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Thursday, December 5


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#1 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:30 PM

American University bumps Ballet Petite to accommodate a Chris Matthews interview with President Obama.

 

But the interview, announced Tuesday morning, abruptly kicked the Ballet Petite’s rehearsals of”The Nutcracker” out of AU’s Greenberg Theatre. That didn’t sit well with the ballet school’s staff, teachers and parents who have been preparing for the performance for months.

 

 

Related.

 

Some 160 girls who have been practicing for a performance of the Nutcracker have been moved out of a theater at American University because it is being used for Thursday's appearance by President Obama on MSNBC's Hardball With Chris Matthews.

 

 



#2 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:32 PM

Huntsville Ballet's Nutcracker gets an 1850s makeover.

 

Phillip Otto, the artistic director of Huntsville Ballet Company and its feeder school, wanted to remake the sets and costumes of the annual holiday performance to mark Community Ballet Association’s 50th year. The association is the umbrella under which the ballet company and the Huntsville Ballet School both operate.

 



#3 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:35 PM

A story on local Nutcracker performances and the importance of the season to ballet companies' bottom line by Kurt Loft for The Tampa Tribune.

 

That money – along with sponsorships and state and local grants – helps ballet groups subsidize the rest of their repertoire, such as “Swan Lake,” “Giselle,’’ or “Cinderella.’’ To keep their “Nutcrackers’’ from growing old and stale, many companies introduce new choreography, sets and even plot twists. The Sarasota Ballet, for instance, veers from convention this year by sending Clara, the main character in the story, off to join the Ringling Circus.

 



#4 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:37 PM

A preview of Boston Ballet's Nutcracker by Grace Hoyt for The Tufts [University] Daily.

But new innovations come with difficulties for the dancers. Principal dancer Kuranaga says that adapting to set changes has forced her to work much harder.

 

“Visually, it is perfection from the audience’s view, but because we’re so new to it we’re still trying to figure out problems,” Kuranaga said. “My costume is beautiful but hard to dance in. It’s very stiff and not broken in.”

 

 



#5 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:39 PM

A review of Boston Ballet's Nut by Iris Fanger in The Patriot Ledger.

 

Now fielding rotating casts of more than 250 children and the full company of professionals alternating in different roles, the Boston Ballet will present 43 performances before the dancers collapse in a heap just before New Year’s Eve. And that’s not to mention the year-old sets and costumes by Robert Perdziola, which are even more sumptuous than remembered from last year’s premiere.

 

 



#6 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:42 PM

Members of Kansas City's soccer team will participate in Kansas City Ballet's Nutcracker.

 

Goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen, defender Seth Sinovic and assistant coach Kerry Zavagnin will join select performances of the classic holiday ballet at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.

 

 

Related, with video.

 

The players will perform in the ballet later this month. The dates have not been set.

 



#7 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 02:45 PM

A story on Tahoe Youth Ballet.

 

Siig has signed on to assist Tahoe Youth Ballet in an advisory capacity to help sustain and develop the company after five years of healthy growth. In doing so, one of their first projects is the creation of the Margaret Banks Memorial Scholarship fund, an opportunity for dancers to receive training at Tahoe Youth Ballet from Hanna as well as guest teachers. Through a generous grant from the Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation, three $750 scholarships will be awarded in January to Tahoe Youth Ballet students who may not otherwise afford as many classes as they would like to attend.

 



#8 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 03:00 PM

 Ricardo Graziano and Danielle Brown speak at Sarasota Ballet's second "Principal Film Series" session.

The Sarasota dancers showed up at FSU on the appointed day and reported to Farrell for their first rehearsal."She looked at us and said, 'What are you doing here?'" Graziano recalls. "And we said...um...we're here...to learn...um, 'Diamonds?'"

 

Replied Farrell: "I'm not sure what to do with you. You were not in my plans."

 



#9 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 03:05 PM

The 2014 Carreño Dance Festival is canceled and its future is in doubt.

 

De Warren, 80, called the cancellation "a hiatus." But according to the sole remaining SIDAF board member, Suzanne Kesten — who, along with former board chair and primary financial backer Elita Kane, encouraged DeWarren to step away — the festival is unlikely to resurface unless Carreño, or someone else, takes the initiative.

 



#10 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 03:07 PM

Toledo Ballet announces this year's special guest Mother Ginger.

 

Every year, the Toledo Ballet invites a local celebrity to participate in their production of “Nutcracker.” This year, that celebrity is Joe Napoli, President and General Manager of the Toledo Mudhens and Walleye.

 



#11 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 03:31 PM

The annual sick-of-Nutcracker piece, this one by Charles Passy for MarketWatch.

 

So, what’s wrong with entertaining audiences and making money at the same time? Arguably nothing. But critics see a certain amount of greed when it comes to “The Nutcracker” — in terms of how some companies take shortcuts (at least after they make the initial production investment) or try to milk the title for every last dollar (can you say “‘Nutcracker’ gift shop”?). And the end result is often a holiday spectacle without a certain sparkle — the dollar signs trump the sugar plums, in other words. For this reason, Demetrius Klein, an acclaimed Ohio-based choreographer and dance-school director, has resisted staging his own “Nutcracker”: He’d rather put art ahead of commerce, he says. “I would be interested in how many dance companies would continue to do a “Nutcracker” if it wasn’t this huge cash cow,” he adds.

 

 



#12 dirac

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 03:32 PM

A post by Hedy Weiss in The Chicago Sun-Times' blog, with a link to her video interview of Victoria Jaiani.

 

Victoria Jaiani, a principal dancer with the company, has performed a slew of crucial roles in the ballet over the years, including the magisterial Snow Queen, the Sugar Plum Fairy and the sensual “Coffee from Arabia” duet. But this year she is pregnant, and will appear only in the first act as — most fittingly as the mother of Clara and her bratty brother Fritz.

 



#13 dirac

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 10:28 PM

Reviews of the Royal Ballet's Nutcracker.

 

The Independent

 

This revival has a delightful heroine in Francesca Hayward’s young Clara. Just promoted out of the corps de ballet, Hayward has bright, spontaneous stage presence, with a sense of wonder at her enchanted journey. Her dancing is airy, with a flowing sense of line. Alexander Campbell is a characterful Nutcracker, with a springy jump. Gary Avis gives the magician Drosselmeyer a touch of melancholy alongside the panache.

 

 

The Evening Standard

 

But the masterstroke of Peter Wright’s production is to make magician Herr Drosselmeyer the main character — a  manipulative master of ceremonies with a whiff of Simon Cowell. To save his nephew who has been transformed into a nutcracker doll, he persuades his god-daughter, Clara, to leave her family on Christmas Eve and journey into a world of fantasy.

 

 



#14 dirac

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 04:30 PM

Amar Ramasar and Sara Mearns perform with the Eastern Connecticut Ballet.

 

ECB Artistic Director Gloria Govrin is excited to have both principals working closely with the ECB students and its developing dance professionals. As for her reaction to having Mearns team with her predominantly female company, she said, “My kids are out of their minds that Sara Mearns is coming here. So I’m thrilled, because she is the kind of dancer I love. She is passionate. She’s a no-holds-bar dancer. She lays everything out on the stage. I think that it’s inspiring to the students, and I think the audience is going to love her.”

 

 




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