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Wednesday, December 7


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#1 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 11:51 AM

An interview with Angus McLane, Northwest Ballet's Drosselmeyer.

Q: And ballet?

A: My son, who is now 21, started dancing ballet when he was 14. Pacific Dance Company in Bellingham was staging "Peter Pan" and my son, Ian, had the title role. I played a pirate role along with several other parents and found a whole new way to be on stage, without any dialogue!

The company became Northwest Ballet, owned and run by John Bishop, who had been in Anacortes for several years. My son and I both continued to participate in productions for the following two years and I have continued on my own doing two or three ballet productions each year since John Bishop took over

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#2 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 11:53 AM

A review of "Orlando Ballet Uncorked!" by Matthew J. Palm in The Orlando Sentinel.

Watching selections from "The Nutcracker" without the elaborate set or storyline left the focus on the dancing — Katia Garza flitting across the stage as Sugar Plum Fairy was breathtaking.

During the performances was where the "master class" element crept in, but it might be wise for Hill to broaden his commentary for a wider audience. It was interesting to hear that what Garza had just performed was very difficult — but what makes it so difficult? How does one practice such moves?



#3 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 11:55 AM

Some venues and performing arts groups are offering "tweet seats." Story by Kara Rose in USA Today.

A growing number of theaters and performing groups across the country are setting aside "tweet seats," in-house seats for patrons to live-tweet during performances, including the Carolina Ballet in Raleigh, N.C., and the Dayton Opera in Dayton, Ohio.

Rick Dildine, the executive director for Shakespeare Festival St. Louis — an outdoor theater festival that began using tweet seats two years ago — said tweet seats have "become a national trend."



#4 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 11:57 AM

A feature on local Nutcrackers by Leonard Eureka for Fort Worth Weekly.

Ballet Frontier, the performing wing of Fort Worth Ballet Center, is a smaller operation but puts together ambitious programs throughout the year at W.E. Scott Theatre in Fort Worth Community Arts Center. For Ballet Frontier’s Nutcracker, company director Chung-lin Tseng and wife Enrica Tseng, both former TBT dancers, had assembled good-looking scenery, handsome costumes, and well-rehearsed dancers; the 12 corps members for the Waltz of the Flowers (an innocuous name for a stirring bit of music) were admirably in sync. Guest dancers Marina Goshko and Andrey Prikhodko from the erstwhile MCB danced the Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier duet, and the enthusiastic youngsters in the audience cheered the powerhouse performance.

MCB may be officially dead, but its name will appear one more time, in San Antonio next weekend, when company co-director Paul Mejia puts on a Nutcracker for Arts San Antonio under the MCB banner. In a recent phone conversation, Mejia explained that the Nutcracker performances had been on the books there for months and tickets had already been sold. “I wanted to honor the commitment,” he said. He acquired permission to use the company name and actually rented sets and some of the costumes from the board of directors, the controllers of the company’s assets. “Friends and colleagues have been wonderful in helping me get this together,” he said.



#5 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 12:00 PM

Goldstar announces the nominees for its annual National Nutcracker Award.

The Goldstar National Nutcracker Award, which made its debut in 2007, is awarded to the The Nutcracker with the best member reviews and event rating. To assure the authenticity of the ratings, members are only able to submit reviews and vote on their favorite Nutcracker after they have purchased tickets and seen the show.

In addition to the Nutty, the winner will also be given a $2,500 cash prize to be used toward their education programs

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#6 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 12:02 PM

New York magazine offers a contest to win free tickets for a performance of "Ocean's Kingdom."

To enter the contest, simply write a haiku — that's five, seven, and five syllables per line — in the comments below in celebration of any aspect of Sir Paul McCartney's long career: Could be a Beatles or solo song, his life, his new mastery of ballet, or even his bravura ability to play all instruments in movie-promotion music videos!



#7 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 12:04 PM

A listing of Chicago-area Nutcrackers by Scott C. Morgan for The Windy City Times.


lthough many suburban ballet companies utilize mostly local dancers for The Nutcracker, professionals are frequently brought in to dance the roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy, her Cavalier and the Snow Queen and King. Salt Creek Ballet promises dancers from American Ballet Theatre and other international performers to guest in its production of The Nutcracker, which plays at the Center for Performing Arts at Governors State University, 1 University Parkway, off I-57 at Sauk Trail, University Park. Performances are at 1 and 5 p.m. Dec. 10. Tickets are $33-$40; call 708-235-2222 or visit http:// www.centertickets.net .



#8 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 12:07 PM

A review of a Blu-Ray disc of the Paris Opera Ballet in "Coppélia."

A 30-minute featurette on the back story, “The Mystery of Coppélia,” authored by Reiner Moritz, is an entertaining and fascinating view of the ballet. Well worth watching.



#9 dirac

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 11:07 AM

The Delta Children's Ballet presents " The Little Match Girl."

Sobel Idul said the production is much the same as in previous years, keeping up with the way the school performed the ballet when it was under the direction of previous owner, Helga Ishikata. She stated that Ishikata's rendition of the popular Hans Christian Andersen poem-turned-ballet has been much loved over the years and the troupe is keeping with the same variations.

While last year the group made a few modifications to the production to allow professionals to perform in the event because it was celebrating their 20th anniversary of the production, this year the ballet will go back to featuring the children who are members of the Delta Children's Ballet company.



#10 dirac

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 11:09 AM

A review of the University of Oklahoma's Nutcracker by John Brandenburg in The Oklahoman.

Other assets to the production were beautiful sets, lighting, costumes and the moving, memorable music of a large symphony orchestra, performing in front of the stage, conducted by Jonathan Shames.



#11 dirac

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Posted 08 December 2011 - 11:11 AM

Q&A with Gabriel Gaffney Smith and Jimmy Orante of BalletMet.

How are women able to wear pointe shoes?

Smith: They have really strong toes, but a lot of it on pointe is having a really strong ankle. That’s what’s going to hold you on balance. The box [of the shoe] cramps your toes together so they’re smushed together, and you build calluses on your toes like a farmer does on his hands.

When you’re watching someone dance on pointe, are they in pain, or are they just used to it?

Orrante: I don’t know if they get used to it, because I always hear how their feet are just killing them. Especially when they’re in them for a full long day; their feet get swollen and start to throb.




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