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October 26, 2019


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Am I correct in counting Sarah Lane as only having THREE performances in the Spring??? Sarah if you’re reading, I beg you to leave and find a company that appreciates you. Nobody wants to see you get the Veronika Part dismissal.

Well, there are still performances to be cast, but none of it will make up for not getting the very well-earned Swan Lake.

Sad state of affairs with ABT. So much talent is wasted. I wonder if it can or will recover? Thanks for reporting, Hagland!


ABT is, for all intents & purposes, in a terminal state.

It continues to reward dancers roles based on their purchased celebrity status rather than whether they can do the steps. Copeland is the worst principal in the history of ABT and yet she can buy two performances of Swan Lake while happily locking out Sarah Lane. Keeping performances from other people has always been as much a goal for her as trying to dance them herself.

The corruption within ABT would not be tolerated in a publicly owned corporation. Nor would you have 30-40 year old employees acting like 12-year-old asses to get attention and then reward them for it. ABT is the only major performing arts organization in New York that doesn't understand how the immature, obnoxious behavior of its employees adversely affects it brand.

A single ticket fee. I'm not surprised. It seems to be a rather twisted way of punishing ballet fans who don't want to watch the dancers being favored by the AD and the board.

I will continue to support Lane exclusively. She has proved herself a star. Along with Brandt. But the rest, I have no interest in watching. Especially the Florence Foster Jenkins of ballet who manages to get numerous performances of Swan Lake no matter how she trips around the stage.

Artistic respect? With Copeland? He's the one who promoted her to soloist level in the first place. He can thank himself for his own bad reputation.

So pissed off on Sarah Lane’s behalf I could spit! Planning to fly up for her Juliet but will worry about last-minute casting changes. Sigh. I agree with Gerry that Ms. Lane should find a company that appreciates her technique and artistry instead is wasting another minute at ABT.

Haglund -

Interesting that you mention the dancers acting immature. Unfortunately I have had to unfollow ABT on both Youtube and Instagram as I would much rather see posts from them with dancing and interesting interviews rather than silly dancers making inside jokes. I used to be a die hard ABT fan and am disappointed by the direction they are going in. They are cheapening their brand.

Agreed, Lane earned her own Swan Lake last season. The fact that she's been denied yet again only confirms management's vendetta against her and determination to keep her as Copeland's understudy.

On another note, I'm devastated at the breakup of the Lane/Cornejo partnership. That leaves Lane worse off in terms of partners. Cornejo has Copeland, Trenary and Brandt. Lane has Sinkin, who is only part time, and Gorak who is a weak partner. Management doesn't seem inclined to find another steady partner for Lane.

I'm hopeful that casting will be announced and Lane gets more performances. I'd see the new ballet with Lane/Simkin and I'm hoping that they'll get a T&V as well as a Sleeping Beauty, it could be Simkin's debut.

Regardless, I will continue to see anything Lane is in. Brandt as well. I cannot abide Copeland, so will only see Cornejo with Trenary and Brandt.

It is well past time for a change in leadership at ABT. Sarah Lane should have split for more fertile grounds years ago. Cassandra Trenary should pack her bags, too. She's not going to get what her talent merits under the current regime. As for "Fakerina" it's all about ticket sales. Maybe leaving the Met will remove the pressure of having to fill such a huge house.

Single ticket fee!? How tacky. Looks like I'll be turning to Goldstar and TDF even more than usual.

Hey Haglund,
I remember back in the late 70's ballet heyday in DC and NYC when ABT sold "standing room only' tickets and people would be 5 deep just to get a of glimpse of the Misha, Gelsey (sigh), etc. What an exciting time! Do you recall how many weeks were in the NYC fall and spring seasons?
And I gotta think that if Mary Day were still alive - she would grab little Kevvie by the ear, put her pointy red-nail-polished finger to his nose and remind him of his duties to the artform. What a disgrace.


Oh man, Karen. Gone are those days. They seem eons ago. Seems like McKenzie is still riding on the success of generations past when he had an embarrassment of riches like Ferri, Dvorovenko, Herrera, Kent, Jaffe, McKerrow, Corella, Malakhov, etc etc. But those days have long since died and yet the Board hasn't wised up. I've never seen such a complacent do-nothing board in my life.

It is simply impossible not to see the Artistic Director's poor choices, lack of commitment to excellence, dullness to the core, inability to coach, inspire, & direct, and desperate hold on ABT as the causes of the company not rising. This company should be America's shining pride in the classics as much as the RB is to England, POB to France, and Mariinsky & Bolshoi to Russia. But it is measured instead by the mediocre narcissists who self-celebrate ad nauseam instead of working their tails off in the rehearsal room. To them, all of life is an infantile joke; so why should anyone consider them serious artists or ballet an art form that we should treasure and support with our hard-earned money? The asses have escaped the barn, that's for sure.

I second Albert and isn't the coveted title as our "National" ballet company in name only? Ah, sadly the golden days are long gone. I can see back then they would be the "National" company for the country but alas it has lost it's way and IMHO can no longer be on the level of RB or POB etc.

H.F., ITA with you; however, they could be on the level of RB & POB with their existing talent which McKenzie apparently doesn't think is usable.

Agreed Haglund but sadly the abuse of such talent as Sarah is inexcusable. Back in the day they may be the king of the hill, as there were less companies to choose from to see talent and good choreography, now lucky for us NYC has more venues to welcome into our city great companies.

Speaking of asses, I sent an Instagram screenshot of Whiteside and Boylston's bare asses to the general ABT email address as an explanation for my lack of support after 20 years of generous attendance. I asked them to please remove me from their call list until a new director with standards has been appointed.

Thank you for doing that, KK. Who would be surprised if that email address was either unattended or handled by an intern who 86s anything that isn't a compliment.

Agree with Lena about searching for Cornejo casting without Copeland. I made the exception last Saturday for his 20th anniversary. He is spectacular and continues to be destined for greater things and even more appreciation outside of ABT. Thank goodness the audience on that night was filled with his following, so there was no standing ovation when Copeland stepped onstage. Terpsichore to Herman’s Apollo? She may be a lovely person, but does she have no shame? I picture the bubbles (“WTF?”) above the heads of Brandt and Trenary. What a distraction and so ridiculous.

Suki, to your "ridiculous" I would add "offensive to Balanchine."

Skylar debuting as Giselle with ABT in DC on February 16th

Yes, indeed! Will be giving the ole tires on the Gisellemobile a kick soon.

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