Thursday, February 19, 2009

Straight from the Horse's Mouth

After some time apart due to scheduling conflicts on both ends, today Carol and I were back to work on her book.

We finished the bare bones outline of her full (amazing) life, ending today's conversation with where she is now. The next step is to fill in endless details and anecdotes once I pull all the information we have already together in some sort of cohesive fashion (a big task).

I thought I'd share a few more interesting quotes from her...I don't want to put too much on here at this point but I can't help but want to share her (potentially controversial) opinionated yet highly knowledgeable thoughts.

*"What’s happening in ballet in the schools now...I don’t think anybody recognizes talent anymore. That was the one thing. Mr. Balanchine could recognize talent, and everybody knew it. He could pick the person from a hundred people who was going to be able to be made into a ballerina. Sometimes I think he could just make anybody a ballerina. He zeroed in on who they were and what their personalities were like. He could use those personalities to make them into a soloist or a ballerina. He looked at the person, not just the technique. Now I feel the people that are noticed are the ones with the highest extension and the biggest instep or the most pirouettes, which really doesn’t count for much in the long run..."

*Here she's talking about Saratoga and how the company's summer season has been cut back.
"I spoke to a dentist up there that said, 'When I go to the ballet I want to see tutus and people in pink tights and toe shoes. I don’t want to see people rolling around the floor in the dark.' He had been trained by Balanchine as to what ballet was. The whole area had been trained. They were very fortunate to be trained that well. Now when they see things that aren’t as good they don’t want to go. You can blame it on the economy and anything you want, but they’re not being given what they want to see...You can't just be a good dancer. You have to be an interesting personality as well. That’s what Balanchine did: he developed you as a human being at the same time he developed you as a dancer and performer."

Oh there's so much more...

1 comment:

Sara Lonngren said...

this sounds like something i would def. read! And everything is so true....ballet has just become a robotic form cloning little machines that can do five turns and put their legs behind their heads. Do they even LOVE ballet? I mean REALLY love it. i wonder sometimes what direction it is going.