Ballerinas and Candy Wrappers
Posted 14 January 2009 - 08:52 AM
Posted 14 January 2009 - 12:43 PM
Welcome to BalletTalk, erpollock , and maybe you'd like to introduce yourself in our Welcome forum. I'll also invite you to add your comments on the performance itself to Colleen Borresta's in the NYCB forum. I've been meaning to add my own.
Posted 14 January 2009 - 01:45 PM
Posted 14 January 2009 - 06:20 PM
Posted 14 January 2009 - 07:37 PM
And on that note, while I understand season ticket holders of years standing discussing whatever mundane subject comes to mind in the minutes before the lights go down and the curtain goes up, as someone for whom every performance is a special occasion, I'm always glad when the people around me honor it as the same once they get to their seat. Blab about your lousy boss later. Yack on your cellphone, check your messages, and text later. Start suspending disbelief and opening yourself to transcendence now. We're not here to hear about you.
Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:13 PM
"Hey you... I saw what you just did, and it seems to me that:
1-You are showing disrespect for the theater environment..
2-...revealing your total lack of good manners , so...
3-...pick those up right now!!!-(because I'm still watching you...) "
Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:27 PM
It is rather suspenseful, n'est-ce pas? Reminds of a review in The New Yorker about 1994 of Tom Jones new show he did in the East Village, called THE LEAD AND HOW TO SWING IT, which spawned an album or two. The ladies threw panties at Tom as they always have gone nuts by throwing keys or what have you. The writer of the demure little piece interviewed Tom afterwards and ended her piece with 'And what happens to all those panties?' Tom answered her 'I have no idea', given that it was obviously an attempt to make sure a new emphasis was made, and pointed out to the great man himself. Was this 'speaking truth to power?'. It most certainly was not. He knew exactly what she was up to, and she probably had to end the 'feature' there because he wasn't really interested in talking about her career or sexual preferences. She seemed to even disapprove of his having some champagne after the performance.
Posted 15 January 2009 - 06:37 AM
Posted 15 January 2009 - 07:07 AM
I'm glad you raised the point that throwing candy wrappers on the floor caused no discomfort or annoyance to others. It has really helped me understand my negative reaction. The incident caused discomfort to me because I realized that just because a person is a beautiful dancer does not mean she knows or cares about throwing litter on the floor. Why is throwing candy wrappers on the floor objectionable? Isn't it a matter of live and let live? In New York State Theater, a beautiful theatrical space, it is inappropriate to make a mess, and a mess for others less fortunate than you to clean up, namely, the cleaning people. You are spoiling the beautiful space, you are creating an unfortunate impression on others who see what you do, and if you are a dancer with NYCB, you are making subscribers think that dancers are merely a beautiful image, not necessarily good people. The impression a dancer makes in the world, especially upon ballet audience members, is crucial. Ballet is an illusion, and to break that illusion when you are among audience members is not a wise choice. I remember a few summers ago when I encountered Nilas Martins at the entrance of Starbucks, and he HELD THE DOOR OPEN FOR ME - I was so positively impressed by his politeness, that the bad publicity he had received (he had been exiled from the Saratoga season so was in the city that summer) was totally wiped away for me. I thought, he is a good person. Throwing candy wrappers on the floor is not a major crime, of course, but it is not classy. Nilas Martins was classy, so he impressed me positively. I hope this helps answer why I reacted negatively, and felt it necessary to give a gentle reproof.
Posted 15 January 2009 - 08:27 AM
It ends up being about what is classy as determining things like 'he is a good person'. My impression is that Farrell Fan was right, although I didn't originally think so. Obviously, Nilas Martins may or may not be a 'good person', but he cannot have been for having been a minor celeb who held the door for someone. This does not even mean he was 'classy'. Of course it explains the negative reaction to the candy wrappers, but not that the ballerinas needed any kind of reproof. They were probably corps dancers below the age of 20 who spend a lot of time in trendy clubs, where the role models are spoiled and do whatever they want. The Nilas Martins case is here described as a matter of 'bad publicity received'. The case was discussed extensively here at Ballet Talk just after his arrest, and so what has to then be pointed to is the case itself as being of at least relatively much greater importance (however small a case), as it existed in a real sense within the justice system, to superficial politeness (which is important, but not so important without including the larger context--which has been here described and reduced to 'bad publicity' and 'exiled from Saratoga'; and this is totally misleading to anyone who doesn't know what happened in the actual case). I don't think ballet is within its own members a matter of one required exquisite movement after another. Ballet dancers go back into their own personalities as people the minute they get offstage, and become concerned with mundane things, physical pains, etc., that have to do with them as people, not continuing the 'glorious illusion',i.e., they have all just been sweating, probably even the ones who say they don't have done so, or paid some kind of health price for not ever sweating. I don't think they should be expected to watch their every move when they are in an audience--a few prima ballerinas would do so, but otherwise they should not be held to the standards of the queen of England when out in the general public. Actors often complain about this kind of expectation from fans, and some of the biggest film stars who live in my neighborhood feel fine about dressing like slobs.
Posted 15 January 2009 - 08:51 AM
Posted 15 January 2009 - 10:32 AM
(On the other side...there are current ballerinas who makes one believe that this vision is still alive in the ballet world: Hayna Gutierrez-(CCBM)-Lorna Feijoo-(Boston Ballet)-and Mary Carmen Catoya-(MCB)- are some of this few rare specimens)
Posted 15 January 2009 - 11:21 AM
As far as life and art, thereíd simply be no art if artists had to be consistent from one to the other. And a brilliant Apollo on stage always trumps a polite one in life.
Posted 15 January 2009 - 11:35 AM
Especially if the 'polite' one in life is also never the brilliant one onstage. I've no reason to think Hubbe wouldn't hold the door, though, so there need not always be trumping involved, or perhaps it can be doubled?
Posted 15 January 2009 - 11:47 AM
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