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Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet
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Author:  Azlan [ Sun Dec 22, 2002 7:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Does anyone have anything to say to Mr Barry?

The Lord of the Dance doesn't have anything on me

Dave Barry, Miami Herald

I am not a fan of ballet.

Now, before you members of the Dance Community get your leotards in a bunch, let me stress that I KNOW I AM WRONG.
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<small>[ 19 December 2004, 03:39 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>

Author:  Azlan [ Sun Dec 22, 2002 8:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I know we had a similar topic elsewhere but can't find it. Open note to everyone: feel free to link to it if you find it.

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Mon Dec 30, 2002 8:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Possibly my thread on the "Zits" comic strip? It's under "Issues."

I have been mulling over my letter to Mr. Barry....

Author:  trina [ Mon Dec 30, 2002 9:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

That Davvvvve!! What a naughty boy. This seems like the usual cheap shots to me! :( :p

<small>[ 30 December 2002, 11:53 PM: Message edited by: trina ]</small>

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Tue Dec 31, 2002 2:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Ironies abound. Mr. Barry attended Haverford College, a liberal arts college with a current enrollment of 1,100 located on the Philadelphia Mainline. Today's tuition/room/board/expenses as estimated by the Haverford financial aid office, are approximately $36,000 per nine-month academic year. While it was undoubtedly cheaper ca. 1965-69 when Mr. Barry was in attendance there, it has never been quite the school for "Everyman," at least not in economic terms. The Everyman pose is just that -- a pose, and one which has been very commercially successful for him. Someone for whom I used to work was a roommate of Mr. Barry's at Haverford. He confirms that Mr. Barry was never serious about anything -- and that appears to be just as true today as it was in the late '60s.

His commentary in this column (exacerbated by some local newspaper editors who have chosen headlines such as "I *HATE* Ballet) is very poorly chosen. He appears to have given little consideration to the fact that dumping on ballet in the U.S. requires no degree of courage or conviction -- it is perfectly safe to do so. This is equivalent to those who dump on any number of other marginalized and disenfranchised groups who are safe targets of mainstream ridicule. He reminds me that he enjoys exploiting the "playground bully" motif -- those who find humiliating, taunting and teasing others to be especially rewarding when there is an audience of cowering and leering onlookers.

My sympathies are with his daughter.

Author:  trina [ Tue Dec 31, 2002 6:20 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I couldn't have said it better myself Francis! :( :confused:

Author:  I-H [ Wed Jan 08, 2003 7:30 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I'm sorry but I really do think you need to lighten up, I thought the piece extremely funny. And before you castigate me as a philistine, I'm an ex dance professional having studied in London at the Royal Ballet School and London Contemporary Dance School, before dancing with ballet and modern dance companies.

To truly think that an article like this will have ANY effect on dance funding or policy is giving it and yourselves far too much power. One of the perceived weaknesses of ballet by the public at large is its inability to take a joke, of taking itself too seriously, it's a humourous coloumn. I particularly liked the dead squirrel analogy.

Okay, rant over I'm prepared for whatever castigation I must take as a Judas to the cause.

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Wed Jan 08, 2003 8:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Point taken I-H and I've put my big stick back in the cupboard. Perhaps it shows what a fragile flower dance is, or at least that dance people think it to be. The general public read or see so little of dance that we tend to go into overdrive at the thought that this might be the only thing that many will read about dance in a period of a year or so and it will confirm the common prejudices.

<small>[ 08 January 2003, 09:53 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>

Author:  LMCtech [ Wed Jan 08, 2003 5:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I'm with I-H on this one. I laughed out loud reading this column. It is easy to dump on ballet, but the things Mr. Barry says are exactly the same things my husband (WHO IS A DANCER!)complains about. But Mr. Barry is much more amusing in his language. At least he admits that he's a fault and being punished for it. I will probably be cursed with a child with a passion for baseball, which I can't stand.

Author:  Shanynrose [ Wed Jan 08, 2003 8:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I have no clue how I missed this the first time around because my husband is a huge fan of Dave Barry. We rented "Big Trouble" and I think he watched it four times. For once I got to read him a Barry column he hadn't yet seen and that is very relevant to our current lifestyle and our daughter's future aspirations.

When I got to the part about male performance attire my husband said "But don't they wear something that's SUPPOSED to make them" You get the idea.

Please don't call my husband a Philistine either. He tries very hard, and once put the pedal to the metal and drove 85mph in 65 zone all the way home from an appointment in the city because he didn't want our kid to be late to her Friday class. He knows the difference between split-sole and full-sole, and seamed and unseamed tights, and could probably name at least 5 pointe shoe manufacturers and our daughter isn't even en pointe yet. Our other daughter plays hockey, but he doesn't know the first thing about who makes the equipment SHE needs. Although he does yell a lot louder at her games than he does at the ballet ;) Still, he's a GOOD dance dad. Please forgive him for being a Barryite.

As hard as I tried I couldn't read this column with a straight face and by the end was hooting and wiping away the tears, not to mention crossing my legs like mad. It was SO funny!

I im'd the link to my mom, my sister, and it's going to my mother-in-law. These people are very patient when my daughter and I are talking ballet this and ballet that. I'm going to print it out for the director of my daughter's dance school. I bet she puts it on the wall.

Thanks for sharing that wonderful link. The world is a sad place for those who are incapable of laughing at themselves.

<small>[ 08 January 2003, 09:58 PM: Message edited by: Shanynrose ]</small>

Author:  librarian [ Thu Jan 09, 2003 7:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Interestingly enough, I have copies of a pair of articles in a similar vein that appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times in 1978, by Bob Greene originally (writing similarly to Mr. Barry) and by Linda Winer, the paper's dance critic at the time, in response. However in this case, the original article was quite serious.

Azlan, what would we have to do to get permission to reprint these? I'd be willing to type them if it were kosher, so to speak.

Author:  Azlan [ Fri Jan 10, 2003 12:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Gee... I don't know... It depends if the writers were staff writers or freelancers.

Author:  librarian [ Fri Jan 10, 2003 5:18 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

I've written to them and inquired. Will let you know, Azlan!

Author:  Liscarkat [ Sat Jan 11, 2003 2:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

Two hundred years from now they'll still be writing books about George Balanchine, and Dave Barry will be forgotten. As for what male dancers wear--I played football and danced ballet, and football pants are tighter and every bit as revealing as tights. I wasn't fat enough to play center, but the guy who was got the quarterback's hands in his crotch about every 30 seconds, several hours per week.

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Sun Dec 19, 2004 2:42 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Dave Barry (and others) - Not a Fan of Ballet

12 things you only see at Christmas
by david quantick for The Times
Fancy a nice glass of white chocolate liqueur? Up for seeing a has-been in panto, or an ageing 70s rocker? David Quantick sums up the season’s lowlights.


With its tinkling music, shiny costumes and yule-y references (The Nutcracker? They might as well have called it Terry’s Festive Assortment [Terry's is a brand of chocolates]), ballet is made for Christmas. The fact that most ballets are about five hours long, feature one camera angle and are filmed in countries where repeat fees and performer royalties are unknown also endears them to television programmers, none of whom will be watching the ballets they are putting out.

click for more

<small>[ 19 December 2004, 07:14 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>

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