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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Affects the Ballet World


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11 hours ago, Helene said:

In Canada the challenge was getting people to donate to the arts, because it was considered the government's job.  There were a lot more grants for artists and writers past the time that, for example, NEA funding in the US was slashed.  It's the same in Europe.

The "reliability" of those grants can vary a great deal from country to country. Reunified Berlin ended up with a lot of redundant institutions. Vladimir Malakhov was given the task of consolidating the city's ballet companies, which he did. But this has yet to be accomplished with its opera houses. There is a lot of resistance to the idea because it would inevitably result in some job losses, and so for decades the city of Berlin has continued to subsidize three opera houses.

Canada Council grants are nowhere near as inevitable. When it decided to eliminate touring grants, the National Ballet of Canada ceased touring domestically, something it had done pretty much since its inception. Now, once a year its dancers board a train for Ottawa to give three performances there, and that's about it where domestic touring is concerned. It would have been nice if a tour had been arranged to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation, but I doubt it was even considered. Several years ago I mentioned to one of the company's principals that I had last seen him dance during the company's last Canadian tour, and he began to fume what a disgrace it was that the "national" ballet company wasn't bringing ballet to the nation. This, along with the disappearance of ballet programming on television (which I think has more to do with ratings than funding) means that it has been decades since any Canadian ballet dancer has been a household name.

When the Canada Council decided to reduce funding to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in order to increase funding for Alberta Ballet and Ballet BC (which was severely lagging), it quickly went from having a serious and genuinely interesting repertoire, with a pretty strong Dutch accent, to being a purveyor of schlock such as Moulin Rouge and Peter Pan in order to put bums in seats.

Robert Desrosiers was a former National Ballet of Canada dancer who became quite a hip modern dance choreographer in Toronto in the 1980s with his own company and number of prominent commissions. However, when in the mid 1990s he attempted to translate this popularity into a season at the 3,000-seat O'Keefe Centre, it was a financial flop. In addition the Canada Council cut his grants because it decided his choreography wasn't evolving artistically,and within a few years his company ceased to exist.

Of course a hugely important element in encouraging donations to arts institutions is the tax break donors receive from the government in exchange. In Canada it is not particularly advantageous.

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Washington Ballet school announced yesterday that some of their on-line classes will be available for a charge. On-demand videos for $8. Live-streamed classes are $13. With so many free classes on-line elsewhere, I wonder how successful this will be, but ballet schools are surely thinking about revenue streams during this pandemic, just like everybody else. I hope they can make this work.

https://www.washingtonballet.org/covid-19-updates-information/

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2 hours ago, California said:

Washington Ballet school announced yesterday that some of their on-line classes will be available for a charge. On-demand videos for $8. Live-streamed classes are $13. With so many free classes on-line elsewhere, I wonder how successful this will be, but ballet schools are surely thinking about revenue streams during this pandemic, just like everybody else. I hope they can make this work.

https://www.washingtonballet.org/covid-19-updates-information/

SFB has been doing this same thing, but I haven't heard yet how successful they are in bringing people in.

https://www.sfballet.org/discover/backstage/san-francisco-ballet-school-goes-digital/

I think what was figured out pretty quickly was that the online company classes were getting an audience of people who weren't even close to professional in their knowledge of ballet positions and movements (and that audience was even trying to join the classes on Zoom). The newbies had to be quickly pointed in an appropriate direction.

So much is happening in a seat-of-the-pants manner it's impossible to tell what is going to have lasting results.


EDIT: OK, I finally found the adult ballet class page:

"Virtual classes will take place through Zoom with a one-hour class.  We will offer live accompaniment and will email you the Zoom link 20 minute prior to class. Online registration closes 10 minutes prior to the start of each class."
Classes are $8

https://www.sfballet.org/school-education/adult-programs/adult-ballet-classes/drop-in-classes/

Edited by pherank
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4 hours ago, California said:

Washington Ballet school announced yesterday that some of their on-line classes will be available for a charge. On-demand videos for $8. Live-streamed classes are $13. With so many free classes on-line elsewhere, I wonder how successful this will be, but ballet schools are surely thinking about revenue streams during this pandemic, just like everybody else. I hope they can make this work.

https://www.washingtonballet.org/covid-19-updates-information/

Colorado Ballet Academy just announced the same thing for their Adult Open classes @$10. I really hope all these schools find a successful model.

=================

Colorado Ballet Academy is excited to offer Virtual Open classes for all of our Adult Open students beginning Monday, April 20. We know this is not a direct replacement for our in-studio classes but hope it gives everyone a chance to stay up to speed with their Ballet training!  

All classes cost $10 to drop in. You must register and pay on our website ahead of time in order to receive class login information.

 

Day 

Time 

Class 

Teacher 

Monday 

10:00-11:30am 

Adult Intermediate Ballet 

Whitney Popp 

Tuesday 

10:00-11:30am 

Adult Intermediate Ballet 

Jayne Persch 

Wednesday 

10:00-11:30am 

Adult Beginning Ballet 

Erika Sandre 

Thursday 

10:00-11:30am 

Adult Intermediate Ballet 

Jayne Persch 

Friday 

10:00-11:30am 

Adult Intermediate Ballet 

Robert Sher-Machherndl 

Saturday 

12:00-1:30pm 

Adult Beginning Ballet 

Diane Page 

 

Please follow the link below to register and pay for your class. After you have paid for your class you will be sent an email from tickets@coloradoballet.org with a receipt, Zoom Video Conferencing Link, and password. 

We are not applying previously purchased classes (online drop-in registration or punch cards) to online classes at this time. We plan to honor any in-person classes purchased online during the closure once we return to classes in the studios. All Class Punch Cards’ expiration dates will be extended at least 2 months. Anyone that has paid for a drop-in class online, that did not occur due to the closure, will be able to apply that registration to a future class in studio.   

We hope to see you in classes this week! Please let us know if you have any questions! 

Thank you, 

Megan Lay | Colorado Ballet Pre-Professional Division and Summer Programs Administrator

Phone: (303) 339-1717 | megan.lay@coloradoballet.org 

1075 Santa Fe Drive, Denver, CO 80204

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I'm not sure where to put this sort of thing anymore, but, Misa Kuranaga will be demonstrating how she spends her day under quarantine at Pointe Magazine's Instagram page tomorrow, Sunday, April 19.
I'm guessing this item will be 'live' tomorrow, or found by clicking on the IGTV icon and viewing the Pointe Magazine video channel.
 

 

 

Edited by pherank
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I think the biggest issue in Canada is the lag in perception that government grants take care of the arts with the practice and expectation of donating to support them.  Too many people think the situation is back when they were growing up or young adults.

I thought charitable donations came directly off of income, but it's been a while since I filed a Canadian tax return, and I may be misremembering, or there may have been a limitation that didn't impact me.

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Steps on Broadway just announced their virtual classes @$12. Interesting that so many schools are announcing on the same day:

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Steps on Broadway invites you to join us for Virtual Steps: A Livestream Class Experience! Train at home with our world-renowned faculty for just $12 a class. Classes begin on Monday, April 20 at 9AM (EST).
 
We miss you and your teachers miss you, so join us in our virtual studio as we keep you dancing at home. Classes will be offered in every style for every level from your favorite teachers.
 
Let’s keep dancing!
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Steps on Broadway | 2121 Broadway, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10023
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13 hours ago, Helene said:

I think the biggest issue in Canada is the lag in perception that government grants take care of the arts with the practice and expectation of donating to support them.  Too many people think the situation is back when they were growing up or young adults.

Of course European subsidies are not guaranteed either, as when the local government pulled the plug on Ballet Frankfurt, despite Forsythe's international reputation. 

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On 4/15/2020 at 8:47 PM, Quiggin said:

PS – I am surprised about the compliance and non compliance with the mask rule in San Francisco. In the mornings in my mid-Polk neighborhood virtually everyone wears them as they go about their shopping. You see fewer in the afternoon, fewest in late afternoons, none on the joggers who run along the commercial street instead of the side streets, but a fair number on bicyclists. You also see classic leftist/libertarian couples, one with a mask, one without.

There's now a couple of articles that address people's concern about exercising in the open during the pandemic, and the likelihood of transition via packages and the like...

Is the Virus on My Clothes? My Shoes? My Hair? My Newspaper?
We asked the experts to answer questions about all the places coronavirus lurks (or doesn’t). You’ll feel better after reading this.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/17/well/live/coronavirus-contagion-spead-clothes-shoes-hair-newspaper-packages-mail-infectious.html


For Runners, Is 15 Feet the New 6 Feet for Social Distancing?
When we walk briskly or run, air moves differently around us, increasing the space required to maintain a proper social distance.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/15/well/move/running-social-distancing.html

 

Hopefully this kind of information will be taken into account when the authorities decide how much businesses can truly "open up".

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24 minutes ago, pherank said:

There's now a couple of articles that address people's concern about exercising in the open during the pandemic, and the likelihood of transition via packages and the like...

Thanks, pherank, those are helpful. The Clothes/Shoes/Hair/Newspaper article helps set up a sensible hierachy of concerns. Taking off your shoes in the entry has always been a good idea anyway with all the dogs and spit and stormwater/drain runoff out there. I tend to have a dedicated pair of trousers by the door for outdoor excursions and bicycling but not for short trips to the mailbox or to the rooftop.

The findings on jogging were good too, with rules of thumb for passing others. (In the old days, actually not so long ago, bicyclists would give a gentle warning, "passing on your left," before coming up alongside you.)

Quote

The implication of these findings, Dr. Blocken says, is that to keep social distance, runners and walkers should swing well wide when passing other people and not cut back sharply in front of them after passing.

“Be nice and wait awhile before you move back in front of anyone,” Dr. Blocken told me, preferably spacing yourself at least 15 feet or more in front.

 

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2 hours ago, pherank said:

There's now a couple of articles that address people's concern about exercising in the open during the pandemic, and the likelihood of transition via packages and the like...

Is the Virus on My Clothes? My Shoes? My Hair? My Newspaper?
We asked the experts to answer questions about all the places coronavirus lurks (or doesn’t). You’ll feel better after reading this.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/17/well/live/coronavirus-contagion-spead-clothes-shoes-hair-newspaper-packages-mail-infectious.html


For Runners, Is 15 Feet the New 6 Feet for Social Distancing?
When we walk briskly or run, air moves differently around us, increasing the space required to maintain a proper social distance.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/15/well/move/running-social-distancing.html

 

Hopefully this kind of information will be taken into account when the authorities decide how much businesses can truly "open up".

Wow! If this is true, running should probably be prohibited, and maybe taking walks as well. But I'm skeptical that the density of droplets and aerosols would be large enough that a person more than a few feet away would inhale enough virus particles to get infected. At least I hope so; with the gym closed I've taken up running because I want my heart and lungs to be at as high a capacity as possible in case I get infected.

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56 minutes ago, YouOverThere said:

Wow! If this is true, running should probably be prohibited, and maybe taking walks as well. But I'm skeptical that the density of droplets and aerosols would be large enough that a person more than a few feet away would inhale enough virus particles to get infected. At least I hope so; with the gym closed I've taken up running because I want my heart and lungs to be at as high a capacity as possible in case I get infected.

Do you live in the inner city? Unless you're running along sidewalks constantly dodging other runners and walkers it really shouldn't be a problem. It's all about close proximity, and avoiding it. No one should run beside or in back of someone else if you want reliable protection. If you have a City Cycling Mask that would help. That type is easier to breathe through. Or one of those hiker's neck gaiter masks. Amazon has that kind of thing.

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Thank you, YouOverThere, for posting that link to the Washington Post article. I was about to do it, a couple of hours after you.

The way the article is organised into discrete sections is interesting, and raises some profound questions — all the more striking because most of them come from the Russian dancers interviewed for the article. The comments section after the article is good too.

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33 minutes ago, cyclingmartin said:

Thank you, YouOverThere, for posting that link to the Washington Post article. I was about to do it, a couple of hours after you.

The way the article is organised into discrete sections is interesting, and raises some profound questions — all the more striking because most of them come from the Russian dancers interviewed for the article. The comments section after the article is good too.

I was unable to bypass the pay wall. Does anyone know how to do this without subscribing?

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20 minutes ago, Marta said:

I was unable to bypass the pay wall. Does anyone know how to do this without subscribing?

Likely they keep track of how many time you visit the WP, and force you to sign in or subscribe after, say, three free page views. At the very least, you will need to clear the browser cache and all browser cookies, and close and re-open your browser to try accessing that page again. But if they are keeping track of IP addresses, as in how many times in a day your public IP address has visited their website, then you will still get blocked.

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In the UK you can sign up to an account that gives you access to one or two articles a month (or is it a week?). That's how I got in. I don't know if that's available in the USA.

Pherank is right; and from my memories of trying to read without subscribing, I'm pretty certain that they do track your IP address.

Edited by cyclingmartin
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56 minutes ago, Marta said:

I was unable to bypass the pay wall. Does anyone know how to do this without subscribing?

It also at least used to be the case that if you googled the article title ("Bolshoi in the kitchen: Russian ballet is also working from home during lockdown") and accessed it from there, that would sometimes work as a paywall workaround. (I remember this specifically with the Times, not sure about WaPo).

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11 minutes ago, nanushka said:

It also at least used to be the case that if you googled the article title ("Bolshoi in the kitchen: Russian ballet is also working from home during lockdown") and accessed it from there, that would sometimes work as a paywall workaround. (I remember this specifically with the Times, not sure about WaPo).

So that people coming from a Google search don't have a "bad experience".  ;)

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My question is why haven't the Pacific Northwest Ballet performances been cancelled.  That engagement starts two days after Eifman.

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1 hour ago, abatt said:

My question is why haven't the Pacific Northwest Ballet performances been cancelled.  That engagement starts two days after Eifman.

I have wondered the same thing. I actually still have a ticket that I was  going to use after a Swan Lake blitz at ABT. PNB has postponed their summer program in Idaho to August. Assume the June  NYC engagement will be cancelled, too.

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14 minutes ago, Leah said:

La Scala will reopen in September with Verdi’s Requiem to honor Covid victims. If the rest of the world is assumed to be a couple months behind Italy there may be hope for Nutcrackers yet.

https://www.ansa.it/sito/notizie/topnews/2020/04/27/la-scala-riaprire-a-settembre-con-il-requiem_8fb4cae5-b1d7-40ba-9b42-a55ea1087100.html

That's pretty impressive! I've also been watching Germany, which has a terrible pandemic -- but it's being managed by scientists (most notably Angela Merkel, a PhD quantum physicist).  I haven't seen any announcements from the German companies about re-opening.

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