Sunday, November 05, 2006

Sick Day

Yes, today, I am officially sick.

So I will stay at home while my trusty co-director, Robin, and my stalwart ballet mistress, Ahita, run rehearsals. At this time of year, weekend rehearsals are mainly dedicated to getting the children who will be involved in the Nutcracker up to speed. There are a few of the more advanced girls from the school who will be given the opportunity to dance in some of the corps roles with the professional dancers. So we need to make sure that they are also rehearsed.

Since corrections and decisions on elements of style are made with the company during the week, often the students have to play catch-up.

Anyhow, things should run smoothly without me. The only possible glitch would be in the final hour, when the complicated Act 1 fight scene is rehearsed. But everyone has already been rehearsed in their parts, with the exception of our scene stealing baby mice. So best of luck to them!

So as I sit here downing cough drops like candy, let me begin to discuss the Sugar Plum Fairy's Cavalier.

In any classical ballet, one of the highlights is the pas de deux. Pas de deux means dance for two and generally refers to a man and woman dancing with each other.

Although there are no hard and fast rules to this, the classical pas de deux is usually made up of 4 sections...

The adagio. A slow romantic piece featuring supported poses, balances and turns.
The male variation. A solo dance which shows of the male dancer's virtuosity.
The female variation. A solo dance which shows of the female dancer's virtuosity.
The coda. An uptempo dance in which the two dancers alternate showing feats of skill.

The 5th section is usually thunderous applause from the audience.

In order for the Sugar Plum Fairy to execute a pas de deux, she needs a strong, able partner. Enter the Cavalier.

SDB's Cavalier is Askar Alimbetov from Kazakstan. Not the fake Borat Kazakstan where people sound as if they are from some fake Eastern European country. But the real Kazakstan, which is not an Eastern European country at all, but rather a Central Asian country, where people are directly descended from Ghengis Khan. If you want more info on the real vs the fake Kazakstan, I suggest visiting...

Tomorrow, I will discuss Askar and what goes into making a Cavalier.



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