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Veronika Part: divided opinions?

276 posts in this topic

Just now, nanushka said:

 

The headline reads, "Veronika Part to Retire from American Ballet Theater [sic]." And reread the first paragraph:

 

Veronika Part, the Russian-born ballerina who has been a principal dancer with American Ballet Theater since 2009, will retire from the company at the end of this season because her contract was not renewed for another year.

I think it was edited after I first read it. The original headline said something like "Veronika Part Announces Her Retirement from American Ballet Theater." And I could have sworn the bit about her contract not being renewed was not in the original version. Or maybe I'm just losing it...

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It happened in Seattle.  Peter Boal announced Ariana Lallone's retirement.  She said publicly and was quoted in the media that she wanted to dance another year and retire during PNB's anniversary season, but that Boal would not renew her contract.  

 

Lallone was pretty much a home grown talent, having made it through the ranks, and like Madonna, was known almost universally as "Ariana" and had a huge following.  She was also given the best roles of her career by Boal and was giving splendid performances, so it was even more of a :helpsmilie: than usual.  I can't remember if he gave her flowers after her retirement performance, which like most, was during the special Encores performance after the last regular season Sunday matinee.

 

 

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1 minute ago, fondoffouettes said:

I think it was edited after I first read it. The original headline said something like "Veronika Part Announces Her Retirement from American Ballet Theater." And I could have sworn the bit about her contract not being renewed was not in the original version. Or maybe I'm just losing it...

 

It's quite possible it was changed. Perhaps even at her own insistence.

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Posted (edited)

Josh Barone's Twitter feed implies that the article was edited after initial publication:

 

https://twitter.com/joshbarone?lang=en

 

He provides info on those who oppose her forced retirement, as well as clarification that her contract wasn't renewed.

 

They might as well also fix the part about her dancing Aurora in Ratmantsky's Sleeping Beauty. I'm pretty positive that her last outing as Aurora was in the Kirkland production. 

Edited by fondoffouettes

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1 minute ago, nanushka said:

 

I understand you didn't write it. I just wondered what you took it to mean, since you were apparently quoting it in support of your point. But perhaps you were just referring to the "two sides to every story" part? The rest of it seems to be making some strong assertions that are completely unsubstantiated.

There are always two sides to every story.  

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10 minutes ago, its the mom said:

One other observation is that some dancers prefer not to have a send-off.  Possibly my favorite ballerina ever, Larissa Ponomarenko, who was a Principal with Boston, decided it was time to retire.  They offered a send-off (a la Yury Yanowsky two years ago), but she preferred to go quietly.  

 

This is definitely a good point to keep in mind, in terms of the farewell performance itself. I can quite imagine Part wanting to make a quieter exit than many others. Though of course that's a separate issue from whether she wanted to make an exit at all at this particular time.

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4 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

Josh Barone's Twitter feed implies that the article was edited after initial publication:

 

https://twitter.com/joshbarone?lang=en

 

 

If you scroll down to his earlier post, you can see the original wording of the article's title.

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Posted (edited)

Oh, wow, and they've added a link to the petition in the NYT article, as well. That definitely wasn't there before!

Edited by fondoffouettes

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[Admin beanie on] I wish this weren't necessary, especially for people who have been here a long time, but, here goes again:

 

Do not, I mean do not, post non-public-facing comments from non-ballet professionals from other boards, blogs, social media, etc. on Ballet Alert!

 

Reporting such posts would be helpful, but isn't obligatory.  However responding to a post like that is in the same territory.

 

I won't even bother editing them but will go straight to delete the entire post.

 

[Admin beanie off]

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Posted (edited)

51 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

They might as well also fix the part about her dancing Aurora in Ratmantsky's Sleeping Beauty. I'm pretty positive that her last outing as Aurora was in the Kirkland production. 

Yes, she only performed Lilac Fairy in Ratmansky's Beauty.

Edited by MRR

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The Times article has been updated yet again, with the following added:

 

A spokeswoman for Ballet Theater said the company, which does not discuss personnel matters, would not comment further. Ms. Part was not available to comment on Monday.

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Forgetting about personality issues and such, what companies would be a good fit for Part (repertoire-wise)?

National Ballet of Canada? The Royal Ballet?

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7 minutes ago, pherank said:

Forgetting about personality issues and such, what companies would be a good fit for Part (repertoire-wise)?

National Ballet of Canada? The Royal Ballet?

 

Anywhere along the Acela corridor sounds good to me! (Though I know that's not what you meant! :D)

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Washington Ballet? Based on social media she seems to have a fairly good relationship with Julie Kent and Kent has acquired several pieces which Part danced (Seven Sonatas, for one). 

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48 minutes ago, canbelto said:

Washington Ballet? Based on social media she seems to have a fairly good relationship with Julie Kent and Kent has acquired several pieces which Part danced (Seven Sonatas, for one). 

 

Kent would be very wise to snatch her up now, especially if Veronika has an interest in coaching after retirement from dancing.

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I can see her having a career as a guest artist, but I doubt that there are prospects for a new home company.

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4 hours ago, canbelto said:

Washington Ballet? Based on social media she seems to have a fairly good relationship with Julie Kent and Kent has acquired several pieces which Part danced (Seven Sonatas, for one). 

 

Not sure that she would be a fit, size wise (height), as well as her expansive style that fills up a huge stage. It's a group of smallish to mid-height dancers. Brooklyn Mack is the one larger/stronger guy in girth if not height but....no...He does so well with the more petite ballerinas like Maki Onuki.  Half of the season happens in smaller stages, like the Harman or the Ike venue @ Kenn Cen. It's a chamber company augmented occasionally by the affiliate school. Nice thought, though.

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Given the resurgence of Russia in popular culture, maybe she could go the same route as Irina Dvorovenko and venture into acting?  I think she has a lot of potential for film and TV.  

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22 hours ago, vipa said:

I believe that back in the day, long time principal dancer Eleonor D'Antuono was treated pretty shabbily at the end. (If I'm misremembering please let me know). D'Antuono had her detractors, but she carried a lot of rep for a lot of years and was cast in pretty much everything.

D'Antuono had the bad luck to come along when the ballerina roster included Fracci, Gregory, Kirkland and Makarova. But she was a great utility ballerina for ABT and, as you wrote vipa, she was a real workhorse in terms of the amount of coverage she provided. (Her counterpart on the male side was Ted Kivitt, who had the bad luck to reach his peak when Baryshnikov, Bujones and Nagy were all on the roster.)

 

I've never completely understood whether D'Antuono chose to retire when Baryshnikov took over in 1980 or she was pushed out (like Part, contract not renewed.) I don't think she got any kind of big farewell despite 20 years of dedicated service to ABT.

 

This should probably be a separate topic - 'Underappreciated Ballerinas at ABT'.

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I never felt that D'Antuono was under appreciated. I had just assumed that she had retired from ABT on her 20-year work anniversary, which wasn't unusual. No internet and online petitions in those days.

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Posted (edited)

Tragic. Veronika isn't my favorite dancer, but compared to the majority of female ABT principals right now who have technical issues or are ungraceful, she is a god send to ABT. What a stupid decision. You could always count on Veronika to give a beautiful and technically proficient performance rather than worrying if she'll not be able to complete the choreography. Shades of Irina whom Kevin also did wrong. 

Edited by Plisskin

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On 7/4/2017 at 0:19 PM, Plisskin said:

Tragic. Veronika isn't my favorite dancer, but compared to the majority of female ABT principals right now who have technical issues or are ungraceful, she is a god send to ABT. 

 

And more evident during today's mixed bill. I am glad the crowd gave her the send off she deserved. 

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On 7/4/2017 at 8:05 AM, Natalia said:

I never felt that D'Antuono was under appreciated. I had just assumed that she had retired from ABT on her 20-year work anniversary, which wasn't unusual. No internet and online petitions in those days.

 

And there wasn't the tradition of significant farewell performances at that time. 

 

If you haven't read it, look for Franklin Stevens' "Dance as Life" -- he did much the same gig as Mazo did for "Dance as a Contact Sport", only with ABT.  He was there when Makarova was staging Bayadere Shades, and when Baryshnikov arrived, and had some cogent things to say about d'Antuono, Gregory, Kivitt, and Bujones.

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5 hours ago, sandik said:

 

And there wasn't the tradition of significant farewell performances at that time. 

 

If you haven't read it, look for Franklin Stevens' "Dance as Life" -- he did much the same gig as Mazo did for "Dance as a Contact Sport", only with ABT.  He was there when Makarova was staging Bayadere Shades, and when Baryshnikov arrived, and had some cogent things to say about d'Antuono, Gregory, Kivitt, and Bujones.

I have & love it but thanks for pointing it out. Fascinating little book. Covers a season in the early 70s...73/74 or thereabouts. I still have the pocket-size soft cover edition with a "swan" on the cover.

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14 hours ago, sandik said:

 

If you haven't read it, look for Franklin Stevens' "Dance as Life" -- he did much the same gig as Mazo did for "Dance as a Contact Sport", only with ABT.  He was there when Makarova was staging Bayadere Shades, and when Baryshnikov arrived, and had some cogent things to say about d'Antuono, Gregory, Kivitt, and Bujones.

 

Thanks so much for the recommendation! Just ordered a copy and excited to read this.

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