moving me

IMG_7312This bitter earth
Well, what a fruit it bearsIMG_7314What good is love
Mmh, that no one shares?IMG_7313 2And if my life is like the dust
Ooh, that hides the glow of a roseIMG_7317What good am I?
Heaven only knowsIMG_7311Oh, this bitter earth
Yes, can it be so cold?IMG_7315Today you’re young
Too soon you’re oldIMG_7316But while a voice
Within me criesIMG_7319I’m sure someone
May answer my callIMG_7318And this bitter earth, ooh
May not, oh be so bitter after all

This Bitter Earth
Dinah Washington
Snapshots of rehearsal for the contemporary solo from Christopher Wheeldon’s Five Movements, Three Repeats (thanks, Aza), originally created on the incredible Fang-Yi Sheu at the Vail Dance Festival. One of those five movements is the ballet-famous “Bitter Earth Pas”. Have you seen it? It was made for Wendy Whelan and Tyler Angle, and it is truly breathtaking. Each and every time I hear this song, I find myself teary in the wings tuning into the lyrics as I wait for the third repeat.
The piece began as a mutual “fan-girling” between Fang-Yi Sheu and Wendy Whelan (former principals of Martha Graham Dance and New York City Ballet, respectively). This mini-documentary (thanks, Melissa!) gives a nice background of the collaboration and creation process. What is it about watching masters watch other masters shape their craft? So inspiring.

 

If you’d like to be moved too, come and see this weightless work live at Up Close On Hope. Tickets here.

that’s a wrap

IMG_4154

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Two weeks from today marks opening night of Nutcracker and the first official day of winter. But dancers know Nutcracker season is already in full swing, and New Englanders (or other cold-weather-dwellers) know winter has indeed arrived.

Early sunsets and extended studio hours make for chilly ballerinas. Luckily, my absolute favorite dancewear brand, RubiaWear, has us covered. Literally. Hehe.

IMG_4173.JPG

I firmly believe everything Ashley Ellis touches turns to gold. The RubiaWear creator and Boston Ballet principal dancer has been growing her collection of ultra-soft and flattering warm ups (which began as a range of legwarmers), and I am all about it. I’ve waxed poetic on the perfection of Rubia legwarmers in the past, but have I introduced you to the Cora wrap?

IMG_4152

Made from the softest fabric in a rainbow of color options, the Cora is cut to the perfect long-enough-to-warm-you-up but short-enough-to-keep-things-light way that Ashley’s designs seem to nail every time. The cozy wrap multitasks as much as its maker, lending itself to a whole gamut of various functions. While I tend to wear it doubled up around my hips, I’ve also been known to circle it around my neck when my shoulders feel stiff, or blanket it over my knees backstage.

Versatility, coziness, and a ballerina-run business. Win, win, win, as they say.

Curious about Cora? Check out my chat with Ashley here and browse the full RubiaWear line here.

back to the stage

Processed with VSCO with b1 preset

Beethoven, Phillip Glass, unauthored cacophonies, but first ballet class…

This weekend I will (finally!) perform in my first real program of the season! That’s seven longs months offstage, folks. Despite last minute adjustments in choreography, costumes, timing, spacing (you know, the usual), I am feeling emotionally r e a d y. I’m dancing Plotnikov, Kozadayev, Yanowsky, and Douglas. Ooof, now say that all five times fast…

So tonight’s the night. It’s about dang time. Let’s do this thing. Go get ’em, tiger. And all those other clichés. See you on the other side.

 

Photo by Dylan Giles.

teenage dreams

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetIMG_1091

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

2C4118CE-A44C-422A-80E9-B6B2EBD972BE.JPGProcessed with VSCO with a5 preset

I imagine you are engaged, it’s an excitingly expectant time. Still young, but with big plans.

You take the train into the beantown, you fall asleep next to him on the way. You get off at Ruggles.

You #shoplocal. Fancy chocolate has been procured for later that evening.

You check into a spaceship yotel. There is a convenient rooftop bar. It happens to be sunset. Red wine and tortilla chips are had.

Your favorite band- the one with lyrics that made you want to become a writer- is playing just a few blocks away in a beautiful historic theater. You have tickets in row D.

The lead singer gets behind the piano, he’s about to play your favorite song. The one that makes you cry when you’re not sad, not happy.

They rock. You dance. They close the concert with your boo song. Everyone sings. I need you so much closer…

Back at the yotel, there are fun lights to play with. There is popcorn and seltzer. There is The Parent Trap on TV.

You are complete in the simplest, yet most cosmic of ways.

we bought a house

49A0004F-F79A-46E1-BC73-D055967536FA.JPG

on a windy monday

at the end of september

we all shook hands

and signed legal tender

 

with shiny new keys

and dusty cake toppers

turning box after box

into cardboard door stoppers

 

surrounded by trees

and a block all our own

in a little blue place

called fourteen gorton

 

we’re hanging our shirts

and stacking our glasses

making plans to stay home

while this autumn rain passes

 

gooey pumpkin loaf

in our fancy new oven

and a purring dishwasher

keeping all of the suds in

 

we’re warming the hearth

and decorating the rest

two birds flew the coop

now we have our own nest.

ninety degrees in the eternal city

IMG_7580IMG_7583

IMG_7593

IMG_6127

IMG_6287IMG_5790

IMG_7520IMG_6305

The weather has been…well, sweaty here in Providence, and it’s bringing back sweet, sticky memories of hot, hot Roma. I suppose it’s about time I got down to sharing my Italy photo diary, so here goes Day 1.

Four days in Rome. A claustrophobic climb to the top of St. Paul’s Basilica rewarded us with a stunning terra cotta panoramic of the city, Rome reflecting the sun with its warm, glowing tettos. The Sistine Chapel, The Trevi Fountain, The Spanish Steps…no historic stone unturned, I assure you.

Days of sweaty sight-seeing in Cathedral-appropriate attire spilled into cold showers, apertivo, and cobblestone strolls to this piazza or that. Many a family dinner, with 2 pizzas for the table, vino flowing from one end of the table to the other and back again, children’s choirs spontaneously rising behind us, a lone cellist filling the hour with that warm, sweeping sound.

IMG_7511IMG_7512IMG_7514 2

 

 

last 3 photos by Michael Collins.