It's news that, as a New Yorker, I am selfishly sad to report: American Ballet Theatre has announced that its The Nutcracker, choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky, will move to the west coast in 2015. Its last New York performance will be this December at the Brooklyn Academy of Music before it calls the Segerstom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, "home." Ratmansky's production premiered in 2010 and received instant praise for its fine use of students and quick wit.
Larissa Ponomarenko, long a revered principal at Boston Ballet, has been with the company through multiple versions of Cinderella—most recently James Kudelka's in 2005 and 2008. Now, as ballet master, she's guiding dancers through Frederick Ashton's classic rendition, which BB performs through this weekend. Pointe talked to Ponomarenko about the similarities and differences between the fairytale worlds of Kudelka and Ashton, and about dancing and coaching the ballet's title role.
Ballet dancers are singularly creative people, but the ballet world can be a difficult environment for choreographers. Mounting a show of your own work requires dancers, studio space, a performance venue—a whole bunch of moving parts that are difficult (and expensive) to coordinate.
That's where the Capezio A.C.E. Award competition comes in. For the past five years now, the contest has awarded one choreographer each year a $15,000 production budget to go toward their own show in New York City.
We all felt a little defeated when "Bunheads" and "Breaking Pointe" were taken off the air. But news of Starz's "Flesh and Bone" cheered us up a little. And now High Strung, a movie about a musician who meets a ballerina who "changes his world," is in the works.
Before—though not long before—they were immortalized as Cooper Nielson and Kathleen Donahue (Center Stage, we'll never stop loving you), Ethan Stiefel and Julie Kent starred in the 1998 PBS broadcast of American Ballet Theatre's Le Corsaire. Corsaire's choreography may be as cheesy as they come, but what does that matter when you have two of the world's greatest dancers leading its cast?
Whether it's yogurt, milk or cheese, dancers usually opt for non-fat dairy products. But it turns out that cutting dairy fat to stay lean might be counterproductive. New studies suggest that people who consume whole milk products tend to weigh less than those who choose low- or non-fat ones. The reasons haven't been pinpointed, but researchers are guessing it's because full-fat dairy fills you faster while also satisfying your craving, so you ultimately consume fewer calories.
Rarely do we think of a dancer's daily work as glamorous. Waking up the body, trying to get in tune with our physical selves in class, and then working to the point of exhaustion in rehearsal and performance, day after day...at certain moments, it can feel more like a grind than anything else.
It's safe to say that Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild aren't your average ballet dancers. Over the past few years, the New York City Ballet principals have collaborated with the likes of contemporary choreographer Larry Keigwin and jookin star Lil Buck, and both appeared in the New York Philharmonic's presentation of the classic musical Carousel. They not only seem to be everywhere, all the time, but also to be unfazed by any style or setting.
Frequently two different choreographers use the same piece of music. But what happens when one choreographer makes two works to the same score? We'll find out later this month, when Emery LeCrone premieres both a classical and a contemporary interpretation of Bach's Partita No. 2 in C Minor, created for the Guggenheim's Works & Process series. The work's March 23, 7:30 pm performance will be livestreamed here.
These days, we know Svetlana Zakharova as an international ballet superstar. As a young student at St. Petersburg's prestigious Vaganova Academy, however, she was...well, still a superstar, just on a slightly smaller scale. Here are some excerpts from her graduation exam in 1996. You'll probably pick her out right away, but just in case: She's on the left in the first clip. Happy #ThrowbackThursday!