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"Do You Miss Classical Ballet? Certainly Not !"


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In yesterday's Links, dirac posted a link to an interview with Adam Cooper, former Royal Ballet dancer, from the BBC website.

Do you miss classical ballet?

Certainly not! I had such a great time at the Royal Ballet company, but I felt a little frustrated. I get much more out of creating new work and that is something you don't do a lot of in a ballet company. I would much rather spend my time and energy either creating my own piece or having pieces created for me.

A couple of generations ago the alternatives available to ballet-trained dancers would have been rather narrow: either remain within the confines of a company or go out on your own, finding work in musical theater of some sort.

Things seem to be changing in the past decade or so. Public interest in "dancers" of all kinds seems to have increased, witness the popularity of shows like So You Think You Can Dance, which has been in the news partly because of the involvement of Miami City Ballets dancers Jeremy Cox (gone from the company) and Alex Wong.

Alternative work opportunities seem to have increased as well, however risky they may be. Nowadays, you hear more and more about dancers -- mostly male, it seems to me -- who are giving up company affiliations in order to take their chances freelancing, putting together their own small troupes, working in musical videos or musical theater, etc.

Any thoughts about this development? Is it really new? Is it growing? Will it work? What are the implications for the traditional ballet companies?

Link to the complete interview with Cooper is here:


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