I quickly got a ticket on-line for the new documentary Restless Creature. I was given the heads up and a link by a dear ballet lover who said, “I cried so much, Wendy is amazing, I had to see the film twice!”
I was so appreciate of the quiet and peace at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. I was compelled to immediately instagram my feelings for Wendy in the form of a letter. “Still teary eyed,
I’m so moved by your commitment, heart and soul, your mental keen focus, your vision, your passion. I’m generally not one that can watch an operation and procedure but I did because it made it even more special to see you physically and emotionally process, press through and come out with hope, faith and determination. Next time I am honored to see you, I’d love to give you a big hug:)”
Restless Creature is an intimate first hand account of Wendy’s career as a dancer from the beginning as a child who always dreamed of becoming a ballerina, who took classes in Kentucky, and who was encouraged by one of her ballet teachers who saw what her fans see, “a high energy coltish physicality.” Wendy moved to NYC at the age of 15 and joined SAB. The rest is history.
During the film, watching her dance Liturgy, a ballet specifically choreographed for her in 2014, her final appearance as a NYCB principal, moved me to tears.
It thrills me to no end that Wendy has continued to work with Brian Brooks, a modern dance choreographer and dancer. I watched with awe Wendy up close and personal during the Dany Studio, Joyce Theater, “Choreographers and Cocktails” in October 2017. February 2017 Wendy and Brian Brooks performed “Some of a Thousand Words.” How is it possible, especially after serious surgeries that she is so able to be so agile, strong, creative, playful. To see her dance is an utter treat. Wendy is so charming and approachable and connected powerfully to herself, Brian and her audience. I loved her exchanges with Brian Brooks, their body language. There’s so much trust and faith when she “fell into his embrace” so many times.
Awesome, Amazing, Iconic, a sweetheart from Louisville Kentucky that’s going to be thrilling us for a loooong time!
"Whipped Cream is one of the most high spirited and fun productions I've ever seen!" (Charles M. Adelman). This is a beautiful production with innovative creative costumes and sets. Daniil Simkin who plays The Boy, is simply delightful, wonderfully engaging and an incredibly talented dancer. As Mademoiselle Marianne Chartreuse, Catherine Hurlin is terrifically adorable, funny and popped off of the stage! Denise Roberts Hurlin, your daughter is a charmer.. How proud you must be! Bring the kiddies to this production- It's Whipped Creamy delightful!
I was honored to be one of many generous auction donors on this extraordinary evening. I donated a package of my book, a one hour life coaching session, and my mindful self care workshop for the winner and nine of his or her friends! This was an incredibly moving evening and fund raising event for the American Cancer Society
DAC is a tribute and fundraising event hosted by New York City Ballet principal Daniel Ulbricht and dancer Erin Fogerty. Daniel and Erin are heartfelt and committed to make a difference. They have raised well over $1 million for the American Cancer Society! There were 15 dance numbers and dancers represented from New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Miami City Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem, Alvin Ailey dance, Broadway Dance Lab and Dorrance Dance.
My daughter Samara, a life coach accompanied me and she was thrilled to sit next to a former New York City ballet dancer Vincent who was absolutely charming.Each dancer shared who they were honoring, who have been affected, still struggling with and lost to cancer.
My eyes welled up. Here is a smattering of the evening highlights.
Maria Kowroski and Jared Angle both from the New York City Ballet with choreography by Christopher Wheeldon. I was struck by Maria's grace, fluidity, and strength. Jaren and Maria were beautiful together.
House of the Rising Sun
Daniel Ulbricht and Joseph Gatti we're dressed in black shirt and black jeans and danced dynamically, aggressively to music by “The Animals.” I love Marcelo Gomes’s innovative and fresh choreography.
I admit I'm biased. I love tap dancing and Michelle Dorrance is the consummate phenomenal innovative, creative tapper. Michelle along with Anthony Morigerato tabooed their hearts out and received a standing ovation.
Smooth Criminal With music by Michael Jackson
Ballroom Dancers Denys Drozdyuk and Antonia Skobina rocked the house. Their dancing was exhilarating, exciting, mind blowing and phenomenal. I spoke with them at the after party and I learned so much more about their collaboration and commitment.
Ashley Bouder and Daniel Ulbricht have been dancing with each other since they were children at the School of American Ballet. They danced tonight with ease and a joyous fun lightness of being. I loved Daniel's antics, athleticism, and Ashley's strength and resilience. Their smiles closed the evening performances with an upbeat, hopeful aura.
The Final Bows
The After Party
How wonderful it was to chat with the performers. I had an opportunity to chat with Ashley Bouder. Ashley is a strong voice and presence for all female choreographers and dancers. I love listening to an empowered, strong, woman. Her daughter, Voilet Storm is one year old.
Sara Mearns, Tiler Peck, Sterling Hyltin, Gonzalo Garcia, and Abi Stafford danced in ethereal costumes to a breathtaking backdrop of pictures in an exhibition. The backdrop melded with their costumes - I thought to myself, "where do my eyes want to go now?" Ratmanski has a way of being structured, focused, exacting, filled with passion and letting his dancers cut loose with joy and free spiritedness.
I know Alexi Ratmansky is married, but I'm having a love affair with his choreography. His experience, intensity, his vision, his expectations, his exacting style is intense, passionate, gorgeous and Russian! He knows what he wants. He wants the most out of his dancers and his dancers want to give their all to him. What a beautiful marriage.
Today, I was blessed with seeing principal Sterling Hyltin, Sara Mearns, Tyler Peck, Joaquin De Luz, Amar Ramasar, Taylor Stanley and a very talented on point Corps. Imagine Isaac Babel's tales of Jewish gangsters in Odessa Russia during the Russian revolution. Ratmansky engages with his audience via his choreography with seriousness juxtaposed with humor and whimsy. This is Ratmansky’s fifth work for New York City Ballet. I can't wait for the 2017-18 season. I can't get enough of Ratmansky!
Well over 40 Ballets Spring 2017 season have been performed by New York City Ballet Spring Season. These are some of my favorites!
Today I saw “For Clara” for the second time. Lauren Lovett's work of art continues to flourish and grow even more beautiful and dynamic, just like her. I had the pleasure to chat with Lauren and Leslie Curtis during intermission. Lauren is such a talent beyond measure. Today she was focused on bringing her creation to its highest form. I admire her commitment, tenacity and loving spirit.
Principles Emily Garrity, Unity Phelan, Indiana Woodward, Andrew Veyette, Chase Finlay and the Corps were dynamic and flowing
A memorable night shared with Charlie Debbi Adelman.... Ashley Bouder Sara Mearns Jared Angle Harrison Coll -Troy Schumacher all from NYCB. Great up close and personal at Ballet Hispanico Studios. Great dancing and conversation all for Dancers and Patrons responding to Aids. A delight to meet and chat with Alison. Can't wait for her Dance Company studio performance at City Center 5-20 7:30pm
"What an exciting event!"
It's 20 years since the Chicago based Joffrey Ballet left New York
I'm thrilled that They're Back March 29th-April 2nd in NY at the Koch theater performing beautifully under the artistic director Ashley Wheater.
The company performed three fabulous dances, Bells, Body of your dreams, and Fools Paradise.
I was so impressed by the company, their versatility, depth of talent and on stage presence.
I was equally impressed by Ashley Wheater, one of the honorees at the dinner.
He cares so much about his company, his dancers and at some point, he was moved to tears.
My spouse Larry and I are truly blessed for the invite by our dear friends Charlie and Deborah Adelman, Gala Vice-Chairs for this magical evening.
New Chamber Ballet Studio 5 City Center: Choreography by Miro Maglior
I was so amazingly excited to see Amber Neff's entwined and making an "A!!" As some of you know I'm a major dance enthusiast! It's my heart passion my soul! I wear an "A"charm around my neck. On close inspection you'll see that it's two dancers coming together in a solid gold "A"making an A for Arden, as Amber Neff has sweetly shared a number of times with me:) The A's go on and on. Dancers are Awesome Amazing Admirable Acrobatic Approachable and my go to A-Team!
I admit, I'm hooked! Why not?
Becoming friends, chatting, supporting new works and seeing a thought from a choreographer become a dance is truly chilling and goose bump worthy.
I love being uplifted and inspired. I am truly grateful and appreciative for every opportunity I have had to participate in this amazing world
I was so excited, I asked my husband to take a picture of me in the car!
Walking down the “lilac carpet” was a blast! My picture was taken at the entry to the Koch theater! Boy did I feel extra-special!
The Who’s Who of the dance and fashion world was there. I spied with my little eye, Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick. Here’s a fab picture of the stunning Sarah Jessica in her finery with Richard Kielar! Just love her. She was the co-chairwoman of this amazing event!
I was so blessed to be invited to the Pre- Reception by Charlie and Debbi Adelman.
As I was chatting with my dance pals Charlie and Debbi Adelman, a woman brushed up against me. Charlie said, Do you know who that is? Before I could get the words out of my mouth he said, that’s Julianna Margolis, the lead actress, from the Good Wife. He was excited. She was wearing a beautiful black lace dress. Yes I know it’s about dance right, but once SJP is involved it becomes a fashion eventful experience of a higher order!!!
Tommy Tune, the renowned choreographer was there. He can’t be missed all 6 foot 4 plus of him. I couldn’t help myself and said to him that I loved him in Will Rogers Follies some 35 plus years ago. He thought a bit, then politely smiled and thanked me
Now onto a highlight for me from the performance. Lauren Lovette, NYCB, principal ballerina had her choreographic premiere of her brand new ballet, “For Clara.” I was so pleased and proud for her!
It’s always super special when you know a person. I’ve met Lauren a few times. She’s so authentic, super talented and just a gal who puts it all out there.
What a fabulous night to remember!!!!
Emery is a choreographer and dancer I support and call friend. She is innovative, talented, a kind, warm gal with a winning smile who lights up the room. I last saw her troupe perform beautifully at Jacob’s Pillow (See Come Dance With Us Blog) and can’t wait to see Emery!
I shared with Emery that I am in the midst of interviewing dancers and choreographers for my Dance book. She graciously met me at a local cool coffee shop and told me all about her passion: Dance! I asked her to reflect on what she felt would be important to include in my book for new dancers and what she wished she knew in the midst of her personal training?
Emery is originally from Charlotte North Carolina. She is the sister of Megan LeChrone, who is a principal of New York City Ballet. Both sister were trained and boarded at the School of American Ballet in Manhattan. Megan went on to apprentice at NYCB, while Emery decided to return home to Patricia McBride’s Ballet School in North Carolina.”
Emery: “I felt too pressured at SAB. There was too much of an emphasis on body type. For a young dancer it’s a confusing world of perfection. It’s important to have a good body image, to nourish one’s mind, body and spirit.
Me: When I asked about the proliferation of eating disorders and ballet?
Emery: I knew many dancers struggling with eating disorders. I didn’t want to go down that road.
She smiled as she shared that her Mom was a cheerleader and her Dad a quarterback, that they had their “dance moves.” That dancing was a natural, in the gene pool.
Emery: “I wish I had access to Mindfulness, Yoga and Pilates. I didn’t know about the importance of replenishing myself. Now she knows better and believes younger dancers need to continue to move in that direction.
Emery finds a balance between being a freelance dancer and choreographer. She has danced at the MET a number of times and became friends with her peers and formed the Emery LeChrone Dance Troupe.
Emery: “As a choreographer, I love how I can choose my own dancers, costumes and create new choreography.” Emery has choreographed and danced for the New Chamber Ballet at City Center as well.
Me: Who are your idols Emery?
Emery: “Russian Prima ballerina, Natalia Makarova and Julie Kent, a former NYCB Principal now retired. I love how Julie hones in on finding your beauty within. I admire them both!”
Me: How important is the practice of mindfulness in your daily life and your troupe?
Emery: I practice mindfulness everyday and integrate that into my troupe. Dancers need to be aware of self care, taking the time to have an outside inspirational life, and loving their body. It's imperative for a dancer to be focused on self care. Specifically about resting time, hydrating and nourishing oneself, and accepting and appreciating the body.
What a glorious day with Mahri founder of Body Conceptions. She is fabulous dancer and personal trainer who owns her innovative company. Mahri is the founder and works with eight additional trainers. She's all about Mind Body Spirit mindful self care and self acceptance.
I have gotten to know Mahri and her beautiful caring in your essence. I also gave my mindful self-care: YOU are your MOST significant other workshop to her and her wonderful trainers.
Today Mahri is training Todd, Nisha and Samara, our very launched and grown adult Children, on the deck, in Montauk NY.
They had quite the fun workout!
Enjoy the videos!
Man Woman and Violin!: Emily Schoen Tyler Phillips
July 26th, Tuesday rehearsal for Jacobs Pillow Inside/Out this evening July 27th, on the beautiful outdoor stage. Thrilled to see Emily dance with her talented partner. The concert master Violinist of Les Miz played a melodic Bach solo.
Emily I'm so proud of your choreographic prowess.
Maria Kistner Conti (concert master for Les Miz)
Bach Partita number 3
Moving riveting fluidly danced
Such talented dancers
Break a leg Emily at Jacobs Pillow
Just Sara Mearns rehearsing for Swan Lake
Yay she's Odette Odile at our matinee today
I’m so excited to be with Priya Malani.
During the performance Priya and I welled up.
Sara Mearns is the consummate prima ballerina,
Technically always on point and dramatically riveting!
"The Innermost Part Of Something" at Alvin Ailey Dance November 14, 2015. Emery LeChrone, a wonderfully talented choreographer, that I adore and support and her talented dance troupe.
First performed at The Joyce 8-13-2015
Keep you all posted for next performance my friends!!!
Miro Magloire’s New Chamber Ballet has produced contemporary ballets notable for their innovative pas de deux movements since its conception: the company’s spring 2016 season was no exception. The audience’s close proximity to the spectacular talents of violinist Doori Na and pianist Melody Fader created an atmosphere of intimacy in the City Center studio, drawing onlookers into the performance, and the bill for the evening included pieces by resident guest choreographer Constantine Baecher in addition to works by Magloire. The company’s return to one of its first ballets, “Silk”, ten years after its first performance is not only testament to the longevity of the company’s success and the timelessness of Magloire’s choreography, but reveals that the company has maintained its tight-knit ‘chamber’ style over years of changes in dancers. The evening culminated with “Djazz,” a ballet with movements somewhat reminiscent of those in Balanchine’s “Who Cares?”, unsurprising considering “Djazz” is set to music by Maurice Ravel, a musician greatly influenced by George Gershwin. The fluidity and movement of the dancers’ fringe-lined leotards complemented Magloire’s choreography perfectly making “Djazz” the stand out piece of the evening.
Choreographers for the Fall 2016 New York Choreographic Institute: D Level School of American Ballet Student Gianna Reisen, Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Price Suddarth and Miami City Ballet’s Eric Trope.
So proud of Gianna, Price, and Eric for being selected as the choreographers for the Fall 2016 New York Choreographic Institute. The Choreographic Institute offers a truly golden opportunity for these three aspiring choreographers, giving them the chance to have their pieces recognized by the broader ballet community, with past Choreographic Institute pieces being developed into full ballets for companies such as New York City Ballet. Given full access to dancers, and costumers, and free reign over lighting and music, these young dancers will choreograph short pieces for the institute: a nerve racking task considering the pieces are set to be performed in front of highly respected board members, and influential members of the ballet community such as Peter Martins. Best of luck to the 2016 choreographers!
What makes an evening magical? It’s the company you keep! I always treasure pre-theater dinner with my dance buds, Charlie and Debbi. Tonight some great additions, my daughter Samara, age 26, Debbi’s daughter Karen, 30ish her musician boyfriend Nate. It was so cool to listen to them sing. Live band Karoke here they come!
After the very lively “Country Dances,” there was one of two intermissions. Samara spotted Ms. Twyla Tharp who was sitting a few seats away. How wonderful to have such close access to complement her, which I unselfconsciously did. She is an award winning Icon with a 40 year resume of accolades, major award winning recognition and success!
As a dance aficionado and a passionate dance lover, not a reviewer, I admit I have tremendous admiration for every dancer who makes challenging choreography look “easy and flowing.”
“Country Dances” was cutesy, fun and very lively. Seeing John Selya dance was a happy throwback to Billy Joel’s Broadway Musical, “Movin On Out,” which he starred in. He still has the moves and the razzmatazz!
I realize the NY Times Wednesday July 13th review was a bit unpleasant of the NY Premiere of “Beethoven Opus 130,” however the dancers, as usual, were terrific! It was a treat to see Kaitlyn Gilliland dance in a prominent lead role. I’ve had a few opportunities to get to know her. Her classical SAB training and her 5 years plus with the NYCB was evident. Here the reviewer and I agree. My words, Kaitlyn is a standout tall, lithe, graceful and so talented!
With “Brahms Pagini,” I was particularly smitten with Reed Tankersley and his extended solo was intense, beautifully organically danced with great fluidity.
After the performance we all waited for Kaitlyn. So cool to listen and reconnect. Gotta love dancers, so easy to love. Yes, Go to The Joyce. Twlya has a long run July 11–23rd 2016 and just go with an open heart!