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  2. I second the ???. This is a guy who shared nude photos of a company member with other company members. The only reason he is not in the same boat as Finlay is that his particular much younger girlfriend whose photos were shared is for whatever reason defending him. Of course coworkers are going to be uncomfortable around him! And to say that they should just “state their case” is unhelpful.
  3. ??? We're not talking about people working in separate cubicles or offices, with next to no direct interaction. it's all 'interaction' at a large dance company. How individual dancers conduct themselves in class/rehearsals/backstage/at special events, etc. all counts towards making the company environment a positive one, or a poisonous one. And then there's all the time spent around company members outside of work. For the majority of dancers at a large company, there isn't much escape from the world of dance. Problems do get magnified in that kind of environment precisely because there are few opportunities (or much time) for escape.
  4. Today
  5. While I applaud the outcome, I believe that the stipulation that Ramasar undergo "counseling" is unnecessary and insulting. And if some female dancers are uncomfortable with his return, they can state their case if he behaves in an unprofessional manner at work. Otherwise the conduct of his life is of no legitimate concern to them.
  6. I remember hearing about a new production, but I must have missed the announcement about De Keersmaeker. Interesting indeed!
  7. I tend to agree, BalanchineFan. The decision seems well reasoned and justified. It’s important for all employees to be protected against arbitrary dismissal by an employer, non-profit or otherwise. Many if not most American workers have no such protections; Catazaro and Ramasar are fortunate in that they have such rights and they were enforced. Firing people for private and non-criminal conduct is truly a slippery slope and the company should have taken greater care. The union has to balance the needs of all its members, and the dancers who are unhappy about this decision today may well appreciate -- and benefit from -- the protections they have in future.
  8. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    Dance Theatre of Harlem visits Seattle.
  9. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    An interview with Victoria Morgan.
  10. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    A longer article from The New York Times on the reinstatements of Catazaro and Ramasar.
  11. WOW! I am so excited to hear that Ramasar will be returning to NYCB!
  12. I think NYCB behaved in a very unscrupulous manner with regard to these firings. They were apparently more concerned about the bottom line of their financial security than in behaving in a lawful manner with regard to their duties as an employer. Although I greatly admire and respect the dancers - or most of them - I have a very negative view of their management because of the firings. Jon Stafford is cited in the article as being someone who was involved in making the decision to fire. I'm sure he was not the only person that gave the go ahead to terminate.
  13. Casting for the final performance of The Little Mermaid is now posted: https://www.sfballet.org/season/casting Sunday, April 28, 2019 – 2:00 pmChoreography: John NeumeierMusic: Lera AuerbachConductor: Martin WestThe Little Mermaid: Yuan Yuan TanPrince / Edvard: Aaron RobisonPoet / Hans Christian Andersen: Ulrik BirkkjaerPrincess / Henriette: Sasha De SolaSea Witch: Wei Wang I suspected Yuan Yuan would get the last show. But if I am being honest, I was hoping for Tiit Helimets to dance the Poet. This is nothing against Ulrik, as I like him a lot as well and am looking forward to tonight's performance. But I would really like to see Yuan Yuan and Tiit dance together in a story ballet before the end of their SFB careers, which we do not know when it will be but..... I thought it might be possible since Nathaniel Remez will be dancing as the Poet in both Saturday performances.
  14. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/19/arts/dance/city-ballet-amar-ramasar-sexually-explicit-texts.html Here's a NY Times piece on the subject. Two women spoke to the Times on condition of anonymity to complain about the outcome. Hmm. I think we can all guess the identity of one of the two.
  15. Curiously NYCB is represented by Proskauer, which is one of the most eminent Labor and Employment shops around. I have to think the decision to fire stemmed entirely from NYCB’s PR department or maybe some incompetent in-house person. I noticed in the answer to Waterbury’s suit Proskauer basically conceded their arbitration case by saying that the conduct was entirely non-work related. Not surprising given that the damages in a tort case are potentially far greater than in a labor arbitration, but I still believe they would never have allowed the firings to happen if they knew about them beforehand.
  16. dirac

    Thursday, November 18

    Ballet Des Moines closes its season with a mermaid ballet.
  17. Cal Performances announces its 2019-20 season.
  18. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    Peter Martins lands a temporary gig at the Mariinsky Ballet.
  19. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    The Joffrey Ballet holds its first UNGala.
  20. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    Mick Jagger makes a post-heart surgery appearance with Melanie Hamrick at the Youth America Grand Prix.
  21. dirac

    Friday, November 19

    Amar Ramasar and Zachary Catazaro score a win in arbitration proceedings.
  22. What a lovely turn of events! I am so glad that Amar will be back performing with NYCB! Just thrilled. I also think that AGMA's standard, "non-criminal activity in their private lives" is a decent standard. While I certainly don't condone abuse of any kind (and I consider what Finlay did to be abusive, criminal activity) I don't see how all employees should be held to a standard of not saying or doing anything in their private lives that wouldn't offend any of their coworkers or any of their employer's donors. "We pursued this case because it's important to us that your employer is prevented from taking extreme and potentially career-ending action based on non-criminal activity in your private life." AGMA
  23. I completely agree with most of what you said. The firings were based on public opinion and perceptions of the board and donors. However, I do not believe that the firings were based on considerations of NYCB's potential legal liability. In fact, I think any lawyer who had a clue would have immediately advised NYCB that under the circumstances of this case, there was no basis to fire these two guys, and that the firings would likely be overturned after an arbitration. To me, this was not even a close case. There was never any legal basis to fire them. If NYCB's lawyers told them to go ahead with the firings, NYCB needs to find new counsel PRONTO. My suspicion is that NYCB was told by their counsel that this would be overturned if the dancers pursued arbitration, but NYCB decided to go ahead with the firings anyway. I think NYCB decided that garnering positive publicity by firing them was more important to their bottom line than following the law.
  24. That project was announced in 2018 - tactful timing, given that it was Robbins' centenary year. Should be, hmmmm, interesting.
  25. The "vindication" I see regards Catazaro's and Ramasar's employment. Which is important. The arbitrator did evidently consider the company was within its rights to suspend the men and it is hard not to suspect that Catazaro would have had the same conditions on his return to employment as Ramasar--which may be another reason he didn't want to come back especially given that he has found work as a featured dancer elsewhere. (Throughout discussions of this case over the past months--and confirmed by this arbitrator at least--it has mildly surprised me to learn that dancers with a nonprofit very much dependent on donations have a contract that seemingly doesn't allow them to be fired for behavior that impacts the company's reputation whether or not that behavior took place at work. And whether or not that behavior was ever intended to be public knowledge.) AGMA's statement tries to split the difference on the larger issues surrounding this case -- describes it as "complicated" and goes on to explain why they pursued it in language that doesn't so much vindicate Ramasar and Catazaro's conduct as insist they shouldn't have been fired for it, and talking about their (the union's) commitment to deal with harassment and creating a safe atmosphere for artists etc., -- not, say, crowing about their victory. Here is a link to an article that has the statements from Catazaro, NYCB, and AGMA: https://www.pointemagazine.com/zachary-catazaro-amar-ramasar-firing-determined-wrongful-2635066151.html?rebelltitem=1#rebelltitem1
  26. I attended last night's gala. The biggest star of the evening was the utterly brilliant Kimin Kim. He defies gravity. He was absolutely thrilling in his Don Q and Black Swan variations. Olga Smirnova dumbed down her solo variation in the Black Swan pdd by doing pique turns around the stage instead of the traditional fouettes. Is she afraid to get injured? I expect that modification from certain dancers, but not a Bolshoi principal. I enjoyed Smirnova's Dying Swan, but they decided to turn it into pas, with Calvin Royal circling around her and stalking her. I wanted to swat him out of the way so I could focus on Smirnova. His presence added nothing and distracted the viewer from this beautiful solo. Kondaurova was sharp and authoritative in a pas from Forsythe's In the Middle. It was for me a highlight. Lucia Lacarra and Fabrice Calmels trotted out Arpino's Light Rain duet (subtitled I Am Gumby, Dammit.) Lucia's flexibility is marvelous, especially given that she is not so young. It was trashy but fun. The Manon pas with Stearns and Seo was deadly boring. I don't have high hopes for their upcoming ABT performances in the lead roles. The new Hamrick piece to boyfriend Mick Jagger's music was harmless but amateurish. The finale was a pastiche of excerpts from Don Q. Shevchenko killed it with a portion of Kitri's Act I variation, where she does the Plistetskaya kicks. There were film clips of youngsters talking about ballet after each piece. The first one or two clips were cute. But the repetition of the cute kids on film trying to articulate their love of ballet started to become grating and a complete waste of time.
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