Natalia

Breaking Pointe Season Two

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Many thanks, dancemom101!

He's joined a wonderful company.

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Joshua Whitehead was offered a second-year apprentice contract on the show, but he is listed on the BW website as a corps member, as is Zachary Prentice. BW2 dancers are listed immediately below the corps members. So I surmise apprentices are not designated as such on the BW website.

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Many thanks, dancemom101!

He's joined a wonderful company.

He sure did!

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Jayne, do you know where "the one not chosen" "landed on his feet"? I googled but was not able to find the info. Also, the dancers with the designation of apprentice are listed under corps members on the BW website. Are they full corps members now or do they simply not distinguish the title of apprentice on the website? Anyone know?

Not to toot our own horn, but this information was posted in an article in the Links some time ago. :)

Apart from the occasional article or interview, I don’t do a lot of “research” on the show, preferring in the main to watch it as it comes. It wasn’t all that hard to read the tea leaves on promotions and it was fun to guess. Josh is probably going to die when he hears about bad boy Zach. Sklute was very rough on poor Rex (he needs a company leader and not a drama queen, one gathers) so get it together, Rex. Beckanne, or “Becky-Anne” as Wendy would say, tells us she was unhappy at not being “casted” as Cinderella (and elsewhere the troupe’s hypercorrective tendency with singular personal pronouns is again on display, I fear). I liked Sisk coming in for her meeting armed with notes.

In rehearsal footage, we see Rex struggling with “Cinderella,” emphasis on the struggle, but whether Rex is really having much trouble or the focus on him gasping for breath is for dramatic purposes is a question.

A Ronald sighting with Katie (back in town for a visit) at Beckanne’s party, which made me realize we’ve hardly seen him at all this season. Rex Loves Allison: The Sequel is rearing its ugly head. I’d be happy for them, given the non-supportive stance of Young Dr. Kildare back in Motor City but no, please no…..

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If Sklute doesn't want drama queens, then his choice between the Ballet West II guys is questionable.

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If Sklute doesn't want drama queens, then his choice between the Ballet West II guys is questionable.

Exactamundo.

I found the contract interviews to be fascinating - just to see how Sklute would handle things. In some ways, Sklute handled the women better than the men, imo. And each time he spoke to the camera after the interview he would invariably say something that would have been better said directly to the dancer. For example, when Sklute says (regarding Rex), "A leading dancer for BW is going to be a leader for the other dancers in my company", he really should have said that to Rex, followed by, "Have you been behaving like a BW leader?" (Or some such thing.) Then Rex would have a better idea of what he needs to work on. Calling Rex an "alarmist" seemed to confuse him more than anything else. And Rex's view of the interview with Sklute was, "He was vague again" (presumably about whether or not he was being promoted - the one thing on Rex's mind). So Rex didn't seem to get why the promotion was in jeopardy. Good thing there's going to be a 2nd interview, except that this 1st interview should have made it clear to Rex just what Sklute was still looking for.

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Ah, but a leader should know what all of his stakeholders expect of him as if sprung from the head of Zeus, without mentoring, and a leader never gets caught up in any cycle of doubt and anxiety or at least shows it.

[/ sarcasm]

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Ah, but a leader should know what all of his stakeholders expect of him as if sprung from the head of Zeus, without mentoring, and a leader never gets caught up in any cycle of doubt and anxiety or at least shows it.

[/ sarcasm]

And think what a mess Zeus was (or is)!

Typically, for Reality TV, there's a lot of concern with "feelings", but not much emphasis on thinking things through. When asked what he saw for his future at BW, Rex answered that he wanted to be promoted. Well duh. But promotion is not a career, and definitely not a life's calling. Think again Rex!

[His brother remains ensconced in the Corps At SFB. It can be a hard road.]

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I had the impression that when Sklute referred to drama and alarmism, he wasn't talking about personal style, but the manner in which Rex was handling his injury. (He didn't actually say outright that he couldn't use any Moaning Minnies on board, but the gist was clear enough.) He didn't seem all that vague to me, but I'm not in Rex's position.

Typically, for Reality TV, there's a lot of concern with "feelings",

Not all that typical by any means, depending on the show.

With all this talk of contracts I'd have liked to hear a little something about what kind of benefits and/or pay the dancers receive and how and if those are affected by the company's financial ups and downs. (For example, Ronnie's injury and rehabilitation look costly; are out-of-pocket expenses a problem for him, or Rex? Do they have coverage from elsewhere?) I understand they might not be able to get too specific about this but a general idea would be useful, and an appropriate dose of reality for a reality show.

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With all this talk of contracts I'd have liked to hear a little something about what kind of benefits and/or pay the dancers receive and how and if those are affected by the company's financial ups and downs. (For example, Ronnie's injury and rehabilitation look costly; are out-of-pocket expenses a problem for him, or Rex? Do they have coverage from elsewhere?) I understand they might not be able to get too specific about this but a general idea would be useful, and an appropriate dose of reality for a reality show.

It would be interesting, but...reality? on a reality show?? That's setting an awfully high standard wink1.gif . . .

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It would be interesting, but...reality? on a reality show?? That's setting an awfully high standard wink1.gif . . .

Ouch!

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Thanks, dirac! In the future must do a better job of perusing the links blushing.gif

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Just teasing, Barbara. The Links are nice, but the board needs our sharp-eyed BAers as well. :)

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Nowhere Near Ready
(Ep.205)
Original Air Date: 8.26.13

High/Interesting Points:
Adam Sklute's expression on watching his dancers rehearse Cinderella (and we hear the word "Terrible!" in the audio). We also get treated to Sklute's less-than-thrilled expression after a sequence of Allison DeBona and Rex Tilson playing flirty friends - it isn't actually in response to DeBona/Tilson, but the editor does a quick cut to the next scene with Sklute and Somes watching the rehearsal, and I just thought Sklute's expression mirrored my own feelings so perfectly.

Beckanne Sisk and Katie Martin go on a visit to the Rock School, Philadelphia. A gushy segment, but still of interest.

Less Zach about Zach (but don't worry, he still manages to slip plenty of self-references in).

Low Points:
Christiana Bennett seemingly on the point of a nervous breakdown, and related to that, Chris Ruud plainly overwhelmed by the amount of work it takes to run BW 2, and be a principal dancer.

Dancers plainly losing focus, and rehearsals looking ragged.

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The thing that I like about the program is that whatever their personal situations, and some of that is quite touching, the minute they start to dance they look like goddesses (Christiana in particular) and gods. That's ballet I guess.

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Allison (qua Breaking Pointe "character") interests me a lot more as the heroine of an internal "love!" versus "art!" debate than as the heroine of a more conventional love triangle.

Qua dancer, she has always seemed quite interesting to me. At least as best one can tell watching a show that doesn't show all that much dancing.

Actually, in this last episode, I felt the producers gave us more of students at Rock studio dancing than professionals at Ballet West dancing. Perhaps because it's the CW but I almost suspect that it's also because, on some level, they find it easier to grasp dance as a school recital than as a grown-up art.

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I might question the "heroine" part. Judging by Monday's episode Allison's been rather the tease with Rex, who admittedly seems not unwilling.

The footage from The Rock School was indeed charming. Nice kids, and nice for Beckanne to be able to come back and enjoy some hero worship. She was good with the students, too.

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I might question the "heroine" part. Judging by Monday's episode Allison's been rather the tease with Rex, who admittedly seems not unwilling.

Yes...that's probably one reason the 'plot' (as edited anyway) is so unappealling.

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As a contrast to this series I recall episodes posted here about the New Zealand ballet. They seemed to have a relaxed feeling in regard to personal matters and company attitude with a lot of emphasis on the dancing, which I really enjoyed.

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I watched episode #7 on the CW website. I think the show misrepresents "opening night". Indeed it's opening night for the lead cast, but according to to the cast schedule, Arolyn Williams and Tom Mattingly danced on First Night (Thursday Feb.14). In fact the Williams / Mattingly pair get 4 performances, Christianna Bennett / Rex Tilton get 3, and Katherine Lawrence / Christopher Rudd get 3.

Mr Rudd is also a Stepsister on the Williams/Mattingly nights.

All in all, I tried to focus on the snippets of Ashton dancing that could be seen in this episode, and for the most part the emotional side was focused on jitters, wigs falling off, and last minute injuries. If all the episodes were like this one, I could like the show more. I'm frustrated with Christianna, though, her husband tries to be attentive to her when she is injured, and she is cool to him. Then later she says he's not giving her what she needs in the relationship (implying more attention and time). Just the same complaint over and over.

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I found it irksome in last night's episode that when performance snippets were shown, we weren't hearing the orchestration but the episode's music. I think once (or twice) they had both tracks of music playing simultaneously but the episode's music was much louder, so you really couldn't hear the orchestra.

I felt bad for Zach when his wig fell off, but from what they showed it looked like he handled it well. Wardrobe malfunctions can happen to anyone.

Yes, it wasn't great when Christiana fell off pointe during her pas de deux with Rex, but I didn't think it was the end of the world like they were showing it to be. I've seen many ballerinas in major companies do that (yes, it is still a mistake). Granted, I've missed a few episodes this season and thus probably the rehearsal footage for that section, and I don't know the choreography in that segment, so maybe the part when she fell off pointe was during a highly climactic moment in the pas (they didn't show enough of the performance for me to gather that). Anyone else have any thoughts on this part?

Beckanne and Allison looked lovely during their performance parts. Too bad Allison's boyfriend couldn't be bothered to show up.

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During dress rehearsal, it showed a girl take a bad fall. They said her name was Emily- never said if she was able to dance for opening night. Anyone know?

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My hunch is that one reason Chris and Christiana are avoiding talk at work is in order to avoid talk getting picked up on camera and turning into the Loud family. I wouldn't draw too many conclusions from their awkward exchanges. I sympathize with them, even if the show could use a good screaming match.

I would think that securing your wig properly is the least you can do. Sure, things happen, but we're also shown Zach losing his wig in rehearsal as well, so it could only be carelessness (or nervousness). Sklute notes that normally he's death on this kind of thing, but that Zach recovered well - as he certainly did.

I didn't think it was the end of the world like they were showing it to be.

I think Chris Ruud just said, "She's going to hate herself for that," and he was probably right, dancers being as dedicated as they are. I thought that was more a reflection of the dancers' feelings during a tense performance - both dancers with recent foot trouble, so things were dicey. Also fits in dramatically with the trouble other dancers are experiencing in the episode (poor Emily dropping on the stage like a sack of mule feed).

Yes, Motor City Doc was a no-show. I fear this will mean that Allison 'n' Rex are back for good.

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I watched episode #7 on the CW website. I think the show misrepresents "opening night". Indeed it's opening night for the lead cast, but according to to the cast schedule, Arolyn Williams and Tom Mattingly danced on First Night (Thursday Feb.14). In fact the Williams / Mattingly pair get 4 performances, Christianna Bennett / Rex Tilton get 3, and Katherine Lawrence / Christopher Rudd get 3.

Mr Rudd is also a Stepsister on the Williams/Mattingly nights.

All in all, I tried to focus on the snippets of Ashton dancing that could be seen in this episode, and for the most part the emotional side was focused on jitters, wigs falling off, and last minute injuries. If all the episodes were like this one, I could like the show more. I'm frustrated with Christianna, though, her husband tries to be attentive to her when she is injured, and she is cool to him. Then later she says he's not giving her what she needs in the relationship (implying more attention and time). Just the same complaint over and over.

"If all the episodes were like this one, I could like the show more" - unfortunately for me, I felt that this episode underscored everything I don't like about this program: no context for the ballet moments, but constant repetition of each person's relationship 'problem'. Bennett feels her marriage isn't working and the stress is ruining her dancing; DeBona can't decide between Doctor "Feet of Clay" Detroit, and Rex Tilton, who wants recognitiion, but is very nervous about having to earn it. And we literally hear about these situations 3 to 5 times an episode, every episode. It isn't the fault of the actual people/dancers that they are portrayed in this manner - these are the choices of the director, editor, writers (there are writers for this?!!!), and production crew.

As Jayne points out above, there are actually other dancers in BW - we just don't hear about them, and the cameras manage to never show the rest of the company in group scenes. Which must take some work, but I would rather that work be put towards educating the audience about the Cinderella ballet by Ashton, and ballet dancing in general. It's amazing that this show never takes the opportunity to explain why people would want to do this thing called "ballet".

The depiction of "opening night" was, as Jayne says, false - it was not the actual opening night for BW, and the entire episode made ballet performance look like a comedy of errors.

But we did get to see everyone in costume, even Ian, who promptly has more bad luck and injures himself right out of the production. The costume scenes were very anitclimactic for me. I have to stick with one of my original comments that BP is not really a show about ballet, it's about the relationships of dancers who happen to be in a ballet company. And what we see on-camera isn't necessarily representative of what is going on off-camera (especially with Bennett/Ruud).

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