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Friday, January 31


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#1 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 09:57 PM

An interview with Edward Watson.

 

Sir Kenneth MacMillan Charlotte MacMillan is a really good friend of mine. Her father was Sir Kenneth MacMillan, the principal choreographer of the Royal Ballet who created amazing ballets such as Mayerling and Romeo and Juliet and Manon, which are the ballets that I have made my name doing. Charlotte is also a brilliant photographer and this picture of some dying flowers [pictured] is something she gave me after a first night of Mayerling. 

 

 



#2 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:04 PM

A review of the Mariinsky Ballet at the Kennedy Center by Alastair Macaulay in The New York Times.

 

Just as exceptional is the supremely refined look of the Mariinsky performers. These St. Petersburg dancers seem a race apart from ordinary humanity: more erect, more stretched, more exquisitely cultivated. They are their most enchantingly lively in the national dances in the palace ballroom, all in heeled shoes (Spanish, Neapolitan, Hungarian, Polish); every twist of head and shoulder, every heel click has panache, wit, charm.

 

 

Sarah Kaufman's review in The Washington Post.

 

How could he resist Somova’s Odette? Captive to a magician’s spell, she unspooled a magic of her own. Somova is known — and derided, by some — for her extreme flexibility more than her artistry, but it’s time for a reassessment. First of all, she is blessedly free of affectation: no Gothic dramatics, no face-pulling. Secondly, this whisper-thin, leggy creature who looks like a child has upper-balcony star quality. There is something fascinating and watchable about her, the way Joan Crawford was not a classic beauty but she made you focus on her every move, every minute. 

 



#3 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:10 PM

An interview with Jonathon Renna.

Renna is also conducting a Saturday morning Masterclass in one of the NAC’s NAC rehearsal halls for intermediate and advanced dance students. He says he tries to take the time to teach aspiring dancers.

 

“I really like making the light bulb go on. There’s a lot of ways that I think about dance that are different and unique to what these kids get every day. And it’s nice to give them a little different flavour. Diversity, especially in dance, is such a key and important.”

 



#4 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:11 PM

A review of the National Ballet of Canada in 'Swan Lake' by Natasha Gauthier in The Ottawa Citizen.

 

Yu is partnered by rising star McGee Maddox, who made his debut as Prince Siegfried earlier this season. Maddox’s appealing baby face is offset by his broad shoulders and thickly muscled limbs. His strength makes him a rock-steady partner, but he was less self-assured in his solo variations. He’s almost too powerful, and doesn’t always show control and precision.

 



#5 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:12 PM

Louisville Ballet's marketing director is promoted to general manager.

 

As general manager, [Cara] Hicks will head up the administrative and financial side of the Ballet, working with the artistic staff to plan and reach the company's programmatic and organizational goals. This new position for the company replaces the executive director position, which Artistic Director Bruce Simpson, who will retire after this season, has also filled for the last several years.

 



#6 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:18 PM

A preview of the BBC presentation of Big Ballet.

 

After picking himself off the floor, Wayne selects the best dancers to audition, who will then be further rendered down by himself and ballet mistress Monica Loughman, a woman so cold and smooth she resembles a sneering marble statue erected for the sole purpose of making you disgusted with yourself. What strikes you most about the hopefuls is how completely unhopeful they are. Everyone's so crushed by life, so busy slopping their emotions all over the place, it's a wonder any of them can drag themselves into a plié. They talk about their size with a downcast joviality, like they're being forced to make knock-knock jokes at the grave of a recently deceased family member. They sit, self-deprecating to camera, like a dog in a party hat ashamed to exist.

 

 

The Daily Mail

He knows all too well that in the real world there is no room for ­dancers with bottoms and tummies that keep wobbling after the music has stopped. Nor were any of the women on the show told to stop eating or lose weight, although some did shed up to two dress sizes thanks to the ­intensive training.

 

Instead, the programme — which follows the dancers in three episodes over five months in the run-up to the production — sets out to show that being bigger doesn’t necessarily stop a woman being graceful or beautiful.

 

 

Related.



#7 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:22 PM

Q& A with Alexei Ratmansky and Leonid Desyatnikov.

What about “Opera,” also with a new score? It’s an abstract ballet with elements of narrative. Did the music and dance evolve separately or together?

 

Desyatnikov: Alexei wanted us to do a nonnarrative ballet. There were a lot of ideas. Alexei had an interesting one, but I rejected it because it didn’t work well with my general melancholic mood. I am Russian, you know. My idea was about a donkey, who was like Christ in a time of gender uncertainty.

 

Ratmansky: I had doubts about putting a donkey onstage. I couldn’t figure out whether it would be one man or two.

 



#8 dirac

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:28 PM

Comment on Misty Copeland's advertisement for Under Armour.

 

The Huffington Post

 

Under Armour's campaigns are usually packed with professional athletes flexing their physiques in the brand's premium sportswear -- not the likes of pretty ballerinas in tutus. However, the Baltimore based athletic company recently inked an endorsement deal with American Ballet Theatre soloist, Misty Copeland to prove that dancers are bad-ass athletes too. 

 

 

Atlanta Daily World

 

Ok, yes I will go buy workout clothes from Under Armour. Isn’t that what these ads are tricking us into. I am sold. And about these moves, Misty! I can’t possibly do any of them but I can at least get my legs ripped like yours.

 



#9 dirac

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 10:41 AM

A report on readers' reviews by Judith Mackrell in The Guardian's blog.
 

 

More reviews came from Resolution! Two of the works under discussion are coincidentally about the 2011 London riots but their reviewers judge both to have missed the mark as performance and as social criticism.

There's praise, however, for Rhiannon Brace's creation for 40 volunteers who took part in the Olympics 2012 opening ceremonies. Lara Hayward writes that the work....

 

 



#10 dirac

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 10:42 AM

Society pages report on the San Francisco Ballet gala.

 

Raves were exclaimed for dancer Taras Domitro, whose thrilling leaps wowed everyone from author-basketball player Robert Mailer Anderson to Ballet trustee Dede Wilsey, who aspires to his heights in exercise class.

 

 



#11 dirac

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 10:51 AM

A review of New York City Ballet by Robert Gottlieb in The New York Observer.

 

The standout this season, though, is Tiler Peck, the company’s most spectacular talent and superb in every role. She’s today’s McBride, with a vast range, uncanny musicality and deep understanding of everything she does. She’s the best “Man I Love” in Who Cares? since McBride, the best “pink” girl in Dances at a Gathering since McBride, and exceptionally fine in Wheeldon’s After the Rain. And she keeps getting better and better. The audience has found her and is in love. Me too.

 



#12 dirac

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 10:54 AM

A review of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in "Romeo +Juliet" by Janet Smith for Straight.com.

 

...Green’s great predecessors as principal dancer make impressive appearances: Tara Birtwhistle cuts a fearsome swath as Lady Capulet, and Vanessa Lawson makes a particularly adoring Nurse. The rest of the corps is consistently strong, too, the ball and festival scenes constant flurries of polished dance.

 

Sergei Prokofiev’s score is the other big star in this work, and though there is no live orchestra, the recording here, by the Kirov Orchestra, is at least high-quality enough for you to appreciate its bold colorations and innovations, from the screaming strings of Juliet’s funeral to the deep orchestral pulses of Tybalt’s death march.

 



#13 dirac

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 10:57 AM

The Grand Rapids Ballet Company will perform at the Chop Shop festival in Bellevue, WA.

 

Chop Shop was established in 2008 by Stone Dance Productions. The festival offers both performances and classes. Community classes open to novices were held in partnership with the city of Bellevue Parks and Community Services Department in the latter half of January. Master classes in improvisation, ballet, contemporary style and its creative development are available to intermediate and advanced dancers during the festival.

 



#14 dirac

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 06:26 PM

A review of Company C by Allan Ulrich in The San Francisco Chronicle.

 

Anderson calls his planning eclectic, which means you take what's available. But there was a surprise for Thursday's audience, in the guise of "Weather One," a new and appealing work by Susan Jaffe, former principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre. This was the only work on the program which used the strictly classical vocabulary, and the only one in which the 10 dancers seemed both most fully challenged and fully engaged.

 




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