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 Post subject: Suitable Ballet Venues and Performance Schedules
PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2006 11:22 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 12, 1999 12:01 am
Posts: 3663
Location: The Bronx is up; the Battery's down
bcx wrote:

Quote:
Thanks for this information, Stuart. I wish we had an eight-month season of 120-130 performances instead of a 15 week season with 60 performances and a month of Nutcracker. The truth is, the San Francisco Bay Area needs more ballet performance space. If we had it, I'm quite sure SFB would willingly expand its performance schedule.


...Then Trixie G Street saith:
Quote:
The real truth is that there is plenty of good ballet to be seen in the San Francisco/Bay Area and many, many performance spaces hosting great work and dancers. SFB isn't the only game in town (much to their chagrin.)


...Followed by LMCTech's comment:
Quote:
But the Opera House is the best ballet venue in town. Most of the other stages are too small for a big classical ballet like Swan Lake or Giselle. Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley is adequate, but barely.

With the SF Opera in such dire straites, the ballet may be able to expand eventually.


...and Trixie G Street rejoindered:
Quote:
Quote:
Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley is adequate, but barely.


That kind of single mindedness is exactly why the arts are in trouble. Big ballet's aren't the only ones worth doing,and quite frankly SFB's versions (with the absence of Jacobson) have there problems.

Quote:
With the SF Opera in such dire straites, the ballet may be able to expand eventually.


I would hardly call the hiring of David Gockley as the new General Director dire straights! It's pure foolishness to thing that the Opera is going anywhere.
:roll:


after which, bcx opined:
Quote:
Quote:
Big ballet's aren't the only ones worth doing


Hi Trixie,

We're about to get kicked out of this thread, but I completely agree with you: I am a big suporter of small local companies. But I do believe SFB may have the shortest performance season of any major ballet company, and I asume it's because of a lack of performance space.


and asked:

Quote:
I know the discussion of the length of SFB's season and the issue of venues has lost its connnection to Swan Lake, but I'm too new here to know how to move the discussion elesewhere. My larger question has to do with how SFB's performance schedule compares with other big companies (London, Paris, New York, St Petersburg, Moscow, etc).

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Jeffrey E. Salzberg,
Dance Lighting Design
http://www.jeffsalzberg.com


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 8612
Location: El Granada, CA, USA
I just saw that this was moved, so I guess it's time to answer the questions posed.


Chamber ballet is fine and there are many great venues for chamber ballet companies. But to host an out of town ballet company or ANY ballet company that has more than 20 dancers, you need a theater that NOT ONLY has enough stage space, but also has enough DRESSING ROOMS. Many of the venues around the Bay that have the stage do not have dressing rooms that would be acceptable to a union company or a major foreign company.

The Cowell can comfortably accomodate about 15 dancer and no warm up space.

Yerba Buena has adequate dressing rooms, but the stage is pretty small.

ODC Performance Space has bathrooms in which one can change, but no dressing rooms. I hear there are plans to remedy that situation eventually.

Julia Morgan Theater is tiny. Tiny stage. Tiny dressing rooms.

Paramount in Oakland is dismal. There's mold on the walls and it's horribly overpriced.

I don't know anything about the Fox theater in San Carlos(?).

Stanford could work and does. Same with Mountain View and San Jose.

Laney College has theater that has been suggested, but I've never been to the venue.

The Presentation Theater at USF has a small stage and barely adequate dressing rooms for no more than 15.

The JCC's new theater seems like an up-and-coming venue. I have high hopes for it as good dance venue.



As for the Opera, they hired a new director because they needed to. They've been hemorraghing money for years and have been running a serious deficit for almost a decade. By serious, I mean several million dollars. By several I mean more than 5.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 12, 1999 12:01 am
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Location: The Bronx is up; the Battery's down
Quote:
Many of the venues around the Bay that have the stage do not have dressing rooms that would be acceptable to a union company or a major foreign company.


The same holds true for theaters in the New York City area, except that I'd add the phrase, "Or a company whose dancers are human beings."

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Jeffrey E. Salzberg,
Dance Lighting Design
http://www.jeffsalzberg.com


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 8612
Location: El Granada, CA, USA
Or a wardrobe supervisor that is a human being.


Sometimes the problem with the theater is electrical. Am I right, salzberg?

My husband worked in theater that were barely running the most basic of light boards with the minimum amount of circuits because their electrical system was so old. I bet the average ballet company larger than 5 would not be able to light their production in a situation like that.


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