International ballet competitions have become a somewhat necessary evil in the ballet world. Brought to popular culture’s attention by movies such as First Position, they are, by all accounts, high impact events. Artistic directors from world-famous ballet companies line the judging panels to the watch ballet’s rising stars train, perform and compete. The competitors, usually between 15-18 years of age, are devoted individuals, likely type-A personalities, who have already put in years of training. But the exposure of such competitions is priceless. Best case, these young men and women will secure a scholarship to a company school or generous cash prizes to further their training. Worst case, they’ll make a lasting impression in an artistic director’s sub-conscious, ready for audition season.
Genée gold medalist Maeve Nolan. Photograph by Winkipop Media, courtesy of the Royal Academy of Dance
The son of a painter and a set designer, director/choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot was, it seems, destined to have a life in the theater. Born and raised in Tours, in central France, in 1960, he studied dance and piano at the Conservatoire Nacional de Région de Tours before joining the Rosella Hightower International School of Dance in Cannes.Continue Reading
One would think that a dance inspired by the events of the January 6 insurrection—yes, a dance!—would not be the ideal stuff of theater, but the eight members of Laurie Sefton Creates (formerly Clairobscur Dance Company), succeeded in giving life to Sefton’s premiere “Herd. Person?”, while the dance, itself, was occasionally problematic.Continue Reading