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Thursday, July 21


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#1 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 09:50 AM

A preview of San Francisco Ballet's annual appearance at Stern Grove by Allan Ulrich in The San Francisco Chronicle.

This yearly date is, agonizingly, the only occasion on which the home crowd gets to see this extraordinary company perform between the first week of May and mid-December. No surprise that the Ballet's Grove visits draw, according to the festival's calculations, an average audience of 8,000.

As is customary at the festival, Artistic Director Helgi Tomasson will reprise hits from the last repertory season at the War Memorial Opera House. This year, the rich fare includes Tomasson's elegant "7 for Eight," a 2004 suite set to sundry J.S. Bach movements and tailored to the talents of the company's outstanding principal dancers. The afternoon will end with "Symphony in C," George Balanchine's exuberant and intricate 1947 tribute to French culture, as life-affirming a masterpiece as you will find in 20th century ballet.



#2 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 09:56 AM

A report on reports of Miami City Ballet's reception in Paris; a new ballet reality show is planned.

Speaking of Black Swan, it's highly likely that no producer would have bank rolled a ballet reality show if not for the Natalie Portman freakout film. The Darren Aronofsky flick highlighted the extreme pressure, and possible psychological breakdown (complete with imagined sexual encounters with Mila Kunis), behind ballet's curtains.

En Pointe, which will eventually follow ballet companies in Austin and Atlanta among other U.S. cities, will undoubtedly capture the extreme physical and mental endurance it takes to perform on the tips of one's toes with grace. But without genius Aronofsky behind the camera (and say no one sprouts feathers from their shoulder blades or swaps spit with a Kunis lookalike), the series may indeed fall very short of the success of Black Swan. In fact, as of this posting, no channel has signed on to air the ballet reality series.



#3 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 09:58 AM

The Bolshoi Ballet holds open auditions for the first time.

With hundreds of applicants whittled down to a shortlist of 50 – 23 women and 27 men – simply getting through the doors was a major achievement. But having got so close to what, for many dancers, was a lifelong dream, the pressure was starting to tell.

Yevgenia Savarskaya is a familiar face to Moscow ballet lovers, thanks to her role as a soloist with the Kremlin Ballet Theater.
But even she admitted to a touch of stage-fright in front of the judges.



#4 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:00 AM

A review of the Bolshoi Ballet by Yelena Andrusenko for The Voice of Russia.

Five premieres and not a single classical ballet, only new avant-garde performances. Such was the latest season of the Bolshoi Theatre ballet company. It comes to an end on the 21st of July with a premiere of modern ballets.

Because of the restoration of the main building of the Bolshoi Theatre which lasted for several years, the Bolshoi ballet company worked on the New Stage all the time, mastering new avant-garde choreography which was practically never allowed into their repertoire in the past. Thus the Bolshoi Theatre has staged ballets by Angelin Preljocaj, William Forsythe, modern classic of choreography Jiri Kylian, fashionable British choreographer Wayne McGregor (ballet Chroma) and Balanchine’s ballets.



#5 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:04 AM

The Australian Ballet's educational program expands to New South Wales.

The company says its Out There program is expanding this year to reach more than 9000 students aged five to 12 in NSW, Victoria and, for the first time, Queensland, with interactive lessons that move from movement skills and rhythm to language and Australian wildlife.

Of course ballet isn't always an easy sell to boys. Student Leon Rettie, 9, admitted: ''Everyone I talk to about it, they're like 'that's more of a girls' thing'.''



#6 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:05 AM

Matthew Donnelly of the Australian Ballet talks about playing the role of Gamache.

He plays foppish nobleman Gamache, the ballet’s comic relief - wearing an equally amusing costume.

“The character is quite eccentric and he wears a very elaborate hat. It’s actually quite challenging to walk through the door of my house in the first act,” the former Royal Danish Ballet dancer said.



#7 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:11 AM

A feature on masseur Mitch Gries.

He started massaging other dancers in 1977 and took massage classes in college and also took courses in Rolfing, Therapeutic Stretching and became certified in the St. John’s Method of Neuromuscular Massage Therapy, which I think may be the single best technique a masseur can master.

In his first year he massaged the Dance Theater of Harlem, the first international cast of A Chorus Line and famed Russian ballet star Rudolph Nuryev, known as one of the world’s very best. He moved to Los Angeles hoping to work on maybe the best ballet dancer in the world, Mikhail Baryshnikov. The American Ballet Theater came to LA in 1978 and Mitch was introduced to Baryshnikov.



#8 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:13 AM

Roberto Bolle performs in Istanbul.

Wednesday evening saw ballet superstar Robert Bolle take to the İstanbul Cemil Topuzlu Open-air Theater accompanied by 10 of Europe’s most talented dancers in the first of two nights of his enchanting show, “Roberto Bolle and Friends,” the second of which will take place on Thursday evening.

As the first time that the 36-year-old heartthrob has performed in İstanbul, both local and foreign fans flocked to the premiere show to see a man widely recognized as one of the greatest male dancers of his generation, perform in his element, the Anatolia agency reported Wednesday.



#9 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:16 AM

The Heinz Poll Summer Dance Festival gets underway.

Startzman said the companies involved will be branching into the community with programs that will make this a significant city dance event. Each of the dance troupes will host a master class at the UA Center for Dance and Theatre in Guzzetta Hall from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on the Saturdays that they perform. Each class is limited to 30 students of intermediate or better abilities. For more details, call 330-972-7948 or email dance@uakron .edu.



#10 dirac

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:20 AM

A story on three students from the School of Alberta Ballet who will compete in the Cecchetti International Classical Ballet Competition this year.

The importance of a competition such as the Cecchetti to a young dancer poised in all likelihood on the threshold of apprenticeship with a well-established company?

"Getting to go to Europe where they've never been and seeing other dancers from eight different countries - I mean, how exciting is that?" says Zerbe. "They're making a memory that will be with them forever."



#11 dirac

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 10:50 AM

Staff changes are announced at Gwinnett Ballet Theatre.

Gwinnett Ballet Theatre is Gwinnett County’s oldest nonprofit performing arts organization, formed in 1977 by Lynne Snipes. For the past 14 years, Lisa Sheppard Robson has been at the helm as artistic director, steering the company to achieve many honors and produce many wonderful dancers.

Robson is now handing over the reins to a new generation of leadership. Beginning with the new school year Aug. 8, dancers and parents will be greeted by new artistic director Jaime Robtison and new school administrator Brandin Prettyman. Prettyman replaces retiring school director Susan DeParle.



#12 dirac

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 10:51 AM

The managing director of Houston Ballet, C.C. Conner, announces his retirement.

He will pass the reins to the dance company's general manager James Nelson, who will step in as the top dog with a new executive director title.

The announcement wasn't unexpected. The 69-year-old Conner had been telling people that his "swan song" was overseeing the successful opening of the ballet's new $47-million downtown building — the Houston Ballet Center for Dance.



#13 dirac

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Posted 22 July 2011 - 10:55 AM

George Daugherty, the former principal conductor and music director for the Louisville Ballet, writes an op-ed about the city's orchestra.

I am, therefore, stunned and deeply saddened that this orchestra's extraordinary ensemble of musicians is now being offered a paltry $18,000 maximum per year for part-time work, no benefits and a “take it or leave it” ultimatum. Unbelievable. Truly, a tragedy. The current management of the L.O. needs to realize that if they replace these fine musicians with whoever is willing to work under these untenable conditions, they will no longer have anything close to a world-class orchestra. Without the legitimate musicians of the Louisville Orchestra, the Louisville Orchestra is no longer the Louisville Orchestra. It will be as fake as a Rolex bought on the street for $25.




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