For adult recreational dancers, summer isn't just a time for swapping out warm-up sweaters for breezy tees—it's also about taking your training to the next level, and perhaps packing your bags for a ballet workshop. Why should teens and pre-professionals have all of the fun? Fortunately, there are scores of adult summer programs all over the United States, and even abroad for those of you looking to sprinkle in a little sightseeing after your final reverénce.
What can adults expect from a weekend or a week of dance training? Everything from technique to repertoire to yoga. Most of all, it's a chance to just dig in and dance, without a pesky to-do list waiting for you after class. Here are some summer programs designed for adult recreational dancers to keep on your radar.
Former Paris Opéra Ballet etoile Manuel Legris has just been appointed artistic director of La Scala Ballet in Milan. Legris, who has directed the Vienna State Opera Ballet since 2010, posted on his Instagram page that he will assume his new position in December 2020. He replaces outgoing director Frédéric Olivieri. According to French news sites, Olivieri, who has led La Scala Ballet School since 2006, will continue to serve as the academy's director.
This spring, American Ballet Theatre unveils Of Love and Rage, a new evening-length work based on an unlikely source: a tale of love and adventure written in the first century AD. We're all aware of Greek mythology, of the tragedies and of the Greek philosophers. But it is much less widely known that a writer by the name of Chariton penned what is likely the first romantic novel in Western literature, or at least the oldest that has survived: Callirhoe.
Earlier this month, 15-year-old American dancer Ava Arbuckle was one of eight scholarship winners at the Prix de Lausanne. For her classical selection, Arbukle, clad in an ultra-feminine, rosette-covered tutu, performed Flora's variation from The Awakening of Flora, Marius Petipa's 1894 one-act ballet about the Greek goddess of Spring. Back in 2007, historian and choreographer Sergei Vikharev reconstructed the work for the Mariinsky Ballet, with Evgenia Obraztsova, then a soloist at the Mariinsky and now principal at the Bolshoi Ballet, originating the titular Flora.
Traditionally, ballet costumes are made to have a life of 20 to 30 years. But they sometimes remain in use for much longer, being worn and altered to fit dozens of dancers. Multiple rows of hooks and bars show this progression, but it's more apparent inside the costume, where numerous labels can be found bearing the names of all past wearers.
Yesterday, the first of Nike's new Common Thread video series dropped, and we were thrilled to see that it featured dancers; namely, Dance Theatre of Harlem member (and June/July 2017 Pointe cover star) Ingrid Silva, and Florida-based ballet student Alex Thomas. Even better, it's narrated by tennis phenom Serena Williams. This series of short videos celebrates Black History Month by focusing on representation in sport. (We're not crazy about ballet being called a sport, but we'll let it slide.) In each installment, athletes united by a common thread discuss their passion, and the lack of role models they saw in their fields while growing up.
Their technique might seem effortless onstage, but even the most seasoned ballet professionals have that one step that still drives them crazy. We asked five principal dancers to open up about the skills they still find challenging, and how they're working to finesse them.
Six-time Tony Award-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz has lit such Broadway musical hits as Frozen, Hello Dolly! and A Chorus Line. She is also one of choreographer Christopher Wheeldon's biggest collaborators, designing the lighting for works such as Broadway's An American in Paris, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Cinderella, a 2012 co-production of San Francisco Ballet and Dutch National Ballet. Shortly after SFB opened their 2020 season with Cinderella last month, Pointe caught up with Katz to talk about her career, her collaborative relationship with Wheeldon, and the lighting profiles of co-productions.
Happy Valentine's Day! Below, Josephine Lee plays a version of the Newlywed Game with Alonzo King LINES Ballet dancers and couple Michael Montgomery and Shuaib Elhassan.
This weekend, Irina Kolesnikova will appear on a U.S. stage for the first time, dancing alongside Bolshoi Ballet star Denis Rodkin. The Russian ballerina is a member of St. Petersburg Ballet Theatre, a touring company helmed by Konstantin Tachkin that will appear at the Brooklyn Academy of Music February 15-16. Before joining SPBT in 1998, Kolesnikova, a native of St. Petersburg, graduated from the city's esteemed Vaganova Ballet Academy. Koleniskova spent just two years in the company's lower ranks before being promoted to principal.
There's a famous lithograph of Jules Perrot's Pas de Quatre, which had its debut in 1845 at London's Her Majesty's Theatre. The print depicts four of the most celebrated ballerinas of the time—Carlotta Grisi, Marie Taglioni, Lucile Grahn and Fanny Cerrito—with nearly indistinguishable light skin and brown hair, dressed in identical lily-white costumes. This weekend, 175 years later, Brooklyn Ballet recreates that image with a group of dancers of color, reflecting the community in which the company is housed. "Our mission is to represent Brooklyn and its diversity," says artistic director Lynn Parkerson.
Summer intensives aren't just for teenagers anymore. Several companies and schools are now offering ballet programs tailored to the specific needs of young adults in their early career or in college. In addition to helping dancers stay in shape, these intensives and workshops give them a chance to receive coaching and career mentoring, practice the craft of choreography, learn new repertoire and expand their knowledge of the ballet business. Read on for more information on eight upcoming professional and collegiate summer intensives.
At the pool: Dores André has been swimming longer than she's been dancing. Even today, it's the San Francisco Ballet principal's preferred workout. "I go if I'm not too busy during the season and I feel like I need to get my stamina up," she says. "It's a routine and a meditation. Just being in the water helps me." Some days she wakes up early for a 6:30 am gentle swim before company class.
Knowing when to push: She's careful not to exert too much energy before a long day of work, and she adopts an easy pace, given her naturally muscular physique. "I try not to swim too fast because I don't want my shoulders to become concave," she says, noting the muscular, hunched posture some swimmers develop. In the off-season, though, she ramps up the intensity. André swims 45 minutes to an hour five times a week with her sister, who's a competitive open-water swimmer.
The 2020 Prix de Lausanne has officially come to a close after a thrilling week of classes, coaching sessions, competition performances and networking forums. The annual competition, which was live streamed around the world and watched over 1.1 million times, gave 77 dancers an opportunity to perform and take class in front of an international panel of judges. In addition to a classical variation, candidates had to master a contemporary solo by Mauro Bigonzetti, Jean-Christophe Maillot, Cathy Marston, Wayne McGregor, Heinz Spoerli or Richard Wherlock.
If you're like us, you've been watching the Prix de Lausanne live stream all week. And chances are, you've picked out a few favorites among the 77 competitors. Today the judges chose 21 dancers to advance to tomorrow's finals. From this group, seven will receive a scholarship and have the chance to choose among the world's most prestigious academies and companies.
Check out the 21 finalists below—three are from the U.S. And catch the finals' live stream tomorrow, February 8, on ARTE Concert, YouTube, Facebook, the Prix de Lausanne website and on Dance Australia starting at 2:30 pm in Switzerland (that's 8:30 am EST/5:30 am PST).
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Fashionistas, this one's for you. A new exhibition titled "Ballerina: Fashion's Modern Muse," running at the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City from February 11–April 18, ties together a few of our favorite things: fashion, dance history and, of course, ballet.
When Christine Cox and Matthew Neenan were forming BalletX in 2005, they had big dreams: Still dancers with Pennsylvania Ballet, they aspired for their contemporary ballet company to perform at Jacob's Pillow and Vail Dance Festival. They liked the idea of presenting new work. They hoped someday their company would be on the cover of Dance Magazine.
Former American Ballet Theatre principals Cynthia Gregory and Fernando Bujones—known for their inimitable stage presence and penchant for flair—dazzle in this performance of the Black Swan pas de deux. They draw the audience into their characters' worlds, even in a gala performance
It's that time of year again: English National Ballet has announced its finalists for the company's Emerging Dancer competition. This highly anticipated annual event, held in front of a live audience and an esteemed panel of judges at London's Queen Elizabeth Hall on May 29, will give six company members from the lower ranks a chance to shine. To prepare, the finalists, who were chosen by their peers, will be paired together and coached by a more experienced company member in a classical pas de deux and a contemporary work. In addition to the jury-selected Emerging Dancer Award, one dancer will receive the People's Choice Award, chosen by the audience. The company will also give out its Corps de Ballet Award, recognizing a corps member for their hard work on and offstage.