3/12/16 O&A NYC DANCE: The Vortex- From Alvin Ailey’s The River

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Jennifer Gelfand performs the Vortex section of Alvin Ailey’s The River. Originally set on American Ballet Theatre in 1970 the work was performed by Gelfand during a tour entitled  Vortex section of Alvin Ailey’s The RiverFernando Bujones and Stars of the Boston Ballet in 1993. The work was set to music by Duke Ellington.  Continue reading

2/22/16 O&A NYC INSPIRATIONAL TUESDAY: Misty Copeland- The Power Of Ballet

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Misty Copeland makes history as the first African-American female principal dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre. Copeland, who came from meager beginnings, became interested in dance at age 13 (usually considered too late for ballet). A true prodigy her talent propelled her to dance en pointe after three months of training and performing within her first year. She shares  her optimism and reflects on her path to stardom.   Continue reading

2/12/16 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: First Look At Misty Copeland Channeling Edgar Degas For Harper’s Bazaar

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Misty Copeland, principal dancer American Ballet Theatre, appears in the March issue of Harper’s Bazaar to recreate iconic ballet inspired paintings and sculpture from impressionist painter Edgar Degas. Congratulations to Copeland for once again disrupting the historical whiteness of ballet. 

56bca4611a00009c01ab2736Copeland as Swaying Dancer (Dancer in Green); Oscar de la Renta dress, $5,490

Photographers Ken Browar and Deborah Ory captured the world-renowned dancer for the eye-catching editorial spread. The resemblance to Degas’ original works of dancers at the Paris Opéra Ballet is uncanny. Copeland nails the graceful poses while dressed in high fashion designs by Valentino, Alexander McQueen, Carolina Herrera, and Oscar de la Renta that look like they were literally plucked from each painting and sculpture.

56bca4091a00009c01ab2735Copeland as Degas’s Dancer; Carolina Herrera top, $1,490, skirt, $4,990

In the article, she explains why she love to dance. “I was drawn to ballet and performing for a reason that I think a lot of people can’t really understand or relate to,” she says. “People think it’s like, ‘You’re out there,’ or ‘You’re exposed.’ But I felt safe when I was on the stage, like no one could get to me. It was the first time in my life that I felt protected.”

56bca4b81800002d0080bc14Copeland as Degas’s Little Dancer Aged Fourteen; Alexander McQueen dress, $4,655, and corset, $4,525

At 33, she’s in the midst of the most illuminating pas de deux with pop culture for a classical dancer since Mikhail Baryshnikov went toe-to-toe with Gregory Hines in White Nights.

56bca3aa1a00009c01ab2734-1Copeland as Swaying Dancer (Dancer in Green); Oscar de la Renta dress, $5,490

Degas’s ballet works, which the artist began creating in the 1860s and continued making until the years before his death, in 1917, were infused with a very modern sensibility.  He offered images of young girls congregating, practicing, laboring, dancing, training, and hanging around studios and the backstage areas of the theater. 

1454957845-hbz-030116-welldegas10Alberta Ferretti dress, $28,090

Copeland is engaged to Olu Evans, an attorney, who she’s been with for more than a decade. They live together in an apartment on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. She admits to an “intensifying” designer-footwear addiction, and while she’s still working out the details of her nuptials, she confesses giddily that Christian Louboutin is making her shoes for the occasion.

1455035644-hbz-030116-welldegas03Roberto Cavalli skirt, price upon request

Misty Copeland- The Art Of Dance

Video shot by Sandy Chase

Photography by Ken Browar and Deborah Ory of the NYC Dance Project

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1/15/16 O&A NYC Shall We Dance Friday: Michaela DePrince

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Michaela DePrince has gone from war orphan to a globally recognized dancer. Her undeniable talent has lead this baby ballerina to American Ballet Theatre, Dance Theatre of Harlem, and the Dutch National Ballet.  Continue reading

12/18/15 O&A Shall We Dance: Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gelsey Kirkland- Nutcracker Grand Pas de Deux

Shall We Dance

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During the 1977 Christmas season, CBS brought Mikhail Baryshnikov’s highly acclaimed American Ballet Theatre production of Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet The Nutcracker to television. The production has remains the most popular and most often shown television production of the work in the U.S.  Mikhail Baryshnikov performed the title role, with Gelsey Kirkland as Clara.
Continue reading

11/6/15 O&A NYC Shall We Dance Friday: Le Jeune Homme et la Mort- Rudolf Nureyev or Mikhail Baryshnikov? You decide

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Le Jeune Homme et la Mort (1946) choreography by Roland Petit, set to Bach’s Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor, BWV 582, with a one-act libretto by Jean Cocteau. The story of a young man driven to suicide by his faithless lover. Two of the most memorable interrupters of the male role (both stage and film) have been Rudolf Nureyev and Mikhail Baryshnikov.  Continue reading

7/14/15 O&A Inspirational Tuesday: Misty Copeland- Dancing Her Dreams

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Misty Copeland stopped by The View on July 6th to discuss her promotion to Principal Dancer at American Ballet Theatre. Copland becomes the first African-American dancer to achieve principal status. In addition O&A NYC Magazine includes Copeland’s 60 Minutes Interview. Continue reading

5/1/15 O&A Shall We Dance Friday- Encore Performance: Le jeune homme et la mort by Roland Petit (Zizi Jeanmaire & Rudolf Nureyev)- 1966

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Le Jeune Homme et La Mort was choreographed by Roland Petit  choreographed in 1946 to Bach’s Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor, BWV 582, with a one-act libretto by Jean Cocteau. It tells the story of a Young Man driven to suicide by his faithless lover. Sets were by George Wakhevitch and costumes variously reported as being by Karinska or Cocteau. Continue reading

2/27/15 Shall We Dance Friday: Diana Vishneva in Moses Pendleton’s F.L.O.W. I, II and III

Shall We Dance

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Diana Vishneva is a Russian ballet dancer who performs as a principal dancer with both the Mariinsky Ballet (formerly the Kirov Ballet) and the American Ballet Theatre. Vishneva’s repertoire includes Don Quixote, Romeo and Juliet, La Bayadère, Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, The Firebird and Giselle. She also performs the works of modern choreographers, especially those of George Balanchine, William Forsythe, Martha Graham, Roland Petit and Moses Pendleton. Continue reading

12/4/14 O&A Shall We Dance: Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gelsey Kirkland- Nutcracker Grand Pas de Deux

Shall We Dance

nutcracker-baryshnikov

During the Christmas season of 1977, CBS brought his highly acclaimed American Ballet Theatre production of Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet The Nutcracker to television. The production has remained to this day the most popular and most often shown television production of the work in the U.S.  Mikhail Baryshnikov performed the title role, with Gelsey Kirkland as Clara.
Continue reading