Unless you’re a professional dancer with an incredibly grueling schedule, teachers often advise not taking any real time off from ballet, because for
every week off, you will need two to get back what you lost. Or so I’ve heard. The general idea, I guess, is that anything that takes time away from
working, working, working on your dancing is bad. Having just come back from two weeks away, though, I can say that time off has been hugely
beneficial to me as a dancer.
Dayton Ballet in Ohio is launching a new choreography contest. The project will coincide with a music composition contest. Three choreographers will be chosen to create a new work on Dayton Ballet dancers, to a recording of new music by the three chosen composers. Choreographers will have 45 hours with Dayton Ballet dancers of their choice to rehearse, and winners will receive a cash prize. Cincinnati Ballet's Victoria Morgan, Ballet Austin's Stephen Mills and BalletMet's Gerard Charles will judge.
To apply, submit a DVD of your work by September 15 to:
The Washington Ballet just announced that they will launch a trainee program this fall. Choreographer Carlos Valcarcel will serve as ballet master for the one- to two- year program for pre-preprofessional students ages 17 and older. It's aimed at students who want to fine-tune their technique and gain valuable performance experience before auditioning for companies.
New York City Ballet principal Daniel Ulbricht is noted for his high energy and soaring leaps, but for Melissa Barak’s recently premiered Call Me Ben, he took on a role that could have had him falling flat on his face: He not only had to deliver dialogue, but he had to play the gangster Meyer Lansky.
After seeing New York Theatre Ballet’s “Signatures 10” program on Saturday night, I realized how hard it is to just stand still and hold a pose
onstage. These dancers did a great job of it, especially in Ashton’s Capriol Suite, a kind of modern retelling of Renaissance-era court dance.
One of the reasons I love going to see dance in small theatres is because I get the chance to watch the dancers up close, and really analyze their performance. This was the case on Thursday, when I went to see Dances Patrelle and Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance at Symphony Space. I sat very close to the stage, and enjoyed picking out the details. What impressed me most, though, was the dancers’ commitment to connecting with the audience and each other, which is sometimes hard to feel in a huge theatre or opera house.
This morning we had a cover shoot with one of my all-time favorite dancers who's a principal at a top company. She's reached a level of success that most dancers only dream of. Yet she told me that when she was young, she never thought she'd get hired as a dancer. There was always someone better. There was always something she needed to improve.