting, given her circumstances. I also loved that it was positive; I think if I'd read some of the other autobiographies first, I might have pulled my kiddo out of ballet school :lol:, but I can see how others, with ballet in their blood, might feel differently about the book. By contrast, I didn't like Kirkland's first book at all; I've given my reasons elsewhere on this and the sister board, so I won't repeat it here. I think I've read most of the ballet autobiographies and some biographies - haven't read Danilova's book though. I'm looking forward to that.

My favorites among the ballet autobiographies are Igor Schwezoff's Borzoi and Villella's Prodigal Son. Borzoi is fascinating. As a student of Russian history, I thought it was a gem. I really enjoy older prose (another reason why I liked Holding on to the Air - I think it reads like it was written in an earlier era). I read Prodigal Son immediately following Farrell's book; I thought that they should have been marketed together as brother/sister volumes. Even though Villella had plenty of negative things to say about Balanchine, I always felt that there was, within his words, still an enormous respect for the man. Villella managed to say the bad stuff without the book degenerating into diatribe. I appreciated that.

In a thrift store the other day, I picked up Diane Solway's A Dance Against Time, about Eddie Stierle's (Joffrey Ballet) life and death. Am only about 30 pages into it, so I don't really have an opinion.

#307 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2008 - 01:11 PM

Thanks, vagansmom. Good to hear from you. The Farrell book and the Villella book have both been under discussion recently in the Writings on Ballet forum, if you're interested. :mad:

#308 Adam

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 09:27 AM

"No Way Home" by Carlos Acosta. Nice little book. Has anybody read "In Balanchine's Company" by Barbara Fisher?

#309 papeetepatrick

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 09:29 AM

I just read 'Wuthering Heights', never had. Peculiar to read something associated with a much younger age than one is now and not knowing what to expect. Somehow I'd never known what the story was, just keywords like Heathcliff, Cathy, moors, that's it. Now I'm going to watch Olivier and Oberon. Great book, though.

#310 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 09:40 AM

I just read 'Wuthering Heights', never had. Peculiar to read something associated with a much younger age than one is now and not knowing what to expect. Somehow I'd never known what the story was, just keywords like Heathcliff, Cathy, moors, that's it. Now I'm going to watch Olivier and Oberon. Great book, though.

I was 11/12 when i read it. It was my first serious book, and i remember vividly being caught reading it under the table while in class, and asked to stepped in front of everyone to turn it to the teacher. I hated her.

#311 canbelto

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 03:01 PM

I'm reading "The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn" by Charles Ives. Magnificent.

#312 dirac

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 05:08 PM

"No Way Home" by Carlos Acosta. Nice little book. Has anybody read "In Balanchine's Company" by Barbara Fisher?


Adam, hello and welcome. In the "Writings on Ballet" forum there is a thread devoted to her book. I think it should be pretty easy to find. Sorry I don't have the time to post the link myself.

#313 dirac

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 05:17 PM

I'm reading "The Life and Death of Anne Boleyn" by Charles Ives. Magnificent.


Tell us more about it. What's his take? The last biography I read was the one by Eric Ives, and it was excellent.

#314 carbro

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 07:24 PM

"No Way Home" by Carlos Acosta. Nice little book. Has anybody read "In Balanchine's Company" by Barbara Fisher?

We have two threads devoted to Fisher's memoir:
http://ballettalk.in...p...c=23602&hl=
and, less specifically
http://ballettalk.in...p...c=26005&hl=

and for Acosta's, only a few brief comments, here: http://ballettalk.in...p...c=25600&hl=

#315 canbelto

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 03:50 AM

Sorry, I mean Eric Ives. :helpsmilie:


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