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Joseph Phillips has moved to... Vladivostok

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What I find dispiriting is that McKenzie is letting so many of the talented men in the corps slip away. Mikhail Ilyin, Joseph Phillips, Vitali Krauchenka, Roddy Doble... Ratmansky utilized Joe Phillips as Herman Cornejo's alternate in "Seven Sonatas". Ratmansky develops and rewards young talent regardless of rank. I think ABT maybe needs to start thinking about promoting Joseph Gorak and giving him several new roles. It seems that these corps men have decided it is better to be elsewhere - anywhere else in the case of Vladivostok...

I also notice that Gabe Stone Shayer has major roles in the new Ratmansky ballets. He is not someone I have noticed before and seems to be fairly new to the company. He is the alternate Ariel in the "Tempest" and has a role in the Shostakovich evening in the Fall City Center season. Can anyone tell us about him?

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It might be a good idea (hint, hint) to keep this thread on the topic of Joseph Phillips.

We already have threads on the ABT forum relating to the promotion or non-promotion of other dances from within. Or, it would be possible to start a new thread on this topic if this seems desirable.

Here is the list of existing ABT threads for those who wish to pursue that side of the discussion: http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/index.php?/forum/53-american-ballet-theatre/

In the meantime, Mr. Phillips and his interesting switch from ABT to the State ballet company in Vladivostock deserves a thread of his own.

I first saw Phillips -- a very young dancer at the time -- when he came to Miami City Ballet, from SF. He came to MCB as a soloist. Reading back over those old posts, I see that I and others were excited about the possibilities. For some reason or other, Miami did not work out. Also, Philllips definitely seems to have been under-uitilized at ABT.

The Facebook video of a long solo from Spartacus is worth looking at. It suggests that he is already thinking in terms of a repertoire that would have been unthinkable at ABT. And it makes me wonder whether he might not have real potential in terms of the kind of work he would be more likely to find in a Russian ballet company (even in Siberia) than in New York City.

I'd love to hear what others think about the Spartacus clip from those who know more about his recent appearances onstage, at ABT and elsewhere.

Here is the facebook link, kindly provided by kbarber in the OP.


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It sure is discouraging to the members of the corps de ballet. Except for I Boylston 2011 promotion, there has not been promotions since 2007-8 (?). Is this due to monetary problems at ABT?

When was Hammoudi promoted? I

Oppss... he was promoted in 2012.

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Joseph Phillips performed Monday afternoon as a non competing partner in USA IBC. His new partner, on stage and off, is Irina Sapozhnikoa. We worked with them for a week before the competition started as they performed in our Swan lake, and what a joy they both were! Joseph has grown technically, but even more artistically during his year in Vladivostok. His partner, Irina, is a spitfire, with amazing legs and feet, turns, and can balance for days! Their opening pas for IBC was Don Quixote and they brought down the house with it. I questioned his decision to leave ABT, but it looks like he truly made the right decision. His technique was always stellar, but now it seems he has the coaching that he really wanted. Irina should be a major discovery and I hope the both end up landing somewhere that will truly appreciate these talented artists! Oh, on a totally different note, they were 2 of the kindest dancers we've ever met. So gracious and humble, interacted with our students, and just a joy to have around.

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Phillips' decision to leave ABT for Vladivostock raised eyebrows but I think he was smart. Even apart from the issue of better coaching, he had to have seen that there were already three short-to-shortish principal males. He also had to have seen that, at a minimum, Thomas Forster, Joey Gorak, Eric Tamm and Roman Zhurbin were probably ahead of him in the race toward soloist. Under those circumstances, better to go and forge a career elsewhere. And who knows? Maybe he'll go the Matt Golding route and leapfrog from Vladivostock to somewhere else.

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