Villella Decides to Give Up Final Year with Miami City Ballet

Edward Villella, the artistic director who founded the Miami City Ballet in 1986 and built it into an internationally recognized company, has left sooner than expected.

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Adam Sklute Contract Renewal Has Him Leading Ballet West until 2017

Ballet West artistic director Adam Sklute will be keeping that job at least through June 2017, as the ballet announces a number of changes to its artist staff and some dancer promotions and additions, according to the Deseret News.

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Post-Modern Choreographer/Performer Kyle Abraham wins Jacob’s Pillow Honor

Kyle Abraham, acclaimed contemporary dancer, choreographer, and artistic director of Abraham.In.Motion, will receive the sixth annual Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award at the Jacob’s Pillow Season Opening Gala on June 16.

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Ballet Superstar Rojo Takes Helm at Troubled English National Ballet

Royal Ballet prima ballerina Tamara Rojo has been appointed the new artistic director of English National Ballet, replacing current director Wayne Eagling, who is scheduled to leave this summer, reported theartsdesk.

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Former NYCB Star Lopez Chosen to Lead Miami City Ballet

Now that Miami City Ballet has chosen its new artistic director, it seems hard to imagine someone with a better résumé for the job.

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Kronenberg, Lopez Vie to Follow Villella at Helm of Miami City Ballet

Two finalists have emerged in Miami City Ballet’s effort to find a successor for founding artistic director Edward Villella, whose forced early retirement has divided the company and its supporters since it was announced in October.

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‘Mao’s Last Dancer’ Chosen to Lead Queensland Ballet

Li Cunxin was born in poverty in China, became a world ballet star, segued into stockbroking, wrote a best-selling memoir, took on a sideline in motivational speaking, and, as of this week, is artistic director-elect of Australia’s Queensland Ballet.

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It’s Official: Nahat Is Out at Ballet San Jose

Ballet San Jose founder Dennis Nahat has confirmed that he has received a letter from executive director Stephanie Ziesel removing him as artistic director.

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Rumors Swirl About Replacement of San Jose Ballet Founder Nahat

San Jose Ballet Artistic Director Dennis Nahat may be forced out of the company he founded, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. Apparently, the artistic direction has moved solely into the hands of the board of directors.

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British Ballet Star Alexander Grant Dies at 86

Alexander Grant, a beloved star of British ballet and a former artistic director of the National Ballet of Canada, died September 30 in London, according to The New York Times. He was 86.

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Ailey II Artistic Director Sylvia Waters to Retire; Troy Powell to Take Over

Sylvia Waters, artistic director of Ailey II for nearly four decades, will retire from her position on June 30, 2012.

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Teacher in the Spotlight | Herci Marsden

Mrs. Marsden is the best dance teacher there is. At 73, she still teaches all her ballet classes. She allows every student to perform; she encourages even those who think picking dance wasn’t a great choice.

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Robert Ivey, Broadway Dancer, Ballet Company Founder, Dies

Robert Ivey, a distinguished dancer, choreographer, and artistic director who died July 15, will be remembered for the many lives he touched in the Charleston arts community, reported The Post and Courier this weekend.

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Joffrey Ballet Happy to Keep Wheater in Top Job

The Joffrey Ballet breathed a collective sigh of relief this week when Ashley Wheater, the company’s artistic director since 2007—and who in recent weeks was shortlisted for the hugely powerful job of artistic director of the Britain’s Royal Ballet—will happily continue on in Chicago, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

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Contemporary Choreographer Crystal Pite Wins Pillow Award

The fifth annual Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award will be presented to Crystal Pite, an internationally renowned Canadian choreographer and artistic director of contemporary dance company Kidd Pivot Frankfurt RM, at the Pillow’s season-opening gala June 18.

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Ailey Artistic Director Announces Program to Support Choreographers

Making his creative vision public for the first time, Robert Battle, the incoming artistic director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, announced a major new choreography program on Thursday, according to a story in The New York Times.

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Summer Workshop All About Sokolow Planned for Peridance in NYC

Jim May, artistic director of Sokolow Theatre/Dance Ensemble, returns to Peridance Capezio Center in New York City with a special summer workshop based on the works of groundbreaking modern choreographer Anna Sokolow.

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New Ailey Leader Talks Dance with PBS’ Tavis Smiley

PBS late-night host Tavis Smiley will talk this Friday (April 29) with Robert Battle, dancer-choreographer and soon-to-be artistic director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

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Hubbard Street, Alonzo King’s LINES Mark Beginning of Collaboration

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago will conclude its season with the company premiere of Following the Subtle Current Upstream, choreographed by LINES Ballet artistic director Alonzo King and marking a new collaborative relationship between Hubbard Street and LINES.

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Lecture Looks at Creative Forces Behind Limon’s ‘Missa Brevis’

Carla Maxwell, Limón Dance Company artistic director, will lecture on Missa Brevis, one of Limón’s classic works, April 19 at 7pm at the Americas Society, 680 Park Avenue, New York.

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Ballet Scene | A Phenomenal Life

Some people challenge conventional limits; Bruce Marks just ignores them. He was a modern dancer who became a ballet dancer. He completed makeovers on Ballet West and Boston Ballet, proving that he could be an equally effective artistic director and chief executive.

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Leadership Change Under Way at Liz Lerman Dance Exchange

Liz Lerman, founder of the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, is passing the artistic directorship to company member and choreographer Cassie Meador.

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Kwikstep Brings Smooth Moves to Mill Ballet School Workshop

Hip-hop dancer, choreographer, and artistic director Gabriel “Kwikstep” Dionisio will teach a master breaking workshop at the Mill Ballet School, Lambertville, New Jersey, on January 29 from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

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Louisville Ballet Executive Director Leaving at End of Year

The Louisville Ballet’s executive director, Dwight Hutton, is resigning from the position effective December 31, according to the Courier-Journal of Louisville, Kentucky.

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OBT’s Christopher Stowell Inspires New Blend of Black Tea

Steve Smith of Steven Smith Teamaker and Christopher Stowell, artistic director of Oregon Ballet Theater, have collaborated on a one-of-a-kind tea blend that will be served and sold exclusively at OBT performances this month.

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Chunky Move’s Founder and Artistic Director Departs

Gideon Obarzanek has announced that he will be stepping down as the artistic director and CEO of Chunky Move at the end of 2011 to pursue other freelance opportunities in dance and other art forms, reported Australian Stage.

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Teacher in the Spotlight | Kevin Self

“Kevin’s late wife, Michele Self, founded Michele’s Dance Academy more than 30 years ago and Las Cruces Chamber Ballet in 1983. Kevin taught with Michele and has continued in her tradition.

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Philadanco Brings Out the Funk at Brooklyn College Show

One of Philadelphia’s most renowned dance companies, Philadanco, will premiere a new piece by Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, founder and artistic director of Urban Bush Women, when the company appears at the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College, New York, on November 20 at 8:00 p.m.

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Ethan Stiefel Takes the Helm at Royal New Zealand Ballet

Ethan Stiefel, principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre, has been appointed artistic director of the Royal New Zealand Ballet.

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Judith Jamison to Receive NYC’s Highest Award

Judith Jamison, in her final year as Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater artistic director, will receive the NYC Handel Medallion, the highest official honor given by the City of New York, on November 8 in a special ceremony.

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Festival Ballet Presents All-Balanchine Program in November

The Festival Ballet of Providence, under the artistic direction of Mihailo Djuric, will present “All Balanchine” in November at the VMA Arts and Cultural Center, Providence, Rhode Island.

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Washington Ballet Showcases Artistic Growth Through Romeo and Juliet

Septime Webre’s adaptation of Romeo + Juliet, set to Sergei Prokofiev’s stunning score, kicks off the 2010-2011 season for The Washington Ballet.

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Four Seasons by Issaev to be presented by Arts Ballet Theatre

Arts Ballet Theatre of Florida will launch its 2010-2011 season with the Four Seasons, four pas de deux choreographed by artistic director Vladimir Issaev, and Danzon No. 2, a new ballet by guest choreographer Yanis Pikieris.

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Florida Troupe to Launch Season With ‘Petrouchka’

Miami-based Arts Ballet Theatre of Florida opens its season in October with Petrouchka, along with artistic director Vladimir Issaev’s The Four Seasons and a new work by guest choreographer Yanis Pikieris.

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Thoroughly Modern in Texas

For two women in Austin, Texas, modern dance is the center of the universe. This universe is kept spinning by three separate but interconnected entities—a physical dance space, a dance school offering classes for serious adults, and a dance company. Both the women and their businesses are devoted to the teaching, making, and performing of modern dance.

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Lula Washington Is Heritage Nominee

Lula Washington, founder and artistic director of Lula Washington Dance Theatre, is the 2011 Heritage Honoree of the National Dance Association.

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Vanaver Caravan at Jacob’s Pillow

The Vanaver Caravan will present a program geared toward dance and world music fans, particularly children, during its engagement August 25 to 29 at Jacob’s Pillow.

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Abraham.In.Motion at Jacob’s Pillow

Dancer/choreographer Kyle Abraham brings his company, Abraham.In.Motion, to Jacob’s Pillow in Becket, Massachusetts, from August 11 to 15.

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Darrah Carr on ‘Most Influential’ List

Darrah Carr, the artistic director of Darrah Carr Dance and a contributor to Dance Studio Life, has been named one of the 50 most influential women in the Irish-American community by the Irish Voice.

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Hee Seo to Be Soloist With ABT

As of August, Hee Seo will be promoted to the rank of soloist with American Ballet Theatre, ABT artistic director Kevin McKenzie announced July 6.

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Teacher in the Spotlight | German Dager

German Dager is a ballet and pointe instructor as well as a talented choreographer and director. He is also a private coach, judge of regional and national competitions, and leader in liturgical dance productions. He is frequently asked to teach master classes for local studios and organizations as well as national dance conventions. He had a successful studio in Colombia and now teaches in South Florida. We are blessed to be graced with his talents and expertise.”

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Jacob’s Pillow to Honor Bill T. Jones

Choreographer Bill T. Jones, co-founder and artistic director of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, will receive the fourth annual Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award.

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Ohad Naharin to Teach Philadelphia Class

Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin, artistic director of Batsheva Dance Company, will teach Gaga, his signature technique, at Koresh Dance Company in Philadelphia from April 27 to 30.

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Teacher in the Spotlight | Linda Lavender Ford

“Linda Lavender Ford inspires all ages with her kindness and spirit. She received the Governor’s Arts Award in 1997 for outstanding lifetime achievement in the arts. Her original choreography includes three complete ballets for children, A Storybook Christmas, Rudolph, and Scrooge. Her influence on the cultural enhancement of life in our northeastern Louisiana region is immeasurable.”

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Teacher in the Spotlight | Lynn Scheps

I care about every student. I am never absent or late. I keep up with the latest Broadway material. I make class time fun, interesting, exciting, and educational. I am passionate about my material and what I teach. I also teach everyday life values.

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