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NEW YORK CITY BALLET

ANNOUNCES THREE PROMOTIONS

Ashley Bouder, Megan Fairchild, and Stephen Hanna Promoted to Soloists

New York City Ballet announced today that Ashley Bouder, Megan Fairchild, and Stephen Hanna have been promoted to the rank of soloist with the Company. All of the promotions are effective immediately.

Ashley Bouder was born in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and began her ballet training at the age of six at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet with Marcia Dale Weary. After attending the 1999 Summer Program at the School of American Ballet, the official school of New York City Ballet, she was invited by SAB to continue her training during the Winter Session. Ms. Bouder was named an apprentice with New York City Ballet in June 2000 and became a member of the corps de ballet that October.

During NYCB’s current winter season celebration of George Balanchine’s classical heritage Ms. Bouder has performed featured roles in Balanchine’s Apollo, Harlequinade, and Tschaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 2; August Bournonville’s Flower Festival in Genzano; and Susan Stroman’s Double Feature.

Ms. Bouder’s repertory also includes featured roles in Balanchine’s Ballo della Regina, Firebird, The Nutcracker (Dewdrop and Marzipan), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Butterfly), Raymonda Variations, La Sonnambula, La Source, Symphony in C (third movement), Tarantella and Western Symphony; Jerome Robbins’ The Concert, The Four Seasons (Winter), and Interplay; Richard Tanner’s Ancient Airs and Dances; and Christopher Wheeldon’s Mercurial Manoeuvres.

She has also originated featured roles in Peter Martins’ Viva Verdi and Mr. Tanner’s Soirée. As a student, Ms. Bouder performed featured roles in Balanchine’s Danses Concertantes and Stars and Stripes for the School of American Ballet’s 2000 Annual Spring Workshop.

In 2000 Ms. Bouder was a recipient of the School of American Ballet’s Mae L. Wein Award, and during New York City Ballet’s 2002-2003 season she was named the Company’s Janice Levin Dancer, an honor which is given each year to a promising member of the corps de ballet.

Megan Fairchild was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, and began her dance training at the age of 12 at the Ballet West Conservatory with Sharee Lane, Deborah Dobson, and Maureen Laird. Ms. Fairchild entered the School of American Ballet full time in the fall of 2000. In November 2001, Ms. Fairchild became an apprentice with New York City Ballet, and in October 2002 she joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet.

This winter Ms. Fairchild has danced featured roles in George Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Harlequinade, and Susan Stroman’s Double Feature. Ms. Fairchild will make her New York debut as Swanilda in Balanchine and Alexandra Danilova’s Coppélia on Saturday, February 14 at 8 p.m.

Ms. Fairchild has also danced featured roles in Balanchine’s Chaconne, The Nutcracker (Sugarplum Fairy and Marzipan), Tarantella, and Valse-Fantaisie; Peter Martins’ Eight Easy Pieces, Sinfonia, and Swan Lake; and Christopher Wheeldon’s Mercurial Manoeuvres. Ms. Fairchild also originated a featured role in Robert La Fosse’s Land of Nod, which was created for New York City Ballet’s 2002 Opening Night Gala. Ms. Fairchild is a 2001 recipient of the School of American Ballet’s Mae L. Wien Award.

Stephen Hanna was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and began studying at the School of American Ballet in the fall of 1992. Mr. Hanna became an apprentice with New York City Ballet in 1997, and later that year he joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet.

This winter Mr. Hanna has danced featured roles in George Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Jewels (Emeralds), and also danced the role of Benno in Peter Martins’ full-length production of Swan Lake.

Mr. Hanna’s repertory also includes featured roles in Balanchine’s Chaconne, Divertimento No. 15, The Four Temperaments, The Nutcracker (Cavalier and Hot Chocolate), Scotch Symphony, Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, and La Valse; Mr. Martins’ The Sleeping Beauty (Bluebird and Wolf); Jerome Robbins’ The Concert, Dances at a Gathering, Fanfare (Double Bass), Glass Pieces, Interplay, Piano Pieces, and 2 & 3 Part Inventions; and Richard Tanner’s Ancient Airs and Dances and Soirée. Mr. Hanna originated a featured role in Albert Evans’ 2002 Diamond Project ballet, Haiku.

New York City Ballet’s 2004 winter repertory season continues through Sunday, February 29, and is an exploration of George Balanchine’s classical heritage as part of New York City Ballet’s year-long celebration of the centennial of Balanchine’s birth.

Tickets for all winter season performances are on sale now at the New York State Theater box office, through Ticketmaster at 212-307-4100, or online at nycballet.com. The New York State Theater is located on the Lincoln Center Plaza at Columbus Avenue at 63rd Street. For information on any NYCB performance call 212-870-5570

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I'm pleased with all the promotions and tickled pink by Bouder's. No more rocks in that road, please.

Hanna's is interesting only in that the direction's signs toward which men would be favored have been more opaque than for the women. Bouder and Fairchild have been all over the casting; besides being talented (which she is) they need Fairchild to be a partner for de Luz. Hanna's gotten opportunities, and more in recent seasons including several principal roles, but it seems they're using him as a partner. That still leaves the repertory that either Woetzel or Boal inhabit potentially vacant within a few years. Who is on the horizon to step into it?

Any guesses from Ballet Talkers? Perhaps Antonio Carmena for some of the Boal repertory?

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Maybe start scanning the roster of the RDB et al. for (yet more) imports. :lol:

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Great for Steve Hanna but I feel less enthusiastic about the two girls. It is premature for Fairchild, especially.

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I'd rather see them promoted and getting proper billing/better pay if they are going to be cast all over the place either way.

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Oberon, we must agree to disagree on this--strongly.

I intend no disparagement to Hanna, but to attain solost status, one should demonstrate something special which sets one apart from the other dancers. For me, he hasn't done this at all. Bouder is coming along strongly this year, and Fairchild did Coppelias last summer. Both have demonstrated that they are growing as artists and I think it will be really, really interesting to see how they progress. Fairchild can be instantly cast as cutie-pie/soubrette, but she fills this niche beautifully and she is young, so I think it's ifne for her to rest there for a year or two, actually. Bouder is arguably the most interesting dancer on a stage the minute she walks on---she claims the space, the air moves around her and her mastery of quick, staccato technique is awesome in one so young. She is a masterful dancer and I hope her personal and professional forward impetus combine to give her the deepening awareness of the dramatic aspects of a role....

Best of luck to them...

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Fairchild can be instantly cast as cutie-pie/soubrette, but she fills this niche beautifully and she is young, so I think it's ifne for her to rest there for a year or two, actually.

I begin to suspect that Fairchild has much, much more to offer than cutie-pie soubrette roles. Nothing wrong with her dancing them now or in the future, but I would hate to see them dominate her repertory.

I agree that the gals have earned their newfound status, but not sure about the fellow. Time will tell.

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I'm thrilled to hear about the promotions I was waiting for Ashley and Megan after last summer. I think they both deserve them greatly. As far as Hanna I do happen to think he deserves this promotion as well. At least in the summers at SPAC he's been performing major roles for at least 4 years and I've been watching him and saying to myself why aren't they moving him up if he's dancing more soloist and principal roles than corps. I think he's been working hard and has been keeping steady when being put into the more difficult roles and he deserves this pay increase and title. And so what if they moved him up partially to be able to partner the taller females in the soloist and principal spots thats perfectly fine with me. They did lose Robert Lyons within the last year or so and he was perfect for the tall females. I think all these promotions are deserved and can't wait to see what new roles they begin performing. :(

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Once again, in true NYCB fashion, many, many others overlooked for the ingenuists of ingenues. To name just one, what about Carla Korbes? What's wrong with her? Absolutely nothing that I can see, including that she is already an artist, no waiting. A dancer who dances for the pleasure of the audience.

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I love Korbes' dancing and want to see her promoted, but at least for the women, promotion is a trial by fire. The signs of a promotion, at least lately, are that your name is all over the cast list to the point where you either get promoted or get injured. I'm not sure Korbes can handle that kind of treatment. That may be what's holding her back. I can't speak for the management, but I have a feeling they like her dancing too. She's gotten principal roles and gotten them young.

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I am just thrilled about all the promotions. I just returned from the Coppelia matinee with Megan as Swanhilda, and she was just wonderful. She is not only strong technically and musically but also has a fine acting ability. And what can I say about Ashley Bouder!?! Ever since I saw her graduation performance as Liberty Bell at the SAB Workshop, I knew she was a star in the making. And Hanna did a wonderful job in Emeralds. Happy news and congratulations to all of them (and lucky us in the audience).

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Wasn't Korbes cast all over the place before she got injured? She's still inching her way back into the repertory and although I'd love to see her get promoted, I think I can swallow it if she waits another season or so...as long as she doesn't turn into another case like Belinda Hatley! :S

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Guest GaynorGirl

I believe the only reason Megan Fairchild has been pushed and promoted so young is not because she is techniqicaly strong, In my opinon it is so Joaquin De Luz would have a soloist short enough to partner. Without Megan, who would he partner?

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GG, welcome to BalletTalk. I'd agree with you, except for it being the "only" reason. There's no question she was in the right place at the right time, and the right height. But I also think Martins liked her. She showed talent from the workshop in '01.

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Hanna's is interesting only in that the direction's signs toward which men would be favored have been more opaque than for the women.  Bouder and Fairchild have been all over the casting; besides being talented (which she is) they need Fairchild to be a partner for de Luz.  Hanna's gotten opportunities, and more in recent seasons including several principal roles, but it seems they're using him as a partner.  That still leaves the repertory that either Woetzel or Boal inhabit potentially vacant within a few years.  Who is on the horizon to step into it?

What about Adam Hendrickson? I think he's short, which could be a problem, but he's both strong technically (he does a good Puck) and has a lot of acting ability (also a good Dr. Coppelius). I can see him growing into roles like Prodigal and Orpheus, and I'd be interested in seeing him try 4T's or Agon as well.

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