#TBT Carlos Acosta in Coppélia (2000)

Carlos Acosta’s name is synonymous with virtuosic and passionate performances. A principal with The Royal Ballet since 1998, Acosta soared onto the world stage in 1990 when he won the gold medal at Prix de Lausanne. With his powerful technique and Cuban charisma, he’s been stunning audiences ever since.

 

In this short clip from 2000, Acosta performs the role of Franz in The Royal Ballet’s production of Coppélia. Like many male solos in classical ballet, Franz’s variation is a showcase of challenging jumps and turns—which Acosta makes appear deceptively easy, radiating a calm smile during each pirouette and tour en l’air. In addition to his immaculate technical delivery, Acosta doesn’t skimp on transitional steps: his signature flair is present in every preparatory port de bras and mazurka.

 

The Royal Ballet’s 2015/2016 season will be Acosta’s last. He will choreograph and star in a new production of Carmen this fall, and after completing the season, Acosta plans to focus on contemporary work and writing (he already has two books published, a novel called Pig’s Foot and his remarkable rags-to-riches autobiography No Way Home). Happy #ThrowbackThursday!

popular
Getty Images

During one of Charlotte Nash's first few weeks with Houston Ballet II, she was thrown into a run-through of Balanchine's Theme and Variations. "I had never really understudied before and I didn't know what I was doing," she says. "I fell right away and was quickly replaced." For Nash, now a dancer with Festival Ballet Providence, the episode was a tough lesson. "I was mortified, but then I said to myself, 'Okay, I need to figure out how to learn things more quickly.'"

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored by BLOCH
Courtesy BLOCH

Today's ballet dancer needs a lot from a pointe shoe. "What I did 20 years ago is not what these dancers are doing now," says New York City Ballet shoe manager Linnette Roe. "They are expected to go harder, longer days. They are expected to go from sneakers, to pointe shoes, to character shoes, to barefoot and back to pointe shoes all in a day."

The team at BLOCH developed their line of Stretch Pointe shoes to address dancer's most common complaints about the fit and performance of their pointe shoes. "It's a scientific take on the pointe shoe," says Roe. Dancers are taking notice and Stretch Pointe shoes are now worn by stars like American Ballet Theatre principal Isabella Boylston, who stars in BLOCH's latest campaign for the shoes.

We dug into the details of Stretch Pointe's most game-changing features:

Keep reading... Show less
News
The Joffrey Ballet's Amanda Assucena and Greig Matthews in Cathy Marston's Jane Eyre. Cheryl Mann, Courtesy Joffrey Ballet.

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

Keep reading... Show less
News
Herman Cornejo in Don Quixote. Gene Schiavone, Courtesy ABT.

American Ballet Theatre's fall season at Lincoln Center's Koch Theater offers a chance to see the company in shorter works and mixed-repertoire programs. This year's October 16–27 run honors principal Herman Cornejo, who's celebrating his 20th anniversary with the company. Cornejo will be featured in a special celebratory program as well as a new work by Twyla Tharp (her 17th for the company), set to Johannes Brahms' String Quartet No. 2 in G Major, Op. 111. The October 26 program will include Cornejo in a pas de deux with his sister, former ABT dancer Erica Cornejo.

Keep reading... Show less