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Tuesday, May 15


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#1 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 10:56 AM

Previews of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet.

The Star-Ledger

Opening tonight, at the Joyce Theater, this two-week engagement divides the wealth of new choreography into a pair of back-to-back programs. Only Angelin Preljocaj’s controversial duet “Annonciation,” which recasts the Immaculate Conception as a weird encounter with space-aliens, has been presented here before.

Cedar Lake is building on its previous successes and developing its relationships with dance makers Alexander Ekman, Crystal Pite, Hofesh Schechter and Jo Strømgren. In addition, the troupe will dance a surprising, neo-classical piece by newcomer Regina van Berkel, a choreographer trained in the Netherlands who is also a veteran of William Forsythe’s Ballett Frankfurt. With an abundance of technical challenges and stylistic contrasts, the season’s two programs aim to showcase the company’s versatility.


The New York Times

The change in fortune dates from 2005, when Ms. Laurie appointed the French-born former Alvin Ailey dancer, Benoit-Swan Pouffer as artistic director just as the company moved into a new home with its own theater in Chelsea.

Mr. Pouffer’s subsequent decision to focus on acquiring new work from an up-and-coming group of mostly European choreographers turns out to have been an inspired one. The company now possesses a remarkably distinctive repertory, and has become a showcase for choreographers who are often well-known elsewhere but little seen in the United States.



#2 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 11:01 AM

Q&A with Tara Lee, who is choreographing new work for Atlanta Ballet.

How many works have you choreographed so far?
About 6..."Pavo" will be my third work for the Atlanta Ballet.

What was your process like when you created this piece?
The process of creating "Pavo" has been unique, because we commissioned an original score (a first for me) from Dr. Nickitas Demos, professor at Georgia State. It has been quite an experience, to create something that is in constant flux from all ends. Thankfully, Nick is a wonderful artist and collaborator.


Related.

The Ballet has recently taken a turn toward programming more contemporary work, as well as toward finding more opportunities for its dancers to choreograph. When Lee originally debuted her choreography in 2003 with "16 String," it was the result of a workshop Atlanta Ballet Artistic Director John McFall put together for the dancers. Since then Lee has continued to work on her choreographic skills. Along with several other dancers, she has created pieces for the Atlanta Ballet's Wabi Sabi, a new company within a company formed to provide dancers with the opportunity to create small site-specific works.



#3 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 11:04 AM

Red carpet photo gallery from ABT's spring gala.

#4 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 11:09 AM

The Albany Times Union offers a poll to readers inviting them to vote for what they like to see at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

For an upcoming column, I’m wondering what attracts you to SPAC. Use the poll tool below to check off the things that have brought you to SPAC in the past. You can check as many as you’d like. Use the comments section below for any comments. The results and comments may be used in a column slated to run May 20.



#5 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 11:11 AM

A review of the Birmingham Royal Ballet by Charles Hunt in the Press of York.

They are simultaneously touring the south of England, but we surely must have had the better half of the ensemble; there was no sign of this being a cut-down version. Accompanied by pianist Jonathan Higgins and by members of the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, including four french horns, some exceptional dancers were featured. We got Iain Mackay, and presumably Poole got Jenna Roberts. We were not shortchanged. Jessica Lang’s choreography for Lyric Pieces set to piano music by Grieg, was possibly the most modern work, but was immediately attractive and accessible, with a tongue-in-cheek soulfulness. The set for this work was made from an infinitely flexible light paper and textile honeycomb material which made walls, paths, pillars and bridges in the hands of the dancers.



#6 dirac

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Posted 15 May 2012 - 11:22 AM

A preview of the annual Fire Island Dance Festival.

Fire Island Dance Festival 18 will also include performances from The Australian Ballet, celebrating its 50th anniversary with a solo danced by principal Yosvani Ramos; Ballet Hispanico, collaborating with choreographer Edwaard Liang in a world-premiere piece; MOMIX, with an encore performance of "Aqua Flora," featuring Nicole Loizides; Rennie Harris Puremovement, a hip-hop company performing "mind-blowing stunts and gravity-defying poses"; and Sidra Bell Dance New York, performing an unconventional male duet from "ReVUE" that explores gender roles and the empowerment of sexy, red stilettos.



#7 dirac

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Posted 16 May 2012 - 03:45 PM

Reviews of American Ballet Theatre's opening night performance.

The New York Times

Caroline Kennedy made the annual Caroline Kennedy Speech. This time she said that her mother would have been thrilled to see the children of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School dance later in the evening. This is not the kindest thing I have heard about Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: the routine they danced, "Polonaise d'Enfants," by Raymond Lukens, made the students look efficiently trite.


The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

American Ballet Theater's gala performance included 15 short dance pieces. Such a generous program can feel like a greatest-hits reel, but when ABT does it—and then throws a dinner party in Damrosch Park attended by past, present and future stars—the evening becomes more like a family reunion that's taking place within view of ancestral portraits on a magnificent wall.


The Faster Times

But, what dancing! Up and down the ranks, from the corps to the glitziest guest star, ABT’s dancers are truly spectacular. Hee Seo (soloist) was luminous in the opening section of Christopher Wheeldon’s “Thirteen Diversions” (from last season); Osipova blew the roof off in “Flames of Paris,” adding extra hops and rotations to her series of fouetté turns, and devouring space with her jumps; Vishneva oozed eroticism in “Romeo and Juliet.” And the men! what other company can boast of such a roster?......



#8 dirac

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Posted 16 May 2012 - 03:54 PM

St. Louis Ballet announces its 2012-13 season lineup.

May 10-12: Contemporary Choreographer's Series. A program of four new works including world premieres by [Gen] Horiuchi and Christopher d'Amboise.



#9 dirac

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Posted 16 May 2012 - 03:59 PM

Q&A with Meg Howrey on her new ballet-themed novel, "The Cranes Dance."

What habits from your ballet experience dovetail nicely with writing fiction?

People ask me if having been a dancer helps with the discipline of writing, but I think I’m more disciplined now then I was when I was younger. Probably the most helpful thing is that I always had a sense of being slightly off the grid. The things that other people seemed to want: security, stability, a decent salary…I just always assumed I would never have any of those things. Perfect training for being a novelist.



#10 dirac

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Posted 16 May 2012 - 04:00 PM

A review of Boston Ballet by Debra Cash in The Boston Phoenix.

Friday's performance, however, suffered some glitches. Lorna Feijoo, though lovely in the sections that quoted La Sylphide, was off her game. Pavel Gurevich lacked control in a work that is singularly unforgiving of sloppiness. But as Feijoo's matched consorts, Jeffrey Cirio was the confidently spinning center of a troupe of six fouette-ing ballerinas and Isaac Akiba sailed like Sleeping Beauty's Bluebird. Études has its corny aspects, but it goes beyond pastiche to be a dance about ballet's aspirations.



#11 dirac

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 03:20 PM

A brief interview with Vivienne Wong of the Australian Ballet.

At any one time, the north shore-raised dancer has “about seven pairs on the go”, wearing through, on average, three pairs a week. “When pointe shoes get warm, they become soft and then you need to let them cool down and stiffen again,” she said.


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