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About pherank

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    fan, balletgoer
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    San Francisco/San Diego
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  1. Sad, but not too surprising. Major newspapers and journals tend to be more a part of the 'system' than representatives of the opposition. Any decent paper might feature opposing viewpoints in editorials, but they still reinforced the dominant culture at every opportunity.
  2. From the NY Times: Remarkable Women We Overlooked in Our Obituaries Overlooked "Since 1851, obituaries in The New York Times have been dominated by white men. Now, we’re adding the stories of remarkable women." https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/obituaries/overlooked.html The list is quite varied and interesting, from Chinese revolution Qiu Jin (who I mentioned in a different thread) to Margaret Abbott (first American female Olympic athlete).
  3. Scene from Le Somptier's film Le P’tit Parigot (1926) A brief appearance of the French/Romanian dancer Lizica Codreanu in Pierrot-Eclair costume - set and costumes (for the women) designed by Sonia Delaunay Terk. The men in their dark suits seem to serve as a neutral backdrop for Delaunay Terk's modernist colors and geometries. Lot's of cigarette smoke wafting into the air too. I'd love to see a restored copy of this film. https://vimeo.com/246879115 A modern documentary and performance referring to the dancer Codreanu (who was a muse of Constantine Brancusi): Reenacting Lizica Codreanu (a tribute) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sJ3hhtRV1I "Lizica Codreanu (b.1901, Bucharest – d.1993, Louveciennes) was a French dance artist and choreographer with Romanian ancestry. In 1918, she joined The Belle-Arti School in Bucharest, making her debut during the first artistic tea program of the “Friends of the Blind” Society at Carol cel Mare Theatre in Bucharest, along with Ion Manu, Maria Filotti and Petre Sturdza. After a few individual performances in Bucharest (Dances of Character, The Spring’s Dance and Rococo Entertainment, March 9th 1919, at the Eforia Theatre), Lizica Codreanu left for Paris and, from 1921 onwards, led an increasing choreographic activity. The composer Florent Schmitt recommended her to Ida Rubinstein for several of her shows, she frequented Bronsilava Nijinska’s courses and got increasingly in touch with the avant-garde groups: Albatross, the dada and surrealists groups, Tchérez and so on. In 1926, she made her debut in film, with the character of Pierot Lightning in Le P’tit Parigot, directed by René le Somptier." http://en.cndb.ro/performances/reenacting-lizica-codreanu-rythmodia-by-vera-proca-ciortea
  4. SFB is running a promotion on tickets for Program 6 "For a limited time save $49 on ANY performance of Nijinsky. Click the button below, select the performance you wish to attend, and enter promo code OBSESSION. Seven performances only April 3–8. Get your tickets today." https://www.sfballet.org/season/2018-repertory/2018-program-6 [Look for the purple "Buy Tickets" button on the right side of the screen]
  5. Next season announced (Atlanta)

    Some Balanchine or Ratmansky always helps. ;) I wonder if Nedvigin thinks that Balanchine is too obvious a choice? And in the beginning at least, he must have a huge wish list of choreographers and ballets he'd like to take on. How to seem new, different, and in-tune with the classics all at the same time? I'm sure he needs to feel the company dancers are actually ready for the ballets that they are taking on. It's hard to say what they are capable of as a company yet, but it should be a fun season all the same. Nedvigin should try to license Ratmansky's Odessa and Peck's Rodeo - that would be something of a coup for a regional company.
  6. Program 5: Celebrating Jerome Robbins

    I'm sure there are people who don't really know he left for ENB. ;) But since Robison has already appeared in Frankenstein as a company member, someone must have decided it wasn't important making the distinction. Or maybe, just maybe, we're going to see more of Mr. Robison - as a part-time member of SFB, while starring at ENB. Heather Ogden of NBofC somehow managed to dance for Suzanne Farrell Ballet as well, though I presume those company schedules worked together better than most.
  7. Program 4 - Frankenstein

    Laying Frankenstein to rest: https://www.instagram.com/p/BgPAthhFXng/?taken-by=jahnagram Jahna Frantziskonis: The depths of despair. So proud of the art this company brought to such an emotionally complex story. Handled with guts and grace! Honored to dance Justine along side them. On to the next!
  8. Peter Martins Retired; Succession Discussion

    …And completely natural for young people to "look up to" the much more experienced staff and veteran dancers. Mentorship is a good thing when handled appropriately. I wish mentorship was an organized and required program for "freshman" dancers in all the big ballet companies.
  9. From the SFB email to subscribers and friends of the SFB: Be there when the curtain goes up on the next generation of ballet professionals. From May 23–25, San Francisco Ballet School students and Trainees will perform Helgi Tomasson’s Blue Rose, new works choreographed by SF Ballet dancers James Sofranko and Blake Johnston, and George Balanchine’s rousing Stars and Stripes. Each performance will begin with a short demonstration by students in Levels 2–8. Following the May 23 performance, the SF Ballet Auxiliary hosts an elegant dinner at the Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco. Proceeds from this event will support the $1 million in scholarships and financial aid awarded annually to SF Ballet School students. An Invitation to Dance: SF Ballet School 2018 Student Showcase Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater Wednesday, May 23 at 6:00 pm Thursday, May 24 at 7:30 pm Friday, May 25 at 7:30 pm Tickets
  10. Program 5: Celebrating Jerome Robbins

    You are all speaking to a long running, general problem of one art/craft (visual media) trying to present and interpret another (dance). And invariably, the so-called 'experts' doing the photography/videography/filming insist on doing their jobs in a way that they know to be considered professional and maybe even 'really awesome' to the many people who pay attention to photography/videography/film. The problem is, these visual records often hamper our experience of the dancing and the choreography - we get too many seemingly willy-nilly editing effects and not enough insight into the dance/ballet. That's ironic, given that video and film productions always have some kind of script and production plan, but they rarely seem to take into account the effective depiction of the dance production, and the music that is the backbone of the production (or not, as the case may be). Most of us end up feeling that it's best to just leave things with a very basic camera setup that shows the audience the entire stage at all times, with minimal body/face 'closeups'. But that's not an approach that cinematographers or film directors are going to love. Ballet is fairly unique in requiring the union of 3 or more possible art forms: dance, music, and costume/stagings/lighting/projections, etc. And so many ballet projects end up becoming something more like a collision than a union of artists. Any kind of clumsy art 'collaboration' now always makes me think of these immortal lines: Balanchine: "We see nothing! Mary Ellen, we don't see Mary Ellen at all! Seligman: Nothing can be cut out, where is Seligman?" [Mary Ellen Moylen's remembrance of Balanchine and Kurt Seligman fighting over the original Four Temperaments costumes (in Dancing For Mr. B)] There has yet to be a "golden era" of dance film/video. And we're not getting any closer. To set a better example, the ballet world needs an A.D. who is as literate in film techniques as Balanchine was in the language of music composition: an A.D. who can dictate precisely how things need to be depicted, and if it's not done to that specification, the film crew won't be paid. ;)
  11. SFB Podcasts: New website, New Location

    At least podcasts and other audio media free you up to do something else at the same time. Books don't allow for much else beyond quiet background music. I prefer silence when I'm reading a book.
  12. Program 4 - Frankenstein

    Aaron Robison posted a nice goodbye note to the SFB staff:
  13. It does seem like most major and regional symphonies in the U.S. are joining in the celebration with Bernstein programs at some point of the year. It shouldn't be difficult to find something of interest near you.
  14. SFB Podcasts: New website, New Location

    Recommended: the Meet the Artist interview with Sofiane Sylve, and how it relates to her recent Master Class talk with Ballet West students https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bexEmbPoDw4 The Stories of Serenade with James Steichen is of interest too, though I think he gets hung up trying to dispel 'myths and legends'. He should listen to Alastair Macaulay's interview on the subject of Serenade http://tendusunderapalmtree.com/alastair-macaulay/ Sasha De Sola talks about dancing Aurora in Sleeping Beauty and is always very well spoken.
  15. Although SF audiences generally have felt that Frankenstein has been, if anything, improved across all casts this year, it sounds like SFB will only be performing new works from their Unbound Festival: "The world-renowned company follows its acclaimed 2016 performances of Cinderella with D.C. premieres to be selected from Unbound: A Festival of New Works. Launching later this spring in San Francisco, the dynamic festival will showcase all-new ballets created by 12 of today’s most innovative choreographers, including David Dawson, Alonzo King, Edwaard Liang, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Cathy Marston, Trey McIntyre, Justin Peck, Arthur Pita, Dwight Rhoden, Myles Thatcher, Stanton Welch, and Christopher Wheeldon. Favorite pieces from the festival will make their way to the Kennedy Center in the fall, celebrating dance without limits and the company’s unique spirit of curiosity, experimentation, and invention."