Art


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Ask A Teen: Ballet’s A Visually Perfect Sport Art Form

Fair enough. The teen, and other dancers, keep their routines going during the pandemic, as well as they can. The high school senior: “I want to inspire people. I wish for people to be moved and left with a sense of pride and joy when they watch me. … That’s all I’ve ever dreamed of really, on the stage or in the street. I want people to look at me and feel inspired.” – Greenville (South Carolina) News
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.23.20


Paradoxically, You Can See More ‘Nutcracker’ Than Ever This Year

That is, if you’re willing to watch on-screen. Collected here are well over 30 options for watching The Nutcracker, or some version of it, this holiday season, from ballet companies across the United States. – Playbill
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.27.20


Things to do – online and in-person – in the San Fernando Valley, LA area, Nov. 26-Dec. 3

  Leon Keer’s “In Case of Lost Childhood,” acrylic on hand cut wood panel, is part of the “Nexus Three” online exhibit from Brand Library and Art Center in Glendale. (Photo courtesy of Leon Keer/Brand Library and Art Center)   Take a chance on cultural and educational experiences, Nov. 26-Dec. 3   EVENTS   Los Angeles Christmas Market: A pop-up shopping experience, opens 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Nov. 27. Check website on Covid-19 precautions. Photo with Santa Claus — in a sleigh with non-reflective...
Tags: Art, Facebook, Books, Music, Comedy, Movies, Abc, California, La, Israel, Christmas, America, Los Angeles, Events, Sport, Dance


When Is A Piece Of Dance Protected By Copyright And When Not?

“While works of dance clearly are eligible for copyright protection under Section 102(a)(4) of the Copyright Act, determining which dances meet the standard — and which have two left feet — has been tricky and has resulted in a number of high-profile disputes in recent years. However, a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in an unrelated copyright dispute may provide important guidance in subsequent dance-related copyright litigation.” – IPWatchdog
Tags: Art, Dance, U S Supreme Court, 11.19.20


Sets appeal: staggering designs for theatre and dance – in pictures

We mine the archive of Guardian photographer Tristram Kenton for the great creations of designers including Tim Yip, Rae Smith and Tom Scutt Continue reading...
Tags: Design, Theatre, Dance, Culture, Art and design, Stage, Es Devlin, Tristram Kenton, Tom Scutt, Miriam Buether, Bunny Christie, Rae Smith, Tim Yip Rae Smith


Could The Pandemic Decentralize The Dance Industry?

Maybe — but, says Dance/NYC’s executive director, “In order for decentralization to be sustained, it must come with intentional investment and organization. … You need cities that invest in the arts as dignified work that should be paid.” – Dance Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.24.20


Queensland Ballet Is Practicing For 2021, And One Of Its Principals Answers Questions

Lucy Green is deeply aware of her privilege right now in the world of ballet – to be employed, to be practicing, to be planning for performance, none of it can be taken for granted during a pandemic. When the interviewer asks her which famous people she’d invite for dinner, she keeps it absolutely real: “I’d much rather have dinner with my family and friends who live interstate/overseas and who I haven’t seen all year due to border closures.” – Ballet News
Tags: Art, Dance, Lucy Green, Queensland Ballet, 11.21.20


In Their Country’s Second Lockdown, London’s Royal Ballet Dancers Are Still Performing

The director of the Royal Ballet, discussing the live-streamed performances: “It’s so important for them to do what they’re trained to do, to be in the studios together, to be rehearsing, and to be performing. It’s their job; it’s their life.” – CNN
Tags: Art, Dance, Royal Ballet, 11.19.20, Second Lockdown London


Baryshnibot: Ballerina Physicist Invents Ideal Dance Partner For Quarantine

A few weeks after the lockdown started back in March, Merritt Moore — who danced with ballet companies in Oslo, London and Boston before getting a Ph.D. in physics from Oxford — hit on the idea of using a robot as a partner for dance training while in isolation. So she ordered an industrial model and started programming it to do 15-second ballets with her for TikTok and Instagram. The pair has since racked up about 15 million views. (And yes, the machine’s name, which was crowdsourced, is Barys...
Tags: Art, Boston, Dance, Oxford, Oslo London, Merritt Moore, 11.18.20


Character Dance Used To Be An Integral Part Of Ballet, And Just As Popular. What Happened To It?

“Most full-length classical ballets feature several character dances — troupes of dancing peasants, parades of visiting princesses. Today, those dances are often seen as ‘filler,’ interludes to give the principals a breather between classical variations. But back in the 19th century, … character dances had deep cultural significance. … (Picture a Paris opera house full of cheering crowds, demanding multiple encores after their favorite star performs a knockout mazurka.) How did something that u...
Tags: Art, Dance, Paris, 11.18.20, Nicole Loeffler Gladstone


Neighborhood Dance Studios Struggle To Survive Pandemic

From the small operations that give youngsters their first lessons (especially in lower-income areas) to big establishments like the Broadway Dance Center in Manhattan, dance studios, and the skilled pros who run and teach in them, still have to pay the rent and other expenses even as income has plummeted since COVID-19 struck last spring. Here’s how a few of them are trying to avoid closure and keep dance available to their neighborhoods. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Dance, Manhattan, Broadway Dance Center, COVID, 11.18.20


Ethan Stiefel Named Director Of American Repertory Ballet

“The position has been open since former director Douglas Martin’s departure in 2019. …. Stiefel, a former American Ballet Theatre star with directing, teaching and choreographing experience, [begins next July and] brings major name recognition and international credentials to the New Brunswick, New Jersey–based ARB.” – Pointe Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, New Brunswick New Jersey, American Repertory Ballet, Stiefel, Ethan Stiefel, Douglas Martin, 11.17.20


Donald Byrd On Making A Career As A Choreographer

“I think that caused me to be really clear for myself about why I was doing what I was doing. I could not take into consideration how people would respond. That included funders and audiences. Part of the risk, then, is that maybe nobody will show up. But when I tried to make things that I thought would please people, I thought those pieces were disasters.” – Dance Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, Donald Byrd, 11.16.20


Theater At Jacob’s Pillow Burns Down

“‘It looked like what a bomb must look like when it goes off,’ said Pamela Tatge, the executive and artistic director of [the summer dance mecca], who saw the damage [to the Doris Duke Theater] firsthand. ‘It was just a pile of steel and wood. There’s amazingly one wall and one staircase that remained.'” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Dance, Jacob, Pamela Tatge, 11.17.20, Doris Duke Theater


Philadelphia’s Count-All-The-Votes Dance Party Was A Deliberate Plan To Avoid Street Violence

“It seemed impromptu. It wasn’t entirely. The undeniable joy before, on, and after Election Day was organic. But a coalition of Philadelphia progressive organizations, many of them Black-led, have for months planned for political tension and unrest, determined to turn down the temperature.” – The Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Dance, Philadelphia, 11.09.20


Another COVID Casualty: Toronto Company Dancemakers Closes Permanently

“Starting as a summer project in 1974, Dancemakers went on to curate award-winning Canadian and international performances and play host to a multiyear resident artist program, as well as many presentations and workshops. More than 4,000 audience members and artists passed through each year.” – The Globe and Mail (Canada)
Tags: Art, Dance, Globe, 11.13.20, Toronto Company


Lauren Anderson Is Thinking About ‘Nutcracker’ In A Season Devoid Of Live Shows

The ballerina danced with the Houston Ballet for years (and now is a program manager in its education department). “I’ll never forget seeing my first Sugar Plum Fairy. Standing there, I’m looking through a stairway that’s part of a set for the party scene. I remember looking through the rungs of that stairway into the light at the Sugar Plum Fairy and wanting to be her. So, I got to retire as the Sugar Plum Fairy. There’s a picture of a Mother Ginger Child looking through the rungs of the stair...
Tags: Art, Texas, Dance, Houston Ballet, Lauren Anderson, 10.29.20


The Washington Ballet’s Plan For Ballet During Covid-19

They went fully digital for 2020-2021, making a deal with Marquee TV for four performances. The dancers were split up into 10-person pods, with tests before rehearsal and before filming. Composers Zoomed into orchestra rehearsals. It wasn’t easy, but: “Dancing in a mask and the restraints of the protocol, I mean, nobody loves it. But in comparison to not dancing, really, it’s nothing.” – Washington Post
Tags: Art, Dance, Washington Ballet, 11.12.20


Founder Of Now-Defunct American National Ballet Charged With Murdering Husband

In early 2017, Doug and Ashley Benefield moved to Charleston with ambitious, high-profile plans to create a top-level ballet company and school there — and over that year, the project gradually and messily fell apart. Now Ashley has been arrested near Bradenton, Florida and charged with shooting Doug during an argument; the couple had separated and were in an ongoing custody dispute over their daughter. – The Post and Courier (Charleston, SC)
Tags: Art, Post, Dance, Charleston, Ashley, Doug, Bradenton Florida, 11.09.20, Ashley Benefield


The Dance World Is Making Peace With This Online Class Business

“In the time between COVID-19’s first worrisome appear­ance in the U.S. and, for many, months of shelter-in-place orders, dancers and teachers alike found their opinions of online learning shifting: from outright resistance, initially, to begrudging acceptance, to — for some — actual enthusiasm.” – Dance Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.10.20


A Dance Critic On The Dancing In The Streets When The Election Was Called

Gia Kourlas: “Last weekend, the explosion of dance — which overtook social media, making it seem like it was happening everywhere — was a celebration of community. But for those of us in the dance world it emphasized another point: While the pandemic will continue to prevent public performances for what now looks to be another year or so, dance is still alive in the world. … Dancing is not just about moving your body, but reclaiming it — and with that, your faith in the world.” – The New York T...
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.10.20


Video Of Alzheimer’s Patient Recalling “Swan Lake” Movement Goes Viral

The Spanish dancer, who reportedly died in 2019 after battling Alzheimer’s disease, has captivated social media since a video surfaced of Marta González, by then confined to a wheelchair, vividly recalling the upper-body choreography of Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake” — her delicate ballet hands graceful as ever. – New York Post
Tags: Art, Dance, Tchaikovsky, 11.09.20, Marta González


At Philadanco, Joan Myers Brown Hands Over The Reins — Gradually

After 50 years, and as she nears age 90, the company’s founder is making way for her longtime assistant artistic director, Kim Bears-Bailey, who first joined Philadanco as a dancer in 1981 and calls her boss “Aunt Joan.” But Brown isn’t stepping all the way back just yet: “I’m number 1, Kim is 1B.” – The Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Dance, Kim, Philadanco, Kim Bears Bailey, 11.08.20, Joan But Brown


Keys To: A Long Life In Dance

When it comes to the secrets of longevity in a dance career, Linda Austin and Bobby Fouther had similar thoughts: you do what makes you happy, just keep going, and ignore the pressures to be liked. In an interview for a book called Beauty is Experience: Dancing 50 and Beyond,  by Emmaly Wiederhold with photographs by Gregory Bartning, Austin said, “If you are stubborn enough and love it enough, you’ll find a way to keep going. You do need some outside validation from time to time. I’ve always g...
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.09.20, Linda Austin, Bobby Fouther, Gregory Bartning Austin


Learning Ballroom Dance Moves Over Zoom

Ballroom dancer Trisha Pérez Kennedy says that “normally, her partner’s touch helps communicate the next step in a dance combination. ‘We use the strength of our bodies to speak to each other,’ she says. ‘It can be as subtle as the pressure of his hand on my back to help me know what will happen next. When you’re dancing on your own, you don’t have that guidance keeping you in check. You have to own all of your technique.'” – Wall Street Journal
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.07.20, Trisha Pérez Kennedy


Dancer And Choreographer Akram Khan Embraces A New Physical Challenge

The world of mixed martial arts is deeply violent – and Khan, who has been dancing for 30 years, wanted to confront his own fears about violence. He ended up choreographing for the fighters. “Once Khan realised that the spectacle surrounding MMA was just as important as the fight itself, he set about creating a dance-based narrative for Brazier’s walk-on to the cage, merging the controlled violence of both practices.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Dance, Khan, Brazier, Akram Khan, MMA, 11.06.20


Choreographing Differently-Abled Dancers

“The choreographies are designed for the functionally diverse artists so that they can demonstrate their artistic qualities. As I create, I physically put myself in their place (wheelchair, etc.), testing and experiencing the choreography. I search for innovative ways someone with restricted movement can achieve the same intention, such as hitting the floor with the wheelchair to create what would be the percussion of footwork. – Dance Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, 11.04.20


Choreographers Now Making Dance With A.I. And Robotics

“At the forefront of this growing field is Sydney Skybetter, a former dancer and a professor of what he calls choreographics at Brown University, where his students approach dance in a way that is heavily computational. … By the end of the 20th century, motion capture, wearable tech and virtual reality had arrived on the scene. Then came A.I.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Brown University, Dance, 11.05.20, Sydney Skybetter


A Robot Choreographer Explains Why Her Job Is Necessary

Catie Cuan, currently working on a mechanical engineering Ph.D. at Stanford: “There are a number of studies that demonstrate that how something moves is even more important [to a user] than how it looks. … I have a set of tools and ethics and practices and skills that I bring to the table, which is ingrained through years of dance training. I can bring those to the application of design, interaction and control mechanisms for robots.” – Dance Magazine
Tags: Art, Stanford, Dance, 11.04.20, Catie Cuan


The Modern Dance Collective That Was Like A Rock Band, Right Down To The Groupies

Born in 1970 as a sort of successor to Judson Dance Theater, The Grand Union (named after a supermarket chain) lasted only for six years. Yet the group and (subsequently) its members — among them Yvonne Rainer, Trisha Brown, Douglas Dunn, David Gordon, and Steve Paxton — changed the course of the art form. Not long ago Wendy Perron came across some old Grand Union videotapes and wondered if the work could be as good as she remembered: “It was even better.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Dance, Grand Union, Wendy Perron, Steve Paxton, 11.03.20, Judson Dance Theater The Grand Union



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