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When former Ballet West principal Michael Beardon took over Ballet Arkansas in 2013, he wanted to find ways to connect the small, 13-member company to the greater dance world and help its young artists develop. “The more interaction they have with knowledgeable and talented choreographers, the faster they’re going to grow,” says Beardon. To do so, he initiated Visions: A Choreographic Competition, an event that also aims to nurture emerging dancemakers and educate audiences.

Marius Petipa’s original version of La Bayadère, which premiered in St. Petersburg in 1877, was meant to evoke the exotic Far East. Today’s productions have no shortage of tropes that Westerners might associate with a royal Indian court: elephants, rajahs, midriffs and opium dreams. The first time I saw La Bayadère, it was not the fantastical setting I found so mesmerizing, but the dancers underneath the layers of intrigue, silk and jewels.

One time or another, we've all felt jealous of that dancer who seems to do no wrong: Her lines are perfect, she's quick to pick up new combinations and the teacher loves her. Usually we're told that feeling envious will only hurt us, and in many cases that's exactly what happens—jealousy tends to bring us down. 

Peter Stark, the artistic director of Next Generation Ballet will come on board at Boston Ballet as the associate director of Boston Ballet II and as the head of the Men's Program at the Boston Ballet School.

On August 20, the dance world will welcome a new interpretation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and this one is sure to sparkle. The Royal New Zealand Ballet, previously directed by Ethan Stiefel and now lead by former La Scala dancer Francesco Ventriglia, has commissioned Liam Scarlett to choreograph a brand-new version of the comedic, whimsical work.

 

New York City Ballet soloist Georgina Pazcoguin will step into the role of Ivy Smith, aka Miss Turnstiles, from August 11–23 in the Broadway musical On the Town. She'll be filling in for New York City Ballet principal Megan Fairchild who will take her last Broadway bow (for now!) on August 9.

Pazcoguin will be followed by American Ballet Theatre principal Misty Copeland, who will perform the role August 25 to September 6. While we love the run of ballet dancers on Broadway, we're excited to have Fairchild back onstage with NYCB for the company's fall season.

The number of ballerinas dipping their pointe shoes in the musical theater pool has been noteworthy this season—and between Misty Copeland joining the cast of Broadway's On the Town (in the role played by New York City Ballet's Megan Fairchild), Leanne Cope's Tony-nominated performance in An American in Paris and Tiler Peck's recent turn in Little Dancer, we're loving the trend.

According to a report in the New York Times, Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre announced on its website today that it would not be renewing the contract of the ballet’s artistic director, Sergei Filin. Filin, whose contract is up in March 2016, made world headlines in 2013 when he had acid thrown in his face, an assault organized by Bolshoi soloist Pavel Dmitrichenko. Filin has since had multiple eye surgeries and is now partially blind.

 

The sweltering, humid heat of a Northeastern summer can make even the most good-natured person act, well, hot-headed. This would be an understatement in describing Lizzie Borden, the woman from Fall River, Massachusetts, who allegedly hacked her parents to death with a hatchet in 1892. The case was a media sensation, and it’s no surprise that choreographer Agnes de Mille—known for portraying American themes in her ballets like Rodeo—chose the story for a stage adaptation.