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 Post subject: National Ballet of Canada Spring 2007
PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2007 10:20 am 
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It’s mad and it’s hot according to the National Ballet of Canada. Buy NOW before the MAD HOT Ballet Gala Performance is SRO! The performance is only for an hour and afterwards you can schmooze and booze with the dancers!!

The Stars of the 21st Century Gala will be well represented by NBoC dancers Heather Ogden, Guillaume Côté, Zdenek Konvalina, and Bridgett Zehr (Koffler Centre for the Arts, April 29). Tickets are kind of pricey from $300 to $5,000!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2007 4:49 pm 
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For Stars of the 21st Century, tickets range from $65-177 if you are just going to the performance. The prices quoted on the Koffler Centre website include the cocktail reception, dinner, etc.
http://www.ticketmaster.ca/event/10003E309F87AB6A?artistid=902371&majorcatid=10002&minorcatid=12


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2007 9:24 pm 
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Thanks, I couldn’t find the regular folk prices anywhere on their websites. I think I’ll have dinner somewhere else and skip dessert for a FAT FREE serving of Heather Ogden arabesque fondue! Yum!!

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 8:34 pm 
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The April edition of NBoC News trumpets ballerinas with babies, MAD HOT Ballet Gala, Stars of the 21st Century, and a sneak peak into an NBoC class! All of the above was available right here on Critical Dance MUCH MUCH earlier. Just call me Scoop!

In other news…Support the Dancer Transition Resource Centre by attending Viva La Danse! Your hosts are Sexy Rexy and Sheila McCarthy. Greta and the Body will be dancing along with a host of others. Looks like a lot of fun but kind of pricey at $350 per ticket.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2007 7:17 am 
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After 7 years of featuring ballet, opera, and classical music the CBC axed ‘Opening Night.’ Some of the many artists featured include Karen Kain, Rex Harrington, Evelyn Hart, and Guillaume Côté. Despite the show winning many awards the ratings were dreadful and hence CBC cut the show and thus inched that much closer to becoming the Canadian Broadcasting Corpse. The only good thing about the CBC is its news and Hockey Night in Canada.

How long can they continue taking money from the public’s purse for U.S. and reality TV programming? It’s a real shame. We finally get a real opera house, from the inside anyway, and now we have no one to broadcast ballet or opera. How fitting they went out with ‘Ode to a Requiem!’

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2007 10:05 am 
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HERE is casting for the National’s trip to Ottawa if anybody is interested.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2007 7:24 am 
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Natasha Gauthier of The Ottawa Citizen reviews the NBoC’s triple bill at the NAC.

Quote:
The National Arts Centre Orchestra joined the National Ballet of Canada Thursday night for a triple bill of modern American ballets from the 1970s. It was another reminder of just what a difference live music can make to dance performance -- a once-essential element that has unfortunately become an unaffordable luxury for many companies.

...Greta Hodgkinson was severe and majestic as a kind of embodiment of collective rage at loss. She flung herself in and out of her lifts and spins with reckless, grim-faced abandon.

The company had been strong all evening, particularly the men, but they were all starting to flag toward the end of the Tetley. The ensemble timing was off, and there was even what appeared to be a near collision between two dancers.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2007 10:22 am 
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Ballet NewsFLASH! Xiao Nan Yu has replaced Heather Ogden for the Stars of the 21st Century Gala. Does anybody know what is up with the above blonde beauty? Miss Ogden hasn’t danced for quite some time missing both the mixed program and Taming of the Shrew. H.O. will be missed if she cannot perform for Miss Farrell’s Don Q.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2007 10:28 am 
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I overheard two company members talking... [post edited by moderator to comply with courtesy policy]


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2007 6:03 pm 
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Thanks for the update Noreen. I never could figure out why the ballet world is so darn secretive when it comes to dancers not performing and the reasons behind an absence. In sports, theatre, and concert performers the powers to be usually provide a reason for a no-show. Perhaps that’s one of the many reasons why they can exist on ticket sales alone for the most part.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 3:18 am 
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Please remember our courtesy policy:

"...To move beyond gossip, a story must be substantiated by official word from a Press Dept. or directly from the artist (not at secondhand) with their permission for release. ..."

As such, it is NOT permissible to post information overheard from private conversations unless the dancers have given their express permission for the information to be posted.

Kate
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 3:19 am 
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** Companies have a right not to publish information about injuries. I'm sure in Canada, as in the US and EU, medical information is covered by privacy laws and cannot be released without express permission of the person in question. And since injuries are hardly black and white issues, and may involve matters that a dancer does not wish to reveal, companies should and do use discretion in making releasing information. That we may pay for tickets or attend performances does not give us the right to invade someone else's privacy, whether we like it or not.**


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:06 am 
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Thanks for making my pointe Kate. The Ballet world is very dark and secretive. Why is it in the NFL they publish detailed injury lists from pulled groins to pulled hamstrings? Why does the Stratford Festival inform its audience through the media when a performer is out with the flu? When an opera star cannot sing because he’s lost his voice, why is it the opera informs you of that fact? Why because we pay their salary!

Maybe I should stop paying salaries for the NBoC? I’ve been seriously thinking of not renewing my subscription. Maybe I’ll satisfy by ballet watching needs by making a trip to NYCB.

Heather Ogden is a principal dancer and also a principal attraction for the NBoC. If she can’t perform it may effect your decision to buy a ticket or not to purchase a ticket. Quite frankly, with Sonia Rodriguez not dancing because she’s with child and the possibility of no Heather Ogden for Don Q, this will hurt ticket sales. Yes there are dancers who can take their place but for my personal tastes none could match up to their version of Dulcinea. I’m sure this will also present a problem for Suzanne Farrell and the NBoC, as new dancers will have to be trained for the role. I wonder who apprenticed for the role last year?

* At the very least the public deserves the right to know if the dancer is out with a physical injury. The least the National could do is publish that. By not informing us of anything, you’re just encouraging the spread of rumors. People will speculate. I believe in living in an honest and open society.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 2:06 pm 
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You're not going to find out about injuries at NYCB either. I don't know of any ballet company that regularly releases information about dancer injuries. If a dancer has a major injury, the company may give some information on request and/or release the information in a news article or interview so that it's public. Like NBoC did for the pregnancies - and they probably delayed any announcements until the dancers felt it was safe to say something. And one might add, sometimes an announcement of 'injury or illness' is a nice little white lie.

But the reality is that - as I said - injuries are not black and white. A company the size of NBoC may have as many as 20 or more dancers with illness/injuries etc. who may not be able to dance at all, are limited in what they can dance or in how often they can dance. And almost always there's no clear time frame for return. So casting may flip flop right up to performance time and even beyond. NFL teams may be able to afford lots of publicists, but ballet companies don't have extra cash lying around and most ballet PR reps are run off their feet normally. They don't have time to get up to date information on and release and re-release information on every dancer who might or might not be performing in each piece.

Additionally, simply reporting injuries wouldn't help rumors much because injuries are only one reason a dancer may not dance. Dancers get sick, get pregnant, lose pregnancies, have menstrual problems or cramps, have family members die, have psychological traumas, have breakdowns, fall out with stagers and artistic directors, are arrested, violate contractual agreements etc. etc. None of which are at all appropriate to reveal and in many cases by law cannot be revealed without the express permission of the person(s) involved. So if a dancer didn't dance and wasn't injured, you still aren't going to get information.

And then how do you explain situations where a dancer simply might not be chosen for a particular ballet or if they are just fine, but were out during the critical period of rehearsals and/or casting (which could be six months ago) and may not be able to be incorporated into the ballet at all or until later in the run. Or are perfectly fine, but their intended partner is not.

There are just too many variations to theme, too many sensitive issues and not enough time or reason to violate privacy.

All that companies should do - and almost all are bound to do it by contract - is announce substitutions prior to a performance, either online, in a program insert or by announcement. Anything beyond that is nice, but we don't have the right to pry into other people's private lives.

Ticket proceeds may or may really pay salaries - companies get just as much income from private/corporate/foundation donations & grants and other sources. But that still gives us no right to information, as much as we might want it (hey - I admit, it is aggravating not to know what is going on).

Kate

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 5:57 pm 
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Thanks so much for the thoughtful and detailed response. I understand your pointes but still beg to differ. For example: If a QB has a falling out with a coach (Pigskin Artistic Director), it would be reported in the media. Perhaps I have answered my own question? If a newspaper was interested in why a certain dancer was not dancing, no doubt the reason would be revealed in the press. Unfortunately, ballet is still struggling in Toronto and hence we have yet to reach 500 views of NBoC Spring 2007 despite it being started March 28th. This is actually quite good for CriticalDance.

If I was AD of the NBoC I would be more open with information to at the very least generate a little free publicity. What can I say but I am a snobbish ballet fan who often switches dates based on casting. The National was generating good publicity at the start of the season but since then the media have largely ignored them. For example: I have yet to read one word about the jazz inspired dance benefit last night, Vive la Danse! Why oh why did they pick to hold this on a Thursday when most people work on Fridays? Did any CriticalDancers go :?:

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