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Friday, July 12


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#1 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 01:55 PM

A review of American Ballet Theatre by Lewis Segal in The Los Angeles Times.

 

Sometimes an ambitious failure can be more interesting than the same artist’s easy successes. Consider “Chamber Symphony,” the centerpiece of the three-part bill that opened the engagement by American Ballet Theatre at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on Thursday.

Choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky -- best known for slick, empty remakes of solid-gold titles -- it attempted to harness the intense melancholy of a score by Dmitri Shostakovich (arranged by Rudolph Barshai) and impose on it a complex pseudo-narrative agenda.

 

 



#2 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 01:58 PM

Maniya Barredo  teachers at the summer session of the Mount Dora School of Ballet.

School owner Kathryn Wheeler met Barredo when they were teenaged students at the Paris Opera Ballet School.

 

"She was a fast turner," Wheeler said. "Our teachers would direct us to try to catch her as we practiced out 'chaine tournes.'

 



#3 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:07 PM

Reviews of the Moscow Stanislavsky Ballet and Whatshisname in "Coppélia."

 

The Guardian

 

Sergei Polunin may choose to present himself as a bolshie adolescent in interviews ("being a ballet dancer isn't cool," he said earlier this week), but on stage he looks completely grown-up, sublimely free. Dancing Franz in this Stanislavsky production of Coppélia, he delivers a performance of mesmerising airiness and witty ease. It's a performance all the more cherishable, too, given that the production otherwise lacks so much.

 

The Telegraph

 

The role of Franz’s lover Swanilda, however, played by the dainty Kristina Shapran, requires variety, from precise comic timing to classical grace to robotic doll dance (when she disguises herself as Coppélia). Shapran wavered on the second task, not quite capturing the flair of the demanding Swanilda.

 

 

The Evening Standard

 

In fact he’s chosen well. Roland Petit’s 1975 version of Coppélia is funny, sexy and psychologically acute. It plays to Polunin’s strengths — he’s adorably naughty from the moment he appears as youthful Franz, smitten by life-size dancing doll Coppélia, but stringing along his girlfriend.

 

The Arts Desk

 

The choreography is classical-style, fast and tittuping, with lots of Petit-isms (Petiteries?) - kissy-kissy and sauciness, Lindyhop stuck-out bums, shoulder shrugs and mock rage. The corps de ballet are soldiers and town-girls, bunnyhopping in boots, bustles and bonnets, in line-dances studded with kisses and ooh-la-la. Petit looks to have derived their steps from marionettes, hands patting hearts, bodies dropping forward or back as if a string had slackened - it dovetails neatly with the revelation of the doll Coppelia’s inner workings, and with the delightful sound of that cranky little organ in the orchestra.

 



#4 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:08 PM

Backstage at the Moscow Stanislavsky Ballet: photo gallery.

 

"All eyes are on Sergei Polunin, pictured here in his dressing room – a controversial figure who stunned the dance world after he abruptly departed from the Royal Ballet last year, then created further waves when he made a dramatic (and unscheduled) exit from a version of Midnight Express in April. Polunin now dances with the Moscow-based Stanislavsky Ballet company."



#5 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:12 PM

Two interviews with Sergei Polunin.

 

The Voice of Russia

 

I caught up with the dancer backstage at the Coliseum just after his dress rehearsal, and asked him that:

"Well, I hope so, that it won’t happen again.

“I’m a person of instinct, I would say.

“It depends on the day, depends on the situation....."

 

The Evening Standard

 

His great friendship with Zelensky had helped his work, he said, whereas he “never talked” to then-Royal Ballet director Monica Mason, who was nearly 50 years his senior. “We weren’t friends. I was scared of her,” he said. “I’m more in charge of things and I feel more free now.”

 



#6 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:16 PM

Sarah Jessica Parker visits Cincinnati to arrange David Blackburn's memorial service.

“I’ve always been very cognizant of the role that David played in my life,” said Parker, speaking to the Enquirer from her home in New York City. “Whenever the occasion allows, I like to recall and share with people that I had this incredible ballet teacher – David Blackburn.”

 



#7 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:18 PM

The latest installment in Sara Mearns' Huffington Post video blog, "Barre None."

 

I've had pieces come out about me in the Times three weekends in a row plus a magazine piece come out about me today, and yes, it is overwhelming sometimes the amount of press I'm getting. But you know what? I have worked my butt off for it and I don't want to hide it. The recent magazine piece really gets my point across that I want to make ballet cool again and if that means stepping into the limelight and showing how awesome a ballerina can be--and that it's not all ballet buns and pointe shoes--then so be it. But you have to own that position and face it head on. Never back down from what you are passionate about until you see it through completely, no matter what it may be.

 



#8 dirac

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 03:11 PM

A preview of Ballet B.C.'s gig at the St-Sauveur festival by Victor Swoboda in The Montreal Gazette.

 

One of the two group works, Petite Cérémonie, is by Medhi Walerski, a French-born dancer with Nederlands Dans Theater who is rising quickly in Europe’s choreographic pantheon as a result of works that he has created for NDT and other companies. Like any good artistic director, Molnar tries to sniff out budding choreographers before they become either too expensive to hire or too busy to accept smaller commissions.

 



#9 dirac

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 09:34 PM

Greta Gerwig talks about her brief time in ballet class.

 

"I was an intense child. When I loved an activity, I had trouble doing it halfway. It was scary with ballet – I would have gone to class for four hours a day, seven days a week, if I could have. And it's kind of a cultish world. Relationships between ballet teachers and students aren't always totally normal, and my teacher – she was British and had been to the Royal Ballet School – gave everybody 'ballet names', which put my mum over the edge: 'She gave you another name?!"

 

 



#10 dirac

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 09:50 PM

Julien Macdonald designs the costumes for an English National Ballet piece to be performed for the Queen.

 

That was the plan, anyway — but when we meet at her Kensington headquarters, the Macdonald cocktail frock and killer heels that Rojo is trying on are grotesquely accessorised with a black therapeutic tape, protecting the ankle injury that may well confine her to a seat in the stalls. The pain is clearly twofold: ‘There is nothing more frustrating than not being able to dance a work that has been created especially for you.’

 

 

Related.

 

Each costume took 15 embroiderers, three machinists and two pattern-cutters 300 hours to create. The garments are each adorned with over 20,000 Swarovski crystals in sapphire, purple velvet, black diamond and pacific opal. This is the second time Macdonald has teamed with the ENB - in 2011, he created a one-off tutu for the ballet company for charity.

 

 



#11 dirac

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 10:01 PM

A story on the appointment of Vladimir Urin to lead the Bolshoi Ballet, from BBC News. Video.

 

His replacement, Vladimir Urin - former general director of the Stanislavsky Musical Theatre - spoke to BBC Russian Arts and Culture Correspondent Alexander Kan about his appointment, saying "I am no revolutionary, I am a man who solves problems one by one".

 

 



#12 dirac

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Posted 15 July 2013 - 06:01 PM

An interactive iPad application features Tom Gold.

 

The app, produced by the non-profit 2wice Arts Foundation and available for a buck, showcases Tom Gold, a celebrated dancer and choreographer formerly of the New York City Ballet, in a routine choreographed, scored, and packaged specifically for the tablet. It gives you three different ways to view the performance. The first, and the most fun, starts with a grid of nine dots. Tap one and Gold materializes on top of it, shown from above as he bounces to an accompanying fragment of violin. Tap another dot and a duplicate Gold appears, bringing another layer of movement and music to the scene. Tap a few more dots and things get even busier.

 



#13 dirac

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 11:19 AM

An interview with some of the working mothers of the National Ballet of Canada by Leigh Hornbeck in The Albany Times Union.

Even today, 30 years after Balanchine's death, only two of City Ballet's 47 female dancers have children.

 

It is a different story at the National Ballet of Canada, where there are 14 children among the company's 33 female dancers. The troupe will make its Saratoga Performing Arts Center debut this week, with performances on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

 

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#14 dirac

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Posted 19 July 2013 - 11:33 AM

The Guardian reprints a contemporaneous story on the Fonteyn-Nureyev pot bust in 1967.

Witnesses said the party-goers, including the two dancers, scattered into the hallway and out of the back door when the officers arrived. Dame Margot, who was found on a rooftop nearby, was described by officers as "very graceful about the raid," but they added that Nureyev, who was found on another roof, "wasn't too pleasant."

 

All those taken into custody were booked at the San Francisco Hall of Justice, fingerprinted, and photographed.

 

 




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