“‘I needed to look at the body as body, movement as movement,’ he says, ‘not as defined by someone else’s aesthetic.’ The piece was developed from everyday actions: there are no formal hand gestures, no folk steps.”
“Gender identity in ballet – men depicted as strong, women as demure – that’s one of the things that disconnects ballet the most from the present world. I’m trying to find a way to express contemporary relationships that look like the relationships that we, as people, have today, while not abandoning that technique.”
Ballet becomes melded with pop culture as Jimmy Kimmel wears a pink tutu to dance with Copeland.
Choreographer Dan Canham says that his Of Riders and Running Horses is “about reclaiming the city space in a gentle way. In the four UK cities the show has been performed in so far, he said they always ended with a spontaneous dance party erupting as the audience joined in.”
“Ideally, though, you would have both a property and a pension. Currently I’m renting but I would love to get on to the housing ladder in the future. I live in Clerkenwell, Central London, and I would buy a property there, but not at the moment. I’m incredibly busy with the ballet – I haven’t had a chance to go house-hunting.”
“The ubiquity of Romeo and Juliet as a ballet is not shared by any other Shakespeare play. In fact, although the strength of his stories and characters seem to make the playwright a good choice for dance, in practice those few ballets based on his other plays have often foundered on dance’s difficulty with translating thought into action; narrative alone is not enough to sweep the audience along in these plays.”
“We have received far less public profiling, far less opportunity to show our work outside the small scale and far fewer offers to upscale our work and be commissioned.”
“Lam Chun-wing, a 19-year-old from a working-class Hong Kong suburb, is an unlikely addition to the world’s oldest ballet company – a state institution steeped in French tradition.”
This week’s viral dance video features two members of the daredevil company Bandaloop making their moves in midair outside the windows of a Shanghai office tower.
“My entire career has been working and striving and proving, and it’s just exhausting. It’s so much more than just the work, which is exhausting in itself. I want to just enjoy this first season as a principal dancer and really just focus on that… So now I feel like I can actually sit back and kind of settle in to this position. That’s exciting.”
“The 1877 original was staged in Moscow, and was by no means the fiasco that used to be supposed. After its Moscow premiere, it was revived there for six of the first seven years of its existence. Recent discoveries … at the old Bolshoi building there, give us a new wealth of detail about it.” For example, the “Black Swan pas de deux” was not intended for either Odette or Odile, and the storm scene is supposed to have a real whirlpool.
“O.K., you want the fountain of youth, here it is: Travel with a modern dance troupe.”
There’s a new executive director after nearly two years without one, artistic director Michael Pink has extended his contract for another five years, and donors have given a $300,000 challenge grant to launch a fund dedicated to new work.
Jean Lenihan joins a group of ordinary folks learning and dancing in Tharp’s The One Hundreds in Los Angeles.
Okay, in this case they’re using hoverboards (basically Segways without the handlebars), but choreographer David Moore and his five dancers “manage to tackle a solid hip-hop routine by simply shifting their weight around.” (video)
London’s Rambert dance company brings together a panel, chaired by The Guardian‘s Judith Mackrell, “that will focus less on the reasons why women are falling behind than on what can be done to support them.” The discussion will be live-streamed online on Wed., Oct. 14 (4:30 to 6:00 pm UK time), and questions may be submitted beforehand.
“Dancing wasn’t the primary problem; Ms. Somogyi, 38, wasn’t sure if she would be able to walk normally again.”
“I think it needed to happen. Dancers in the past have talked about it, but they haven’t had the platform that I’ve had, which makes a huge difference. I think that it’s forcing the conversation to be had, and it’s a part of me, and it’s a part of my experience in my life and my struggles. … Just because I’m a principal dancer now doesn’t mean that all goes away.”
Kim Brandstrup: “Because I’m not from a ballet background, I often don’t use codified steps. First you need the trajectory through the room, then later you can shape it, detail it and make the picture.” Says NYCB principal Sara Mearns, “We couldn’t really get it [at first]. It was like, how big a jump would get you over here, or what kind of turn would work there? Then we realized, we are out of our comfort zone, but we are really free. He is directing us, but he will let us go where we want with the movement.”
“There seems to be this cross-fertilisation going on that’s never happened before. The Royal Ballet and English National Ballet, our two biggest ballet companies, are commissioning contemporary choreographers more and more to work with them. Things are getting blurred in a way and and the dancers are having to be very versatile to take on those different movements.”
“In this series, GQ takes a look at what pro athletes in different sports eat on a daily basis to perform at their best. Here’s a look at the daily diet of [ABT principal] Marcelo Gomes.”
Caroline Thomson, who was a deputy director general and chief operating officer at the BBC before coming to ENB in 2013, will depart next April “to focus on her non-executive work with other organisations.”
The Pavlovich Ballet School, headquarters for the Columbia Classical Ballet and “renovated just this summer, has been completely destroyed. During the flooding, water reached up to the ceiling of the studio. Costumes and music scores were ruined. … The entire building needs to be gutted.”
“Most modern productions of Swan Lake are derived from the 1895 staging at the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, which had its premiere after Tchaikovsky’s death and for which Tchaikovsky’s score was drastically reordered and rearranged by Riccardo Drigo. The original 1877 Bolshoi Swan Lake … has been more of a cipher to posterity.” Until now.
“Balanchine is unique unto himself. I think the real heirs to Balanchine are [Alexei] Ratmansky and the upcoming Justin Peck actually. I think these people possess an extraordinary skill set that is far more aligned with Balanchine’s way of organizing. I was trying to work on another thing because I didn’t think Balanchine was very imitable. You can’t imitate Balanchine.”
“A few years back ballet was on the way down as an art form. There was a book written about it by Jennifer Homans, and she made this statement that ballet is dead. Everyone got a little upset. But in a sense she was on to something. Since then things have changed.”
“With today’s audiences having Twitter-like attention spans and where dances choreographed for TV shows like ‘So You Think You Can Dance,’ generally encompassing about two minutes, Duckler said her goal — and main test — ‘was to make a dance work that lasts for five hours.'”
“The problem is far-reaching, especially among companies of NYCB’s scale. And yet, I want to believe that I work in a field that cares about the voices of women and people of color. I want to believe that an art form that fancies itself as progressive, and a company situated in one of the most forward-thinking cities in the world, isn’t complacent about racism and sexism. Unfortunately, I don’t believe any of this yet.”
Patricia Barker has been “instrumental in preventing the regional company, which is Michigan’s only professional ballet company, from shutting its doors. And, under her direction, both the size of the company and the breadth of the works it performs have grown.”
Says Washington Ballet artistic director Septime Webre, “It’s really taken some time for directors to feel comfortable talking about this subject, but now the topic is out in the ether. Misty is a big part of that. And people aren’t just talking now, they’re really trying to find ways to do something about it.”