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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Television: 60 Minutes showing NYCB

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  • swanchat


  • Victoria Leigh


  • Momof3darlings


  • mom2


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There are so many things I want to say........but I'll just say this:

Methinks the emporer wears no clothes.

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:D :D and there are _many_ emperors out there without any clothes. ;)



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"The Emperor Wears No Clothes" or "The Emperor Has No Clothes" is often used in political and social contexts for any obvious truth denied by the majority despite the evidence of their eyes. Are you referring to the "truth" about ballerinas or the "truth" about Peter Martins' ability to run NYCB???? Or is there a bigger "truth" I am missing altogether?

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And back to the original topic and commentary on the 60 minutes interview itself we go........please! Joking about it is fine, but it only takes one or two comments to derail a conversation into mush. :whistling: That doesn't mean stop the discussion, but let's discuss the show and the interview along with our feelings of what we saw and heard in a productive fashion.

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I was thrilled that classical ballet got 13+ minutes of network, prime time attention. I thought the piece brought out the physicality of dance and the wonderful job Martins does coaching and supporting young male dancers. I'm not sure I agree with the idea that NYCB is the "mothership of ballet" in America but overall I thought the piece was well done.

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Good "pointe", chel!!!! :toot:

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I have now watched all the videos and was so touched by Stahl's obvious love for the art form. I loved the segment showing the differences of styles; very informative! The portion showing jumps landing with heels up and not on the floor runs contrary to all advice dd has been given about protecting her knees, feet and ankles when she jumps though. I never knew that landing without heels down was Balanchine style. It makes sense about the noise but I do wonder if injuries result from this.


As far as McCartney, call me a Beatles fan but I thought he was rather cute in his enthusiasm. I didn't see the production and know that the critics were less than kind but I do think that Martins addressed the need to mix things up a bit and reach out to younger audiences; the execution may have been faulty but it does need to happen. To me, Wheeldon's Alice in Wonderland also reached out to younger audiences (the tap dancing rabbit, the wild costumes) and was a box office success although some critics have also been lukewarm. Maybe the critics need to adjust to a younger point of view as well. B)

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Victoria Leigh

The heels not down thing is about the speed. But it is not a good thing to do. Your daughter's teaching is correct. Demi plié is the motivating movement for jumping, and demi plié is not taught with the heels off the floor. But, that is the Balanchine style.

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I have to agree about the critics. Reaching out to varying audiences is a tough thing to do and please everyone. You have to keep enough of your regular season ticket holders happy but then have to find ways to make those you find "new" engaged as well. The attempt should be applauded because even when the work is panned, it may do exactly what it was meant to do and that is engage interest in ballet and ballet performances from those who otherwise would not attend. I know that when our local company performed with a hip-hop artist a few years back the reviews from the non-ballet community were great while the reviews from the ballet community varied. However, no matter what the ballet community thought of it, the goal was to bring in a different type of supporter and that has been fairly successful. And in the end, paying the bills so you can continue fund more ballet is what the goal is.

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And you never know, critics and audiences can get it wrong... Rite of Spring (like many others) was a phenomenal failure when it premiered. It's now considered to be one of the most revolutionary pieces of the 20th century and 100 years later, multiple companies (including a mini-festival at the Bolshoi this spring) are performing in to celebrate it's birthday!

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My mother's favourite line: "You can kiss in ballet?" She and I agreed that maybe, if you'd been asked to compose a ballet, you'd do a little research into it. (and yes, I'm a Beatles fan...my face when he appeared must have been a picture)


I did enjoy this, all controversy aside. Together with this, and a feature that was done on David Hallberg last year on Sunday Morning, I see some progress being made.

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