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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    dancer (for fun, not pro), ballet junkie
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    Seattle based, visit NYC & SFO
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  1. Tonight is opening night of PNB's 2021-22 season! It's the company's official return to McCaw Hall since February 2020, although there was a First Look gala on Wednesday for an intimate audience (pre-show cocktails, appetizers and post-show champage toast with artists outside). This rep features all works of resident choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo: Silent Ghost, One Thousand Pieces (excerpt), Little Mortal Jump. Details of the show, including a Ballet Talk normally provided before the show by Doug Fullington, and casting can be found here: https://www.pnb.org/season/singularly-cerrudo/ The live show is only available to full season subscribers and they are performing one weekend instead of two, or four shows instead of seven. However, there is a full season digital subscription available for $249. There is also an option to buy this Rep 1 show for $35 - it starts streaming Oct 7 and is available for unlimited viewing for 5 days.
  2. MCB has welcomed Steven this week as a new Principal dancer! Congratulations to Steven!!! I will miss his dancing so much - he had so many different sides to his dancing, including hoofing, drama and comedy! I am so looking forward to his Encore performance since we didn’t see him featured hardly at all this season.
  3. PNB posted on Instagram that Benjamin Griffiths will dance opposite Leta Biasucci in the role of Franz. I’m so happy I was hoping to see this cast I’ve missed this partnership so much! And with his retirement announced last season we didn’t get to see too much of Ben before he left PNB, so I’m perfectly happy to see an archived performance of Coppelia from 2016. https://www.instagram.com/p/CNsexTEAVYp/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
  4. I loved Pictures at an Exhibition! It great to see everybody dance, but especially all the retired dancers. I found Rachel Foster especially charming, and I had forgotten that Sarah Ricard Orza and her husband Seth dance together so that was a big bonus! kaysay was really well done, with all the choreography suited to each of the dancers. I loved the narration and global feel, it reminded me a bit of Alonzo King's work. Although I liked the pdd a lot, and I love that Chopin music, I felt like it would have been better as a separate piece as I didn't see how it related to the three preceding solos. The other two pieces were interesting but not exactly my cup of tea. But I'm glad to see so many positive comments on PNB's FB. It's good to have a program that has something for everyone, and to grow the audience base.
  5. Casting is up on the PNB website for the new Byrd and Pictures: https://www.pnb.org/season/rep4/ I have been waiting and waiting to see Pictures casting knowing the archive would be from a few years ago. So excited to see beloved retired dancers: Rachel Foster, Carrie Imler, Sara Ricard Orza, Karel Cruz, and Jonathon Porretta!!! Out of the dancers on the current roster, it seems like we have seen Noelani Pantastico dance the least, so I am really excited to see her on the list! I am so excited for Pictures! Every day there was a show, I went during the last run. I will watch at least once every day this time around!!! Pictures at an Exhibition Rachel Foster Carrie Imler Elizabeth Murphy Sarah Ricard Orza Noelani Pantastico Karel Cruz Kyle Davis Seth Orza Jonathan Porretta Jerome Tisserand
  6. I know you said you're not a fan of the talking dancers but in Dores Andres' MTA interview, she discussed the narrative behind her role in Symphony #9 and her take on the piece in general. She is one of the speakers in Wednesday's POV lecture if you want a sneak peek. It was in the last half of the interview, after they discuss Wooden Dimes.
  7. From PNB's FB: Two beloved Principal dancers stepped away from PNB this summer. In celebration of these incredible artists, we're sharing with you today short film tributes to the inimitable Lindsi Dec and Sarah Ricard Orza. Phenomenal ballerinas on stage, off the stage these women are dearly loved by their PNB colleagues for their generous grace, wisdom and mentorship. Lindsi Dec and her husband and fellow former PNB Principal dancer Karel Cruz have relocated to San Antonio Texas with their two boys where they are continuing to create the future of ballet with their school, DeCruz Ballet. Learn more about their programs on the website >> https://www.lindsiandkarel.com/ Get your tissues, and schedule yourself time to celebrate Lindsi Dec. https://www.facebook.com/PNBallet/videos/285341399604641/
  8. From PNB's FB: Two beloved Principal dancers stepped away from PNB this summer. In celebration of these incredible artists, we're sharing with you today short film tributes to the inimitable Lindsi Dec and Sarah Ricard Orza. Phenomenal ballerinas on stage, off the stage these women are dearly loved by their PNB colleagues for their generous grace, wisdom and mentorship. Sarah Ricard Orza began her post-partum doula work as a dancer, and is now supporting families lovingly adjust to life with a new baby through her company Tapestry Doula. Learn more about Sarah's work >> https://www.tapestrydoula.com/. Get your tissues, and schedule yourself time to celebrate Sarah Ricard Orza. https://www.facebook.com/PNBallet/videos/celebrating-sarah-ricard-orza/1908396249334500/?__so__=permalink&__rv__=related_videos
  9. I was off the grid with almost no internet at the end of January through early Feb and was on the fence between the full subscription and buying half the season a la carte. When I heard the gala highlights were still available when I was back in WIFI territory, I bought the full season on Feb 10th. I prioritized watching the gala excerpts and Program 1 interviews, since it is PNB's production of AMND. AMND was available, but I'm not sure for how long. Over the weekend I had PNB's Romeo et Juliette to watch before it expired Monday midnight, so on Feb 16th I went to see if AMND was still available and only the trailer was there. The MTA and POV interviews from Program 1 are still there now, so in hindsight I could have saved those for later. Maybe I was given 72 hours like I single purchase of AMND? I noticed the full season is available for purchase still for $289. I suspect SFB will eventually reduce the price as there are now 6 programs remaining. PNB has done that as their season progressed. It's interesting how the different companies provide different amounts of time for viewing, organize the content, and what they provide for extras. I'm glad I bought the entire SFB season, I have really enjoyed the extra interviews, and I've only watched program 1 so far. And I'm excited to see Jahna in Sandpaper, I was at that Sunday matinee last year. We still miss her in Seattle.
  10. I received my digital ticket about three hours ago. There is not a Five Minute Call this time, I suspect because the dancers are still on a super long layoff and haven't been around to record any fun stuff. Instead the show is introduced by James Yoichi Moore, including the annual Second Stage (transitional career fund for dancers) ask, followed by additional inspiring remarks by Noelani Pantastico. We don't get to see Doug Fullington this time; they've inserted a Ballet Talk link. Good if you need to fix a drink or some food before the show I guess. The Meet the Artist video is hosted by Peter Boal with Noelani (Juliet) and James (Romeo). Advertised, but I didn't realize, are Larae Hascall and Mark Zappone discussing the build of Jerome Kaplan's designs. Larae was the PNB Costume Shop manager for some thirty years or so and Mark worked in France way back when and currently designs for multiple ballet companies. Should be fun. They always have humorous anecdotes about acquiring materials, etc. Spoiler alert: Not advertised, so a pleasant surprise, is Vivaldi's Four Seasons (Summer) performed by the PNB Orchestra https://order.pnb.org/digital/rep3 if you still need to buy a ticket. Streaming avail until Feb 15 midnight.
  11. I've seen a few other Maillot's works (Lac, Cendrillon, La Belle), I believe R&J to be his career highlight. It is not way out there like the other ones, it's softer and quite beautiful. It is not traditional in that he tells the story a bit differently but it works well. The Seattle audience (generally) loved it immediately. There was a Kent Stowell R&J that has been retired and I haven't heard any complaints. It uses the Prokofiev score and it flows like a film. I guess I'd say it is a bit abstract mostly in the death scene in the end but I actually liked how Maillot stripped down imagery heavy imagery like churches and crypts so we could focus on the action. Mercutio also has a bigger role and it is so excellently played by Jonathon Poretta. There is a lot of risque humor (it is French) and I love the show within the show, it is brilliant. When I first saw the slow motion melee, wow I was entranced. It will be interesting to watch this piece at home on a big screen. Helene pointed out some noteworthy casting. It's also worth mentioning that the Juliet, Noelani Pantastisco, was offered a contract by Maillot in 2008 and left PNB to dance with Maillot's company for 7 years, returning to PNB in 2015. Juliet is one of her treasured signature roles. For anyone considering a single ticket purchase, I highly recommend it. Funny story for example: A friend from SFO (hard core SFB fan on this platform) flew up one weekend with two pre-purchased tickets. He hadn't seen it yet. We had discussed whether we might pick up a third show, but he wasn't sure ahead of time. When the curtain came down after the first show Friday night he immediately leaned over and said "I'm definitely going to need to see this a third time". 🤭
  12. https://www.kiro7.com/news/local/gender-fluid-dancer-pacific-northwest-ballet-is-breaking-barriers/CBVHJLK4FVDEBHFJ7ARKZ534L4/ Here's the article in video and text form. Edwards explains his motivation behind asking to study pointe and his personal self discovery. What a brave young man. At the end of the interview there's a statement on why KIRO covered this interview.
  13. Today there was second local news interview, this time by KIRO, the CBS affiliate, I saw it on the 11:00 news I don't see it posted online otherwise I would include a link. I'll add it if I find it later. This one seemed longer, and included Peter Boal who said Edwards was the first male student to ask to study pointe. I've not seen KIRO spend any screen time on ballet or dance recently so I was surprised by this segment. KIRO does seem to be big on diversity; I actually watch that station for the racial diversity in anchors/reporters. KING, the first station who interviewed Edwards, showed quite a bit of support for PNB in December. Early in the month there they showed Peter Boal discussing the impact of not performing Nutcracker live (strategically timed to sell digital Nutcracker tickets), and between KING and its sister station KONG, a one hour special of PNB's Balanchine Nutcracker highlights was televised four times. So I thought the Edwards interview was kind of a continuation of PNB publicity but this time more of a human interest story. I'm just so glad for dance, or any type of arts, to get air time. So much time is spent on sports and whining when they can't play their games. I'm also glad I live in a city where precious air time was spent on a gay African American male ballet student who wants to dance on pointe like a female. I'm afraid there are still some cities in this country where social norms are not liberal enough to withstand such content.
  14. I've had all of these thoughts as well and so disappointed SFB locked up their gala after PNB offered their first free virtual gala (and asked for donations) in November. When the company goes the donation route, they also have the opportunity to add names to their donor database, and since virtual, can really expand around the globe. That's an opportunity to sell more virtual subscriptions in so many states and countries. I only attended the SFB gala once and only the performance, so what do I know. Perhaps the dinner crowd would be offended if not an exclusive event and they don't want to upset them and future sales/support. It is very nice that virtual subscribers will have limited access for one week. I'm curious to see what the selections will be. Also, I'm hoping the entire gala will be available later in the summer like last year with the matching gift offer from the Board of Trustees.
  15. The tv interviewer said KING5 received a message from a viewer who said they should know Ashton's story and share it. I'm so glad she or he sent that message! His GoFundMe donations are growing!!! In the tv interview it showed Ashton dancing both male and female roles, and to naomikage's point, the female roles were not comedic, they were beautiful and graceful. If I were sitting in the balcony of the opera house, I wouldn't know that a young man was dancing instead of a young lady. I am fascinated by this young man. His IG account has videos of him practicing pirouttes and fouette turns in a narrow outdoor terrace. He has no fear! It will be really interesting to see how far he goes and if he will be cast in female roles some day. That may make him more competitive in the job market. I can't wait to see him cast/dance in the Next Step program this year! It's great PNB is open to men training on pointe. Also at the beginning of the interview I noticed his pointe shoes are color matched to his skin, not stock light pink shoes - very important.
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