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July 01, 2020


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Dear Haglund,
I don't comment on twitter or instagram but I had to bite my finger to keep from responding on the hyper political rants from a particular NYCB ballerina. I don't know if you have written about this before...it seems to me that when ones see companies firing people left and right over their political comments, then call me surprised at the level of attack this ballerina flings out on her instagram. At the very least, it seems imprudent. I'm not a partisan but it's annoying to read these things when you just want to see dance related items. One would think NYCB might find it detrimental to the company that a ballerina posts not a positive "I think the USA could do better so let's support X!" but rather her "if you support X, you're scum." For my part, I know there are dancers posting civilly with whom I agree and dancers with whom I disagree. I'll still go to see them. But I will not pay to see this gal again.

I think the "performing arts in theaters again" quandary boils down to a simple question: at what point will you be OK with sitting in a theater with others surrounding you with potentially no empty seats? Masks, ventilation, asymptomatic carriers - I'm afraid until there is more certainty (virtually no new cases, vaccine and / or treatment) it's going to be a long haul. We might start seeing live-streamed performances first.

I agree that we may not decide it's safe to go back into the theater until a vaccine is available or until we're down close to zero for positive cases. The governor is saying that the virus might well have been circulating in New York in January, perhaps earlier, when we were all crowding into the Koch Theater for six weeks of the winter season. So I think there will be a point where we could go back with PPE and other safety measures before the vaccine is widely available -- although I'm not sure whether I'd be willing to take the risk.

Now, mt, I'm also biting my tongue at the screeching preaching ballerinas/os who (A) get personal relief by expressing their rage and their own hate, but who don't have the intellect or interest in contributing potential solutions to the conversation, and (B) are trying to highjack the spotlight on the tragedy, racism, and domestic terrorism of George Floyd's murder to whine about their little ballet world.

The governor of New York has said over and over and over again that it is time to go from rage to resolutions. He has mandated full police reform in New York by April 1st and he has urged and challenged all citizens to tell their elected officials exactly what they want in a police force.

Why haven't the screeching preaching ballerinas/ballerinos published on Instagram their own letters to Mayor de Blasio or Speaker Corey Johnson in which they articulate what they want in a police force and what their solutions to racism in the NYPD are? "Defund the police" -- yeah, and then what? I will hazard a guess that the reason we haven't seen their articulate, important, resolution-filled letters to elected officials on their Instagram accounts is that they don't have the intellect or interest to write any.

For anyone who is so inclined to participate in the discussion on the path to resolution, here is Speaker Johnson's email address: SpeakerJohnson@council.nyc.gov

I always get a reply to my emails to Speaker Johnson although it can take a few weeks.

Instead of trying to show the world how fierce their digital punch can be, the screeching, preaching ballerinas/os should try giving 5 minutes of serious thought to put together a laundry list of things they want or don't want in a police force and keep the focus on what happened to George Floyd, not what is happening in their little ballet world.

Dear Haglund,
I agree that many high profile dancers don't have the interest in writing letters or proposing thoughtful solutions. They don't know what they want. Plus, letter writing doesn't produce the instant response they are used to as dramatic public posting does.
It seems their main interest is keeping their profile in front of people. But solutions are complex while sloganeering is simply noise. And it antagonizes unnecessarily. As you said, "and then what?" I look forward to the day when people who want change begin by quietly developing and displaying the virtues they wish to see in others. Especially humility,patience,gentility,and benevolence. As the attendant says, "first put the mask on yourself, then you can help others". (no pun intended)
Happy 4th!

mt, you hit the nail on the head with "their main interest is keeping their profile in front of people."

Reality check: dancers are people. Many of them do have a foot solidly in the real world. Others are less mature and overly dependent on adulation. What else is new?

I don't know who you are speaking about. If they have a problem then let it be theirs. We all know we need a intense house cleaning in November as well as some major statewide reforms but until then, let's focus on the positive near future for dance lovers. Current streaming performances and dates:
*StaatsBallet Berlin; Streaming now - "From Berlin With Love"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwxExysqN50&feature=youtu.be
*English National Ballet: July 8 - C. Wheeldon's "Cinderella" in the round
* Stuttgart Ballet: July 9 - J. Cranko's "RBME"
* Miami City Ballet: Currently thru July 26 - T. Tharp's "Nine Sinatra Songs"
* Miami City Ballet: July 12 - A. Ratmansky's "Symphonic Dances"
Royal Ballet: Currently on You Tube - Wayne McGregor's "Woolf Works"; July 10 - K. MacMillan's "Romeo & Juliet"; July 24 - "Sleeping Beauty"
*Dance Theater of Harlem: July 11th "Tones II" by Arthur Mitchell; July 18th "Coming Together" by Nacho Duato; July 25th "Dougla" by Geoffrey Holder
*Vail Dance Festival: July 31 thru August 7

Thanks much CAH for all the performance info. That's quite a lot to look forward to.

The NYCB's screecher/preacher in residence is whining that she can't get out of the country to do gigs. I don't understand this. No other major company is performing now, and in any case, they have their own dancers.

What is he or she talking about?

Asking for a friend.

Oops. He or she can't get out of the country.

Diana, it's all about the "I"-- it always is. Woe is her. Never mind about the hundreds of thousands who are dying from this virus; "I" can't do want I want to do...

Well, sure I get that. But can't she use elementary logic? Even if she could get out of the country, where would she dance? In Red Square, for kopeks?

The Bolshoi is *closed*. The Maryinsky is *closed.* Ditto every other major (and minor) theater in Europe while we sort this thing out.

She dumps on pols for opening up too quickly but then screeches, "I wanna dance!" This makes no logical sense.

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