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Friday, April 13


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#1 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:37 AM

More stories on the appointment of Tamara Rojo to the artistic directorship of English National Ballet.

The Telegraph

But should we be surprised that the Spanish dancer is taking the top job at ENB? Not really. Educated, articulate and very bright, Rojo has been stretching her administrative wings for some years now, already sits on the board of Arts Council East, Dance UK and the ICA, and has long been talked about as a future director of one of our leading ballet companies.


The Evening Standard

She said she wished she was not taking over after a 15 per cent cut in Arts Council funding but added: “I hope I have the resources and the imagination and the strength to do it.”


The Independent

Ms Rojo, a principal dancer at the Royal Ballet, will replace Canadian Wayne Eagling – whose departure after seven years remains shrouded in mystery – in September.

She first came to the UK 15 years ago as a dancer with the ENB, before graduating to principal dancer. ENB chairman John Talbot said: "Her reputation was initially built here, and she has maintained contacts with the organisation."



#2 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:40 AM

BBC News story on Rojo.

She said she is "honoured" to take up the directorship, and would consider expanding the company's work into other art forms.

"I am particularly excited about working with young British choreographers and building strong relationships with our audiences in the regions," she added.


Q&A.

Q: Why on earth do you want to be a director? – it’s just one problem after another and few agree with the decisions you make!

First I want to give back to the artform what I have received from the artform – which is lots of years of wisdom, passed to me by very generous people, be they directors, teachers or coaches. They have given me this huge amount of knowledge that I feel responsible for. And one of the ways you can deliver back is directing a company where you can help dancers develop and reach whatever dreams they have. And I want to bring more of the public to the artform and see the enjoyment it brings. I suppose I believe I have something to say!



#3 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:41 AM

Sacramento Ballet presents an all-Balanchine program.

The six works on the upcoming program are not entirely new. They've been performed either in full or as excerpts by the ballet on previous dates, but none of them since spring 2000.

"We've never put so much Balanchine back to back. We've never even done a full Balanchine program," said Binda. The 90-minute program features an array of some of the choreographer's most famous works, including "Tarantella," "Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux" and excerpts from "Stars and Stripes" and "The Four Temperaments."



#4 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:46 AM

Reviews of Scottish Ballet's "A Streetcar Named Desire."

The Telegraph

Typically of outgoing Scottish Ballet director Ashley Page’s leadership, the piece is the consequence of an audacious experiment. He invited Nancy Meckler (best known as co-artistic director of the Oxford-based theatre company Shared Experience) to direct her first ballet in collaboration with the Belgian-Colombian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa (for whom this is a first foray into narrative dance). The result is a brilliantly bold and sensitive ballet which is full of memorable set pieces.


Daily Express

Created around a number of beer crates that act as building blocks for walls, chairs and tables, the set is simple and effective, especially when Blanche’s plantation house literally collapses.

John Salem’s original score is enormously varied, rarely straying into cliché in spite of the occasional use of sleazy sax and lonelyheart piano.


The Stage

To John Salem’s original and atmospheric score, Ochoa creates short bursts of action and rapid groupings, almost entirely dominated by Eve Mutso’s willowy Blanche, who is haunted by the ghost of her dead husband and her own deluded fantasies.

While the combination of naturalistic gesture and dance is hard to accommodate at first, the stylised ensembles reveal an assured integration of stagecraft and cinematic vision. Sometimes there is too much going on - the flower sellers occupy too much time and space without purpose, and what’s with the Umbrellas of Cherbourg sequence?



#5 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:53 AM

A feature on Gareth Pugh's designs for the Royal Ballet's "Carbon Life" by Trisha Andres in The Huffington Post.


In this instance, point shoes have taken the form of moulded, thigh high black boots while tutus have been rendered with spikes. Then there are the angular pointed masks and bodices with fitted veils. All in all, a fresh albeit unusual take on ballet costumes.

But then again, there's nothing conventional about this production. With a stellar lineup that reads like the cast of a sold-out music festival -- award-winning music producer Mark Ronson on bass guitar accompanied by an ensemble including, Alison Mosshart of the Kills, Jonny Pierce of the Drums and Boy George with Rufus Wainwright orchestrating three of the nine songs -- Carbon Life is an experiment in collaboration but also the Royal Opera House's bid to attract a younger demographic to the venue.



#6 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:55 AM

A review of Alonzo King's LInes Ballet's season opener by Gilly Lloyd from examiner.com.

With his scientific approach to ballet, King believes that 'both dance and architecture take information from metaphysical and natural laws which govern the shapes and movement directions of everything that exists.' He describes Triangle of the Squinches as an exploration of the inner and outer space of the body - prompted by his thought processes as to how we 'strive to touch something infinite with our material forms', and 'the resonance between the bodies we inhabit and the forms we create'.



#7 dirac

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Posted 13 April 2012 - 10:58 AM

Photo gallery of Tamara Rojo dancing.

We take a look at some of her greatest roles for the Royal Ballet and English National Ballet from 2000 to the present.



#8 dirac

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 11:00 AM

Reviews of San Francisco Ballet.

The San Jose Mercury News

"Divertimento No. 15" and "Scotch Symphony" prepared us for this particularly astringent modernism by cooking 19th- century classicism down to its fundamentals. "Divertimento" was buoyed by Mozart's glorious chamber music of the same name, and it sparkled and soared with courtly beauty as the dance was meant to sublimely entertain us with the architectural refinement of classical ballet.

But as thunderstorms raged outside the theater, the orchestra's pitch faltered and the dancers struggled with the paradox of secure technique mixed with movement torques that require that form be loosened. Only Gennadi Nedvigin seemed wholly unfazed among the men, with his unflagging technique letting him soar and pause with wit. Among the women, Vanessa Zahorian and Frances Chung, with their long legs, freed themselves to devour space and cheekily shoot off turns. The rest of the cast looked insecure.


The San Francisco Examiner


On opening night, Taras Domitro, Sarah van Patten, Tiit Helimet, Vito Mazzeo and Sofiane Sylve shone in featured roles, while the backing corps – especially Sasha DeSola and Wan Ting Zhao – held statue-like, difficult poses at length with strength and grace. The orchestra sizzled.

That wasn’t the case in the opening work, "Divertimento No. 15," set to Mozart's music. The listless, occasionally downright sloppy, orchestra didn't help the “pretty” choreography – not one of the master's best.



#9 dirac

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 11:05 AM

A preview of Washington Ballet's 2012-13 season by Sarah Kaufman in The Washington Post. Photo gallery.

Hemingway’s novel of an American journalist in the 1920s, running with girls in Paris and bulls in Pamplona, Spain, is curious material for a ballet, but then so is “The Great Gatsby.” However, it was his 2010 “Gatsby” production — a hit with audiences — that inspired Webre to try his hand at Hemingway. And more such adaptations are planned: The Washington Ballet is launching a new initiative, “American Experience,” that will produce a series of full-length ballets over the next several years. Possible works, according to the company, include those by Henry James, Tennessee Williams and Langston Hughes.




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