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Tuesday, July 5


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#1 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:15 AM

More on the labor negotiations at Joffrey Ballet.

The Chicago Tribune

The Joffrey's last proposal, which was submitted to AGMA Midwest area representative Barbara Hillman (an attorney with the Chicago firm Cornfield and Feldman), called for a five-year contract that would include a 3 percent wage increase for each year.

That's less than dancers were getting under the old contract (which gave a 5 percent increase for each of the contract's three years), and it does not take into account the increase in work hours. "However, Joffrey already offers weekly wages considerably higher than many AGMA companies that require the six-hour rehearsal day/30-hour week," Conway countered, "and our sole motivation is to attract world-class choreographers for the dancers and audiences."


The Chicago Sun-Times

Attempts to reach Barbara Hillman, the dancers’ AGMA representative, who is with the law firm of Cornfield and Feldman, were unsuccessful over the holiday weekend.



#2 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:21 AM

A preview of the 2011-12 dance season by Hedy Weiss in The Chicago Sun-Times.

The Harris Theater for Music and Dance has put the finishing touches on an action-packed 2011-12 season that will include some of the top artists on the international scene. Highlights include:

† The fabled Paris Opera Ballet’s first-ever stop in Chicago, launching an American tour here with performances of “Giselle” (June 27-28, 2012), as well as a mixed bill of rarely seen 20th century neo-classical works including Serge Lifar’s “Suite en blanc,” Roman Petit’s “L’Arlesienne” and Maurice Bejart’s “Le Bolero” (June 29-July 1). All performances will be accompanied by the Grant Park Orchestra.



#3 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:23 AM

Nevada Ballet Theatre offers summer classes.

The Nevada Ballet Theatre offers a number of summer classes for everyone from novice to intermediate levels. One of them is Barre Only, which, as its name implies, uses exercises at the barre -- the horizontal pole that lines a ballet studio -- as the only equipment. All ages and experience levels are welcome.



#4 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:25 AM

A story on the ongoing financial challenges for New York City Ballet in Saratoga by Dennis Yusko in The Albany Times Union.

City Ballet and The Philadelphia Orchestra do not sell nearly enough tickets to cover their costs. Each loses about $1 million a year. The holes are filled through member gifts and contributions. The New York City Ballet filled 34,509 seats at SPAC in 2010, down from 34,895 the previous year.

"The crowds are not so much crowds anymore," Fantauzzi said. "The disposable income people used to set aside to support the arts now goes to more necessary and immediate expenses."



#5 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:31 AM

Ivan Vasiliev and Natalia Osipova rehearse Ashton's "Romeo and Juliet."

Now this dazzling pairing is to capitalise on both its on-and-off stage connection in – what else? – Romeo and Juliet. Tickets for the nine-show run at the Coliseum will be so hot that they will burn your fingers, not least because there is an additional curiosity value. For the couple will not be dancing the Kenneth Macmillan Romeo and Juliet (which Osipova recently performed for American Ballet Theater). Instead, they will offer the rarely seen Frederick Ashton version, created in 1955 to the familiar Prokofiev score.

This new staging is by Peter Schaufuss, former star dancer in his native Denmark and with the Royal Ballet. He has a profound association with the Ashton Romeo and Juliet. When it was offered to Dame Ninette de Valois, she shied away from it, fearing comparisons with the brilliant Bolshoi version that was soon to come to Britain. So Ashton took his new work to the Royal Danish Ballet: his Juliet and Mercutio were danced by Peter Schaufuss’s parents. When Ashton died in 1988, he left Romeo and Juliet to Schaufuss in his will.



#6 dirac

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 09:37 AM

A cover story on Veronika Part by Laura Jacobs for Dance Magazine.

Nevertheless, we live in the fast-paced era of allegro. Part, at 5' 8", had to strive for the speed and attack that is so valued in America. “I have a very specific body that makes my life onstage more difficult,” Part explains. “Long legs, flexible and hyper-extended. A big arch and a very thin ankle.”

“Because Veronika’s feet are so long and thin,” says Kolpakova, “they’re not strong. Her leg—it’s beautiful but not straight. She works very hard to understand each position.”



#7 dirac

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 10:47 AM

A blog post on the labor problems at the Joffrey by Zachary Whittenburg for Time Out Chicago.

Contract negotiations between Joffrey Ballet management and its dancers via their union, the American Guild of Musical Artists, broke down on Friday, as first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times yesterday morning. What happens from here could well hinge on whether there’s a fundamental difference between stonewalling and an impasse: The company claims its hand was forced due to an AGMA lawyer frequently missing in action and, so far, that lawyer has granted only one interview, with The New York Times, which quoted her in a blog post published on Monday afternoon.

“We were in the process of getting a response to the company when we heard about this lockout,” Barbara Hillman told Times reporter Melena Ryzik. “We were totally surprised by this.”



#8 dirac

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 10:40 AM

A WNYT preview of New York City Ballet in Saratoga, with video.

But it has been a struggle in recent years to keep the tradition going. White said ticket sales only cover about 47 percent of the cost to bring world-class ballet to SPAC. She said the rest of the money has to be raised through sponsorships and other means.

White is trying to build a younger audience to bring more people to the seats by mixing a little contemporary with the classics.




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