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Thursday, February 6

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A look at dancers' pre-performance rituals by Sarah L. Kaufman in The Washington Post.

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They already obsess over the finest details of technique and artistic nuance, and years of devotion go into preparing for performances, but, still, fate is awfully powerful. Many go to great lengths not to tempt it. Ballet dancers immerse themselves in magic for most of their careers, bringing to life such stories as the Romantic-era “Giselle,” with its bad omens and spectral virgins. In this and other works, dancers have to commit themselves wholeheartedly to fantasy worlds ruled by spirits and spells, and some of that rubs off.

 

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Skylar Brandt prepares for her first "Giselle."

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She likes to work. Soloists, generally, have down time — too much for Ms. Brandt’s taste. “I just turned 27, and I feel like at this point I should be starting to experience more growth,” she said. Or some growth. It’s not just about being promoted; she really just wants to dance.

 

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Festival Ballet Providence performs this weekend.

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"Game Changers," a mixed bill program, will feature contemporary works by Tony Award winner Christopher Wheeldon, former Boston Ballet principal dancer Yury Yanowsky, and former Alvin Ailey Dance Theater member Christopher Huggins.

 

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Backstage at Pacific Northwest Ballet's "Cinderella."

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Sweaty costumes were whisked away to a heated room to be dried for the next performance. The stage, costumes, hair, and makeup were in a constant state of change as dancers filled 110 different roles in the performance choreographed by Kent Stowell.

 

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