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

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diane

Senior Member
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About diane

  • Rank
    Bronze Circle

Registration Profile Information

  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    former ballet dancer, now teacher, freelance choreographer, mama of two dancers
  • City**
    germany
  • State (US only)**, Country (Outside US only)**
    Germany and Austria
  1. Workplace Problems at ENB

    Goodness, this seems to be more the norm than the exception in many companies, at least in some form or other. And it brings back many memories. Part of it is surely the near total dependance a dancer feels they have on the ADs and AADs (and often others) regarding his/her career. Often it appears largely mysterious how a decision regarding roles and advancements are made, if all else is /appears to be equal. So sometimes every word, every glance, every non-word or non-glance is analyzed meticulously, looking for clues to messages that appear to be few and far between. And, in my own experience, a toxic atmosphere can erupt almost instantly, given a few ingredients. This is not to say that there should be an excuse for any of this! A director, a ballet master - all of these people should be able to defuse such situations, should be humble enough to allow for humanity to show through. -sigh- I think that most of us former dancers have experienced at least some of this inexplicable and inexcuseable behaviour at some time in our professional lives. It sometimes feels as though the person delivering the abuse is deeply insecure and trying despearately to deflect from something in their own person; that they have risen to a position beyond their abilities to control. But this is indeed cold comfort. I doubt that anything will come from trying to go through the official channels to change things; these things normally do not change like that. It will take something almost explosive and potentially damaging to many - and to the company - to get things to budge. My opinion, obviously. -d-
  2. That is indeed quite unusual for a company to insist on that sort of thing! I certainly wish him all the best with this! I had wondered about this, if there were any issues for the members of the troupe if they wanted to transistion or something like that. I think it would be pretty amazing to have a company where the members could really be who they were, regardless of whether they fit a sterotype or idea. It would be a great chance to help further understanding and acceptance of not only trans but all the many diffeent aspects of humans. (I do not want to say, "lifestyles" , for it is not a decision to make; we are the way we are) But, probably there are those folks who see the dollars dwindling if they feel they cannot count on audience coming to gawk and laugh. There has got to be a better way, though. -d-
  3. Are there ballets that should no longer be staged?

    This is a fascinating discussion. I have not as much experience as most of you, but nevertheless....Just a thought: Here in Germany and Austria when Shakespeare plays are presented they are done so of course in German, and there often are chnages to the text, perhaps in part because it has already been translated, so one can presumably continue to translate further, or for clarity or other reasons.(of course it is the same with any other plays which were originally written in a language other than German; they are all translated, as are all films dubbed) I guess that is often done with choreographies, too, though perhaps not those which are so well protected that the permission to stage them is attached to the promise to do so faithfully. I wonder if the "translation" of text and the inevitable changes - however subtle - that brings with it, could (or does) have a parallel in choreographies. I would think it surely does; though perhaps not quite as strongly in the purely classical ballets as in more modern pieces. I agree that it seems a huge issue is to figure out what is important, what is the essence, of a work, and how to preserve that while also allowing it to exist within the times and the culture at present; especially if the companies/ performers are financiallly dependent on audiences coming and paying. One reason some European countries so lavishly support the arts is so the artists are not forced to follow current ideas of what is "good" or "worthy". Of course, there is constant debate about what is good or worthy or what is "art", but that is indeed another subject. -d-
  4. The other Strauss - meaning Richard? Yes, sometimes there are some other things; even R.Strauss, but not often. This one is for publicity, after all. Karajan - yes. Yes. It is a Tradition (with a captial "T") for us to watch the Neujahrskonzert here... and at midnight of the first of January to listen to the Donauwalzer and dance around the room precariously holding a glass of Sekt. -d-
  5. Did anyone see this? Being "over here", we of course see the German/Austrian version and the Austrian broadcasting people are "presenting" it. Is this shown "live" in the US? It's quite "kitschy"; but I guess that is the idea; get more tourists to come to Austria. I am finding the dancing bits more and more cringe-worthy as I get older. The dancers are fine, the choreography and attempts at - what? a story-line? - bother me more and more. My DH is Viennese and therefore this is a must-do for us on New year's day after breakfast. Actually, I liked it that there were not quite as many martial pieces this time; or perhaps I was not paying attention. (who was it who said of playing/conducting Viennese walzes, "...it is not - one-two-three - but more like, one-two and... maybe... three"...?) -d-
  6. Maria Kochetkova

    Nice, thanks! -d-
  7. I am stunned that this was meant seriously. On another note: It is possible to put rubber onto strategic parts of the soles of the slippers or pointes; even so, it is still not fun dancing on super-slippery floors. Perhaps that is what was done for these brave dancers? -d-
  8. Um, the whole video is surely a joke, no? -d-
  9. Yeah - and I wonder what the real reason is?? Copyright? Some companies at least leave up the entire class for years and years. Oh, well. -d-
  10. Tiler Peck on Ellen

    Cool! Yes, for sure I hope that she did not have to sit there for too long, getting cold! And, I am really wondering what she did to her pointe shoes so that she could dance on that floor!! (I know that one can have rubber glued onto the soles, but I did not notice anything, did anyone else?) -d-
  11. Ah, thanks. It is wonderful to get to see class and some rehearsals! Unfortunately, I never have time to watch the videos at this time of year - it is a super-busy time for me.I will make do with the highlights which remain so that I can watch bits and pieces over the xmas and soring holiddays. -d-
  12. Then/Now photos

    So much fun to look at these! Personal observation: I know that one cannot really make comparisons from photographs, as they could vary ever-so-slightly from second-to-second, so that we cannot know if the photo of the three muses, for example, in the iconic arabesques with Apollo, was taken at the exact moment as the other photo of the same pose.... but..... personally I find that in general the older photos show more in terms of body language and emotion and "human-ness" than the more recent ones. Of course, it may just be me reading too much into them. -d-
  13. Then/Now photos

    Marvelous! Thank you so much for these!
  14. Quote pherank: "Somehow, there remains this notion that any artwork that doesn't pretend (and it's always pretend) to be wholly original and seemingly beholden to nothing else in the universe, is secondary or just not very good." I agree. This goes on all the time in (especially modern/contemporary "zeitgenössisches") dance all the time, and sometimes those who feel they were the "first" get annoyed and sue. I think that much of art through the history of mankind has "borrowed" heavily from other works; and that is fine. To me, anyway, art is distilled experiences, put in a way which makes it possible for someone else to experience something in, perhaps, a slightly different way. (without immediately shutting the door and shouting...) -d-
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