You cannot make this stuff up. You just can’t.
Dueling headline news … first from the Bolshoi Ballet, then from American Ballet Theatre …
|Bolshoi Theatre via RIANOVOSTI
Sept 28, 2011
|The Bolshoi Ballet picks up an American accent
Moscow’s Bolshoi Theater has broken new ground by inviting David Hallberg, of the American Ballet Theater (ABT), to be a guest dancer for the upcoming performing season. Hallberg, 29, will appear on the stage of the Bolshoi in early November, in Adolphe Adam’s “Giselle” and Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s “Sleeping Beauty.
|American Ballet Theatre
Sept 28, 2011
| American Ballet Theatre to Launch National Training Curriculum in Saint (sic) Petersburg, Russia
American Ballet Theatre’s National Training Curriculum, a program of ballet technique combining artistic training with the basics of dancer health and child development, will conduct a five-day satellite session in St. Petersburg, Russia.“Bringing ABT’s National Training Curriculum to a community outside the United States is extremely exciting for us,” said ABT Executive Director Rachel Moore.
It’s been a week since we learned that, in a reversal of fortune, the Bolshoi Theatre picked off our bravura-best ballet guy, David Hallberg. It was a good, old-fashioned talent steal … like in baseball, or hockey, or something like that.
Given this keening body blow, with what “touché” does American Ballet Theatre counter-parry?
ABT will go to Russia and teach ’em a thing or two about ballet instruction.
Yes, in an announcement of, shall we say, unfortunate timing, ABT crows, con brio, that it will travel to Russia to teach Russians how to teach classical ballet to children.
What am I missing here? Isn’t teaching ballet to children, like, the #1 Main Thing that Russians do incredibly well? Shouldn’t they rather be teaching us how to do this? (In fact, they have been, for 100 years.)
Perhaps this is ABT’s subterfuge way of stealing their dancers back for us. If so, go for it!
Am I picking on ABT? You bet. I’ve spent the last thirty years writing supportively about ABT. To see them lose their mojo in this fashion is just painful. David Hallberg, you go !
And don’t look back.
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