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 Post subject: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Sun Feb 27, 2000 12:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 23, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 243
Location: Miami, FL USA
As promised, a short word on Joffrey's Valentine performance, "From Joffrey with Love", a benefit for the United Foundation for Aids.

Here's the nitty-gritty:

Program

"Creative Force"

Chor: Laura Dean
Music: John Zeretzke

Dancers (There were a lot!)

Nicole Marie Duffy, Jennifer Goodman, Stacy Joy Kellar,Catalina Garza, Trinity Hamilton, Deanne Brown, Tracey Julias, Suzanne Lopez, Michael Levine, Michael Anderson, Guoping Wang, Christopher Fellows, Sam Franke, Brian McSween, Jerimiah O'Connor, Patrick Simonello.

This was a lovely opener, particularly on Valentines Day. The costumes were all red body suit type deals and really caught the eye. This was a piece about patterns and flowing movement. Not much depth, but just very pleasant entertainment. Joffrey seems to excell at multiple body types just dancing their brains out.

Sea Shadow

Chor: Arpino (debuted 1962)
Music Maurice Ravel

Dancers: Maia Wilkins & Davis Robertson.

I really did not care for this piece, but I guess you need a pdd on a Valentine program. It was very well danced, but it was just two moody.

Caught

Chor: David Parson
Music: Robert Fripp

Danced by Taryn Kascock

I am sure that many on this board have seen Parsons himself perform this piece as I have, but this is always a crowd pleaser. I would not be totally honest if I said that something was missed by having a 5'6'' woman dancing instead of the 6'5'' Parson, but had I not had the image of Mr. Parsons, I would simply say: cool concept, strong dancer and good for you Joffrey to have this in your rep.

The closing number was the one with the biggest divergence of opinions.

Trinity(Revival) is a kitchy piece to some and a dated relic to others. Set to 70's music (it debuted in Berkley 1970) it had bright costumes from hot pink/bright yellow to orange and green combos.

I'm not going to go bit by bit, but I really enjoyed the piece. Unfortunately the men were not as strong as I would have expected and except for on or two (whom I don't know there names due to lack of deliniation in the program notes), they did not get the difference between the campy parts and the balletic parts. It's a fun closer to me but some thought there should have been a more challenging technical piece to show off the company better.

All in all it was a nice evening of dance and as I sat in the audience with some of the dancers of Maximum Dance, we look forward to the day when we have thirty dancers instead of 10 - 12 we currently do. The options certainly open up.

Cheers! I'm off to see Trockadero!

<small>[ 12 June 2003, 10:12 PM: Message edited by: Azlan ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Sun Feb 27, 2000 8:12 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area
Yikes, Trinity does sound kitschy. Shag, do you know what the music pieces were? I am developing a theory about performing arts created in the 70s...


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2000 2:10 pm 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
I saw the Joffrey do "Trinity" (when they were still based in NYC) in the 80's and I really liked it. However, I think it's one of those pieces that really depend on who is dancing which part. The choreography is not earth-shaking or innovative, but I saw Gary Chryst dancing in it. He is a wonderful dancer; I would call him a "dancer's dancer". NOt a lot of people outside the field have heard of him, but he is just a magnetic perfomer. He can take the most simplistic, banal choreography and make it look incredibly meaningful and important. Now he dances for Netherlands DAnce Theater 2, the "spin off" company of NDT I, for dancers over 50 (or is it over 40?) Oh well, they are a great group, also featuring Martine van HAmel,and Sabina Kupferberg (Jiri Kylian's wife). Catch this company if they're ever in your neck of the woods.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2000 11:03 pm 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Trina, at risk of being pedantic(well, we should all do what we're good at), NDT2 is the young company (up to 22) and NDT3 is the company that Gary Chryst would be in. As far as I know NDT3 have never been to London, but they went to Edinburgh a couple of years ago and blew everyone's socks off with their distinctive rep and approach. NDT2 will be here in a a month or so and we are all looking forward to it more than somewhat.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Feb 29, 2000 1:56 pm 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
Stuart-I stand corrected yet again!!<BR>Yes...I love that company...of course, I don't think that company would exist in the USA, because we are such a youth oriented culture and seem to think (mistakenly I might add)that dancers should retire at 40. However, NDT 3 proves my own personal point of view that dancers, in many ways are so much more intersting (like good wine, I think Merce Cunningham once said!)after 40...becasue they have lived a little, and have more resonance and depth in the emotional aspect of their performing. In other words, they're not just worrying about how many fouette turns they are going to do today!! Actually, I think I remember reading in the nY times about a dance company in New York which is made up of over 50 yrs. old dancers-can't remember their name, though.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Sun Mar 05, 2000 8:54 pm 
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Location: SF Bay Area
trina, I agree with your statement about "senior" dancers. Remember the comment that Paul Taylor made in "Dance Maker" where he said something akin to having to choreograph emotions into his dancers because they don't have a life's experience to draw from?<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited 03-06-2000).]


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 7:50 am 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
From the Chicago Sun Times:<P><B>JOFFREY TAMES 'THE SHREW'</B><P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>A lone pianist knocked out the score--Scarlatti sonatas interpolated by composer Kurt-Heinz Stolze--for John Cranko's 1969 ballet, "The Taming of the Shrew," based on Shakespeare's rollicking tale of a comic but brutal courtship. Aside from "The Nutcracker," it's the first full-length ballet that the Joffrey has staged since relocating to Chicago. (A 41-piece orchestra will play the music live Thursday through Sunday as the Joffrey presents the first week of its two-week spring season.)<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P><A HREF="http://www.suntimes.com/output/show/joff13.html" TARGET=_blank><B>MORE...</B></A><P>


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 7:54 am 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
Wow--Joffrey is doing quite a varied and challenging rep! Bravo! "Taming of the Shrew" and Tudor's "Lilac Garden" show quite an artistic maturity. Has anyone seen them lately?


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 9:37 am 
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Location: SF CA
<BR>The last I saw them was doing Billboards in the mid 90's. I miss them. I loved Trinity and I agree Trina, it made a difference when Gary Chryst and Christian Holder were in the cast. Those were the days when we would applaude so much that they would do an encore.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 11:04 am 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
Trinity is one of my very favorites - and it is the one tape which I do not have. I have one of the largest tape collections (so I am told) of dance - most especially classical dance - but Trinity is missing from my collection. But not from my mind - I LOVED IT.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 12:20 pm 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
I notice you're not going into details about 'Billboards' Lucy - very wise. Oh well it did put them back on their feet financially.<P>They have just made a new film of 'The Green Table' that was shown in Cologne as part of the celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the birth of Kurt Jooss. Basheva kindly sent me a copy of their previous recording. At some stage I would love to have this new one as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 12:30 pm 
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Location: new york, ny usa
hi stuart, glad to see you finally got it! tell me something, i remember seeing 'the green table' on what i guess was a joffrey tour, and i recall kurt jooss coming on stage to receive some kind of applause. can you figure out why that would have been? (other than the obvious?)....p


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 12:37 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Not really patricia, except as you say the obvius point that he would have set the work on the Joffrey in those days. I would have loved to see the great man in the flesh, even if it was only taking a bow. It's his daughter Anna Markard that sets the work now.<P>From memory the Joffrey played a vital role, as it was they who notated 4 or 5 of his works for posterity. What an irony that one of the contributors to the development of Laban notation was never very interested to have more of his 50 ballets notated.<P>A strange coincidence happened to me a couple of months ago. I was on a bus reading a book about 'The Green Table' and a little old lady next to me said that she had seen 'The Green Table' around 1942, when Ballets Jooss was touring round the UK. Sadly this was just before I got off, but she told me how she remembered what an impression it made on her.<P>Thanks to Joffrey's commitment to the work, it is preserved for posterity.<p>[This message has been edited by Stuart Sweeney (edited March 13, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 2:22 pm 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
To all interested in Joffrey, may I recommend "The Joffrey Ballet- Robert Joffrey and the Making of An American Dance Company" by Sasha Anwalt. It is a truly fascinating book. Joffrey, a native of Seattle, had an amazingly eclectic, indeed modern approach to dance. This love sustained him during some very difficult times, namely Rebekah Harkness basically stealing his company right out from under him,(later became Harkness Ballet) unbelievable political machinations constantly going on around him, financial and personal woes of every stripe.


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 Post subject: Re: Joffrey Ballet of Chicago 2000-01 Season
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2001 2:39 pm 
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
There is also a very good biography of Rebekah Harkness which I read. It is by Craig Unger and the book is called "Harkness".


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