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dirac

Wednesday, December 19

14 posts in this topic

The Guardian offers a webstream of the Royal Ballet's Nutcracker.

In advance of our webstream of the Royal Ballet's much-loved Nutcracker later today, new director – and former dancer – Kevin O'Hare explains what it's like to lead one of the world's largest and most prestigious dance troupes, and why ballet can be for everyone.

Part One

Part Two

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A video interview with Stephen Wicks and Mark Welford of Bloomsbury Flowers in The Guardian.

Former Royal Ballet dancers Stephen Wicks and Mark Welford opened Bloomsbury Flowers in Covent Garden in 1994. They supply bouquets to the Royal Opera House for ballets, dancers and performers. They explain the tradition of flower throwing and how ballerina Margot Fonteyn used to dodge the lead-weighted flowers from one keen fan at the end of a performance.

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Dancers of the Royal Ballet are featured in a new exhibition by the photographer Rick Guest.

.....the images aim to illustrate the key disciplines of ballet technique: Balance and poise.

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Labor disputes result in the cancellation of La Scala Ballet's opening night.

The world's great sopranos are not the only prima donnas at La Scala. In the latest fit of pique among its performers, ballerinas in the opera house's latest production of Romeo and Juliet have gone on strike after management refused to pay them more for dancing on a sloping floor.

Related.

The choristers said the extra duties violate their contract, but management argued they were no more than normally called for, according to Italian new reports.

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Mejia Ballet International presents its Nutcracker.

Mejia and his Mejia Ballet International will be in San Antonio this weekend to present four performances of the holiday classic under the auspices of Arts San Antonio. This will be the company's second appearance here, though some of the principals were included in earlier visits as members of the now-defunct, Arlington-based Metropolitan Classical Ballet.

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Jacob's Pillow announces its 2013 schedule.

Following its June 15 gala, the festival will open with a return performance by Dance Theatre of Harlem June 19-23 at the Ted Shawn Theatre. That stage will also host the New York-based Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet July 3-7; Brazilian hip-hop group Companhia Urbana de Dança July 10-14; the British Columbian contemporary company Ballet BC July 17-21; French contemporary ballet company 3e étage July 31-Aug. 4; Montreal’s O Vertigo Danse Aug. 7-11; and the premiere of contemporary ballet star Wendy Whelan’s “Restless Creature” Aug. 14-18. The Martha Graham Dance Company will close the Ted Shawn season Aug. 21-25 with Graham’s interpretation of “The Rite of Spring.”

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Q&A with dancer Stephanie Maiorano.

Q: Are you full-time at San Diego Ballet?

A: I do dance full-time with the San Diego Ballet. My schedule has me dancing Tuesday through Sunday, but I get out early enough in the day to teach some ballet classes in the evening, for some extra income. Also during our off season, which are the summer months, I do secretary work for a law firm downtown.

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Pamela Hayes Classical Ballet presents its Nutcracker.

“There are a zillion of them, but I have tried to make ours more entertaining,” said PHCB Artistic Director Pamela Hayes, who acknowledged that “The Nutcracker” has been historically criticized for a rather uninspired first act. “I became aware when I became more of an observer than a participant that the first act ran long, and could be boring. So now we try to make ours more entertaining and humorous by inserting more comedy to make it funnier than others.”

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An interview with Sergei Polunin by Alex Needham in The Guardian.

Directed and choreographed by Peter Schaufuss, the ballet has already prompted some salacious speculation about prison sex scenes, but Polunin says that it is too early to talk about the specifics. "I think it will be violent," he says. "I know there's going to be blood and screaming and real dancing, but I'm not sure exactly what it's going to be."

There is a also documentary about Polunin in the works, made by a team including Gabrielle Tana, producer of Ralph Fiennes's version of Coriolanus, Julie Kavanagh, who wrote the Intelligent Life profile and who has known Polunin since he was a boy, and her husband, Ross MacGibbon, head of dance at the BBC.

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A story on Austin dance academy Ballet Afrique.

Ballet Afrique teaches all genres of dance to predominately black students in East Austin."There's so many different schools in Austin, beautiful companies, Ballet Austin, Tapestry Dance, but those companies are not located in neighborhoods where children who really want to dance get the opportunity," explained Smith.

Smith teaches 115 students. More than half of them are on a scholarship and those that do pay are charged rates 40 percent less than the average dance academy.

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Another item on the strike at La Scala.

For Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, however, ballet dancers hitting the bricks was a strike too far.

“This is the theatre of the absurd,” it thundered. “Today there is a payment for leaning over. Next they will be asking extra for putting on a leotard.”

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A review of Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo by Brian Seibert in The New York Times.

“Laurencia,” the New York premiere on the troupe’s Tuesday opening-night program at the Joyce Theater, isn’t very funny. As faithfully staged by Elena Kunikova, it’s an excerpt from the finale of a 1939 Soviet ballet about a peasant revolution in Spain. The Trocks forgo the story in favor of Spanish styling and the classical variations that come with a ballet happy ending.

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A review of Pacific Northwest Ballet's Nutcracker by Sandra Kurtz in Seattle Weekly.

If this unexpected glitch gave anyone onstage a fright, they didn't show it. Saturday evening's performances were as solid as if nothing had gone wrong. Lesley Rausch and Jerome Tisserand, so stalwart in their little boat during the debacle, were charming as Clara and the Prince. Tisserand has an elegant sense of line, especially in his legs, and he manages to be detailed as well as vigorous. Elizabeth Murphy gave a very clear performance as the Peacock, with a deeply sculpted lower back as she swished her tail feathers. And Laura Gilbreath sailed through the densely packed choreography for Flora.

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An inteview with Rachel Rawlins and Colin Peasley, both retiring from the Australian Ballet.

Peasley and the Russian Nureyev didn't get along so well. "Nureyev and I used to fight a lot. When some (non-English speakers) can't express themselves, they tend to punch. And I didn't like being someone's punching bag. Still, Nureyev was wonderful man. A genius."

Rawlins, 39, is excited ahead of her final performance, in the twin lead role of Odette-Odile. "I think you're always a little bit nervous before a show. I think it will be an emotional one."

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