Jump to content
This Site Uses Cookies. If You Want to Disable Cookies, Please See Your Browser Documentation. ×


Senior Member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by pherank

  1. 2022 Season Tickets are now available at the PRINCIPAL PACKAGE level:

    Want the same seats for every performance? There are two packages to choose from:

    See a total of five preselected programs and save up to 25% on the single-ticket price. Packages start at $110.
    Celebrate with some of Helgi Tomasson's most beloved ballets: Swan Lake, Caprice, Prism, and Trio
    Be there for three world premieres by in-demand dance makers Cathy Marston, Dwight Rhoden, and Christopher Wheeldon
    See the SF Ballet premiere of Blake Works I by celebrated choreographer William Forsythe and the eagerly-awaited premiere of Alexei Ratmansky's The Seasons
    Lose yourself in ballet luminary August Bournonville's Romantic-era fairytale La Sylphide
    And enjoy two ballets from Tomasson's iconic mentors: George Balanchine's Symphony in C and Jerome Robbins' In the Night

    Experience the entire Season (all seven programs) and save up to 30% on the single-ticket price. Packages start at $140.
    Get everything from the Principal 5 Series, plus:
    Join us for the world premiere of Helgi Tomasson's Harmony, his sleek and elegant The Fifth Season, and his high-spirited and exuberant Don Quixote
    And see Yuri Possokhov's fun and quirky Magrittomania


    Choreograph You Own Package/Season option coming soon...

  2. 1 hour ago, Terez said:

    Wow, my head is spinning over the changes (that's what happens when you live in a cave for 18 months!). I also just found out today that Kelly Tweeddale has resigned as executive director. I'd always wondered if she were living a nightmare, negotiating all the upheaval -- not just COVID but the call for racial equality in the ranks -- in her first two years on the job. And I'll bet Glen McCoy is pretty happy he retired in 2019. Is there a thread on Kelly Tweeddale's resignation I should be aware of?

    I saw a 2021-22 roster that only had four apprentices; I don't know whether that version, or this one, is more updated. Anyone else know?

    Welcome back, Terez. If it's any consolation, I think ABT is in pretty much the same situation - looking for an A.D. and Executive Director. But there's a lot of that going on.

    Due to the pandemic quarantines, a lot of apprentices have been retained for another year, because they were never really able to train with the companies as they normally would. That's happening with pretty much all the big companies. So I think the 4 new SFB apprentices are joining the ones that are staying on. But I haven't seen a final listing of names. One of the 2020 trainees decided to move on anyway.

  3. Recent Alastair Macaulay posting with b&w photos:

    "How fascinating it is to study photographs of Alicia Markova’s Odile in the 1934 Vic-Wells Ballet production of “Le Lac des cygnes” (“Swan Lake”). The role is transformed by the bright - golden? - tutu she wore. It cannot be said too often that Odile was not dressed in black by any company until the 1940s: a stupid coarsening of a subtle role, as if labelling her with Evil round her neck..."


  4. 29 minutes ago, Helene said:

    This article in Harper's Bazaar is about different dancers' reflections on the impact of COVID-19 during Black Lives Matter protests and talk about the lack of diversity in dance, but, being Harper's Bazaar, the visuals are all about fashion.  I wished they hadn't gone with the blurry shots, but you can see the clothes more clearly and the dancers in motion in the video:

    Blurry is the new black?

  5. A new Chinese documentary on Yuan Yuan Tan (filmed during the quarantine) with curious subtitles and some audio in English:


    I believe this is part of a larger series on Chinese artists and musicians. It does look to be pay-for-view once the viewer gets a certain distance into the documentary, so sorry about that.

  6. On 7/25/2021 at 3:21 PM, Quiggin said:

    Thanks for the Bently background. Karinska's costumes are definitely brilliant and players in the drama but I thought the seed may have been planted by the stagecraft of the earlier version. 

    Adrian Stokes gives a nicely detailed act by act description of the 1933 Cotillon in Tonight the Ballet, where he refers to Bérard's costumes as "prismatic-colored." 

    per Cartier-Bresson:


    I've always wondered what happened to the rest of the Cotillon footage - all we ever see are some brief shots, played back at the wrong frame speed. Film cameras were heavy and cumbersome in that era, so I can't believe someone was running about taking "snapshots" with the film camera. There had to have been a long sequence of the ballet filmed, originally. Perhaps now in someone's attic?

  7. Some of my recent postings have made me aware of a couple more potential directors:

    Sarah Van Patten and Ulrik Birkkjaer. Now that both dancers have gotten involved in stage project management, fund raising, school creation/organization, etc. - I'm updating the list above with their names.

  8. Here are some fun photos and descriptions from Tahoe Dance Camp participants...

    Frances Chung
    "...Perhaps you don’t see all the logistics that had to be figured out, the tears shed by babies and adults alike, and the frustration and worry still of the unknown, however, one cannot deny these are the experiences that shape and form us as humans.
    When I step on stage tomorrow I hope for it to be an expression of all things learned in life and dance in the last two years. I hope time stands still. To all the dancers I get to share the stage with: we have nothing to lose and everything to gain


    Joseph Walsh
    "A year and some change ago, something extremely special happened in the midst of a time that felt like nothing good could happen. Sarah Van Patten called a zoom with some buds after one of the numerous @sfballet zooms in which we struggled to find some way to dance again. With almost no hope, I joined the call just to keep busy. Little did I know what would come from that first brainstorm. Sarah invited myself and 14 or so others to stay at her place in Tahoe (I shared a bunk bed room with @babatunji @lukeingham @garenscribner and @vallady … it was epic). We all tested and yada yada yada… you know how these protocols go, and were able to live together for weeks and just create. We created with absolutely no pressure, among friends (and lots of babies). I learned so much from this experience, not just as an artist, but as a collaborator, dance maker, artistic coordinator, editor, wardrobe assistant, and most of all baby sitter."


  9. "65 years ago, SF Ballet had its first East Coast performances at @JacobsPillow, a pivotal moment for the then still-developing company. Watch video excerpts of those 1956 performances in Jacob's Pillow's brilliant Dance Interactive"


    SFB in Apollo (with Conrad Ludlow, Nancy Johnson, Christiane Bering and Sally Bailey) at Jacob's Pillow:


  10. From Toni Bentley's "Karinska and Balanchine" which I found online:

    Patricia Zipprodt:
    "I used to spend a great deal of time with Gjon Mili who was doing a big color story for Life and he dragged me to the ballet. It was La Valse and in comes Tanaquil Le Clercq in this white dress. Bang. I went down to [the Fashion Institute of Technology] and beat on their doors and got a scholarship and went to school...

    The white satin and tulle gown Zipprodt saw was, interestingly, not really white but rather a luscious cream color. Karinska knew that a true white has an empty, flat appearance onstage...

    Layering of colors, often very disparate ones, was one of Karinska's specialties, and it was never more apparent or used to better dramatic advantage than in the other women's costumes in La Valse. Attached to heavy, silver-gray halter-cut bodices with low-slung backs, the long skirts were composed of up to six layers of color - red, orange, purple, and pink — all topped by a single layer of translucent gray."


  11. Tiit Helimets has posted a series of videos to Instagram featuring his daughter Chloe doing barre and center work. She's currently taking the ABT Summer Intensive with Cynthia Harvey (remotely). [Since the videos involve a child, I'll let people find the postings on their own, rather than linking directly.]

  12. 1 hour ago, Quiggin said:

    You might begin at its source, Cotillion, a Kodachrome clip (by Anne Barzel?) of which is here:


    Christian (Bebè) Bernard did the costumes which most likely determined Karinska's lovely purple and black layered ones for La Valse – and which I prefer to the newer white ones. Bernard also did the sets and the first version of the black dresses – and set the tone – for Mozartiana in 1933. Kirstein describes the colors of Cotillon as "pistache, purples, gilt and black" and the ballet "full of migraine and nervous ennui, the desperate gaiety of insecure adolescence" in a enthusiastic 11/01/1933 Vogue article, which leads with this photo:


    (I'm a bit of a Bernard fan – so therefore all the linkages.)

    Thanks, Quiggin. Everyone loves the look of the "Three Fates" costumes, which do seem to be derived from the earlier Cotillion look. Karinska's "Fate" tulle skirts were actually made from a number of different transparent colors layered over one another, with I think charcoal grey on top (not a true black). And the bodice may actually be a charcoal grey as well. The debutante's costume is less spectacular in coloration, I suppose. I just wondered if the look had remained the same - at least at NYCB - or if what we see now is actually a bit different from the original.

  13. Fjord Review's 2nd part came today in the e-mail. A webpage is now posted here: https://fjordreview.com/digital-transformation-of-dance/


    Digital Transformation of Dance

    In this second part of our report on dance during the pandemic, we focus on companies' response. We asked: what strategies did companies employ to create safe performance environments for dancers and the public? And how successful were in-person events, when they occurred? If you missed part one of our report, you can catch up here.
    Part One: Social Dis-Dancing

    Of the companies that did choose to offer socially-distant in-person events, four companies opted for outdoor performances, and three utilized indoor venues. A variety of approaches were used to ensure the safety of dancers and audience members alike. In addition to social distancing and masks worn by all participants, companies also employed strategies such as:
    • staggering seating times
    • shortening performances to eliminate the need for an intermission
    • reduced audience capacity
    • performances of only pas de deux and solos (limiting pas de deux to cohabiting couples)
    • and the utilization of a health screening for dancers and staff
    Approaches to Pricing 
    In order to determine pricing for socially-distant performances, dance organizations used a variety of strategies. Several companies included these performances as free bonuses with previously purchased virtual season tickets. Others determined prices based on previous rates prior to the pandemic.
    Although, according to survey responses, these performances accrued nominal revenue, all companies had positive audience responses following the events.

    Post-Pandemic Performances
    Outdoor dance festivals and performances certainly existed prior to COVID-19, but they might become less of a novelty in post-pandemic seasons. While it’s not viable for all companies to perform outside year-round (due to location, weather, and venue availability), organizations might place more focus on non-traditional venues moving forward. Not only does this approach allow for flexibility as the pandemic continues to evolve, it also has potential to expand viewership and cut down on rental costs associated with indoor venues.
  14. The classical look can be beautiful, but it all depends on how this port de bras is being used. Tyler Peck is working at a blinding speed (as usual) which is going to require some adjustments just to get from one articulated position to another without looking like a bird flapping its wings. But relatively few dancers can match Peck's simultaneous speed and articulation. Is Hallberg working on a particular ballet's aesthetic? Or is he trying to develop a new overall approach for the company?

  15. I have a question about the "debutante" costume from Balanchine's La Valse (costume originally by Karinska). Has the NYCB costume always had the ecru-colored bodice with, I guess, some black or dark brown piping along the top edge? And is the headscarf always black? POB used that same coloration recently, but MCB seems to be using a white-colored bodice with faintly colored skirt (not exactly a white). The original photos of Le Clercq in her costume were all in black and white so I can't really tell anything about the colors used.









  16. I'm not sure if this was mentioned before, but Sofiane Sylve is now titled the Artistic Director of Ballet San Antonio (she was Artistic Advisor for Ballet San Antonio, and designer of the school's curriculum):


    BSA has performances planned for this Fall:

    A Night at the Castle
    OCTOBER 22-24TH
    Swan Lake Choreography by Julius Reisinger
    Adapted and Staged by Sofiane Sylve, Mary Jo Crews and Rafael Ferreras
    The Sleeping Beauty Choreography by Marius Petipa
    Adapted and Staged by Sofiane Sylve, Mary Jo Crews and Rafael Ferreras

    A Night at the Castle is an evening especially curated as an introduction to the great classics, with exciting and virtuosic moments interpreted by the most beloved fairy tales characters. The Rose Adagio from The Sleeping Beauty and the infamous Black Swan pas de deux from Swan Lake are only a few of the iconic pieces presented! Come celebrate Aurora’s wedding with us and join your favorite fairies and cavaliers for the most whimsical party of the realm. It’s an evening not to be missed!



  • Create New...