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April 10, 2012 | By Sylviane Gold, Special to the Los Angeles Times
NEW YORK - It may be the understatement of the theater season when the choreographer Steven Hoggett, says, in the quiet British way, "It's a very interesting time for me. " But understatement is not actually his thing. The emphatic flailing and ecstatic flying he devised forGreen Day's"American Idiot" are pumping up audiences at the Ahmanson Theatre through April 22. The stamping, stomping, full-out dancing actor-musicians of "Once," the downtown hit based on the 2006 indie film of the same name, have been rapturously received on Broadway.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 1, 2014 | By Joseph Carman
After 16 years in purgatory, a carousel barker takes his granted leave to perform a good deed on Earth. He presents his child, whom he has never seen, a star stolen from heaven. You might expect the title character to break into "Soliloquy" from Rodgers & Hammerstein's "Carousel. " But this is not musical theater. It's a ballet, where the movement alone speaks and sings. Starting Feb. 7, for four performances at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, the Hamburg Ballett is presenting John Neumeier's "Liliom," a ballet in seven scenes and a prologue.
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 4, 2011 | By Nicole Sperling, Los Angeles Times
As a suburban kid growing up in the bedroom community of Rancho Cucamonga in San Bernardino County, choreographer Jamal Sims gained most of his musical influence from television and movies. Michael Jackson's "Beat It" video made him want to dance; "Breakin" introduced him to spinning on his back. But it was "Footloose" that turned him on to a kind of dancing he hadn't seen before, specifically country line dancing. So when director Craig Brewer wanted to talk "Footloose" with Sims, best known as the choreographer of the "Step Up" movies, Sims admits to being intimidated — believing that the original 1984 movie starring Kevin Bacon was not an easy redo.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 22, 2013 | David Colker
When Dick Van Dyke got the role of Bert in the 1964 movie musical "Mary Poppins," Walt Disney asked him if he had a recommendation for a choreographer. Van Dyke recalled working with the team of Marc Breaux and Dee Dee Wood, who had created a number for the Jack Benny television show. "I'm not really a dancer," Van Dyke said. "I could move a little and I was what you call an eccentric dancer -- loose limbed and light on my feet. But they took what I could do and made the most of it. I was just thrilled.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 23, 2013 | By Valerie J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
Hollywood considered Matt Mattox one of the best dancers in the country when he was cast to dizzying effect in "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers," the 1954 Oscar-winning film celebrated for its imaginative and masterful dance moves. Billed as one of the "frontier Romeos" in the musical set in the American West, the classically trained Mattox memorably vaults over a sawhorse, pirouettes on a plank and poetically wields an ax in striking choreography by Michael Kidd. "Everyone on the movie set agreed that he was the best dancer of all," Jacques d'Amboise, who was a leading figure in American ballet when he danced alongside Mattox as one of the film's rowdy brothers, said this week in a French media report.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 22, 2013 | David Colker
When Dick Van Dyke got the role of Bert in the 1964 movie musical "Mary Poppins," Walt Disney asked him if he had a recommendation for a choreographer. Van Dyke recalled working with the team of Marc Breaux and Dee Dee Wood, who had created a number for the Jack Benny television show. "I'm not really a dancer," Van Dyke said. "I could move a little and I was what you call an eccentric dancer -- loose limbed and light on my feet. But they took what I could do and made the most of it. I was just thrilled.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 13, 1985
Paul Godkin, who danced with the American Ballet Theatre in the 1940s and '50s and choreographed for such films as "Around the World in 80 Days" and on television for Ed Sullivan and Dinah Shore, is dead of a heart attack at age 60. Godkin, who danced with such ballerinas as Tamara Toumanova, Nora Kaye and Carmelita Maracci, also performed on Broadway and did choreography for Las Vegas spectaculars. He died Friday.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 16, 2009
What a wonderful story on Jack Cole ("Moving Marilyn Monroe," Aug. 9). He was one of the top choreographers of the era. I was a "boy dancer" 50 and 60 years ago in New York and Hollywood. Didn't get to work with Cole although I did audition for him once in New York. I studied his technique from two of his dancers, one in New York and one in Chicago. Loved it. It was my favorite form of jazz dancing. Jack Moore Palm Springs
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 18, 2008 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Norman Morrice, 76, a choreographer and former director of the Royal Ballet, died last week, the company announced in a statement. The exact date of his death and the cause were not announced, but British newspapers reported that he was found dead Jan. 11 at his home in London. "Norman was the fourth director of the Royal Ballet and very much felt the responsibility of following in the illustrious footsteps of the previous directors," Royal Ballet Director Monica Mason said in a statement to Bloomberg News.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 20, 2007 | Lewis Segal, Times Staff Writer
Fierce, fiercer, fiercest: The most memorable pieces in the latest edition of the Spectrum: Dance in L.A. series turned rage into motion, a style that may define this city right now if you're a choreographer or company leader. It's a battle getting your work seen and supported locally, so why not bring that battle into your body and onto the stage? The 15-part Spectrum #23 offered plenty of examples Sunday at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood (a new venue for the series).
ENTERTAINMENT
November 17, 2013 | By Meredith Blake
NEW YORK - Matthew Bourne was standing in the bedroom of Tchaikovsky's home outside Moscow two years ago when he decided it was finally time to tackle "Sleeping Beauty. " "It had a single bed and a very ordinary wooden table, looking out the window at birch trees," recalls the British choreographer, seated in the plush lobby at City Center in Manhattan, where "Sleeping Beauty: A Gothic Romance," had its U.S. premiere last month in advance of its run at the Ahmanson Theatre starting Thursday.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 12, 2013 | By Susan Reiter
Australian choreographer Lucy Guerin has been recognized for her intriguing and thought-provoking works since the 1990s, when she spent a pivotal seven years performing and choreographing in New York City. Mikhail Baryshnikov took note of Guerin's individuality in 1999, including two of her dances in his White Oak Dance Project's repertory. Based in Melbourne since 1996, she founded her company Lucy Guerin Inc. in 2002 and has returned to New York often enough to keep its dance audiences abreast of her more recent projects.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 12, 2013 | By Susan Josephs
As a child growing up in Houston, David Roussève spent most of his Sundays attending an African American Roman Catholic church. Though determined to be a model altar boy, he questioned the definition of sin. "I certainly wasn't in touch then with my own sexuality," says the now 53-year-old choreographer, who came out as a gay man in his mid-20s to his family. "But I knew for a fact there were people in that congregation who were having sex and who weren't married, and it didn't seem right that all these people were going to hell.
WORLD
September 2, 2013 | Tracy Wilkinson and Richard Fausset
When President Enrique Pena Nieto delivers his first state of the union message Monday, he won't leave home to do it. The unusual venue -- his residence, Los Pinos -- is replacing the more traditional spot, the presidential National Palace, because striking teachers have laid siege to the plaza surrounding it. Government officials and invited dignitaries would have a tough time reaching the palace. Nine months into Pena Nieto's presidency, not everything is going quite according to his well-choreographed, carefully hyped plans.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 23, 2013 | By Michael Miller
On her eighth day of rehearsal at UC Irvine, Kitty McNamee decided to refocus her dancers on the theme of their piece. Rather than demonstrate steps or go over musical motifs, the choreographer gathered her team around and read a different set of directions - from the dictionary. The word in question was "transit," which is also the working title of McNamee's entry in UC Irvine's annual National Choreographers Initiative. With the online Oxford Dictionaries offering a slew of meanings, she rattled them off quickly: the movement of people or materials, the passage of celestial bodies and so on. FOR THE RECORD: Dance program: An article about the National Choreographers Initiative in the July 24 Calendar section described the initiative as a UC Irvine event.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 13, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
BERKELEY - "The Rite of Spring" is a ballet born of violence. Stravinsky's score unfurls the furious sudden spring of his native St. Petersburg, the sounds of cracking ice on the river Neva being like gunfire. Taken from the scandalous sexuality of Russian folklore, the dance depicts a virgin sacrificed to the savage, ecstatic pleasure of "sages. " We've long ago gotten used to all this, the "Rite" having entered into its second century last month. Orchestral performances over the decades have become ever more driven.
NEWS
December 30, 1993
James McGregor Jamieson, 73, a dancer and choreographer whose Broadway musical credits include "Brigadoon." In 1947, Jamieson played Harry Beaton, the starring role in "Brigadoon." He performed at the White House for President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy and the king of Morocco in 1963 and with the Russian dancer Helena Antonova, and founded the Academy of the Dance, based in Wilmington, Del. As an instructor, he worked with such stars as Bob Hope and Bing Crosby.
NEWS
April 25, 1994
Gene Nettles, 65, an American dancer and choreographer who became prominent in Scandinavia. Nettles, a native of Jackson, Miss., started dancing at the age of 7. He studied ballet at Katherine Dunham's Ballet School in New York. After dancing in Broadway productions, including "My Fair Lady," he moved to Norway in 1958. Four years later, Nettles settled in Copenhagen, where he choreographed the first Broadway musicals staged in Denmark.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 1, 2013 | By Barbara Isenberg
NEW YORK - You hear choreographer Mark Morris before you see him. He's humming as he approaches his front door, maybe a Tchaikovsky fragment, maybe something else. He doesn't even know he's humming, much less what it is, he says later, "but people know I'm coming, like belling the cat. I'd make a bad spy. " But given his passion for music, all kinds of music, Morris should make a good music director for the 2013 Ojai Music Festival. Music is as embedded in his spirit as dance, he says a million ways, and any doubters can only take a look at the eclectic and packed schedule he's put together.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 30, 2013 | Valerie J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
Clarence Burke Jr., the lead singer of the Five Stairsteps, a sibling R&B group once regarded as "the first family of soul" for a string of hits that included "O-o-h Child," died Sunday, a day after he turned 64. Burke died in Marietta, Ga., where he made his home, said his manager, Joe Marno. The cause was not released. Formed in 1965 in Chicago, the group originally consisted of four young brothers and a sister who played their own instruments as well as sang. They owed their collective name to their mother, who observed they looked like stair steps when they stood by one another in order of age. The eldest brother, Clarence, also played guitar, wrote many of the group's songs, served as a producer and choreographed their dance routines.
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