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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2001 10:24 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
As I remember it in her charming autobiography "Choura", and from what people around her said....she believed that a ballerina, especially a prima ballerina, had to live the part in everyday life.<P>She felt that wherever she went she was representing her company, The Ballet Russe, and her art. And she made it a point to NEVER look sloppy. It was very important to her. <P>What kind of teacher was she, Nancy? What was her attitude in class? Screaming? soft spoken? kind? distant? warm? cool? Did she move at all? Could you see her "presence"?<P>She is such a legend.


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 7:06 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 87
Location: Winthrop, Maine
Wow Nancy- you got to study with Danilova?? I,m soooooo impressed. I read her autobiography a couple of years ago and fell in love with her personality as well as her dancing. I would have loved to meet her. What an interesting life.


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 9:39 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 17, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 1278
Location: Basking Ridge, New Jersey, USA
As I recall, Madame was very much the prima ballerina in class. She was immaculate, she expected precision. Her presence was SO strong! I felt in her classes (also in Vera Nemtchinova's classes) such a connection to the past. She wasn't moving all that much as I remember, but she could create a whole picture with a small gesture. I don't think she screamed, but everything she did was with flair, so I wouldn't call her soft-spoken. There was a bit of an edge, a bit of humor, a bit of sarcasm. It was definitely her show.<P>One day Danilova singled me out as I struggled to do renverses. "You don't know how to do?" When I answered in the negative: "Well, is time you learn." With which she executed a perfect one. I don't know if my renverses improved at all that day, but I'll never forget what hers looked like!<P>


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 10:20 am 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
What a wonderful experience Nancy! How I envy you that .....<P>I had an experience with Sonia Arova. We were doing tour jeté (grand jeté entournant entrelacé), cabriole, cabriole - all the way from the downstage corner up the diagonal. It was devilishly exhausting!!<P>She stopped the class and pointed to me (oy vey) and asked "Are you on vacation?" <P>What she meant of course was that I was allowing my body to rest, relax, after the tour jeté and before the cabrioles. I was sooooooooooooooo embarrassed!!<P>But it taught me a lesson that the ending for one thing is the preparation for another.<P>There was something so VERY speacial, theatrical, about those old ballerinas.


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 12:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 01, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 64
Location: St. Joesph, MN
Wow!!! I am in the middle of finals, so i haven't been able to check the studio as often. But I am so glad you all had some wonderful information and experiences to share. It makes me think twice now when i see a movie that has any dancing in it, Is it a double or not? I have to admit I haven't see "Turning pointe" But I can gaurantee that as soon as my finals are over, that is the first movie that I am renting this summer!!<P>salima


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 26
Location: Mukilteo,WA,USA
Hey guys!<BR> Great info! Very very interesting! You know, there's a picture of Alexandra Danilova watching her class do a pas de bouree in Gretchen Ward Warren's book on page 386, I think. I'm probably going to watch "Turning Pointe" pretty soon, since I haven't watched it. Image All for now.<BR> ~reverances, <BR> technique_shoe<BR> (Anastasia) <BR>


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 3:56 pm 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
In my copy of the book - it's on page 356....but you might have a different edition.<P>There is an intersting picture on page 368 - several girls in class dancing under what looks like a tent.<P>If you look at the girl in the front row, right side - she looks like she has quite a good turnout. From what I can see her knee looks to be fairly well over her foot.<P>But the girl alongside of her - front row, left....her front foot is turned out, but her knee a lot less so. She might end up with knee problems..<P>Also the girl in the second row on the left - you can't see her face, but she also has her front foot really turned out - but the knee doesn't match.<P>What do you think?


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 4:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 1999 12:01 am
Posts: 166
Location: new york, ny usa
if the ballet being referred to in the gala in 'turning point' is the one which she dances with her hair in a kind of ponytail, and which is shown as being choreographed by the character played by daniel levans, then that is 'vortex' from 'the river' by alvin ailey.<P>best line in the picture: from jurgen schneider: "once more, with no feeling please."


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 4:43 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 1999 12:01 am
Posts: 2708
Location: Seattle, WA USA
Nancy, did you go to SAB?<BR>I used to see Danilova going into SAB all the time...right next door to Juilliard (same floor as Juilliard Dance Dept) Anyway, she chided me once for walking around the hallway in bare feet'she was worried I'd step on something and hurt my feet, I guess! (I dont' think she was "hip" to modern dance, where we typically dance barefoot; although now folks dance in jazz shoes); she did it in a very sweet and maternal way. She always had perfect "outfits"-scarves matching her earrings, matching her lipstick matching her handbag. Every inch the "lady". Refreshing to see someone who took such pride and care in her appearance!!!<p>[This message has been edited by trina (edited May 22, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2001 8:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 242
Location: Washington St.
Basheva, I see what you mean about the turnout in the picture. But I can sympathize: it is so hard to admit that you have less than perfect turnout, so there is that tendency to force the foot out, especially when the teacher says: turnout more! I have this problem: now my knees do hurt, and I have to be much more careful. In some ways it feels like such a regression... oh, but wait, this is terribly off topic!


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2001 4:48 am 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
Katheryn - I would suggest that you don't have it feel like a regression - rather think of it as understanding how to work with what you have. Doing that will allow you to dance longer - healthier, safer. <P>That, I believe, is progress.<P>Nureyev was once asked for advice about how to dance longer - and he said "don't turn out so much". Wise words. A good teacher should understand this.


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2001 6:05 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 1999 12:01 am
Posts: 166
Location: new york, ny usa
For those of you who are younger, and might not know it, Danilova was the last ballerina trained under the Russian Czars, she danced and starred with the Ballet Russe under Diagelev. <BR>++++++++<BR>not sure about that timing, though, according to the dance research collection at the new york public library, danilova was born in 1907, and if she entered the school at age 10, as i understood they usually did, then she would have come in just as the revolution started and not trained under the czars but afterward. <BR>also i would have to check but i don't think leslie browne ever did competitions. she was an sab student and that has always been frowned upon and then went into abt. buti would have to check this.<P>


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2001 6:24 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
According to G.B.L. Wilson's "A Dictionary of Ballet" - Danilova was born in 1904. It says she entered the "Imperial" school of the Mariinsky. That would put her studies under the time of the Czars. I have seen it mentioned in several other places that she was the last of the ballerinas trained in the Imperial school under the czars.<P>You could be right about Leslie Browne...I am trying to find my biography of her. But, it still seems to me that I remember her winning a competition prize, but I could be wrong. It would be interesting to find out.<P><p>[This message has been edited by Basheva (edited May 23, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2001 6:38 am 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
Here is the obituatry that was in the New York Times when Danilova died - she was 93 and died in 1997, which would make the date of her birth 1904.<P><A HREF="http://www.chron.com/cgi-bin/auth/story/content/chronicle/features/97/07/16/danilova-obit.0-0.html" TARGET=_blank><B>ALEXANDRA DANILOVA</B></A><BR><p>[This message has been edited by Basheva (edited May 23, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: pointe work
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2001 6:45 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 1999 12:01 am
Posts: 166
Location: new york, ny usa
i could also point to obituaries with differing dates from many other newspapers. regardless of whether she was born in 1904 or 1907 or even 1903 as some of them say, she was not the last ballerina trained at the imperial school. that was the statement to which i was responding.


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