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Monday, November 19


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#1 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:03 PM

The story behind the new costumes being prepared for Boston Ballet's Nutcracker.

Perdziola and company began with in-depth discussions of the period, style, story, and characters, and he attended several performances with Nissinen to see the existing costumes in action. "It's one thing to see the clothes on a dress form, but it's another to see how it's going to come together on a human," says Heightchew.




#2 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:04 PM

A preview of Alabama Youth Ballet Theatre's Nutcracker.

Herriott and Keren Gibb, who are the artistic directors for Alabama Youth Ballet's school and its non-profit performance division, continue to use much of Tygett's choreography in their production, Herriott said. For those who grew up in Huntsville taking part in or watching the annual holiday favorite, the AYBT production will be very familiar, Herriott said.



#3 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:07 PM

The director of St. Croix Ballet, Karla Sweeney, announces her retirement due to illness.

After directing more than 100 performances, Karla Sweeney said she still loves "Nutcracker." "Every time I hear that overture -- I love that overture -- it sort of just sets the scene," she said. "I have never gotten tired of it. It's a tribute to Tchaikovsky's music, I guess. I've heard this music a lot, but I haven't overdosed on it."

She has filled every possible role in the ballet: director, narrator, costume designer, skirt maker, dancer, ticket seller, even vomit cleaner-upper.



#4 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:08 PM

Q&A with Helen Pickett.

How did your dance career wind up evolving into choreography?
In 2005 I received a call from Mikko Nissinen, director at Boston Ballet, asking me if I would like to choreograph for the company. I said yes. The wind up was urgent. Meaning I knew I must say yes now. Prior to this call, I had choreographed solos for students at The Ailey School, Purchase College and Julliard. I need to be in a dance studio.

Did your time with William Forsythe have an impact on your choreographic style? Why or why not?
Bill sees/saw/will always see possibility in life. Tapping into one's curiosity creates possibility. Forsythe and many others, inside and outside of dance, have influenced my lifestyle. The sum of our lives impacts all decisions we come to.



#5 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:10 PM

A preview of Ballet B.C.'s first program of the season.

Happening Nov. 22-24 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, the new program is headed up by the North American premiere of Italian choreographer Jacopo Godani’s A.U.R.A. (Anarchist Unit Related to Art).

“Jacopo’s piece is incredibly charged,” said Molnar, who added the piece is set to music from the German electric-acoustic duo 48nord. “There are 15 dancers working as a large organism in a highly physical, dynamic word.”



#6 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:11 PM

A piece by Emily Molnar for The Vancouver Sun.

There are two very pronounced mentors I’ve had in my life. William Forsythe, whom I worked for in the Frankfurt Ballet, showed me the potential of the artist and of contemporary work. He taught me about taking risk and having the courage to turn everything upside down and constantly keep developing the potential of something. And Margie Gillis, who is one of the most profound performers in our country today. She represents the grace and brilliance of the dance and what it truly means to be an artist in our world today. You can put Margie on a stage in front of a variety of people and she will touch everyone.




#7 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:16 PM

Reviews of the Royal Ballet.

The Independent

It’s twenty years since the death of Kenneth MacMillan, one of The Royal Ballet’s defining choreographers. His ballets, particularly his story ballets, are still at the heart of the company’s repertory, adored by dancers and audiences alike.

The company marks this anniversary with a triple bill that shows MacMillan’s range, from the bright Concerto to the abstract drama of Requiem.


The Telegraph

So begins Las Hermanas, Kenneth MacMillan’s 1963 response to Federico García Lorca’s play The House of Bernarda Alba. Like the other two pieces in this programme commemorating the 20th anniversary of the genius choreographer’s death, it was in fact created not for the Royal Ballet, but in Germany. And, contrary to a claim in Saturday night’s cast list, this was the first time the Royal Ballet had performed it at Covent Garden.


The Arts Desk

The lacuna in the drama was Elizabeth McGorian’s Mother, stomping like a panto witch with her stick, rather than a hurt woman with decades of fiery anger banked up (as I recall Genesia Rosato doing in a show in 1998). The Mother should bully the stage, dictate the timing, force us all into line. As it was, Yanowsky did all the work to carry the piece, and she couldn’t do it all on her own.



#8 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:17 PM

A review of the RB by Neil Norman for The Stage.

The best is saved for last. Requiem, MacMillan’s tribute to Cranko (who died at 45) is an unequivocal masterpiece. Employing Cranko’s own innovative dance structures and subversive gestures, MacMillan adds a layer of spirituality and puts it all together in a work to Faure’s Requiem that is not so much a ballet as a transfiguration. With a set that looks like a Perspex cathedral and loaded with religious iconography both Christian and pagan, it contains some of the most breathtaking moments in ballet - including soaring, airborne lifts, ritually encircling formations, mourning pietas and celebratory ascensions. Performed by the cream of the Royal Ballet - with an outstanding solo from Leanne Benjamin and Rupert Pennefather rarely better - this is a sublime experience.



#9 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:19 PM

An item on Ray Barra.

Ray Barra, 82, has been handing down his knowledge of the steps of Las Hermanas to Royal Ballet stars including Alina Cojocaru, Thiago Soares and Zenaida Yanowsky. Barra danced the principal role of the groom on the show’s debut in 1963.



#10 dirac

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:20 PM

A review of Diablo Ballet by Rita Felciano for danceviewtimes.

Excellently coached and reconstructed by former Limón dancer Gary Master and current Limón company member Raphael Boumaila, this "Pavane" was a co-production with SjDANCEco. Their Maria Basile danced His Friend's Wife and Heather Cooper The Moor's Wife. Diablo's Derek Sakamura interpreted The Moor and Robert Dekkers' His Friend. The quartet gave a beautifully detailed and balanced rendition that subtly brought to the forefront the sexual tensions underlying the conflict. In his icy control Dekker's Iago, insidious and increasingly raging, was particularly effective. Sakamura was not the best casting choice. An elegant slender dancer, he didn't have the physical presence we expect to see in Othello. It didn't help that his costume seemed too big. Cooper, delicate and young, gave a lovely Desdemona. In modern parlance Basile's fine Emilia would be described as "needy."



#11 dirac

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:33 AM

A review of the Israel Ballet by Ora Brafman in The Jerusalem Post.

In recent years the Israel Ballet had taken a few steps forward in terms of dance and production values, but remained stuck with classical repertoire or neo-classical works arranged and choreographed almost exclusively by company founder Berta Yampolsky, due to economic constrains.

In order to upgrade and update the repertoire, the company invited Itzik Galili last year as a test case. Galili, an ex- Batsheva dancer, moved to Holland 20 years ago and soon became recognized as a talented, prolific creator with dozens of works for a long line of important companies.



#12 dirac

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:36 AM

Janie Taylor will appear in Delta Festival Ballet's Nutcracker.

The Houston native is a former student of Joseph and Maria Giacobbe, the artistic directors of Delta Festival Ballet. She studied at the Giacobbe Academy of Dance from the ages of 12 to 15, after her family moved to Mandeville. She received “a good foundation” there, she said, and soon she was studying at the School of American Ballet in New York. She has not been back to New Orleans to perform since, though it was not for want of trying.



#13 dirac

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 07:38 AM

An item on New York City Ballet's series of promotional documentaries.

"He taught America how to dance, generations after generations after generations -- now only how to dance but how to look at dance, and he taught audiences to how to appreciate classical ballet" Peter Martins, Ballet Master in Chief at NYC Ballet, explains in this documentary portrait of George Balanchine. "There's no one larger in the history of ballet -- without exaggeration -- than Balanchine."



#14 dirac

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 06:24 AM

Q&A with Yannick Lebrun of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

Time Out New York: How did you feel about ballet?

Yannick Lebrun: Ballet was something I didn’t want to do at first. I wanted to do jazz and modern and to try hip-hop. Jeanine Verin, my dance teacher, looked at me and my mom—this was in 1995—and said, “You have to start with ballet. Ballet will help you find that freedom in other techniques.” She was right. I had to start with ballet even though I had to hear people laughing at me or questioning why I was dancing. Everybody else was playing soccer. But I was always like that and even now, I am very independent. My mom encouraged me.




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