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Everything posted by Tapfan

  1. Sincere thanks for this link. It's so great to hear from someone from the black ballet community other than Arthur Mitchell or Virginia Johnson. God bless those two. They're great people and very knowledgeable. But just as Misty isn't the only or even best black female dancer of note, Arthur and Virginia aren't the only knowledgeable and important black former dancers. Ms. Howard really hit the nail on the head with her anecdote about people from San Francisco Ballet being surprised to see well-trained black students at Sandra Fortune-Green's dance school. As Theresa said, there
  2. Film director Darren Aronofsky of "Black Swan" infamy, said that during the research and pre-production phases for that film, he found the people in the ballet establishment to be very insular. Of course, we should take what he says with grain of salt. He may have simply been disappointed that he and his Hollywood gang wasn't met with what he felt was a suitable amount of enthusiasm for the fact that he was spotlighting their "fringe" art form. But then, too many gatekeepers for the classical performing arts are pretentious and off-putting towards laymen when extolling the vir
  3. It would have been better for Ratmansky to have kept quiet about the backlash. Now he just sounds disingenuous.
  4. It's good to see ballet people other than Virginia Johnson being asked to speak about lack of diversity in the art form. While Johnson is certainly knowledgeable, she's hardly the only person of color with worthwhile opinions on the matter. Besides, the fact that she's practically the only black woman in classical dance that anyone knows about other than the heavily marketed Misty Copeland, means Virginia's comments are frequently used not only as proof of the bias against black classical dancers, but also as an excuse for the frequently whiter than white status quo.
  5. This article found in The Amsterdam News has a few notable factual errors like the one that gets the timeline wrong as to when New York's biggest ballet companies launched their diversity initiatives. ABT for instance, had established Project Plie two years before Misty Copeland became a principal, NOT as a result to her having been promoted as the article suggests. Also, City Ballet did not have representation at the International Association of Blacks in Dance-sponsored auditions for women of color that were held in January. Dance Theater of Harlem was the only New York-based company wit
  6. To those folks who use the argument that " Nobody complains about the NBA being too black, so why pick on ballet as being too white?," well, that is indeed a specious argument. Nobody before or since has systematically barred whites from being in the NBA. Indeed there was a time many, many, years ago when it wasn't a majority black league. Ballet like other classical performance arts, DOES have a history of denying access to training and employment to people of color in this country. That's not a fairy tale. It's a simple fact. Just snapping your fingers and declaring that the playing field
  7. I'm not surprised to see that Hayward and Golding have a different attitude than Misty when it comes to navigating the world of identity politics in ballet. It's definitely a generalization to say this, but many black and and black/white mixed-race Brits seem to have much more relaxed attitude concerning race in the UK than most African Americans have in the U.S. Neither philosophy is wrong, They're just different. I think our vastly different histories and experiences have a lot to do with it. Golding and Hayward's comments remind me of Thandie Newton's remarks when she first gained a
  8. I'm hoping for more recognition for Ashley Murphy of Washington Ballet, She is a gorgeous classical artist who was with DTH for 13 years. Although I miss her at DTH, she definitely gets more exposure at WB. Poor DTH. They are frequently ignored by those who write about classical dance. And on those rare occasions when they are mentioned, it's only as that company that Arthur Mitchell founded and where Virginia Johnson danced. The end.
  9. Even if this film wins rave reviews, ballet insiders are bound to loathe it. Ballet has such a small, pop culture footprint, that many people who love it, tend to be bitterly disappointed when the few ballet films that are made, fail to be unadulterated hagiographies about the people of the art form they love. Many classical dance people remind me of some members of racial minority groups who become upset when Oscarbait films about minority lead characters inevitably fail to encapsulate the totality of that group's experiences in this country. (See The Help, Driving Miss Daisy, Dances with W
  10. Bronzer isn't typically used in an attempt to "pass" as a member of another racial group.
  11. What's frustrating with so many of the black female classical dancers like Precious Adams and Kimberly Braylock, is that they dance in the corps de ballet and it's next to impossible to follow their careers.
  12. I thought the trend was for most female principals to be on the tall side, between 5'6" and 5'9." Is that wrong?
  13. Interesting article on related subject matter. The lack of U.S. classical dancers of African descent is sometimes attributed to wrong body type as if all black women in the U.S. were built the same. This is a mistake that even many black people make. But there are plenty of lanky black women like the one mentioned in this article.
  14. Where was Ms. Galloni rehearsing? That didn't look like the POB rehearsal spaces. And i don't know her nationality, but that young woman couldn't be more French if she tried, from her attitude to the tres chic outfit with the sky high boots.
  15. Nashville Ballet's Kayla Rowser rehearsing . Yes, there are black female classical dancers other than Misty. And hopefully her high profile will spark interest in some of them.
  16. This artlcle in Atlanta Black Star highlights other black ballerinas. Believe it or not, some of us black folks are interested in other black female dancers other than Misty, but because it's hard to get info on ballerinas of any color, for ballet dancers of color, it's next to impossible. I'm proud to say I'd heard about all these dancers except the young woman from POB. And even she was on the radar of some black ballet fans because we saw her in the POB defile du ballet.
  17. The publicity generated by Copeland's camp that some folks in these parts see as so intolerably vulgar, doesn't hurt ballet in any way. All your favorite performers are still dancing your favorite pieces and are still getting an overwhelming majority of the attention of those people who write about classical dance.
  18. Of course he has the right to free speech. It was just kinda hazy that this youtube post was just him, not his company.
  19. Of course there are basic skills that everyone must master before they can call themselves a ballet dancer. But perfection of body isn't always paramount, Margot Fonteyne would never have had a career otherwise.
  20. We seldom hear from people on this board who like aspects of Misty's dancing. It's nice to be reminded that when judging art and artists, it's ALL just opinion, not fact.
  21. Hmmm. It came up when I googled NYCB videos. I thought Devin was into photography and twitter where he's pretty funny in a smug sorta way. And I thought City ballet had some control over what is posted concerning their organization, especially after Devin joked about Martins' DUI on social media.
  22. Lots of pool parties. And raves. And the youtube comment section is where I got the idea.
  23. Now tell me doesn't look like a suburban Connecticut prep school or worse, an episode of HBO's "Girls." I hate that show. Bunch of entitled whining ninnies. NYCB needs better PR.
  24. There's not really anything in this article that hasn't already been said before in all the other articles on diversity in classical dance, but at least Virginia Johnson seems hopeful for the future.
  25. Where any of these schools' black females? Because that is the problem within a problem. When people speak about African Americans that they see in schools or companies, more often than not, they are talking about MALE dancers.
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