You Dare To Arrive Late? We’re Dancing Here!

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“The curtain rose five minutes ago, the corps de ballet is building the atmosphere, the ballerina is about to enter, the audience is collecting itself in mounting excitement when — — “Excuse me, I’m so sorry.” Upheaval follows. Sometimes eight people have to rise or adjust themselves as the patrons claiming the ninth and 10th seats make their way past.”

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Bloodbath At Pennsylvania Ballet

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“With a single swing of the ax, the new leadership of Pennsylvania Ballet has cleared out the longtime artistic pillars of the company” – the ballet master and mistress, both of whom were there for nearly 40 years; the director of the company’s school; and the assistant to the artistic director. Angel Corella was named the new artistic director last month.

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ABT’s Not Just Wringing Its Hands About Lack Of Diversity In Ballet, It’s Going Out To Develop More Dancers

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“Classical ballet in the United States has an image problem, as dancers at the top companies are almost entirely white. … In an attempt to make ballet more diverse, the American Ballet Theatre has launched a new programme to search for talents from the excluded communities. Al Jazeera’s Daniel Lak reports from New York.” (video)

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Dancers Are Taking Over Beijing

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There are “thousands of so-called square dancing troupes of Chinese seniors that have sprung up in the last few years, descending on public plazas, parks and other urban open spaces across the country daily for nostalgia-infused light cardio workouts. The phenomenon has grown so widespread that it’s causing social friction, with multiple groups battling for pavement space and sonic supremacy in many parks, much to the annoyance of often younger nearby residents.”

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Girls From Brazil’s Favelas Find Escape In Ballet

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“Growing up amid drug dealers and addicts, … girls from a rough neighborhood known as a ‘cracolandia,’ or crackland, are learning the graceful art courtesy of a local church group that also offers them food, counseling and Bible studies.”

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St. Paul Ballet Makes A Go Of It As A Dancer-Run Company

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“A little more than a year ago, the company and school faced debt and considered cutting back on performances and even closing its doors. It reorganized as an artist-led organization, with dancers taking on administrative roles. Heading into the 2014-15 season, it looks like the dancers’ dedication has paid off.”

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One Thousand Choreographed Robots (Or, Flo Ziegfeld Meets The Roombas)

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“There’s something unsettling about watching 1,000 robots execute a perfectly choreographed routine. … And yet, these machines – tiny $20 robots that take five minutes each to assemble, for a total of 83 hours – are actually completely banal. In fact, according to the researchers, their capabilities are pretty abysmal.” (video)

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At The World Hip Hop Dance Championships

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“Hip-hop dance is not going global – it’s been global for years … The global reach was evident not only in the winners of the major world dance crew competitions” – groups fro Japan, Canada and the Philippines – “but also by the fact that a dominant team, New Zealand’s the Royal Family, was so popular that it had a special performance Saturday night.” (includes video)

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Some Of The Country’s Best Dance Takes Place On The Subway

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“This choreography of grit and grace perseveres, despite an increase of arrests by the New York Police Department, as a delicate wonder, glued together by exacting precision and indelible stamina. Plus, there’s the joy of watching a dance where dancing is not allowed: It’s a subversive performance. It’s also a surprise.”

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The Magical Metamorphoses Of Indian Classical Dance

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Alastair Macaulay: “Opera people often – and rightly – remark on the marvelous films of the soprano Maria Callas in concert; they show us the very moment when her whole face subtly switches into the character she is about to sing. It feels miraculous. Yet such moments keep recurring during individual Indian dances: the face changes contour; the body becomes another being.”

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Misty Copeland May Get Her Own Biopic

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New Line Cinema has purchased the option to adapt Copeland’s memoir, Life In Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina, into a feature film; producers and scriptwriters have already been selected. The Hollywood pitch: “The Blind Side set in the dance world.”

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Dancing The Struggles Of Rio’s Slums

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Sonia Destri Lie, founder of the contemporary urban/hip-hop troupe Companhia Urbana de Dança: “We looked at photos of protests, of the bodies of people killed by the police, and we started dancing this, improvising.”

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Tiler Peck Transforms Herself Into The World’s Most Famous Ballet Statue

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“With her strong jaw and confidently bared breastbone, Degas’s Little Dancer statuette … absolutely does not care what we think. Yet her mystique has only grown. Who was that girl, really? And who was she to Degas? These questions fuel [a new] musical, which is reportedly part fact, part fantasy,” in which Peck is starring this fall.

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Royal Ballet Of Flanders Fires Artistic Director

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“Although the ballet did not provide an explanation for letting her go, from the beginning, [Assis] Carreiro was a controversial choice for the role of artistic director. … Dancers wrote a letter to the organisation’s board late last year citing that 69% of them had voted no confidence in the artistic director. Eventually, one-third of the company left.”

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Watch The Mariinsky Ballet Take Class

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“It is interesting to see any company in class, to glimpse behind the greasepaint and the glamour to see the sheer hard work and repetitive grind which makes onstage greatness possible. But it is particularly fascinating to watch the Mariinsky in action, partly because their dancers are so famous – but mainly because their style is so pure.” (includes video)

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Contemporary Choreography Is Hard, Says Natalia Osipova

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“In ballet, the muscles on the inside part of your legs work, but here you use the muscles on the outside of your legs. There’s a lot of pressure on the knees, which you don’t get in classical ballet, and you dance practically barefoot, which is also unusual. Lots of falling movements – when we were rehearsing we were covered in bruises, all beaten and battered!”

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Here’s What Black Ballet Dancers Really Go Through

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“Racism is less about what happens to you and more about what doesn’t happen to you.” As ABT’s Misty Copeland prepares to dance the White and Black Swans for the first time, she and several of her dark-skineed colleagues (including Carlos Acosta) talk about the challenges they still face (yes, including hate mail and physical threats) and the progress that’s being made.

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ABT Donates Archives To Library Of Congress

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“Officials at ABT said on Thursday that the New York company is donating its archives of more than 50,000 items of visual and written documentation to the Library of Congress. The donation coincides with ABT’s coming 75th anniversary celebrations.”

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