there is only now

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I am such a huge fan of New York City Ballet’s 2016-2017 campaign.  It’s somehow both hauntingly timeless and incredibly current; a breathing incantation of Balanchine’s mantra “There is only now.”  The captivating video and stunning photos by Peter Lindbergh are just dreamy, and his musings on the special art of capturing ballet dancers are truly poetic…New-York-City-Ballet-2016-2017-03.jpgnew-york-city-ballet-2016-2017-07New-York-City-Ballet-2016-2017-06.jpgnew-york-city-ballet-2016-2017-01new-york-city-ballet-2016-2017-02-762x1024New-York-City-Ballet-2016-2017-04.jpg

“With dance, it is about capturing movement, which is everything I love.  It leaves space for the unexpected, as the same movement is never twice the same.”

-Peter Lindbergh

from the h o u s e

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Ballet is a living art form.  Its makers do not produce something to be hung and admired, used, or stored for the enjoyment of a future audience.  It is breathing and fleeting.  After a step has been made, so too it has vanished.  When a performance concludes, all that is left is a memory.

What a magical thing then, when another artist, in this case a photographer, is able to catch a bit of that living art and preserve it in time.  I am grateful to any brave soul who attempts the frustrating task of photographing moving art- especially one as precise and with such perfectionist authors as ballet dancers-  so much so, that I am able (in most instances, ha) to overlook technical imperfections and admire, commend, and spread the beauty such carefully captured art.

A small collection of photographs taken at a dress rehearsal, by the courageous and talented Saulius Ke

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theatre thoughts

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home is where the house faces

and up on high the white light traces

a hallow box the wing embraces

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home is where the curtain rises

to a careful grid of our varied sizes

we look, line, breathe and hope distance disguises

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home is where the booms stack and glow

creative floods do steady flow

and nurtured artists bloom and grow

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home is where the gold molding frames

setting and seating change their names

but forever our sanctuary the theatre remains.

{sleepy theatre thoughts by me | awesome dress rehearsal photos by Jacob Hoover}

 

whirlwind

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in a whirl of tulle

and white lights

and lace

rosin’d pointes rock away

sticky grid lock

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parties move on

from Silberhaus to 

my own

a growing tree stacks its dust

where festive bulbs

once shone

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flower petals brown

in dark skips where

they lie

whispering of stale sweets

and waltzes 

gone by

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gauzy ghosts of dancers

now wisp in 

their place

flooding the empty theater

with a harrowed

hallow grace

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final bits of chalky snow

flake away and off

the stage

a calendar completely cracked

it must be time to turn

the page…

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creepy poetry by a sleepy me, photos of FBP dancers by the talented Jacob Hoover.

for more from Mr. Hoover and his ultra cool camera, head on over here.

apollon musagéte

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history, mythology
symbolism wrapped in white
the Youth of Zeus, both god and muse
wheeling in circles toward the light
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artistic divinity, physical symmetry
curator of beauty, movement and word
collector of gesture, youth under pressure
born fresh to a body fore matured

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flexed hands, open hips
collect more space in less time
mice that flinch and toes a-ginch
3 muses scatter a musical rhyme
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Mr. B’s revolving mirrors
simple steps with precise execution
chariots, chains, clocks and trains
final apotheosis: elevated resolution.
– from the mind of Kirsten, channeling Calliope
Apollo choreography by George Balanchine thanks to the George Balanchine Trust©
photos by Melissa Wong.

ballet with a bend

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Today is the day!  I’m very excited to finally share the music video for The Bynar’s Time vs. Money.  We worked so hard to create this, and I think the final product tells that story itself.  I am beyond proud to have been a part of this project, and hope you all enjoy watching.

caged

Infamous street artist, JR (you know, the one responsible for the NYCB installations at the Koch Theater), is at it again.  This time, the French artist known for his large-scale black and white images flyposted around the streets of Paris, brings us Bird Ballerina.  In this wheatpaper piece, a ballerina sits behind the “bars” of nine shipping containers in the Port Le Havre in France.  The resulting image is hauntingly beautiful, an unmistakable sadness exuding from the caged ballerina who patiently awaits her release.BirdBallerina_01 BirdBallerina_02 BirdBallerina_03 BirdBallerina_04

via Honestly WTF

lights, camera

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“What time is it?”

“You know what, I have absolutely no idea.  We’ve been in this black hole for so many hours…is it still Wednesday?”

-A and I at 3:30 pm 3 Wednesdays ago, volleying exhausted sentiments at the end of a 6-hour dance day.  The studio that we spend our lives in had been completely blacked out for our viedo shoot.  Dark curtains covered the big windows, the fluorescent lights were extinguished- there would be nothing for the strangely live dust bunnies to cling to but the fierce lights that spotted us, most times from behind.  With the free Seven Stars lunch (possibly the highlight of an already exceptionally interesting day) still fresh in our gracious mouths, A and I pondered the allusive hour, realized what a long time we had been working for, and exchanged an unplanned nod of pride towards each other.  We had one segment left to shoot, and it was, without a conference, our favorite.

Stepping back into the center of the studio, we took our positions for the “spinny sequence”, between a backpack-sized camera and one blinding spotlight.  As we danced our last section, the two objects moved on human legs, slowly circling around us, mimicking our revolution.  Now this is a real black hole, A and I agreed with our eyes.  Just keep spinning, one more take, and we might be released from it’s spiraling suction.

“That’s a wrap!”, the director led our celebratory applause before embarking on his round of handshakes and high fives.  It was the second week of summer and already we’d filmed a music video- talk about starting off the new season with a bang.

Stay tuned for updates as the music video for Boston’s own, The Bynars, “Time vs. Money”, progresses through editing and into it’s final cut.  Can’t wait until the launch and premiere, so I can finally share the full project!

photo stills from Time vs. Money, via Shaun Clarke

black/white

Last night, I had the pleasure of attending Festival Ballet Providence’s Black & White fundraising gala event.  Let me just say now- I live for these things.  Fancy dresses, high heels, sparkly jewels, dramatic makeup, delicious food, dainty desserts, dancing…check, check, check, checkcheckcheckcheck aaaaand check.  This gala was particularly enjoyable because it was spent with all of my best girlfriends AND we got to help raise money for our company.  Win win?  I’d say so.