Blogs

Calling all high school-aged dancers! On Tuesday, the National YoungArts Foundation announced that the application to become a 2016 YoungArts Winner is now open. Since 1981, the nonprofit has nurtured and supported promising young talent in the visual, literary, design and performing arts.

 

The Boston dance community is coming together on April 25 to remember the life and legacy of Samuel Kurkjian at the Walnut Hill School of the Arts’ Keiter Center in Natick, MA. Kurkjian, who died in 2013, joined the Boston Ballet in 1968 as a principal dancer and ballet master, eventually becoming the company’s first resident choreographer. He later joined the staff of Walnut Hill, where he was a beloved member of the faculty for 35 years.

 

Whoever thinks dancing is a selfish profession hasn't met New York City Ballet principal Daniel Ulbricht. Once again, he’s joining forces with the American Cancer Society for his annual Dance Against Cancer benefit on April 27 in New York City.

Plains Midstream Canada, an energy company located in Calgary, Alberta, will sponsor a new international partnership between Alberta Ballet and Houston Ballet. Though Alberta Ballet is Canada's second largest ballet company, the organization is seeking to raise its international profile. Houston Ballet will perform in Edmonton and Calgary in late April and early May, while Alberta Ballet performed in Houston in January, 2015. At that point, it wasn't clear that the tour would develop into its current partnership between the companies.

In what's proving to be a year of many ballerina retirements, Paris Ópera Ballet star Aurélie Dupont has announced that she will step down from the company next month. The 42-year-old dancer has been with the Ópera for 32 years, and has been an étoile for 17 of them. Her final performance on May 18, in L’Histoire de Manon, will reach an audience far beyond Paris: It will be shown in 350 cinemas throughout Europe, and later screened in 100 theaters in the U.S. and Canada.

For the last week, New York City has been teeming with bunheads, here to compete for over $300,000 in scholarships at Youth America Grand Prix. Out of 7,000 dancers who competed in regional semi-finals, 350 were selected as NYC finalists, with over 70 moving forward to Wednesday night’s final round. The winners were announced publicly yesterday evening and given a chance to perform one last time during YAGP’s glittering “Stars of Today Meet the Stars of Tomorrow” gala at Lincoln Center—and they did not disappoint.

A great ballerina holds an immense amount of power: She can adopt any role and become another being, using movement as the ultimate means of expression. Some of the greatest ballerinas of the 20th century have honed this skill, but few have become as powerful an icon as the Mariinsky Ballet's Galina Ulanova. Named by Joseph Stalin as prima ballerina assoluta, Ulanova became the masthead for Russian ballet in the former Soviet Union.

Justin Peck, the prolific resident choreographer at New York City Ballet, was recently profiled on CBS news. The piece features performance and rehearsal clips from several of his newest creations: 'Rōdē,ō: Four Dance Episodes, Belles-Lettres, Heatscape (choreographed for Miami City Ballet) and scenes from the documentary film Ballet 422.