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Saturday, July 26

8 posts in this topic

A preview of Ballet Manila's nineteenth season.

The company then brings back Swan Lake on November 14, 15 and 16, with Maxim Chaschegorov and Katherina Markowskaj of the Bavarian State Ballet as guest artists. In this gripping tale, Prince Siegfried falls in love with a bewitched princess, Odette, who turns into a swan by day. The prince pledges eternal fidelity to her but mistakenly proposes to another woman, Odile, when evil sorcerer Rothbart casts a spell.

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A review of Carlos Acosta's Cubanía by Kate Kellaway in The Observer.

The story (Acosta's in reverse) is of a ballet dancer who goes to Havana where he finds himself a figure of fun because he can't dance African style or breakdance with the best of them. When he poses in front of a street crowd – Danza Contemporánea de Cuba in fighting-fit form – and strikes a classical dancer's opening pose, they fall about laughing. Acosta enjoys sending up the ballet, bringing out the amusing incongruity of a sober figure in a straw hat gesturing gracefully at his suitcase. Varona is his gyrating rival with a Havana (what else?) cigar in mouth. And the piece's intention is that, tutored by the irresistible Corveas, Acosta will prove there is nothing he cannot do, there will be a rejoicing in multilingual dance. But in practice, this tired narrative needs theatrical – not merely balletic – flair to make it work. What it does succeed in is stimulating speculation about Acosta's take on the pull between his homes – for this is choreographed nostalgia.

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The National Ballet of China visits Cuba.

Cuban ballet is known for its passionate and free-flowing style. Here in Havana, it's 35 degrees Celsius, but the dancers are braving the heat without air conditioners. Chinese and Cuban dancers are undergoing a rigorous rehearsal under the supervision of China's troupe leader Feng Ying, and 94-year-old Cuban Ballet legend Alicia Alonso. During past visits to China, Alonso has met with Mao Tse Dong and Zhou Enlai.

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An interview with Abigail Boyle.

"Your centre of gravity is totally different for ballet versus contemporary," she says. "In ballet everything is up, in contemporary you are grounded down. I have a fight with my body for about 10 minutes every time. But once you have it, it's there."

Boyle will dance in Daniel Belton's Satellites, Larry Keigwin's Megalopolis and has been learning the principal role in Balanchine's Allegro Brillante.

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An interview with Ethan Stiefel by Bernadette Rae in The New Zealand Herald.

Stiefel's departure after just three years is a disappointment. It was obvious from the start that the position here was a golden opportunity and stepping stone for an ambitious dancer looking to the next stage in his professional life.

He says he had no predetermined length of time in mind when he moved Downunder. But the physical distance between New Zealand and New York, where Murphy is a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre, did take the couple by surprise.

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The Pennsylvania Ballet and BalletX will perform at the Vail International Dance Festival.

For Aldridge, a principal dancer with Pennsylvania Ballet, the tour will be extra special. Her tall, dark partner will be Robert Fairchild, a star from the New York City Ballet; the two were tapped to dance a pas de deux in Balanchine's Stravinsky Violin Concerto, another Woetzel request.

Ballet dancers often get little notice or rehearsal time for new roles, but Aldridge got even less prep. She found out about the duet two weeks ago and was to get only one half-hour rehearsal with her new partner this weekend in Vail. Still, she's thrilled.

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An interview with Natalia Osipova by Giannandrea Poesio in The Spectator.

The choice might look bold to some, as the performance moves away dramatically from what the public has learnt to associate with the couple. But it should not be read as an act of rebellion, as Osipova states. ‘I believe that, since the late 20th century, ballet artists have benefited from being free to move across choreographic modes. Though such opportunities ought not to be read or interpreted as synonymous with breaking away from tradition. The importance of tradition cannot be overlooked, as tradition remains key to what ballet is today and will be tomorrow. A performance such as Solo for Two, therefore, should not be construed as a cry for more artistic freedom. I am very lucky to be working with the Royal Ballet, a company that offers a splendidly varied and wide range of possibilities for its artists. Solo for Two is not a reaction, but the practical realisation of our wish to explore the work of dance-makers we feel particularly attracted to and interested in.’

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A review of the Noverre Society’s “Young Choreographers” program by Ilona Landgraf in her blog, “Landgraf on Dance.”

......Company members of the Stuttgart Ballet regularly volunteer to be part of the action. Costumes usually come from the Stuttgart Opera's wardrobe department and the financing of set designs is possible – if kept reasonable. Promoted by the project are, first and foremost, ingenuity and intriguing ideas.

Rainer Woihsyk, head of the Noverre Society, has the luxury of being spoilt by options. This time he even had applications from New York and Toronto. Nine aspiring chorographers were finally chosen to put their ideas to the test.2. Ludovico Pace and Brent Parolin, “This Could Get Ugly” by Robbie Bird, Noverre Society: Young Choreographers 2014 Five of them were from the Stuttgart Ballet's ensemble and four were from abroad; three of the nine were Noverre evening first timers.

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