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Matthew Bourne has made a choreographic career out of reimagining classic ballets and giving them dark, contemporary twists. His Sleeping Beauty, described as a "gothic romance" complete with vampires and fairies, is no exception. You can see for yourself tonight: PBS will air Sleeping Beauty as part of its Great Performances series on April 25 at 9 pm EST. Check your local listings and catch a preview below.


Throughout her 18 years dancing with Boston Ballet, Larissa Ponomarenko performed classical and contemporary roles with ease and elegance. But offstage, she was just as entrancing. During my years as a student at Boston Ballet School, I remember my classmates and myself peeking into her rehearsals, gawking at the effortlessness of each step. We knew it came from her Vaganova training, but still couldn’t believe her precision. Though she is often overlooked, Ponomarenko is a cherished icon for many.

 

This morning, it was 23 degrees on Hurricane Ridge in Washington's Olympic National Park. Down on Rialto Beach, the waves poured around huge rock formations and signs warned tourists they must use bear-proof canisters for storing all food. On the Marymere Falls Trail, a mist hung in the old growth forest that shelters a 90-foot waterfall.

 

There's nothing more incredible than seeing a dancer master the artistry of a powerful role like Odette/Odile. But let's face it: We're always thrilled once that Black Swan pas coda arrives. Throwing some triples into its series of 32 fouettés won't make or break a ballerina's performance, but boy, can they dazzle an audience.

All the ballerinas of the Paris Opéra Ballet are renowned for their crystalline precision, honed in the company's notoriously rigorous school. But Isabelle Guérin, an étoile with POB from 1983 to 2001, set an especially high standard for technical purity. The slow, mournful pace of Nikiya's death scene from La Bayadère lets us luxuriate in her flawless lines. Here's a recording of that solo from a 1994 performance in Paris. Happy #ThrowbackThursday!

 

Sarah Jessica Parker has a few identities: Little Orphan Annie, Carrie Bradshaw, and more recently, #1 celebrity ballet advocate. Today from 12–2 pm EST, she will guest host WNYC's Leonard Lopate Show to talk all things ballet. Gelsey Kirkland and Michael Chernov will chat about their Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Ballet.

Beautiful National Ballet of Canada principal Heather Ogden seems to be artists' muse of choice these days. A few months ago, director Ben Shirnian and fellow NBC principal Guillaume Côté released a hypnotic video starring Ogden.

Choreographer and New York City Ballet soloist Justin Peck must be one of the busiest guys in ballet: Somehow he's dancing full-time while also creating what seems like a never-ending string of imaginative new works. His latest for NYCB, Everywhere We Go, premieres May 8. It marks Peck's second time using music by indie darling (and talented classical composer) Sufjan Stevens, and his first time working collaboratively with Stevens on a score.

Most long-running dance shows—"So You Think You Can Dance," "Dance Moms"—are high on drama. AOL On's city.ballet., though, didn't need shock value to get viewers to tune in. That's one reason I'm excited to report that Sarah Jessica Parker's project is getting a second season.

Last night, I attended the final round of Youth America Grand Prix's New York City finals. Every year, I'm overwhelmed by the level of talent at the competition, and this year was no exception. There's nothing more exciting than spotting the stars of tomorrow, today.