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ABT's Male Principal ProblemPoll


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Poll: Promote From Within or Go On a Spending Spree? (72 member(s) have cast votes)

To solve its looming shortage of male principals, should ABT:

  1. Promote from within to fill the ranks (45 votes [62.50%])

    Percentage of vote: 62.50%

  2. Go out into the free market and hire male principals from outside the company (27 votes [37.50%])

    Percentage of vote: 37.50%

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#271 abatt

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 06:30 AM

Marcelo is once again increasing his workload to fill in for injured/absent dancers (Today's matinee of Corsaire, the Hee Seo SL). Ironic that Matvienko was supposed to fill the gap for Hallberg's cancellations, but now Matvienko is MIA.

Agree about Gorak. Would like to see more of him. Have not made up my mind about Forster.

#272 Josette

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 10:08 AM

I remember the first time i saw Thomas Forster, when he first joined ABT: he did a saute (sorry, no accent on the e) in arabesque from the upstage left wing onto the stage in The Sleeping Beauty vision scene; and I have been following him ever since. He is a wonderful, well-trained dancer, excellent partner, always fully invested in what he is doing, is natural on stage, and is tall and has beautiful feet. I have been waiting for years to see him given the opportunities his talent and work merits.

#273 abatt

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 10:28 AM

One person they seem to give some good roles to is Eric Tamm. When I first saw him as a last minute fill in a few years ago for David Hallberg (in Theme and Variations?) I was not impressed. However, he looked much better this season as a lead in Symphony in C in the first movement. I think the next male who will be in line for a promotion to principal is James Whiteside. He's carrying a large load of principal assignments this season. They are testing him to see how he does. He's done very well in the roles I've seen him in.

#274 Jayne

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 02:58 PM

Praise for Joseph Gorak:

http://online.wsj.co...2589331648.html

[font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][size=4]First came a marvelous program that opened with a recent restaging of Mark Morris's "Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes" (1988). A witty and rich excursion for 12 dancers to Virgil Thomson piano études, it looked splendid on the expansive Met stage where sterling [/size][/font]corps de ballet[font=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][size=4] dancer Joseph Gorak shone.[/size][/font]



#275 miliosr

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Posted 06 May 2014 - 03:50 PM

I haven't posted in a long time but I did a little research after reading the most recent posts on the 'Met 2014 Season' thread.  Per ABT's Web site, here is the distribution of male principal roles by dancer name.  (Their rank is in parentheses after their name - P = Principal, S = Soloist, C = Corps and GP = Guest Principal/Exchange Artist.)

 

Gomes (P) = 14

Whiteside (P) = 13

Cornejo (P) = 8

Stearns (P) = 8

Hallberg (P) = 7

Simkin (P) = 6

Matthews (S) = 5

Bolle (P) = 4

Radetsky (S) = 3

Jackson (GP) = 2

Tamm © = 2

Shklyarov (GP) = 2

Vasiliev (P) = 2

Gorak © = 1

Hammoudi (S) = 1

Lendorf (GP) = 1

Muntagirov (GP) = 1

Nedak (GP) = 1

Veyette (GP) = 1

 

Several comments:

 

1) Gomes, Stearns (who was slated for more performances until his injury) and Whiteside continue to be the male workhorses at ABT.  If one (or more) of them goes down to injury, ABT is in a world of hurt.

 

2) I continue to question the promotion of Simkin as I do not feel he is carrying a principal's load (largely for height reasons.)

 

3) There is no point in retaining Vasiliev as a principal if he's only going to contribute two performances.  Write him off as a failed experiment.

 

4) Bringing in Lendorf, Jackson, Nedak and Veyette to staunch the schedule bleeding caused by the Stearns injury and the Matvienko withdrawal has got to sit ill with the male corps dancers and soloists.  The Veyette casting in particular has to be a real morale crusher because management is basically making a vote of no confidence in its own male corps.

 

5) It's hard to look at this casting and not come away with the impression that ABT -- at least on the male side -- is a company in disarray.



#276 aurora

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Posted 06 May 2014 - 04:11 PM

 

Jackson is a guest not a principal



#277 ABT Fan

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Posted 06 May 2014 - 05:28 PM

I agree wholeheartedly with every comment, miliosr, and I thank you for putting together such an eye-opening tally.  It is depressing isn't it?  Given how mgmt is handling this Met Season, I'm going to have my eye on the roster post-season to see if any corps members (and how many) leave.  What reason would they have to be optimistic about their future there, when they see how many talented corps and soloist dancers languish for years without a promotion and aren't fully utilized when there are injuries and hence, opportunities?  Giving Matthews, Tamm and Gorak more roles to fill in for the injured is terrific, but not good enough.

 

And, although it pains me to say this, I believe Hallberg should only be a guest artist at this point.  It's clear that his loyalty is to the Bolshoi (and to doing guest appearances worldwide with other companies) and not to ABT.  That's wonderful for him personally (I really mean that) but I can't help but think that his principal status is preventing someone else from getting promoted (like Matthews).  Doing 7 performances in a year is a guest artist's schedule.



#278 bingham

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Posted 06 May 2014 - 06:19 PM

I agree wholeheartedly with every comment, miliosr, and I thank you for putting together such an eye-opening tally.  It is depressing isn't it?  Given how mgmt is handling this Met Season, I'm going to have my eye on the roster post-season to see if any corps members (and how many) leave.  What reason would they have to be optimistic about their future there, when they see how many talented corps and soloist dancers languish for years without a promotion and aren't fully utilized when there are injuries and hence, opportunities?  Giving Matthews, Tamm and Gorak more roles to fill in for the injured is terrific, but not good enough.

 

And, although it pains me to say this, I believe Hallberg should only be a guest artist at this point.  It's clear that his loyalty is to the Bolshoi (and to doing guest appearances worldwide with other companies) and not to ABT.  That's wonderful for him personally (I really mean that) but I can't help but think that his principal status is preventing someone else from getting promoted (like Matthews).  Doing 7 performances in a year is a guest artist's schedule.

How are the principal dancers paid? Is it based on the performances they do for the season? If so,Marcelo should be the highest paid dancer based on the number of his performances.



#279 RUKen

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 02:49 AM

According to abatt in a different thread on ABT salaries, the dancers' salaries are based on a combination of seniority and level in the company (principal/soloist/corps), and they are operating under union contract.  As a result, the two highest salaried principals (of either gender) are Paloma Herrera and Julie Kent.  I believe that Marcelo Gomes is the highest-paid male dancer.



#280 miliosr

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 02:49 AM

Jackson is a guest not a principal

Corrected

 

Given how mgmt is handling this Met Season, I'm going to have my eye on the roster post-season to see if any corps members (and how many) leave. What reason would they have to be optimistic about their future there, when they see how many talented corps and soloist dancers languish for years without a promotion and aren't fully utilized when there are injuries and hence, opportunities?

I've been concerned about this ever since Isaac Stappas didn't reach the soloist level.  Ten years ago, his career was flourishing . . . and then it wasn't.  No surprise, then, to hear several years ago that he was leaving ABT to pursue his studies.

 

I, too, am curious to see if more corps guys leave after the Met season.  Last year was a bad one for ABT in that it lost Roddy Doble (to Boston) and Joe Phillips (to Vladivostock).  Phillips' decision raised eyebrows (due to the location) but I think he was smart.  He could count where he was in the promotion hierarchy (at a minimum, behind Tom Forster and Joey Gorak) and decamped to someplace where he could actually dance principal roles. 

 

There's a whole raft of corps guys who joined ABT in 2004 -- Alexei Agoudine, Grant Delong, Blaine Hoven, Luis Ribagorda, Arron Scott and Roman Zhurbin.  Ribagorda will stay because of his wife, Sarah Lane, Scott is in line to replace Craig Salstein if Salstein chooses to retire so he has reason to stay, and Zhurbin has a thriving career at ABT as one of the finest actor-dancers in New York.  (I just wish they would name him principal character actor.)  But the other three might want to consider their options because I don't know what's left for them at ABT.

 

Giving Matthews, Tamm and Gorak more roles to fill in for the injured is terrific, but not good enough.
If I were Matthews and Tamm, who picked up performances because of the Stearns and Matvienko situations, it would not be unreasonable to ask, "If I'm good enough to sub, why aren't I good enough to get these performances in the first place?"  And if the response is, "Well, we need big names to fill the Met", then the immediate and obvious retort should be, "Then why are you bringing in guys from Australia and Ukraine who people have barely heard of?"

 

And, although it pains me to say this, I believe Hallberg should only be a guest artist at this point. It's clear that his loyalty is to the Bolshoi (and to doing guest appearances worldwide with other companies) and not to ABT. That's wonderful for him personally (I really mean that) but I can't help but think that his principal status is preventing someone else from getting promoted (like Matthews). Doing 7 performances in a year is a guest artist's schedule.
In the absence of the Stearns injury and the Matvienko withdrawal, Hallberg was actually scheduled to do fewer performances.  He was closer to Bolle in that regard.  So, he is, along with Bolle and Vasiliev, very much a guest artist/part-time principal.

#281 abatt

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 05:24 AM

I think when additional casting is announced, Simkin will probably be listed for Puck, which is a lead role. (Probably also Salstein, and maybe Cornejo too) The numbers above may have to be adjusted.



#282 Kaysta

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 08:56 AM

Anyone see the news?

 

Jared Matthews is leaving for Houston ballet at the end of the Met season.



#283 California

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 09:02 AM

Anyone see the news?

 

Jared Matthews is leaving for Houston ballet at the end of the Met season.

We have a couple of other threads going on this. Yuriko Kajiya is also going to Houston.



#284 Kaysta

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 09:08 AM

 

Anyone see the news?

 

Jared Matthews is leaving for Houston ballet at the end of the Met season.

We have a couple of other threads going on this. Yuriko Kajiya is also going to Houston.

 

Yeah, I saw your post in the other thread.  Sorry, don't leave the ABT forum all that often, so didn't see it over there.  Didn't mention Kajiya here as its a thread about the male principals at ABT.



#285 miliosr

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Posted 07 May 2014 - 09:17 AM

And now the other shoe drops.  With Matthews and Radetsky both leaving at the end of the Met season, ABT will be left with a decimated soloist contingent consisting of Craig Salstein and oft-injured Alexandre Hammoudi.




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