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Job posting for artistic director


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9 minutes ago, Olga said:

Historically, I think an impresario provided financial backing.

Whelan has produced her own shows.  I haven't read anywhere that the designers, choreographers, and venues have worked or been used for free or that she is independently wealthy and could write checks out of a trust fund to pay for them.

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1 hour ago, Helene said:

Whelan has produced her own shows.  I haven't read anywhere that the designers, choreographers, and venues have worked or been used for free or that she is independently wealthy and could write checks out of a trust fund to pay for them.

Her first show, in 2013 at the Joyce theater, was a co-production with the Joyce. Thst is how the Joyce described it on its website. They may have funded it, as I think they do for some of their shows. i don’t know if this was true of the second show, or of her show at BAM. But I mentioned the funding as a side note about the definition and etymology of the term. None of this changes my view that the description of Whelan in that piece is quite puffed up on the positive side, mute about the negatives and structured as an argument that she is, all in all, the best choice. 

I am not sure Whelan produced Hagoromo, the show she was in at BAM. BAM’s website says it was “Conceived and directed by David Michalek” who is her husband. Therr is no producer credit. She and Jock Soto danced it. 

Edited by Olga
More facts
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I'm kind of tired of the speculation.  Announce who it is and then we can all move on.  I wonder if Dance Magazine has any insider info, re when they said it could be any day now, that NYCB makes the announcement.

Anyway, I hope it's soon. I'm getting exhausted!  :)

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I thought that the article was silly and written by someone who is actually a lot less knowledgeable than the folks on this board.  It made no sense to me.  Millpied? Wheeldon? Misty Copeland? Suzanne Farrell? I thought Farrell actually had to cancel her summer program? Misty Copeland directing NYCB?  It's just bizarre. 

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I found the article silly and click-baity.  I don't think there was anything more or less overstated about Whelan than about anyone else.  

Based entirely on outside observation, she wouldn't be my optimal choice.  But based entirely on outside observation, I don't have any evidence that my optimal choices even applied for the job.

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1 hour ago, balletforme said:

I thought that the article was silly and written by someone who is actually a lot less knowledgeable than the folks on this board.  It made no sense to me.  Millpied? Wheeldon? Misty Copeland? Suzanne Farrell? I thought Farrell actually had to cancel her summer program? Misty Copeland directing NYCB?  It's just bizarre. 

Last year, the NY Times named Millepied as one of three frontrunners for the position (along with Whelan and Peck). 

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Thanks folks for the corrections.  I guess that I would expect an article over a year after the NYT article to give us something "newsworthy" instead of simply replaying info from so long ago.  

Edited by balletforme
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Maybe not being an impresario, but Whelan is "curating" "Evening of Stars" for the New Orleans Ballet Association (NOBA), with:

  • Yuan Yuan Tan and Tiit Helimets from San Francisco Ballet ("White Swan PDD")
  • Adiarys Almeida and Taras Domitro ("Black Swan PDD," short excerpts by Cuban choreographers)
  • Four dancers (unnamed in the article) from Pacific Northwest Ballet ("several duets")
  • Denys Drozdyuk and Antonina Skobina (ballroom)
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On 1/18/2019 at 2:17 PM, Olga said:

Wendy Whelan an impresario? That is a BIG stretch. The piece reads like a plug for her, though Boal comes off well. Both Whelan and Boal (through his wife) have something in common on the Martins front.

I think I know what you are referring to--you can correct me if I'm wrong--but "in common" seems to me a misleading way to express it. Martins was Whelan's artistic champion: whatever went on behind the scenes, he created ballets for her and promoted her career steadily, casting her across the repertory. She was, I should think, THE star ballerina of Peter Martins' NYCB insofar as NYCB has stars. At the end, when she was well over 40, he took her out of Sugar Plum Fairy (with all that implies) and she allowed herself to be filmed in a pretty raw emotional state seemingly blaming him for that and even, at one moment, seeming to blame him for the physical problems she had afterwards -- insisting she had never had a serious injury until after that conversation with him as if there might be some kind of mystical (or psychological) cause-and-effect. She may not have meant to make that connection and who knows if she feels now as she did during the transitional time in her career which was filmed.  All of that, however dramatic, seems a far cry from being choked, physically shaken, and berated by Martins as Kelley Boal reports or indeed being married to someone who was choked, shaken, and berated. (Not that Kelley Boal's experience kept Peter Boal from staying at NYCB and having himself a very successful career at NYCB under Martins.)  Unless Whelan were to report being physically attacked by Martins in that fashion I don't see much in common with Kelley Boal's experience, because...well...if one believes Whelan's account of what happened with the Sugar Plum Fairy role, then one might still reasonably come to the conclusion Martins was being a good director making tough decisions; if one believes Kelley Boal's account of what he did to her, then...not so much. 

I also prefer the decision on a new director be made sooner rather than later. But mostly, as I 've indicated above, I hope that whoever comes in has an active respect for and understanding of Balanchine's legacy. Or at least cares enough to put Balanchine's works in the hands of regisseurs who do--and to program them regularly (something one would be naive to take for granted). Other things matter...but not as much.

Edited by Drew
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Drew, yes, that is what I was referring to. There are indeed significant differences, but why I felt a shorthand reference would do is that they both line up on the same side of the epic Martins drama, albeit their cases are quite different. Likely or at least possibly, that is a drama  that bears on the selection process by the Board, as well as on the opinions of others, not on the Board, as to their preferred candidates. One can make excuses, and you have, for what Whelan said in that film, but in my view what she said about the connection between  Martins taking her out of Sugarplum and her injury and how she said it, was enough to make the Board think twice or more — and not just because it was hostile to Martins, but because it may indicate a temperment and judgment unsuited to running the company. 

I can’t believe how many posts I have made about this - I thought the paragraph about Wendy was juvenile and ridiculous. As I said, Wendy could be problematic as director but if she does get the post I wish her well. 

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Whereas I don't think an entire Board would act because a prominent, well-loved dancer was taken out of a role in her 40's: if there's any Artistic Director or Ballet Master who has had the job for five years or more hasn't done, I'd be very surprised, and if Whelan gets the job, it will be her job to do the same.  If there's any drama that Whelan's situation is akin to, it's "The Turning Point."  What Kelly Boal described was reason for dismissal in any profession.

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Whelan was at NYCB last night.  For years after her retirement she did not come to NYCB because, as she put it, she was not ready to see others dance her old roles.  I guess she's gotten over that, because over the past year she is at the Koch regularly.

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1 hour ago, abatt said:

Whelan was at NYCB last night.  For years after her retirement she did not come to NYCB because, as she put it, she was not ready to see others dance her old roles.  I guess she's gotten over that, because over the past year she is at the Koch regularly.

I can certainly understand that feeling.

After I quit ballet (and I was not a professional) going to the ballet hurt so much that I found I couldn't for several years. I can't imagine the profound feeling of loss after spending basically your entire life as a dancer. It would certainly be an adjustment! I'm glad she does come now though.

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There was a recent interview with Millepied who said he was a candidate but isn't interested.

Millepied, known to the general public for choreographing dances in the movie "Black Swan" where he met his wife, confirms that he was among the candidates to take over the NYCB. This company is itself shaken by the retirement of its director over 30 years Peter Martins, accused of sexual harassment before being cleared. But scalded by the experience in Paris, he is not interested: "It's the same thing: stay locked in a theater the majority of the year".

https://culturebox.francetvinfo.fr/danse/benjamin-millepied-de-retour-a-paris-j-avais-besoin-de-creer-284930

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4 hours ago, FPF said:

There was a recent interview with Millepied who said he was a candidate but isn't interested.

Millepied, known to the general public for choreographing dances in the movie "Black Swan" where he met his wife, confirms that he was among the candidates to take over the NYCB. This company is itself shaken by the retirement of its director over 30 years Peter Martins, accused of sexual harassment before being cleared. But scalded by the experience in Paris, he is not interested: "It's the same thing: stay locked in a theater the majority of the year".

https://culturebox.francetvinfo.fr/danse/benjamin-millepied-de-retour-a-paris-j-avais-besoin-de-creer-284930

Thank goodness he is not a possibility IMO. Lord knows we don't need to see more of his choreography.

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