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vipa

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Posts posted by vipa

  1. Just watched the Prodigal Son discussion/coaching session. Confession, I'm not the biggest fan of "story" ballets, and I've seen Prodigal so many times over so many years, that I've been avoiding it for quite a while. Seeing this renewed my interest. I can't wait to see the stream of the ballet, but more than that I can't wait to see it live again. My appreciation for the work has been renewed

  2. 37 minutes ago, Jacqueline said:

    Canbelto, I agree. The second episode had me crying, too.  Not sure why -- the beautiful way Dena Abergel handled the casting, being a former Nutcracker parent myself (not at SAB but at a school in California run by one of Balanchine's early ballerinas -- Yvonne Mounsey), the camaraderie among the students... all of it.  I have now watched it through twice. 

    I agree. It had me crying too. I loved the entire series. There is no hiding the fact that it is heartbreaking for the kids who aren't cast, but the adults around them handle couldn't handle it better. I also found it poignant that some of the kids knew it was their last Nutcracker year, because they'd be too tall next year. This is particularly sad in this pandemic year in which so many kids lost there chance.

    All in all I found the series a refreshing antidote to the ridiculous portals of ballet that are out there. Reality is dramatic enough IMO.

     

    a

  3. 3 hours ago, canbelto said:

    Ballet Collective's streaming right now:

     

    Interesting production born of these difficult times. Amazing and totally committed performers. It's being streamed on demand 12/23 through 12/26, in case you missed it https://www.nutcrackeratwethersfield.com. I believe the concept has legs for post pandemic. Bravo to everyone on the creative, performing, productive, money raising teams for delivering this Nutcracker in such a beautiful yet challenging setting.

  4. 4 hours ago, Rock said:

    It's so tiresome isn't it? The same story over and over - they starve themselves, they're treated horribly, they're all miserable - all of which isn't true at all. 

    Tiresome is the right word. Unfortunately most of the people who watch will be people who've never seen a ballet company.

     

  5. I'm glad ABT is pushing on as best they can. I too agree that ABT should try to show us some classical pas with couples they can put together. How much these dancers have been able to stay in classical pas shape is a question, although Skylar Brandt (from her instagram posts) seems ready for anything. ABT's big ticket sellers have been the big classical ballets. That's the audience they've cultivated and programmed for, the exceptions being new works by Ratmansky and other new choreographers here and there. IMO audiences go to ABT to see big, theatrical, classical ballet productions. It may be harder for them, than for some other companies, to appeal to their usual ticket buyers. IMO one way would be to present as much classical ballet as possible, be it by pas de deus or excerpts. 

  6. 1 hour ago, cobweb said:

    I also find the redesign unattractive and unengaging. The home page is all silhouetted sculptural bodies. No movement, no ballet. Nothing to draw the dance lover in. 

    I agree about the design, and as julaij said it isn't particularly user friendly. I wonder who their target audience is? I have to say, I'm not impressed with the planned programing, but perhaps it's too soon to make a judgement about the direction the new leadership is taking.

  7. 6 minutes ago, cassieallison said:

    Anyone else watch her interview with Lauren Lovette? Based on her comments I wouldn't be shocked if Lovette does not return to dancing.

    There's a good discussion on the Fairchild/Lovette interview under: NYCB cancels Fall 2020 and Nutcracker seasons

  8. 12 hours ago, cobweb said:

    Just judging from this one interview, a simple fix for Megan Fairchild might be to clarify in her own mind what kind of dialogue is this meant to be. Is it a conversation between old colleagues about how both of them have been doing during the pandemic? Or is it an interview of Lauren Lovette and her reflections on her past, present, and future? Megan seemed to be taking it as a convo to which they would both share experiences, while Lauren seemed to be taking it as an interview of herself. I would prefer the latter, but I could enjoy the former as well, if they are both on the same page. 

    In all the interviews I've heard Fairchild give, this was the most frustrating in that I wanted to hear more from Lovette. In some other interviews it seemed more natural for Fairchild to interject her own experiences. IN any event, I'm glad Megan Fairchild is putting them out there, it must be quite a learning curve for her.

  9. 4 hours ago, vagansmom said:

    I well remember that period too. But in late 1996 and early 1997, Alexandra Ansanelli burst on the scene with her glorious musicality. I was smitten. A few years later, the very large crop of well-trained dancers who were now graduating from prestigious ballet schools began showing up on the NYCB stage. Ashley Bouder was the first, followed by so many of NYCB's current principal dancers. I think we owe it all to a combination of the yuppie years when many people were making making money hand-over-fist and could afford to send their children to the best ballet schools and to all the new schools popping up that were/are run by former Balanchine dancers. Ballet schools had their highest attendance during those years before soccer started to replace ballet as a childhood activity. So there were plenty of very well-trained dancers to choose from. 

    I so agree with this. There were years when things were really dismal at NYCB. A certain blandness set in, in the performances. I started to go to see ABT more! Then something happened. I too remember Ansanelli bursting out, followed by a stream of dancers who had technique, musicality and imagination. For whatever set of reasons, NYCB became thrilling again and has stayed that way. Now we're in a situation in which the dancers are losing more than a year of performing, and new leadership is trying to settle in. I hope for the best. We'll see.

  10. Interesting discussion that is branching off in many directions. In my statement, I certainly didn't mean no new works. I was just struck that the NYCB's press release was very focussed on new works and choreographers. I am hoping to be able to return to the theater again, about a year from now, and see live dance performances. What do I want to see? To me the NYCB is special. It's special because of the vast rep of Balanchine and Robbins, and the training of the dancers which results in a go-for-broke, musical approach that combines expansive movement with incredible speed. Do I need to see this particular company do Tanowitz - probably not. I don't mind seeing Tanowitz at NYCB, and I'm sure the dancers enjoy the process (that is actually neither here nor there to me, but nice for them). At the same time what I want, as we are coming out of a pandemic is the soul soothing of Serenade, the bravura  of Theme & Variations, the wit & beauty of Chaconne, the fun of Who Cares, the intensity of Agon, the -- well you get it. An incredible number of Balanchine works have stood the test of time and the variety is amazing. So give me some new works, I love the excitement of that. Most will be forgettable, some will be well crafted and, if we're lucky, 1 or 2 will be worthy of joining the rep. But, I personally, won't be buying tickets to see programs of all new works. I'm hoping for some sign from NYCB that that isn't the plan, but if it is I hope they sell every seat in the house, I won't be there. 

  11. Maybe dance audiences will be eager to see NYCB do a lot of new works when they return to the stage after a year and a half, but I'll be eager to be re-immersed in the Balanchine rep. I'm all in favor of giving opportunities to new choreographers, but great art is hard to come by, and I fear the emphasis on turning the page could mean ignoring the fabulous NYCB heritage. 

  12. 1 hour ago, nanushka said:

    Love her dancing. So upset by her abrupt departure. But “Principal Dancer”? Seriously? Principal of what?

    Not a good look.

    Agreed. I hope this isn't the end of her dancing career. IMO her career at ABT was filled with lost opportunities for the company and Lane. Her promotion came a lot later than it should have and then she was under under utilized.  Personally, I feel it took a toll on her confidence.

    It may not be easy to join another company in the time of COVID, but I hope she is able to, if that's what she wants. Lane has special qualities.

  13. I watched Kathryn Morgan's video with great interest. I don't think we can have a full idea of what happened, and how conversations played out from start to finish. Clearly she thought that losing weight was the key to casting, and maybe it was. At the same time I was not very impressed with the rehearsal clip she showed of Firebird, but have no way of knowing how her dancing compared with that of the dancer who was cast.  Perhaps a MCB viewer could better comment on  this. For Morgan, it seems management's expectations weren't met for whatever reasons.  I contrast this situation with Lauren Fadeley who entered as a soloist and was promoted to principal soloist at the end of her first season. She was told by Lordes Lopez that she exceeded all her expectations. (I heard this in a Fadeley interview). Fadeley isn't a skinny little thing. Maybe Morgan's situation had more to do with dancing than weight. I don't know. I do know that even under the best of circumstances, company life isn't easy because it's a zero sum game. For every role in a performance there is a winner and a lot of losers. 

    I wish Kathryn Morgan well. Her idea of a pick-up company that tours, performs and integrates itself into community ballet studios is great. 

  14. On 5/11/2020 at 12:04 PM, DC Export said:

    Hey there folks-

    As NYCB has been adding ballets to their YouTube page every week, I've gone back and visited my "Ballet Bucketlist." One of the items on there is the Elusive Muse documentary about Suzanne Farrell. Does anyone know where this can be seen online?

    I saw Elusive Muse a number of years ago but haven't been able find it since. It suddenly appeared on youtube. 

     

  15. 8 hours ago, volcanohunter said:

    Thank you for the link.

    I would gladly pay to watch a complete stream of Liebeslieder. That is all.

    I too would happily pay to watch a complete Liebeslieder and, in my experience, it's a ballet that is best appreciated close up.  

  16. 1 hour ago, aurora said:

    It seems so strange that she hasn't addressed it at all on her social media by now. She's been posting, but not on this, and her info still has her as a principal at ABT.

     

    I understand wanting to process things in ones own time, so I don't meant this as a criticism, she owes us nothing.

    I just think it is somewhat surprising she wouldn't want to get something out there.

    She could be deciding what to do next so she can make an announcement with a positive spin.

  17. I too am bummed about Sarah Lane, if it is true that she is no longer with ABT. She had become a really fine dramatic artist of depth and beauty. It is weird that Kevin M. bothered to promote her but then didn't cast her.

    I'm a bit surprised Gillian Murphy is still on the roster. Her comeback from maternity leave was interrupted by COVID so I wouldn't have been surprised if she decided to retire. I also wonder about Misty Copeland. A month or so ago, in an interview, she said she hadn't been able to do much physically during the shut down because of injury.

    ABT will return a changed company. I'm glad to see faster promotions!

     

  18. 1 hour ago, On Pointe said:

    If Lourdes Lopez has a preference for very thin dancers,  hiring a woman whose years-long struggle with weight is well known was a pretty whack move.  The fact that so many dancers left at once indicates that Kathryn Morgan wasn't the only dancer who couldn't put up with Lopez.  It might be time for a change in administration,  which is a shame as so few women run ballet companies these days.

    With all due respect, I don't believe we can jump to the conclusion that dancers who are leaving MCB at this time, are doing so because of  Lopez. We are in a pandemic and many people are rethinking their lives and careers. I don't have insider information to comment on Morgan's hiring and casting at MCB, but it could be a case of misaligned expectations. Many dancers in many companies learn roles that they do not get to perform. In terms of body type, Lopez hired Lauren Fadeley, who is not a waif. She did quite well casting wise and got promoted. My guess is that the expectations on both sides were more in alignment. 

  19. 16 minutes ago, pherank said:

    Oh, I was just referring to the fact that Morgan said she was sidelined because of her appearance, but Lopez could just as easily have said something like, "I'm really sorry, but I want to give performance time to this other dancer to announce her promotion. But don't worry..." Yada, yada. But instead Lopez apparently focused on Morgan's appearance. It doesn't seem like any attempt to salvage the situation was made. As many have pointed out, there was nothing hidden about Morgan's situation - it was all very upfront. Lopez knew what she was getting into.

    I'm confused, sorry I haven't been keeping up with this conversation. Is there a link to a Lopez interview in which she said she told Morgan she was sidelined because of her weight? 

  20. 5 hours ago, Jack Reed said:

    I would imagine so!  I've noticed performing artists perforce tend to think in entertaining ways - although whatever that way is at the moment may bother those trying to focus on cold facts or a consistent story sometimes - so, thanks for the link to one of his examples, but do you have a link handy for the "listening parties" as well?  

    The link to the last Listening Party is below. I believe the next one is on Sept. 17 "Music to Love or Hate." Also at MarkMorrisDanceGroup.org the video fault is quite fun.

     

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