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 Post subject: Frederic Franklin: a Biography of the Ballet Star
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 7:28 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 14494
Location: SF Bay Area
A preview of an upcoming review in CriticalDance's Ballet-Dance Magazine:

Frederic Franklin: a Biography of the Ballet Star,
By Leslie Norton and Frederic Franklin

Reviewed by Leland Windreich

November 2007

Leslie Norton, an associate professor in the Theatre and Dance Department at Hamilton College, had written the first draft of this biography without having had any personal contact with her subject. When she finally approached him, the affable dancer agreed to collaborate with her, providing some precious memories, anecdotes and significant facts.

Watch for the November magazine to be published Nov 12, 2007:

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 7:01 pm 

Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 688
Location: Seattle, WA. USA
I found it to be good read, full of interesting information and anecdotes. His story really came alive during the recounting of the creation of Agnes de Mille's Rodeo. This was the best part to me.

My only criticism was that I felt the author listened too much to Franklin's opinions about Nina Novak, and, after listing negative thing after negative thing, it came across as Novak-bashing. I counted: five negative things and only one positive -- and that lightly; how she mastered castanet playing after not knowing how for one ballet. In the interest of full disclosure, yes, I know Nina and can be accused of being biased; nevertheless, this impressed me as being less than balanced. The author could have called Novak herself (or others) to get another side of the story.

It's a good read partly because Franklin is forthright with his opinions and assessments.

He is someone who is still very active -- both staging ballets and performing character parts in story ballets.

Several of these ballets should be more widely disseminated before too much more time passes.

At least I can recommend this book -- better than the recent Fonteyn biography. That author gave us way too much information. I adored Fonteyn -- and still do but admiring someone's work from afar is sometimes best.

Dean Speer

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