Jump to content


Russian Nights Question


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#16 Guest_Helice_*

Guest_Helice_*
  • Unregistered / Not Logged In

Posted 10 February 2003 - 10:22 AM

Actually, there has been a fair amount of dancer turnover in the past two seasons, with several principals and soloists either retiring or leaving. Also, PNB announced last month that it was cutting performances of the remaining "mixed bill" programs this season, making some program changes, and furloughing administrative staff. The following article from the Seattle P-I has more information:

http://seattlepi.nws...149_pnb15.shtml

#17 Alexandra

Alexandra

    Board Founder

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,248 posts

Posted 10 February 2003 - 10:42 AM

Thanks for that -- I don't think the turnover is out of the ordinary, though. I meant what's happened with companies (not PNB) where the directorship has changed, and dancers -- either a few real favorites, or a huge percentage of the company, 50% or more -- are suddenly cut. That can sometimes push audiences away.

#18 Guest_Helice_*

Guest_Helice_*
  • Unregistered / Not Logged In

Posted 10 February 2003 - 11:18 AM

I would tend to believe that the segment of the audience that can tell one dancer from another is the one that is going to keep on coming to shows anyway. I also suspect that attendance has dropped because of a combination of factors: the horrible local economy; dull programming choices; confusion about or dissatisfaction with the Mercer Arts Arena as a venue for dance.

#19 Alexandra

Alexandra

    Board Founder

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,248 posts

Posted 10 February 2003 - 11:43 AM

Thanks. I found your last point especially interesting -- for those of us who aren't familiar with the center, what are the problems? The article you linked to above also referred to it as "less attractive," though there doesn't seem to be an alternative, since the Opera House is being renovated.

The Kennedy Center here is in the same situation -- the Opera House is closed for a year, and they're putting programs/concerts in other theaters. It's not exactly the same situation, of course, because it's a theater missing one of its own houses, not a company floating around without a home. But ballet fans aren't happy -- the schedule is cut back, no real appearance by the Kirov this season (just an appearance at a gala), ABT in the Concert Hal, not an ideal venue for dance, etc.

In the hopes of keeping subscriptions up, the Center programmed a two-week "international festival," probably in the hopes that people would want to see the stars so badly that they'd keep their subscriptions.

#20 Guest_Helice_*

Guest_Helice_*
  • Unregistered / Not Logged In

Posted 10 February 2003 - 01:20 PM

The Mercer Arts Arena has been converted temporarily from an old, smallish sports arena that was next to the opera house while the new hall is being constructed. While it respresents something of an incredible transformation for anyone who saw the old arena, it is still a problematic venue for dance. It is really wide, so there is a lot of dead space around the proscenium, making it hard to focus on the stage. The perspective from the center sections is definitely better than the side sections. There are also entire sections on the sides with badly obstructed views of the stage (they usually don't sell many seats in those). The acoustics have been praised, which, for the ballet, means that the orchestra still sounds fine, but I've also been a bit more conscious of hearing dancers' feet pounding the stage since the move.

For those to whom such things matter a great deal, I imagine the new facility lacks the requisite "opera house" ambience. I'm not particularly bothered by the lack of opulence, but I often feel disoriented because there is no real expansive lobby area to mill about in before the performance or during the intermissions. Something of the social experience is lost. People tend to go outside at the breaks if the weather is decent.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


Help support Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers year round by using this search box for your amazon.com purchases (adblockers may block display):