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Festspielhaus Baden-Baden has published the program for next season. As the usual Mariinsky performances at Christmas are canceled, they will have Bavarian State Ballet with Wheeldon's Cinderella in December 2023. The guest performances of John Neumeier's Hamburg Ballet have turned into a two week ballet festival in autumn, with more performances, lectures and discussions at smaller venues in the spa town, for example at the lovely town theatre and at the Burda Museum. For next season, Hamburg brings Neumeier's latest creation "Dona Nobis Pacem", which premieres this December, and his Sleeping Beauty. In May 2023 they also have the Sao Paulo Dance Company with a mixed bill.

 

https://www.festspielhaus.de/en/program/

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NZZ Magazin published an article on Sunday 23 about Ballettschule Theater Basel, several former students have spoken about misconduct of the school and its staff.    

 

I'm not sure if the article is accessible without free registration, but if you are interested registration requires minimal details and is free.

https://magazin.nzz.ch/nzz-am-sonntag/kultur/man-brach-uns-und-alle-schauten-zu-ld.1708605

 

The discussion whether allegations should only be made via court proceedings and not via journalism extends beyond ballet. Regarding Basel I am not aware of any ongoing legal proceedings.

 

Three points from this article strike me as being noteworthy .... the school admits it is aware of a situation where unacceptable behaviour was evident and steps were taken to remedy a situation, no overall review or adjustment of behaviour across the school was taken, several years later numerous students are speaking out about bad behaviour, a toxic environment and the devastating impact on physical and mental felt by some of the students.

 

Hot on the heels of events at Bejart Lausanne and TAZ Zurich this article now shines a light on Basel BTB....I am now wondering is the Swiss ballet/ballet school world so different to its "European" neighbours, is it the only country with skeletons in its ballet cupboard?  

 

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Thats an interesting thought...I'm not so sure its possible to "dispose" an art form. 

I hope that the Swiss discussion will impact neighbouring countries - Austria Germany France, so that they will also be forced to look inward at their  practices too, 

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25 minutes ago, Suffolkgal said:

Mao’s last wife made a spirited attempt to cancel classical ballet as we know it as Imperialist. 

 

There are people trying to do that today, and succeeding.  Certain classical ballets are now 'offensive' and/or 'imperialist/colonialist' and many ADs don't have the cojones to ignore the loud minority and let the ballets be performed.  I hope this is a temporary state of affairs and that common sense will prevail again.  Otherwise, we will lose much that is beautiful and creative and part of our artistic and cultural heritage.

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5 hours ago, Angela said:

 

You may have heard about the ballet school scandals at Berlin and Vienna.

The "so-called" scandal in Berlin. Wasting hundreds of thousands tax payer Euros for nothing. 🙈

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3 hours ago, Sabine0308 said:

The "so-called" scandal in Berlin. Wasting hundreds of thousands tax payer Euros for nothing. 🙈

 

was it nothing? i have read that no prosecution was upheld but i didn't see a report that actually cleared the school, i think the final investigation has still not been carried out....

i dont believe in the approach of "no smoke without fire" but i am aware there is a huge difference between no prosecution or not guilty in legal parameters compared with not having happened in the world outside courts.

 

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10 hours ago, sillysally said:

 

 

was it nothing? i have read that no prosecution was upheld but i didn't see a report that actually cleared the school, i think the final investigation has still not been carried out....

i dont believe in the approach of "no smoke without fire" but i am aware there is a huge difference between no prosecution or not guilty in legal parameters compared with not having happened in the world outside courts.

 

As far as I know, not a single person spoke in the local labour court against the former school leaders. The judges continued to call it "smoke without fire" throughout all days in court. I'm not saying that there were no reasons for an investigation in the school, but this entire thing went out of control and common sense and certain press did a lot for it.

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Regarding Berlin: Based on what the public knows today, it seems to me absolutely appropriate to talk about a "so-called scandal" at the Berlin school.

 

Facts are: First investigations have been carried out (their results are available on the web since August 2020). Ever since no further (or "final") investigation has been launched. Before the first investigation was completed, the city of Berlin's government fired the school's two directors - and afterwards clearly lost each and every of many lawsuits arising from that.

 

These facts, in my opinion, do not point to an actual scandal at the school but rather to a scandal in the political and social "environment" of the Berlin school in which knowledge, understanding and appreciation of classical dance is not well developed. Which, for example, leads the Berlin government to make a choreographer without any classical knowledge, experience and expertise the co-director of the classically trained State Ballet or an influential Berlin politician to seriously suggesting the State Ballet school schould no longer focus on artistic education... 

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7 minutes ago, HorstVollmer said:

Regarding Berlin: Based on what the public knows today, it seems to me absolutely appropriate to talk about a "so-called scandal" at the Berlin school.

 

Thanks for sharing. Its useful to understand the overall situation. I'm taking the positive from your comments its safe to assume the school environment is supportive, that there is not an atmosphere built on toxic behaviours - such as weight shaming and bullying. 

   

4 hours ago, Sabine0308 said:

The judges continued to call it "smoke without fire"

I didnt know that this standard phrase had been used so my use of this phrase wasn't meant specifically  about this case.  Its a disappointing reality that it is possible to tarnish a reputation without evidence and I'm sorry to hear this wqs the case in Berlin.

 

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3 hours ago, HorstVollmer said:

Regarding Berlin: Based on what the public knows today, it seems to me absolutely appropriate to talk about a "so-called scandal" at the Berlin school.

 

Facts are: First investigations have been carried out (their results are available on the web since August 2020). Ever since no further (or "final") investigation has been launched. Before the first investigation was completed, the city of Berlin's government fired the school's two directors - and afterwards clearly lost each and every of many lawsuits arising from that.

 

These facts, in my opinion, do not point to an actual scandal at the school but rather to a scandal in the political and social "environment" of the Berlin school in which knowledge, understanding and appreciation of classical dance is not well developed. Which, for example, leads the Berlin government to make a choreographer without any classical knowledge, experience and expertise the co-director of the classically trained State Ballet or an influential Berlin politician to seriously suggesting the State Ballet school schould no longer focus on artistic education... 

I agree. However, I remember vividly how the then Berlin Senator for Education Sandra Scheeres (responsible for the ballet school) was delighted and excited onstage, about the accomplishments of the students and especially about founding the "Landesjugendballett Berlin" in 2017. She marvelled about the students, and the teachers and directors in particular and their hard work to make many  performances for the students possible.  2 years later, many of her  accusations were pointed towards the directors exactly about this: "too many performances without enough time to rest for the students, and too many travel costs for the director (to organise the performances also abroad)." Mrs. Scheeres is long gone now, with a nice pension, but the reputation of the two former directors is ruined. Ugh. I stop now. 

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Let's go to more positive news from Ballet in Berlin...today, we as members of the Staatsballett Berlin friends, got to meet the new dancers and fellows who joined Staatsballett Berlin this season. It was a very friendly, relaxed meeting with a lot of fun and also thoughtful remarks by these young people. To avoid rather boring reports on "trained there, done that", the dancers got to pick randomly their "keyword" from a bunch of cards and were asked to tell their thoughts connected with the word. The acting director Christiane Theobald had prepared these cards. It was fun!

Just 2 examples: a guy from Belgium picked the word "tree house" and it turned out that he actually had built a tree house when he was a kid, to the dismay of his Mom who was scared he would fall down.

A funny mismatch was the word "techno" (when in Berlin, there's techno😀). The girl who picked it was laughing, since Techno is certainly not her kind of music and she would never go to a Techno club.

Other words were Berlin, winter, idol, pointe shoes (at this point we learned that dancers in Russia, e.g. Mariinsky, never do class in point shoes, so that was a new experience for the dancer joining SBB from there), mindset, mosquito sting, sunshine, and more.

Now that I'm writing this down it looks boring 😀, but it was really done in a nice, fun and relaxed way.

New dancers (I leave out the ranks, but add where they came from):

Marina Duarte, Vera Segova (from Bayerisches Staatsballett Munich)

David Soares (from Bolshoi Moscow)

Bruna Cantanhede, Erick Swolkin (Bolshoi Moscow)

Lisa Avsjanishvili ( Mariinsky St. Petersburg)

Daniela Thorne, Gregoire Duchevet, Achille De Groeve, Wolf Hoeyberghs, Theo Just, George Susman (all from Junior Ballet Zurich, probably picked by Christian Spuck before coming to Berlin next season)

and

For the Mentorship Programme:

11 fellows (coming in most cases from Staatliche Ballettschule Berlin). 10 Ladies, 1 Gentleman (who surprised us when he said that he began his professional training at age 17 only! he's now 22 - btw he picked the word "dream" and it was certainly a distant dream for him to join a professional ballet company).

 

I liked this evening a lot and was also delighted to see such strong personalities in the dancers. 

 

Edited by Sabine0308
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10 hours ago, Sabine0308 said:

Let's go to more positive news from Ballet in Berlin...today, we as members of the Staatsballett Berlin friends, got to meet the new dancers and fellows who joined Staatsballett Berlin this season. It was a very friendly, relaxed meeting with a lot of fun and also thoughtful remarks by these young people. To avoid rather boring reports on "trained there, done that", the dancers got to pick randomly their "keyword" from a bunch of cards and were asked to tell their thoughts connected with the word. The acting director Christiane Theobald had prepared these cards. It was fun!

Just 2 examples: a guy from Belgium picked the word "tree house" and it turned out that he actually had built a tree house when he was a kid, to the dismay of his Mom who was scared he would fall down.

A funny mismatch was the word "techno" (when in Berlin, there's techno😀). The girl who picked it was laughing, since Techno is certainly not her kind of music and she would never go to a Techno club.

Other words were Berlin, winter, idol, pointe shoes (at this point we learned that dancers in Russia, e.g. Mariinsky, never do class in point shoes, so that was a new experience for the dancer joining SBB from there), mindset, mosquito sting, sunshine, and more.

Now that I'm writing this down it looks boring 😀, but it was really done in a nice, fun and relaxed way.

New dancers (I leave out the ranks, but add where they came from):

Marina Duarte, Vera Segova (from Bayerisches Staatsballett Munich)

David Soares (from Bolshoi Moscow)

Bruna Cantanhede, Erick Swolkin (Bolshoi Moscow)

Lisa Avsjanishvili ( Mariinsky St. Petersburg)

Daniela Thorne, Gregoire Duchevet, Achille De Groeve, Wolf Hoeyberghs, Theo Just, George Susman (all from Junior Ballet Zurich, probably picked by Christian Spuck before coming to Berlin next season)

and

For the Mentorship Programme:

11 fellows (coming in most cases from Staatliche Ballettschule Berlin). 10 Ladies, 1 Gentleman (who surprised us when he said that he began his professional training at age 17 only! he's now 22 - btw he picked the word "dream" and it was certainly a distant dream for him to join a professional ballet company).

 

I liked this evening a lot and was also delighted to see such strong personalities in the dancers. 

 

I thought David Soares was a very elegant dancer when I saw him at the Bolshoi (not live, just via youtube) so will be interested to read your reports if you go to see him Sabine. 

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10 hours ago, annamk said:

I thought David Soares was a very elegant dancer when I saw him at the Bolshoi (not live, just via youtube) so will be interested to read your reports if you go to see him Sabine. 

I saw his debut in Marcia Haydee's "Sleeping Beauty" here, alongside Ksenya Ovsjanik. And a rehearsal for "Giselle". Let's say I saw the potential, his beautiful long lines, a good technique, e.g. great manege jumps, but I also missed the passion/soul. I understand that it takes some time to settle in a new country, city, company,  being alone without the partner, so I will definitely go and see him again.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Reminder:

Livestream for Cinderella with Bayerisches Staatsballett:

Sunday November 13, 2022, 4 pm Munich time

-for free, worldwide available-

(Video on demand Nov 19 for free as well, for 24 hours)

Main Cast:

Cinderella- Madison Young

Prince Guillome - Julian Mackay

Benjamin - Shale Wagman

(I've seen it yesterday live. Looking forward to your opinions).

 

Link with info:

https://www.staatsoper.de/en/livestream-cinderella

Edited by Sabine0308
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4 hours ago, Sabine0308 said:

Reminder:

Livestream for Cinderella with Bayerisches Staatsballett:

Sunday November 13, 2022, 4 pm Munich time

-for free, worldwide available-

(Video on demand Nov 19 for free as well, for 24 hours)

Main Cast:

Cinderella- Madison Young

Prince Guillome - Julian Mackay

Benjamin - Shale Wagman

(I've seen it yesterday live. Looking forward to your opinions).

 

Link with info:

https://www.staatsoper.de/en/livestream-cinderella

Did you go to the live performance Sabine ? 

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Marcelo Gomes becomes new AD with Semperoper Ballett Dresden, for season 23/24 so far.

He is principal dancer and balletmaster in Dresden. 

In German only:

https://www.sueddeutsche.de/kultur/tanz-dresden-marcelo-gomes-wird-chef-des-semperoper-balletts-dpa.urn-newsml-dpa-com-20090101-221118-99-572130

Edited by Sabine0308
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