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About SandyMcKean

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    Gold Circle
  • Birthday 03/23/1945

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    totally consumed with balletomane fever
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  • State (US only)**, Country (Outside US only)**

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  1. Keeping Up With...

    I always loved the way Barry danced at PNB. He put so much energy and pieces of himself whole-heartedly into his performances. His comic sense was of the highest caliber. His Puck was the best I'd ever seen.
  2. Allow me to throw in this "data point"...... My home company is also PNB. I have little direct experience with other companies other than SFB many years ago. From what I hear, PNB is unusual in the ballet world in that dancers tend to stay in the company for years....many even for their entire careers. The audience gets to know the dancers very well....even corps dancers to some extent. So my surmise is that it is "more" natural for big send offs at PNB than at many other companies given the chance for the dancer and the audience to bond over many years. Case in point, is the recent retirement of Carrie Imler. As I've often said, Carrie is/was my most admired and respected dancer. But not only that, she was in PNB for her entire career (23 years I think it was). Her admirers were legion....and there must have been 1500-2000 of them there for her well billed send off.....all screaming their heads off.
  3. Royal Ballet cinema season 2016-17

    I saw the Ashton presentation in Bellingham, WA at the Pickford (an arts cinema house) last Sunday the 9th. What an experience for me! Altho I have been watching ballet for many decades, I'm pretty sure I've never seen an Ashton before (except maybe sometime in the '70s which is too far back to remember). I hardly know what to say. I did learn one thing.......as the name of one of BA's members declares: I am now an Ashton Fan! I don't know enough to make meaningful comments except that it seemed to me to be a wonderful bill with which to be introduced to Ashton. Three very different works from story ballet to pure abstract. I was stuck by Ashton's deep commitment to story telling; I'm not sure I've ever seen so much drama packed into ballet as Ashton is able to do. I was probably the most emotionally involved during Marguerite and Armand since we all knew that this was Zenaida Yanowsky 's farewell performance. Having recently attended the farewell performance of my most-ever admired dancer Carrie Imler at PNB, I was struck all over again by how much an audience can love a dedicated artist who gives so much of herself in the name of art and humanity. The endless standing O at the end of the video was worth the entire day. That performance of Yanowsky's still haunts me.
  4. Tomasson Announces 2018 Festival of New Works

    My brother, who has season tickets to SFB, just sent me a graphic of the April and May 2018 calendar that shows specifically how the 12 New Works programs are distributed across the performance dates at the end of April and the beginning of May 2018. (They label the 4 performances of 3 ballets each as: A, B, C, D.) As it turns out, SFB is packing performances into nearly every available date. Looking at this chart of dates, I can see several ways to see all 12 works in 4 consecutive days........indeed, there is even a way to see all 12 works in 3 days (4/27, 4/28, 4/29). So the rumor I heard at PNB is true after all.....one can see all 12 works in a long weekend!
  5. Tomasson Announces 2018 Festival of New Works

    Looking at the actual schedule it seems I can see all 12 new works if I stay in the SF area for a week (4/20 thru 4/26 inclusive). Not quite a long weekend, but close enough for me to make it happen. I've informed my brother in San Anselmo to expect my wife and I as guests for that week . It will be real fun for me to go to SF's Civic Center and enter the War Memorial Opera House once again. I grew up in Marin and started my 50+ year love affair as a ballet spectator in 1964 while attending UC Berkeley. As it happened, I latched onto what was called in those days an "usher ticket" from the student center. This ticket allowed a student to see a performance at the opera house for free if they came early to usher. I thought I was going to hear a symphony. I didn't even know it was going to be ballet.....my first ever! Well, thanks to my lucky stars, the 1st piece was Balanchine's Serenade. When the curtain opened to that iconic tableau of 17 women basking in the moonlight I was stunned by the beauty. By the time the music and all those feet hit first position, I was in love.......a love that has never diminished in all this time. What a treat to go back to where it all started for me!!
  6. Sara Orza Elizabeth Murphy Leah Merchant Cecilia Iliesiu
  7. Royal Ballet cinema season 2016-17

    For those in Seattle, USA or Vancouver, Canada (and environs), the Pickford Film Center in Bellingham, WA is showing this b'cast during the 3rd week of May (a Sunday and a Wednesday). So for those willing to drive, it is an option. http://prod3.agileticketing.net/websales/pages/info.aspx?evtinfo=245183~f6f09a43-2b29-4bfa-8fdf-eec896542d8e&epguid=80e0a251-d516-4ede-8086-478b7c96b89a& P.S. I go to this theater all the time for ballet.....it is a nice "artsy" complex that does a fine job. Screens are a bit small, but more than adequate. Sound system is fine too.
  8. You're right, and I was wrong. I just looked at my old programs. In the 4 times I saw Vertiginous, Lindsi was not in the cast.
  9. Tomasson Announces 2018 Festival of New Works

    pherank, For reasons I don't fully understand myself, I seem to have an inexhaustible appetite for seeing ballet for hours on end. Since I moved 2 hours north of Seattle, I now confine myself to PNB's 1st weekend (since I must stay at friends etc in Seattle). So to see multiple casts, I simply go to all 3 shows that weekend. This means I sit there for 3 shows in a little over 24 hours. On that Saturday, I am in McCaw Hall from about 11:30am to nearly midnight (with sojourns for food etc). A couple of years ago, on a lark, I even went both weekends and saw all 7 shows in a row. Believe me (as our faux-Pres often says), I can take it . I also have a brother in Marin I will visit while there. From what I can gather, SFB is planning 4 shows of 3 ballets each. Sounds like I will either have to miss a few, or contrary to the comment I heard at the Q&A, one will have to be there quite a few days to catch all 12 ballets.
  10. Tomasson Announces 2018 Festival of New Works

    This Festival was mentioned at a Q&A session after a PNB performance this week (Dawson, Lang, Forsythe). A comment was made that SFB was attempting to schedule these 12 works in such a way that an out-of-towner, like me, could travel to SF and pack all 12 ballets into several days (less than a week I'm hoping). I know SFB is used to mounting more than one ballet program in a week, so they are capable of at least that. Does anyone know if it's going to be possible to see all 12 ballets without having to be in SF for the entire period (or nearly the entire period) from 4/20 thru 5/6/18??
  11. Royal Ballet cinema season 2016-17

    I wrote that 3 or 4 weeks ago. As it turns out, the Pickford in Bellingham is showing the ROH presentations. The wrinkle is that the presentations are not on the official ROH dates, but rather somewhat later, always on a Sunday, and always at 11:00am. This is music to my ears (pun intended) since I need to take a ferry to get home, and the official screenings at 6:00pm go too late for me to attend. Here is the Pickford schedule: MacMillan's Anastasia – at Pickford 1/8/17 @ 11:00am The Nutcracker.....Pickford is not doing it (doing Bolshoi Nut instead) Wayne McGregor's Woolf Works – at Pickford 3/26/17 @ 11:00am The Sleeping Beauty (after Petipa) – at Pickford 4/9/17 @ 11:00am Mr B's Jewels – at Pickford 5/21/17 @ 11:00am Frederick Ashton's The Dream / Symphonic Variations / Marguerite and Armand – at Pickford 7/9/17 @ 11:00am Incidentally, here are the ROH operas being shown at the Pickford: Offenbach's Les Contes d’Hoffmann – at Pickford 1/22/17 @ 11:00am Verdi's Il Trovatore – at Pickford 3/5/17 @ 11:00am Madama Butterfly – at Pickford 5/7/17 @ 11:00am Verdi's Otello (staring Jonas Kaufmann) – at Pickford 7/30/17 @ 11:00am
  12. Tricolore: Millepied et Balanchine

    Helene, your brain must operate at 10 times the speed of mine. I am continually amazed at how much you see, the scope of your reactions, your ability to remember and articulate, in a single ballet performance. I see a lot, but you are astounding!
  13. Royal Ballet cinema season 2016-17

    That's near where I live and I have been searching a ton of websites to check this out over the last couple of weeks. The ROH seems to think that their b'casts are shown at the Pickford Film Center in Bellingham, Wa. but nothing is scheduled at the actual theater. The Pickford does have a posting about the ROH, but there is no list of titles or dates/times. The calendar at the Pickford doesn't show any of the ROH showings. The Pickford did the ROH showings last year, but it doesn't look good for this year.
  14. Romeo et Juliette

    Now that's an interesting observation!