Special-effect Ballet

Lost in Motion II: An amazing ballet video incorporating computerized special effects. Usually I’m not a big fan of special effects in anything, but I’m sold on this one coz it’s so seamlessly executed and fits the “story line” very well, not to mention the stunning red dress! 

Below is a behind-the-scene account of how this video was made. Enjoy!

Natural Born Ballet Gifts or…?

Isabelle CiaravolaI believe most balletomanes marvel at Isabelle Ciaravola’s feet. They are just unreal! While some of you may have derided her merits in dancing by thinking that she wins through her natural-born “gifts,” how many of you are aware that she has worked and continues to work so very very hard every day to get to where she is at l’Opéra de Paris. According to Sonia Melo, a Brazillian-Swiss ballet teacher, who has once coached her (and with whom I have had the great fortune to be briefly coached), Isabelle goes home every day to her water bed and there she starts to stretch herself rigorously even after a whole day’s work behind her. It is amazing to hear that such an accomplished and gifted dancer does not for one moment sit on her laurels. And Sonia, who is such a wonderful coach herself, could not restrain her big smile whenever talking about Ciaravola, and I know the reason why 🙂

Dancers as Neighbors

Judith Jamison\

It’s interesting how New Yorkers’ daily life can be so interconnected with the dance world (and art world in general). I love that about this city, which I once called home and still do, to a certain extent. Last fall I visited with an old friend and her husband, who used to live in the Upper West Side of Manhattan. We met in D.C., where they live now, and saw the exhibit “Dancing the Dream” at Smithsonian’s Portrait Gallery. There was a large photo of Judith Jamison, founder of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. My friends told me how they used to run into Jamison, who was their upstairs neighbor for two decades. The husband remembers how striking her statuesque body was—and how unusual and groundbreaking her body type and dance was at the time when she first started her dance troupe. He also remembers how he had asked for free tickets to her performance all these years but was never given one, LOL!