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jps

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About jps

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    Balletgoer
  • City**
    San Francisco
  1. Bart, I think you're going to like Joseph Philips, a gifted SFB corps de ballet member, who won Gold Medals at the USA International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi (2002), the First Prague International Ballet Competition (2002), the Youth America Grand Prix, NY, (2002) and the Jury Prize at the International Ballet Competition in Helsinki, Finland (2001). This Spring, as you pointed out earlier, he and Ashley Bouder danced together at the Youth America Grand Prix 2007 Gala at City Center; he's partnered her before. His departure is a big loss for SFB, but he will have opport
  2. Last Friday, at a round table discussion by University of California, Berkeley, scholars on the treatment of King Arthur in legend and in music (held in conjunction with the American premier of Mark Morris's production of Purcell's "King Arthur" on the UC campus), Professor Davitt Moroney, an English musicologist and authority on Purcell, and the University Organist, said that as a scholar and performer of music, he listens to music in a very particular way; and when he saw how Mark Morris choreographed Purcell he was struck by the fact that Morris listens to music like a professional mu
  3. This is a great idea--just what I've been looking for to build a ballet DVD/book collection. I wonder if we could have our own Netflix store as well for recommended DVD rentals! (I'm enjoying a Netflix copy of "Napoli" at the moment.) Thank you, Helene.
  4. A San Francisco footnote: "Melissa Hayden and Jacques d'Amboise were the opening night guest artists (Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier) for Lew Christensen's 1967 premiere of his new "Nutcracker" with sets and costumes by Robert O'Hearn. I was a 16-year-old advanced Ford Foundation Scholarship student with San Francisco Ballet at the time and danced in the premiere as a "big" Snowflake and "Salmon" colored flower. These roles were a bit more coveted as there was more advanced work and more time on stage! It was an exciting time to be around Lew and SFB. It was a big deal that Ms. Hayden and Mr.
  5. I'm sure this information is not news to regulars here, but for the record: DanceViewTimes has published six diverse and well-written (as usual) reviews of SFB at Lincoln Center; the first five, by Susan Reiter, Leigh Witchel, Mary Cargill, and Lisa Rinehart are here: http://www.danceviewtimes.com/backissues/2...uly/073106.html The latest is Nancy Dalva's "Letter from New York." It's a thoughtful, funny love letter to a dance company: http://www.danceviewtimes.com/index.html Robert Greskovic's appreciative review of Mark Morris's Sylvia appeared in the Wall Street Journal on August 1
  6. I've been very moved by these tributes to Melissa Hayden (and the wonderful photographs--thank you rg), even though I never saw her dance. My parents first met her in 1945, when she was a member of the corps at ABT, and remained friends with her for many years. I was too young to remember "Millie's" visits to our home, but my mother (who is now 95, living in Florida, and a fan of MCB) still remembers Melissa Hayden's wonderful energy, sense of fun, and total dedication to her dancing. When I mentioned to my mother that some of her students said she was tough on them, she said "she was tou
  7. Thanks for your comments, Globetrotter. What I appreciated about Gottlieb's comment is that it is not only a criticism of SFB but an appreciation, and a suggestion for future development. I don't think there is any question that SFB has benefited from Helgi's particular gifts, and has needed precisely those gifts. Your story about Mr B's comment reminded me that the talk around here (San Francisco) is that Yuri Possokhov would make a great associate artistic director for SFB. Then we would have Helgi's elegance combined with full-hearted Russian expressiveness. Meantime, I continue to think
  8. Of all the reviews I've read of SFB, this comment by Robert Gottlieb struck me as particularly astute: "San Francisco Ballet strikes me as deeply virtuous, and I can’t wait to see it again. Even so, it lacks, for me, a crucial element of great dancing: large-scale personal expressivity. Like most companies, it reflects the characteristics of its leader. Tomasson was an immaculate classicist—elegant, tasteful, contained, never vulgar, always correct and frequently charming; that’s what his company is like, too (several of the men actually look like him). But he never fully absorbed Balanchin
  9. When I saw NYCB this Spring after a break of five years, I thought, "no one does Balanchine like this company. They are absolutiely Numero Uno in this department--a national treasure if we ever had one." I think SFB has a different, complementary set of skills and values, and Leigh's comment helped me to see it more clearly. But SFB is still very much in the process of defining itself artistically. It may be America's oldest professional ballet company, but it has only recently moved from regional to international ranking, and it is still developing its core idenity. It's a very young company
  10. I think this is absolutely correct, but I haven't seen it stated so clearly. I think many SFB dancers want it and are in a postion to carry it out, and many of us in the audience would support it. SFB will never be the Kirov or NYCB, but it could be a great contemporary/post-modern ballet company. The economics work against it (a mixture of classical full-lengths and contemporary ballets is what Helgi has opted for, and that has kept the company in the black). But SFB's real strength is actually in the contemporary/post-modern idiom, even if it hasn't explicitly said so. Thanks for pointin
  11. I'm enjoying your posts tikititatata, and am largely in agreement with you. Actually Paul Taylor brought Springs Rounds to San Francisco this spring and it looked great--on his company. I'm glad people are taking SFB at its word that it is a major league player, and is holding it to major league standards. (Im still crazy about it and its dancers, though). I hope Mark Morris will continue to make dances for SFB AND continue to bring his own company to Berkeley every year for a West Coast season. The net result has been incredibly positive for us in the Bay Area.
  12. What does CPYB stand for and who are some of its alums? Were Tina LeBlanc, Kristin Long and Brooke (Taylor) Moore CPYB dancers? What is it about Pennsylvania that produces such great dancers? (sorry, slightly off-topic)
  13. Yes. Seven performances in six days (Tuesday-Sunday, two performances on Saturday) is standard for SFB during their regular season. The Lincoln Center schedule is the kind of performance schedule they are used to. Yes, that is the basic SFB style. Front of the curtain calls happen, but they aren't routine. Maybe they'll bring them back from NY. Thanks for your very insightful review of Vanessa Zahorian and Guennadi Nedviquine--in fact for all three of your Sylvia reviews. You saw qualities in these dancers I didn't fully appreciate until you pointed them out.
  14. The San Francisco Ballet website is now providing links to daily reviews of its Lincoln Center performances at: http://www.sfballet.org/about/touring/index.aspx I must admit, however, as a regular at the San Francisco Ballet, that I'm finding the responses here more interesting. drb captures my experience of SFB dancers best. Too bad SFB isn't experiencing a regular NYCB audience. Curtain calls are an exception at SFB. I liked the responsiveness of NYCB audiences when I was in town in June, and thought it would be great for SFB dancers to experience it too. There are a number of peop
  15. Did anyone see Company C Contemporary Ballet, Charles Anderson's lively little troupe from San Francisco at Joyce SoHo (155 Mercer St)? They are in town this weekend, and Jennifer Dunning gave them an appreciative review in today's Times. I am very fond of this small regional ballet company from the San Francisco Bay Area, and the work that Charles Anderson, a former NYCB dancer, is doing for our local dance community. He founded the new Oakland Dance Fesitval for small local companies, and he has been able to offer his dancers in Company C nine-month contracts, a real achievement these days.
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