Saturday, December 3
Posted 03 December 2011 - 05:24 PM
The Ballet West dancers were in tiptop shape, as usual. Their biggest challenge will always be to make this year's production even better than the last somehow. When so many people revisit this beloved ballet year after year, the company is charged with consistently kicking it up a notch — which in most cases it is doing.
Seasoned Sugar Plum couple Christiana Bennett and Christopher Ruud danced opening night. However, I took in an alternate Plum couple featuring Arolyn Williams and Christopher Sellers, slated to dance Saturday evening. Williams embodied the disparate lilting delicacy and the meaty technique of this legendary role, visibly growing with each movement. The grand pas between her and Sellers was a study in long lines, precise angles, sweep of movement and classical fanfare.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 05:32 PM
The story of ballerina Randi Osetek is not typical. She dances with Carolina Ballet and also dances the featured role of the Sugar Plum Fairy in "Green Bay Nutcracker Ballet," choreographed by Timothy Josephs of the Green Bay School of Dance and artistic director of Northeastern Wisconsin Dance Organization.
Posted 03 December 2011 - 10:55 PM
Girls would also resort to breast reduction operations to keep their slim frames, she said, adding: "They're crazy – I am a woman first, then a ballerina." Garritano claimed that one in five students had become anorexic and a smaller number bulimic, and the same proportion were still suffering, "not just at La Scala, but in the business. And many now cannot have children."
A spokeswoman for La Scala declined to comment about the danger of anorexia at the academy today. Garritano said she that had been told not to discuss it publicly. "But I talk to people coming through the system, and it seems nothing has changed. Too often the teachers are frustrated former ballerinas who do to others what has happened to them."
Posted 04 December 2011 - 05:21 PM
Q. Why make such an old chestnut part of that?
A. “The Nutcracker’’ is the only traditional ballet we do. It’s very appropriate to the organization, because the organization has both a professional company and a school. So it’s a way of wedding the two. And also “The Nutcracker’’ historically has been a very important ballet in terms of initiating new audiences to the art form. But for a company that really is constantly creating new work, it’s a very good thing that we are able to teach the benefits of tradition to the children, and to the company as well. It keeps us in touch with that tradition.
Posted 05 December 2011 - 03:36 PM
Mr. B's interpretation of the beloved Christmas ballet story is arguably the most famous stage version, but it's an uncommon treat for Ottawa audiences. A nearly full house turned out for the Southam Hall premiere. The large crowd was due perhaps in part to the novelty of the company and the production, but also because so many young Ottawa dancers were participating in the performance, with supportive families in tow.
Balanchine's choreography features more difficult and prominent dances, for a larger number of children, than other productions. From the moment the curtain rises, the spotlight is on the children, as young Marie and her naughty brother Fritz tussle while trying to glimpse the Christmas tree being prepared in the next room.
Posted 06 December 2011 - 12:47 PM
In its first year, the award's criteria remain rather vague, and though there can be no quibbling about Lecavalier's merits, it would be useful in the future to clarify just how and why the jury came to its decision. For the record, the jury - or more precisely, the award's "administrative council" - consisted of Bissonnette, choreographer Sylvain Émard, Marie Chouinard (ineligible in consequence for award contention this year), Danse Danse series producer Clothilde Cardinal, choreographer Frédérick Gravel, École supérieure de ballet du Québec managing director Alix Laurent, attorney Louise Guerette, and Michel Raymond, director of the Margie Gillis Foundation.
Posted 06 December 2011 - 12:49 PM
In the five decades of Ballet West’s “Nutcracker” performances, there have been years in which it appeared tired and frayed. Not recently, though. At the Dec. 3 matinee, the Dancing Doll (Lindsay Duerfeldt) looked utterly mechanical, just as she should. Nothing else did.
Willam Christensen’s opening scenes for “Nutcracker” may have little to do with ballet, but they have everything to do with entertainment, and they’ve never looked more rich and polished.
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