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Ballet Pacifica

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August 12, 1991 | CHRIS PASLES, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A West Coast premiere and three new works commissioned by Ballet Pacifica will highlight the Laguna Beach-based company's 1991-92 season, opening Oct. 25 at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. The season will open with the first West Coast performance of "Our Town," choreographed in 1988 by former Joffrey Ballet principal dancer Philip Jerry for the Grand Rapids Ballet. The ballet is set to Aaron Copland's score by that title.
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ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 2012 | By Laura Bleiberg, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Artistic director Molly Lynch doesn't do a lot of advertising to lure participants to the National Choreographers Initiative, now underway in the dance studios of UC Irvine. That's because she doesn't have to. Alumni have spread the gospel of the three-week project, an independent workshop that supports the growth of contemporary ballet. This year, about 40 choreographers applied for four spots. The lucky quartet - Los Angeles-based Melissa Barak and New Yorkers Thang Dao, Darrell Grand Moultrie and Wendy Seyb - have received transportation to Irvine, a fee, housing, professional dancers, plus rehearsal time in state-of-the-art studios.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 7, 2001
Ballet Pacifica will hold auditions Saturday for its four-week intensive conservatory program July 30 through Aug. 25. Dancers 10 to 13 will audition at 2 p.m. Dancers 14 and older will audition at 3:30 p.m. Classes will be given in ballet, modern, character and jazz, as well as seminars on nutrition and injury prevention and care, and other subjects. Auditions will be held at the Ballet Pacifica Conservatory, 1824 Kaiser Ave., Irvine. The audition fee is $10.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 27, 2008 | Dennis McLellan, Times Staff Writer
George H. Russell, a veteran record promoter, guitarist and composer, died of a heart attack July 19 at his home in Laguna Beach, said Sandra Gillard, his companion. He was 89. Russell was commissioned to write the music for "Encounter Near Venus," a children's story ballet presented by Ballet Pacifica in Orange County in 1975. He also composed music for two other ballets, "Birthstone Suite" and "Mah Jong." Russell recorded two solo guitar albums, which were combined in 1994 as "George Russell: His Guitar and Music" and included 20 original compositions.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 26, 2000
Ballet Pacifica has laid off Raymond van Mason, the company's first ballet master, appointed only a year ago, because of "financial constraints," artistic director Molly Lynch said Tuesday. "You set a budget for the year and have to adapt due to changes in income and expenses. You're continuously monitoring your budget and keeping things in balance. I needed to make some adjustments," Lynch said.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 5, 2003 | Chris Pasles
Christina Lyon, a former American Ballet Theatre dancer, has been appointed artistic director of the Irvine-based Ballet Pacifica. A 28-year-old native of Newport Beach, Lyon succeeds Molly Lynch, who resigned last month for "artistic and professional reasons" from the troupe she had led since 1988. Lyon received her early dance training from Yvonne Mounsey, founder of the Westside Ballet in Santa Monica, and danced in the ABT corps from 1993 to 1996 (she was known by her maiden name, Gibbs).
ENTERTAINMENT
May 6, 2006 | Chris Pasles
Former San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Evelyn Cisneros-Legate has been named academy director of Irvine-based Ballet Pacifica. She will take over as head of the company's school from husband and wife John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow when their contracts expire at the end of July. Gardner and McKerrow are former American Ballet Theatre principal dancers hired last year by artistic director Ethan Stiefel, who resigned in March after the company's 2006-07 season was canceled.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 29, 2006 | Diane Haithman
More trouble for Orange County's Ballet Pacifica: Husband and wife John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow, former dancers with American Ballet Theatre, will leave their administrative posts with the Irvine-based company when their contracts are up at the end of July. Last year, Ballet Pacifica hired ABT star Ethan Stiefel as artistic director and announced big plans to restructure, raise money and hire 20 to 25 permanent dancers to raise the profile of the 46-year-old troupe.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 28, 2001
Ballet Pacifica's 2001-2002 season will include the world premiere of Robert Sund's "Liaisons," a children's series and Tchaikovsky's holiday favorite, "Nutcracker." Sund's work, set to music by Bach, Vivaldi and Handel, will be a collaboration with cellist Tanya Tomkins and harpsichordist Corey Jamason performed Oct. 5-6. Other pieces on that program will be Antony Tudor's "Sunflowers" and artistic director Molly Lynch's "Different Trains," set to music of Steve Reich.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 21, 2004 | Mike Anton, Times Staff Writer
Ballet Pacifica's artistic director resigned Tuesday amid a financial crisis that has forced the Orange County dance company to cancel its spring season and its nationally regarded summer program for developing new works.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 2007 | Lewis Segal, Times Staff Writer
Ballet Pacifica has canceled so many projects and seasons in the last few years that the announcement Monday of the imminent closure of its school and the indefinite "hiatus" of its performing company didn't come as a shock but rather as just one more stage in its well-documented free fall. Indeed, you might argue that the 45-year-old Orange County institution never recovered from the resignation of artistic director Molly Lynch in 2003 -- the same year that founder Lila Zali died.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 27, 2007 | Mike Boehm, Times Staff Writer
Barring a $500,000 bailout by donors in the next month, Orange County's premier ballet troupe will go out of business after 45 years, its two top managers said Monday. Ballet Pacifica's remaining performances -- children's programs scheduled for this weekend and in June at the Merage Jewish Community Center in Irvine -- have been canceled, and its training academy will close Friday.
OPINION
November 26, 2006
OF COURSE WE'RE rooting for the new Los Angeles Ballet, which will debut Dec. 2 at the Wilshire Theatre with a production of (what else?) the "Nutcracker." Still, it's hard to ignore the historical odds against ballet in the L.A. area. The company may begin with the graceful arabesques of Clara, but we have to brace ourselves for the thud of "Swan Lake's" Odette dumped to the floor during the pas de deux by a feckless Siegfried we call "the public."
ENTERTAINMENT
May 6, 2006 | Chris Pasles
Former San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Evelyn Cisneros-Legate has been named academy director of Irvine-based Ballet Pacifica. She will take over as head of the company's school from husband and wife John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow when their contracts expire at the end of July. Gardner and McKerrow are former American Ballet Theatre principal dancers hired last year by artistic director Ethan Stiefel, who resigned in March after the company's 2006-07 season was canceled.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 29, 2006 | Diane Haithman
More trouble for Orange County's Ballet Pacifica: Husband and wife John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow, former dancers with American Ballet Theatre, will leave their administrative posts with the Irvine-based company when their contracts are up at the end of July. Last year, Ballet Pacifica hired ABT star Ethan Stiefel as artistic director and announced big plans to restructure, raise money and hire 20 to 25 permanent dancers to raise the profile of the 46-year-old troupe.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 3, 2006 | Lewis Segal, Times Staff Writer
If a reigning star at American Ballet Theatre -- recently (if unofficially) crowned one of the kings of dance -- can't inspire enough support to launch even a midsize ballet company in Southern California, who can?
ENTERTAINMENT
August 9, 1996 | ZAN DUBIN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Ballet Pacifica's 34th season will feature five new ballets, three of them works for children. A new, still untitled work by David Allan with music by Henryck Gorecki will highlight the season's first Concert Series program, Oct. 11-12 at Irvine Barclay Theatre. Gorecki's string quartet "Quasi una Fantasia" accompanies the work. Rick McCullough's "By Lamplight" and Robert Sund's "Tchaikovsky's Trio" complete the program.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 2006 | Chris Pasles, Times Staff Writer
American Ballet Theatre star Ethan Stiefel resigned Thursday as artistic director of the Irvine-based Ballet Pacifica. Stiefel's resignation, 15 months after he agreed to assume the leadership of the 46-year-old company, abruptly ended the latest effort to transform it from a struggling regional troupe to a national player.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 25, 2006 | Chris Pasles, Times Staff Writer
On the heels of big promises for 2006-07, Irvine-based Ballet Pacifica has canceled the season to restructure and raise money, board President Janet Ray said Friday. In addition, a statement issued by the company said that Executive Director Thomas Gulick has resigned "for personal reasons" and that Orange County businesswoman Melody Wolfgram has been hired as interim management director.
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