September 7, 2012 |
In a spacious dance studio at the Los Angeles Theatre Center, Benjamin Millepied, sporting a full beard and new wedding ring, kept springing up from his chair to experiment on his own body while figuring out the intricacies of a virtuosic duet between two of his male dancers. "Try this," he told them and dropped to the floor into a bent-kneed, one-armed plank position that allowed him to do "10 seconds of abs. " A few minutes later, he gave the thumbs-up to a capoeria-like spin on the forearms that one of the dancers attempted and brought a gasp from Millepied's mother, visiting from Bordeaux, France.
April 29, 2012 |
On a recent Sunday morning, at an hour when many a teenager is still prone in bed, Adam Bernstein, 15, and Eli Gruska, 13, were lying face down on the floor of a Los Angeles ballet studio. Both boys would soon be heading to New York City for the biggest ballet competition in the country. They and the others in this all-boys class were awaiting instructions from Marat Daukayev, former principal dancer withRussia'sfamed Kirov Ballet (now the ballet of the Mariinsky Theatre). Daukayev begins his boys' class with sets of push-ups, not pliés.
March 25, 2012
American Ballet Theatre Where: Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday; 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday Tickets: $16 to $115 Information: (714) 556-2787 or http://www.scfta.org
March 25, 2012 |
"Imagine a fish out of water," instructs choreographer Alexei Ratmansky to the American Ballet Theatre dancers portraying the 13 captive maidens in his new production of Stravinsky's "The Firebird. " Mesmerized by Kaschei, the evil sorcerer, they flop around as he zaps them with his wicked energy. Speaking in a hushed voice with a soft Russian accent, Ratmansky, working in one of ABT's no-frills Manhattan studios, conjures up traffic patterns for the corps de ballet, who promptly obey directions.
September 18, 2011 |
The arts world craves star power. Locally, we're covered. Opera? No problem — Plácido. Classical music? Dudamel. Dance? There's ... well, anyone there? Anyone at all? This s explains why perhaps the most important dance figure of the past quarter of a century in Southern California is largely unknown. She's not a dancer — in point of fact, she hasn't been en pointe in half a century. Instead, Judy Morr occupies a comfortably cluttered and modest office, basking happily in as little attention as she can possibly get, quietly programming dance, especially ballet, for as many people she can get to come see it. She is backed by worldwide contacts, an up-to-the-minute knowledge of hot versus not and, most important, the considerable resources of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, which turns 25 this month.
July 10, 2011 |
On a brisk January afternoon, there's an air of high spirits as dozens of American Ballet Theatre's dancers and staff gather in the largest studio of the company's Lower Manhattan headquarters. For two hours, as they run through ABT's newest full-length ballet, "The Bright Stream," bravura mixes with hilarity, as virtuoso turns alternate with comic vignettes. Numerous characters not usually found on the ABT stage — a tractor driver, a milkmaid and the denizens of a 1930s Soviet agricultural collective — express themselves with individuality and distinctive styles.