Stellar casting creates “Beauty”ful ABT quandary @ Segerstrom Center

Dance
Southern California, wake up! Stop your behind-the-wheel slumbering … Don’cha know that we’re hosting the dance event of the season? And it’s a real sleeper! That would be “The Sleeping Beauty,” in a prestigious new production presented by American Ballet Theatre. The new “Beauty” will have its festive premiere March 3 at the Segerstrom Center ...

Jerome Robbins, in 1947 the king of high/low art

Dance
In this photo dated September 7, 1947, choreographer Jerome Robbins coaches chorus kids in ballet. He’s preparing dancers for “High Button Shoes” [music Jule Styne, lyrics Sammy Cahn, book Stephen Longstreet, direction George Abbott, choreography Jerome Robbins]. The show opened October 9 1947 at the Century Theatre on Broadway, then moved to London’s West End ...

“Oklahoma!” choreographer, Agnes deMille, appreciated 2

Dance · Film · Theater
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TCM Classic Film Festival 2014 opens Thursday April 10, 2014, with a screening of “Oklahoma!” at Grauman’s TCL Chinese Theatre. Shirley Jones, the film’s star, will be honored. Let’s learn about “Oklahoma!”‘s great choreographer who transferred groundbreaking stage choreography to the screen in 1955. AGNES (George) deMILLE b. Harlem, New York, Sept 18, 1905 d. ...

Gomes transcends in Balanchine’s “Apollo” for ABT

Dance
It was not just “awesome,” but indeed a privilege to watch Brazilian-born Marcelo Gomes, a great personal favorite, stretch his lovely long limbs as the Greek god, Apollo, in George Balanchine’s plotless ballet dating from 1928. In the dance the young man encounters and frolics with three muses, Calliope, the muse of poetry, Polyhymnia, the ...

While in Moscow, California dreamin’: ABT’s Ivan Vasiliev

Dance
We very much enjoy seeing this photo of the divine Ivan …That would be Ivan Vasiliev, heading to Los Angeles for weekend performances with American Ballet Theatre. Here’s Ivan, caught by the camera pouring CALIFORNIA  wine at a recent Moscow dinner party. On his teeshirt: True BelieverLos Angeles, California That is so righteous. We believe ...

Cruising “Corsaire”s

Dance
Preparing for four “Le Corsaire” (1856-restaged) performances by American Ballet Theatre next weekend at the Music Center. I’ve not seen anything beyond the warhorse pas de deux of this pirate-themed full-evening ballet. The PDD’s a beloved ballet chestnut, an old and familiar friend, bearing the slight tinge of mothballs. My only-middling enthusiasm for a full-length ...

David Hallberg grew up obsessed by Fred Astaire

Dance
Studying tap dance as a kid, before he got proper shoes, says David Hallberg, “I taped nickels on the bottom of my penny loafers.” Hallberg explains this charmingly in a marvelous profile that aired today on CBS’s News’s  “Sunday Morning” program. The premier dancer of the Bolshoi Ballet and principal at American Ballet Theatre more ...

Dueling ballet headlines: ABT vs. Bolshoi 4

Dance
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 ...

How could this happen? David Hallberg joins Bolshoi Ballet 2

Dance
In a tremendous blow to American ballet, our best home-grown talent, literally a corn-fed farm boy from South Dakota, David Hallberg, 29, announced today that he is joining the Bolshoi Ballet. Ka-thunk. This caps off, in one stunning announcement, twenty years, at a minimum, of Europe stealing the U.S.’s thunder as the global bastion of ...

Still the swingingest thing: West Side Story’s George Chakiris

Dance · Film
A lot of ladies — and quite a few gents including American Ballet Theatre principal dancer Marcelo Gomes and the just-retired Jose Manuel Carreno — gawked as West Side Story star George Chakiris entered the Founder’s Room of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at the Los Angeles Music Center. It was the opening night reception following ...