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Ballet from Heck

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This topic draws its unifying idea from the comic strip Dilbert, where the title character finds himself surrounded by little demons and in the thought balloon, it says, "Oh fooey, I've been darned to Heck." This topic also springboards off the Casting from Hell thread in that it's about bad performances, but bad for a specific reason - that it's just too mediocre, insipid, or just plain blaaaah to make an authentic Hellion. Note that the heading subsumes not only casting, but costuming, decor, orchestral work, and a host of other pusillanimous production values that seem to haunt the ballet world. Have a good time.

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My ballet from heck is from the movie Center Stage. It's the one at the end that the Ethan Stiefel character choreographs. The film makers present this ballet as "hip", more revelant than the previous ballet performed which was more classical and traditional.

If a "hip" ballet includes motorcycles on stage, simulated humping on a bed, and a cheesy disco finale, than count me out. I'll be a traditional ole fuddy duddy the rest of my life.

The whole situation in the movie seems similar to that time in the 1960's and early 70's when ballets like Astarte and Maurice Bejarts ballets were supposed to be a reaction againest the elitest art form of classical ballet, the Swan Lakes and so forth. That was 40 years ago! Yet Center Stage suggests it as some radical new idea. How "hip" is that?

I know there are some younger posters who like this movie, so I'm not trashing the whole film, just that particular nauseating ballet in it. :green:

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That was the kind of thing I was aiming for with this thread. My nominee is just one variation in The Turning Point which was supposed to be a "new, radical" solo by the Daniel Levins character, and it turned out to be "Vortex" from "The River" (Ailey/Ellington) which at that time was so much a part of the Ballet Theater standard rep, it was almost a chestnut! Come to think of it, that whole ballet should be revived. "Vortex" works so much better in contex'.

But let's not leave out the stage; so much of ballet that appears on film is really of the "from heck" quality, we could keep this up for another month.

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Yes, for today's companies to avoid the lukewarms of Heck, all that they would need to do would be to stage the latest in the "New! Improved!" Swans by doing a completely straight, plain-vanilla version of the ballet, the psyche of the stager submerged by what's actually required of this classic. That would be so New! and Improved!, it might even be considered radical!

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Actually I think it's The Royal Multi-National Heck Ballet. Of course don't forget their student company: The Pennyroyal National Heck Ballet.

I'm in agreement with the notion that one of their flagship productions is the aforementioned excerpt from Center Stage. (Did enjoy the movie though)

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When I read the original post, all these Peter Martins ballets leapt to my mind.

And don't forget all the Royal Multi-National Ballet of Heck's many productions of Sleeping Beauty, most notably the ones that include a small cast with two or three "court ladies" sitting round the stage, imaginary vines at the end of Act I, and a boat that makes figure eights over and over and over and over through the mist....

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