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Monday, July 18


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#1 dirac

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 09:06 AM

The Joffrey Ballet's dancers go back to work.

That vote has been scheduled that far out to allow all the dancers, who've been traveling and working elsewhere in some cases, to return to town, according to a company spokesman. Those here, meanwhile, will be allowed to attend class all week. The vote next Monday is expected to occur in a closed studio accessible only to union members before the scheduled noon rehearsals for the fall season take place.

The tentative settlement, reached last week and involving a minimum raise of 10 percent that will vary depending on dancer seniority, came at the end of a week-and-half lockout. A spokesman for the union could not be reached.


Related article.

The life of a professional ballet dancer may look like a glamorous one. But in reality, dance is extremely grueling, high-pressure work, where dancers have little control of their schedules and the highly competitive nature of the business means few want to rock the boat or anger managers who decide the future of their artistic careers.

In a recent story for the Chicago News Cooperative, Meribah Knight details the travails of life for dancers in Chicago’s Joffrey Ballet, a relatively small critically acclaimed company that moved from New York in 1995.



#2 dirac

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 09:11 AM

Benjamin Millepied becomes the poster boy for the YSL fragrance "L'Homme Libre."

Millepied previously revealed how he got a taste for posing in front of the camera while watching his fiancée, Natalie Portman, shoot her Miss Dior Chérie campaign, and it looks like his note-taking has paid off.


Related article.

He is captured midway through performing a pirouette over Manhattan in the shot by photographer Patrick Demarchelier.....

Benjamin and Natalie welcomed a baby boy last month. It was recently revealed he was named Aleph, the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet.



#3 dirac

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 09:17 AM

An interview with Craig Cathcart.

Craig was inspired to take up ballet after he was handed a pamphlet by Julianne Allcorn at Spiral Dance Studios while in primary school. Allcorn later became his teacher.

“I took it home and gave it to Mum and Dad, and told them this is what I want to do and they [said] ‘Are you sure?’

“I tried it out, and I ended up staying with her from the day she opened her school until the day she closed it, so 10 years.”



#4 dirac

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 09:20 AM

Rupert Christiansen muses on the role of the male dancer in the West and proffers the "insiders'" explanation for all the boy-on-boy action in ballet companies.

Being in constant intimate contact with beautifully honed and tensile bodies, stimulated by music and choreography of sensual intensity, and excited by the adrenalin rush of performance, ballet dancers are not surprisingly creatures who spend much of their professional lives on high sexual heat. However great the artistic spirituality involved, what we are talking about here is an animal process of courtship and arousal.

The result is obvious: to put it bluntly, dancers, male and female, are in such a state of readiness that they will grab at anything in a skirt or trousers, leotard or legwarmers, to relieve their itch. Labelling the male-on-male contacts as homosexual or bisexual is missing the point.



#5 dirac

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 09:27 AM

An appreciation of Robert Ivey by Charleston's Director of Cultural Affairs.

In our experience working with him, we found him to be one of the most generous, hard-working members of Charleston's arts and cultural community, making enormous contributions to the quality of life in the Lowcountry.

Robert, who died last week, was one of the chief collaborators who helped the Office of Cultural Affairs design and launch Piccolo Spoleto in 1979. He coordinated Piccolo's Dance Festival and/or the Dance at Noon Series every year since the festival began, generously giving of his time, energy and expertise to the benefit of the festival.



#6 dirac

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 12:57 PM

Associated Press review of the Mariinsky (Kirov) Ballet by Jocelyn Noveck.

But even that tantalizing hint of weirdness didn't prepare for the goofy, inspired fun of "The Little Humpbacked Horse," a romp through Russian folklore that was the clear highlight of the Mariinsky Ballet's weeklong appearance at the Lincoln Center Festival.

Goofy? That's not an adjective one would generally use to describe the Mariinsky, better known to most of us by its former name, the Kirov Ballet. Grand, illustrious, legendary, sometimes mannered and stuffy — any of those would seem more like it.



#7 dirac

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 01:00 PM

Oregon Ballet Theatre revives "OBT Exposed."

The open rehearsals, which continue daily through Saturday, mark the much-anticipated return of OBT Exposed. From 1995 to 2008, the company presented free public rehearsals each summer in Portland's South Park Blocks, but had to suspend them for two years under financial pressure. But on Monday, the series returned to downtown's newest public square, drawing a mix of onlookers, including ballet fans, downtown workers on coffee and lunch breaks, along with plenty of moms with cookie-eating toddlers.



#8 dirac

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Posted 20 July 2011 - 10:30 AM

Pit orchestras in Australia face financial challenges.

It was completed after discussions with the managements of the Australian Ballet, Opera Australia, Victorian Opera and Orchestra Victoria, but excluded musicians, which outraged the Symphony Orchestra Musicians Association.

''The conclusion they reach and advocate for is a continuing program of cutting musician's wages and increasing job insecurity by putting musicians on part-time contracts,'' said the association's national officer, Howard Manley.




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