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      2018 Joint Fundraiser for Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers   02/03/2018

      We have launched our 2018 Fundraiser.  To donate, please see the instructions on our home page for checks (US dollars only) and credit card donations via PayPal.  We close the fundraiser as soon as we raise enough to sustain us for the next year, and we thank you for your support!

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  1. Today
  2. 2018 Fundraiser

    We're two-thirds of the way to our goal, and we'll stop nagging and stop the fundraiser as soon as we raise the funds to keep the sites going for another year. A big thank you to those who've supported us, and to those who support us year round through our amazon box (which is temporarily under the calendar listings).
  3. Watching the Olympics

    Scott Hamilton has made huge contributions to figure skating, but I did not like his style of commentary at all. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir aren't just younger and hipper and more fun to watch -- they are more informative! Or seem so to me--a very casual fan. And I am much closer to Hamilton's age than to theirs. I did love Peggy Fleming, but that was because she was Peggy Fleming not because I found her commentary particularly illuminating. (And she is still Peggy Fleming to me.)
  4. Skorik

    She didn't perform for several months anyway last year, as I recall. How this would effect her current physical state, I, personally, have no idea. Added: She's scheduled for four major appearances in the next month. I wish her the best. https://www.mariinsky.ru/en/company/ballet/principals/baleriny/skorik1
  5. Watching the Olympics

    I just watched the ice dance competition. Somehow haven't found this thread until now. But all three figure skating competitions have been hair-raising. Ice dancing is usually the one that's most predictable, but not in this Olympics. From Papadakis/Cizeron's unfortunate wardrobe malfunction in the SD to Hubbell/Donahue's fall in the free dance to the razor thin victory by Virtue Moir, wow, that was just so thrilling!
  6. Skorik

    I was one of the supers for all the Mariinsky performance at the Kennedy Center and she danced well here.
  7. Skorik

    I will admit to not having viewed this video segment. I have watched more than ten minutes of the rest of the The Shades Act and find her to be absolutely Elegant, almost sublime at times. Her statuesque beauty is as fine as I've seen in anyone. Towards the finale this Elegance carries over to her facial expression and her totality, I find to be, well, -- Absolutely Elegant !
  8. For better or for worse, I won't bother to point out the issues, if the accusations hadn't come at this moment in time the whole thing would have been handled differently. It is a complicated thing to think through.
  9. It seems they would have to come up with a job description before they consider anyone.
  10. Peter Martins Sexual Harassment Allegations

    Is there anything to be learned from this? Besides the obvious - launching and publicizing an investigation against a person in a position of power, based upon an anonymous accusation, is probably not a good idea. Peter Martins is not really exonerated, as his past bad behavior has been brought to public attention once again. Darci Kistler has been humiliated through no fault of her own, while having to deal with her daughter's serious substance abuse problem. Dancers who were secure in their career arcs have to start over with "the devil they don't know". And the NYCB board has the unenviable task of finding a new AD who won't be run out of the city on a rail by the critics and the fans. As the current tenant in the White House would put it - sad.
  11. Peter Martins Retired; Succession Discussion

    That would seem sensible, but one can also imagine them defining the job based on who they decide to have take it, no?
  12. Winter 2018

    Well many of the same dancers of Red Violin got huge applause when they closed out the night with Russian Seasons so I hope they didn't take it personally ... It's hard to muster much enthusiasm for Red Violin though.
  13. It seems to me that the NYCB Board of Directors has to start with defining the job. Will it be split? That has to be the first task. After that there has to be a clear definition of the missions of the school and the company. From there an assessment of the qualifications that indicate an ability to carry out those missions. I expect the search to take quite some time. I also expect there are constant phone calls to Martins asking for input in several areas. This was a sudden departure. Personally I hope a woman is named to lead the company.
  14. Out of all the wonderful William Forsythe work to choose from they choose two that have been widely seen already and one that they themselves have already done to death. The artistic choices at this company do not seem to make any sense. I can't help but wonder if Kain (through audience research?) was made to think the public no longer wants full length classical work anymore? Or if this is simply her own..unique... taste? The Being and Nothingness/The Dream program seems short. Pehaps they will do what they did last time and make a last minute turkey addition. I would LOVE to see Hawes in The Dream. I have only ever seen pictures of Sphinx but have found even they to be quite something. I would love to see more of Glen Tetley's work but (as you have discussed above) the current NBoC will likely not program this kind of thing at least under the current reign. If they had hoped to get the subscriptions back on track I doubt this is going to do it. Sigh.
  15. I concur with what you say here SandyMcKean. Although I prefer William Forsythe when he is working in a more ballet style (Artifact, In the middle) One Flat Thing grew on me after repeat viewings. The range of his creations is to me pretty spellbinding. He has made work so vastly different in style to a point I don't think many others could ever match. I am also excited for Ezra Thompson. Here is to the future!!
  16. Binet Allegations

    According to Media at the National Ballet the website is correct. David Binet has been removed from the NBoC Endowment Foundation Board effective immediately.
  17. I saw One Flat Thing 5 times when it was first done in 2008. The first time, I didn't like it at all. I wasn't of the mood, like some, that I should be angry and leave the hall.....I just didn't get it.....but I've learned over the years, that when I don't like something, it's usually me, and not the piece. Second time, it grew on me just enough such that I became neutral. Then in one of his lectures, Doug Fullington mentioned this technique where the dancers must key off each other instead of depending on the music. WOW.....the third time, I got it, and found the piece fascinating and exciting. The fourth time I started to see Balanchine here and there and every where (that's not surprising since those who know way more than I often talk about the connection between these two choreographers). All of this came into sharp focus the fifth time. Oh, am I glad I stuck it out! One Flat Thing is now one of my absolute favorite piece of all time.....right up there with Agon and Square Dance. In this season I've been looking forward to One Flat Thing more than any other ballet......except perhaps Ezra Thompson's new work. Ezra grabbed my eye years ago, and he keeps blowing me away with his talent, commitment, and his invention. Now to see all of that mature into a 22 minute statement is about as exciting as it gets for me. Imagine all of this is ONE program........yipee!
  18. Winter 2018

    Absolutely, I always applaud performers who are good even if they are stuck in a bad vehicle.
  19. Winter 2018

    I second that. I always applaud the dancers even if I dislike the ballet. I don't think sending a message to the choreographer really works.
  20. Winter 2018

    Yes, that's too bad. One should really applaud the dancers at least, if not the piece.
  21. Yesterday
  22. Watching the Olympics

    Gold medal winning snowboarder Chloe Kim was born in the year 2000. How old does that make you feel? ;) The Generation X-ers seem to portray the 1980s as a care-free golden era. That's a little hard to take, but it just shows you - it's all about our memories of youth.
  23. Watching the Olympics

    I'm sure many of us remember when Dick Button and Peggy Fleming dominated the broadcasts. I have to think they're worried about attracting younger audiences and I wonder how many of them even remember Scott's triumphs in 1984 - or how many were even born! Assume it's all about ratings.
  24. Winter 2018

    And of course a ballet can be better or worse depending on the cast. To compare in a way to figure skating…. it's also about the moment. Still, how sad that the dancers didn’t get a respectable amount of applause. But I have to admit, I’m more tepid with applause after an uninspiring program.
  25. I did so, and I rarely leave a bad offering until the end-(the worse scenario has been dozing off, as with in ABT's "The Tempest"). This time though....it was just too much of the uninteresting stuff. It was getting on my nerves.
  26. Watching the Olympics

    From the NY Times: Scott Hamilton Was Demoted as an Olympic Broadcaster. Don’t Feel Sorry for Him. By JULIET MACUR https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/sports/olympics/figure-skating-nbc-scott-hamilton-.html "...Not with the rise of Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir, a pair of sequined Olympians-turned-pop-culture-idols. They are NBC’s primary figure skating analysts at the Pyeongchang Games. Hamilton has been relegated to a show called “Olympic Ice” on the secondary NBC Sports Network, where he teams up with Tanith Belbin, an Olympic silver medalist in ice dancing, and the sportscaster Liam McHugh." “I calculated once how many times I fell during my skating career — 41,600 times,” he said. “But here’s the funny thing: I got up 41,600 times. That’s the muscle you have to build in your psyche — the one that reminds you to just get up.”
  27. An Unlikely Youth Revolution at the Paris Opera By TOBIAS GREYFEB. 19, 2018 https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/19/arts/music/paris-opera-young-audiences.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Farts "According to the company, it had 95,000 audience members younger than 28 last season — more than 10 percent of tickets sold and 30,000 more than just two years before." “What I think was a mistake at the opera was for many years to persist with a number of productions which were locked into purely vocal performance,” Mr. Lissner said. “Today’s spectators are looking for more than that. They want to experience something theatrical as well. That’s what brings young people to the opera.”
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