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With Father's Day just around the corner, we wanted to take a minute to acknowledge some of the dancer dads out there who are doing double duty at home and onstage. So in between feting the father figures in your life this weekend (and thanking them for sitting through countless hours of dance recitals throughout the course of your lives), check out these eight ballet dads below.

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Ballet Stars
Pacific Northwest Ballet's Seth Orza and Noelani Pantastico in Balanchine's "Stravinsky Violin Concerto." Angela Sterling, Courtesy PNB.

It's rare for a professional ballet career to extend two decades or more. But there are indeed dancers who've been gracing the studio and stage for that long—learning, adapting and growing along the way. Today, Pacific Northwest Ballet's Noelani Pantastico, National Ballet of Canada's Guillaume Côté and Ballet Memphis's Crystal Brothers reveal what physically, artistically and emotionally sustains their careers.

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National Ballet of Canada's Guillaume Côté, Xiao Nan Yu and artists of the ballet in Apollo. Cylla von Tiedemann, Courtesy NBoC.

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights!

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News
Guillaume Côté in rehearsal with Harrison James for "Frame by Frame." Photo by David Leclerc, Courtesy NBoC.

This week marks the world premiere of Frame by Frame, The National Ballet of Canada's new full length ballet based on the life and work of innovative filmmaker Norman McLaren. While those outside of the cinephile community might not be familiar with McLaren's work, he is commonly credited with advancing film techniques including animation and pixilation in the 20th century—he died in 1987. The Canadian artist's many accolades include a 1952 Oscar for Best Documentary for his abstract short film Neighbours (watch the whole thing here). Later in life, McLaren became interested in ballet, and made a number of dance films including his renowned 1968 Pas de deux.

NBoC's new work, titled Frame by Frame, will run June 1-10 in Toronto. The ballet combines vignettes of McLaren's life with movement quotes from his films and real time recreations of his technological advances. It was created in collaboration by NBoC principal dancer and choreographic associate Guillaume Côté and film and stage director Robert Lepage, who is making his NBoC debut. Pointe touched base with Côté on how this interdisciplinary project came together.

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Photo by Aaron Vincent Elkaim, Courtesy National Ballet of Canada.

National Ballet of Canada principal dancer and choreographic associate Guillaume Côté has created several one-act ballets for the company, including 2015's Being and Nothingness. But the June 4 premiere of Le Petit Prince, adapted from the novella by French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, marks his first attempt at evening-length storytelling.

The dreamy, unusual story—which features a pilot who has crash-landed in the Sahara Desert and a boy who has fallen from an asteroid—might not seem like perfect choreographic fodder. "I was nervous to try and tell this story in a straightforward, linear way," Côté says. But he credits his team, including set and costume designer Michael Levine, and the ballet's three-year development process, with boosting his confidence. "The ideas have evolved in a very honest and organic way. I've taken my time to find the right movement vocabulary, and to gain experience telling stories clearly through dance."

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Côté in an NBoC rehearsal with wife Heather Ogden. Bruce Zinger, Courtesy NBoC.

Next summer, National Ballet of Canada principal Guillaume Côté will add another role to his repertoire—artistic director of Quebec's Festival des Arts de Saint-Sauveur. A Canadian version of the Vail International Dance Festival, Saint-Sauveur, founded in 1992, presents international and local dance companies and music groups in a bucolic village near Montreal. Events occur indoors and outside. "As a dancer, I'm constantly discovering new companies and choreographers I would love to collaborate with," says Côté. "I want to bring some of them to the festival." Eventually, he hopes to present an evening of premieres each summer, and the creation of an evening-length work.

Côté feels the setting makes it a special place for dance. "In a way, it brings dance back to its basics, stripped of scenery and expensive effects," he says. "It inspires artists to show their work in the most beautiful and simple way. Quebec is an incredible place for contemporary dance and I think the festival can be an extension of that community."

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