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Stage Flooring for Ballet


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#16 innopac

innopac

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Posted 12 June 2008 - 01:17 AM

I disagree with Julie Kavanagh's assessment of Simon Robinson's book A Year With Rudolf Nureyev as "sharply observed", "amusing and poignant". I wouldn't praise it quite so highly myself. However, here is a passage from Robinson's book that I found interesting and thought that it might interest other non-dancers as well.

"One of the first things Rudolf did when he went into the theatre at Verona -- or into any theatre -- was to walk the stage, every square foot of it. To the audience, a stage is a stage. To any good dancer, a stage is a minefield. Rudolf demonstrated this. Some boards are good and some are not. The bad boards are stiff, the good boards springy. 'Dance on bad board, you don't get any air. Dance on good board, you get extra six inches.' So he found out the geography of the stage and shifted his performance accordingly. He also had a keen eye for dust." page 124

"Blue" [Simon] then goes on to describe the importance for Nureyev that the stage was swept from the centre out to the wings to really clear the dust. Nureyev wouldn't tolerate the stage being swept by starting in the wings and working across to the opposite side. He was concerned about the dust causing a slippery spot for the dancers.




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