Movies, bars, and ballet

My friend Paul Parish, irregular Foot contributor, writes from the Bay Area:

The world sure is looking unfamiliar — not unrecognizable, just distorted and actually “on-the-morph.”

San Francisco Ballet’s “Swan Lake” did unbelievable box office. Two million dollars in sales, biggest box office ever for SFB. High ticket prices, of course. Standing room’s gone up to 20 bucks, and standing room was jostling, 4-5 people deep at the back of the orchestra. Plus, they put another crowd up in the balcony….

My hunch is that in alarming times, ballet — maybe dance of any kind, but especially the kind with a steady beat – becomes something that people find emotionally helpful — not necessarily an escape, more like a lifesaver, something that buoys them up. It certainly happened in the ’30s and ’40s, when ballet first took hold here. During the war, everybody commented on the exponential growth in the audience’s numbers and fascination…

Right now movies and bars and ballet are doing real well.

Here is Paul’s gracious review of the “Swan Lake” that’s breaking box-office records. And here’s hoping for an update after further viewings (nudge, nudge…). 

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