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Veronika Part on the David Letterman Show July 9


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#91 Barbara

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:06 AM

Wouldn't it be fabulous if Dave himself hazarded a visit to the ballet as a result of meeting Ms. Part? In fact ABT should probably send him a couple of comp tickets for the fall season in something featuring Ms. Part and perhaps he would comment on the experience on the show. Better yet, Tony could accompany him and explain what he was about to see.

#92 DeborahB

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:18 AM

Wouldn't it be fabulous if Dave himself hazarded a visit to the ballet as a result of meeting Ms. Part? In fact ABT should probably send him a couple of comp tickets for the fall season in something featuring Ms. Part and perhaps he would comment on the experience on the show. Better yet, Tony could accompany him and explain what he was about to see.


It's a great idea, Barbara but Dave is more than a bit of a recluse. He rarely goes to anything in NYC (he did attend "The Color Purple" with Oprah as part of his wooing of Oprah to finally come on his show. Long story). But Kelly Ripa, Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb. and a host of other national media personalities DO attend both ABT and NYCB.

#93 cargill

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 11:18 AM

It is interesting how far reaching an appearance on Letterman is--I was at a physical therapy session today, and was talking to someone with an injured foot about high heels, and someone else piped in saying he had seen a ballet dancer on Letterman and was surprized that she was wearing such high heels (about 6 inches he said)--but he was very impressed by her!

#94 Jack Reed

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 12:25 PM

Now that I've had a chance to see the whole segment through a couple more times -- hang in there, Buddy! -- I have my further thoughts: Letterman keeps bringing up two themes, It's hard and Is it painful?. That touched a sore spot with me -- isn't this too often the emphasis in popular promotion of ballet? Doesn't it direct people's attention to the wrong places? How about more emphasis on grace and beauty and how the movement goes with the music and so on? What do the rest of you think? Do you watch with concentration on the difficulty, watching for slips or evidence of strain, or do you enjoy the beauty and wonder of it?

#95 Simon G

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 02:34 PM

Jack,

I think you're reading far too much into this. Letterman complemented Part on several occasions for her grace, her athleticism and her ability. Bringing up the painful element of dancing is no different from questioning an athlete on injury, pain and endeavour - instead of reading a sinister overtone into what are completely innocent harmless questions, isn't it great that a ballerina is being asked those questions on Letterman rather than Serena Williams, Michael Phelps or Rafael Nadel?

I think it's important that everyone stop focussing on the negative and what "should" have been but be happy that for the first time in decades a wonderful ballerina was given a huge nationwide audience to promote her art form by just being herself. In terms of marketing for ballet Part probably did more in those six minutes for ballet than the entire combined marketing budgets of all the large, mid scale and small ballet companies in the US.

And this is the thing to remember, no one likes ballet, no one of course we do, but in terms of the wider public consciousness its silly, elitist, boring, anachonistic, self regarding and exclusory, precious and snobbish and not worth taking notice of - and then there was the wonderful Veronika Part who in six minutes proved herself to be none of those things and by proxy ballet too.

I agree with Farrell fan that I doubt she's made a huge longterm impact on new ballet fans, but I'd be willing to bet that for a good few months at least ticket sales for ballet companies throughout the US, and especially at ABT for Part's performances will take a distinct and dramatic upturn.

#96 Jack Reed

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:11 PM

Okay, I know I'm a pessimist by habit -- but I'm a true pessimist: I'm pessimistic about my pessimism. I may be wrong! Maybe, overall, her appearance brought more high regard for what we value. We can always hope. But ballet as athletics? I still wince at that.

#97 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:23 PM

...just a little addition to this-(I know, I said I was done with the subject, but I can't hold my fingers...). My BIGGEST complain is just how...uninteresting were Letterman's questions. If this whole thing is previewed by both the interviewer and the interviewee, then the choice of questions wasn't quite right. Even if Part is not that language-fluent, even if Letterman is not a ballet connosseur, even it the audience is "average"...something more exciting could have been said...(like even mentioning/promoting some current/future performances). A BIG plus would have been to have presented a fragment-(just like they do with THE MUST of the guests, either actors or ahtletes, of let's say Veronika's Odile doing the 32 fouettes. I don't think that would have taken that long, and I BET it would have been A PLUS for the audience, even for the average one. (Hell, it STILL does wonders to me...).
Just a thought...

#98 Jack Reed

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:44 PM

Cristian, do you mean you would have had her present "the 32" there in the studio? They did show a clip with her about as light and airborne as she likely gets without a porteur; for the few seconds it lasted, I thought it was a very good taste of ballet's distinctive aerial quality, which sets it apart from other theatrical and show dancing. Sometimes a run of fouettes looks more like a stunt. (Sorry, but sometimes I'm reminded that we can only disagree if we care about the same thing...)

#99 DeborahB

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:50 PM

Cristian -- I said I was done with this too (LOL).

All I can say is that having a ballerina on national tv is a minor miracle.
She's not the star -- Letterman is/was (and Daniel Radcliffe etc.).
And again, Ms. Part was charming and Dave was charmed by her.

I'm sorry but there's just too much nit-picking going on here.

Having Ms. Part on was a wonderful gift to ABT (and to her).

I suggest we just be happy for ABT, and for Ms. Part ,and hope that this opens doors to for more dancers to appear on national tv.

#100 Jack Reed

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:59 PM

Amen to that!

#101 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 05:41 PM

Cristian, do you mean you would have had her present "the 32" there in the studio?

Oh, no Jack...I meant in a video clip...althought the idea of the Black Swan coda LIVE does indeed sound wonderful to me. Now, I know that THAT would be close to surreal...but yes, even if presented as a stunt, it would have been very exciting. Hey...I even felt that presenting Part going on pointe was meant to be perceived as a mere stunt, to which people responded applauding and cheering.

#102 kfw

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 05:47 PM

I suggest we just be happy for ABT, and for Ms. Part

and say a prayer of thanks for Tony Mendez! :lol:

#103 Helene

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 06:19 PM

I'm thrilled that it was Part.

#104 Simon G

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 02:05 AM

Oh, no Jack...I meant in a video clip...althought the idea of the Black Swan coda LIVE does indeed sound wonderful to me. Now, I know that THAT would be close to surreal...but yes, even if presented as a stunt, it would have been very exciting. Hey...I even felt that presenting Part going on pointe was meant to be perceived as a mere stunt, to which people responded applauding and cheering.



Cuban,

The problem with extended clips shown on primetime TV is that rights have to be paid after a very short amount of time dependent on the contract with the film company who filmed the ballet and AGMA and whatever other governing bodies regulating the performance rights of musicians, directors, producer etc

That means for the fouette coda every dancer seen, every musician playing and a whole host of technical, backstage and production crew would all have to be paid for a short segment which would have passed for nothing and detracted from the main event Part, herself.

So they audience applauded when she went on pointe? So what, would you rather they'd booed or laughed at her? It was a rather sweet and lovely moment - extended ballet clips would have been out of place in the context of what this interview, the format of Letterman and what the segment was about.

The interview was fun, not pretentious, perfect in context of what it was and for the format it served - a light, engaging segment in a light entertainment chat show. Anything else would have only excluded the audience for which it was intended.

Jack, I hear what you're saying about ballet not merely being an athletic event, but an art form, I agree, but for a widespread audience who dislike or are indifferent to ballet, what's wrong with focusing on how incredibly hard it is to master as an athletic art?

I kind of get the feeling that people want to be outraged, upset, disgusted etc with Part on Letterman so much so that they're not allowing themselves to enjoy this event for what it was.

I thought Veronika Part was absolutely great, this is a reason to be happy, she did ballet a great service in agreeing to go on Letterman and being as super, charming, sexy, intelligent, humourous and engaging as she was.

#105 DeborahB

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 02:27 AM

I suggest we just be happy for ABT, and for Ms. Part

and say a prayer of thanks for Tony Mendez! :clapping:


You are so right, KFW! Tony is not only a nice guy (to be honest, the entire Letterman crew is great), but he has enough clout (thank goodness!)
to have helped make this happen!


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