Blogs

Taiwanese ballet dancer Liao Yi Hsuan recently filmed an ad for denim company Lee Cooper—and it's unexpectedly heart-wrenching.

Liao isn't a world-class ballerina, an artist of such phenomenal gifts that she's guaranteed success. Instead, she's like many of us: Talented, yes, but above all, passionately committed to ballet.

Sometimes even dancers themselves don't realize how hard they work. But this fascinating time-lapse video, capturing a day of class and rehearsals in Boston Ballet's Studio 7, makes it clear just how much goes into the ballet dancer's average workday.

To a dancer, watching the film (which was created by David Gifford and Adrian Dalca of MIT with high-tech GoPro cameras) feels strangely dream-like. We've known days like this, and yet seeing one in a pseudo-abstract context is like having an out-of-body experience.

Congratulations to choreographers Alexei Ratmansky and Kyle Abraham! Both have been named 2013 MacArthur Fellows, an honor that earns them a $625,000 "genius" grant—and entry into a very exclusive club, which includes the likes of Merce Cunningham, Paul Taylor, Trisha Brown, Mark Morris, Twyla Tharp, Bill T. Jones and Arthur Mitchell.

 

Check out our iPad health exclusive! "Your Guide to Ultimate Ballet Body" is now available as an in-app purchase within the Pointe iPad app. You’ll get health tips, exercise secrets, nutrition surprises (you should be drinking chocolate milk—really!) and special exclusives. Features include energy-building recipes by dancers for dancers (don’t miss Jennifer Kronenberg’s Asian Garlic Salmon), the skinny on Drew Jacoby’s workout and more.

Finally, Covent Garden is expanding its popular big screen broadcasts to the U.S., and Royal Ballet fans will be able to get their fill of their favorite stars.

Back in January, Starz announced that they were working on a scripted drama that would "explore the dysfunctional underbelly of the ballet world." Think Black Swan as a television series.

Story ballets are back. On Monday, when the Joffrey Ballet announced a $500,000 challenge grant from Chicago’s Rudolf Nureyev Dance Foundation to develop new full-length narrative works, it felt like a tipping point. A company best known in recent decades for its abstract contemporary repertoire, the Joffrey’s new grant steers it toward a different model, and signals that storytelling has returned to the creative mainstream.

As a ballet lover who watches "Breaking Pointe" for the dancing, my heart sank a little when I heard that the title of last night's season finale was "The Story of Us." A whole episode devoted to offstage love stories? Oh, dear. And I was right to be afraid.

You know a ballet meme is good when it makes you chuckle to yourself and think, "So true." The most recent meme to capture what it's really like to be a ballet dancer is Ballet Monsters, a series of cartoons created by artist Keith Lin that are now circling the internet.

Got Nutcracker auditions coming up? You might want to avoid texting right before you take your place at the barre.

 

Fascinating new research from Harvard Business School found that people who spent a few minutes typing on a small, handheld gadget were only half as assertive in follow-up tests as those who had typed on a desktop computer. They were also far more meek on an additional test that measured power and self-confidence.