dance

Choreography As Conflict Resolution — A Retired Dancer Becomes A Professional Mediator

Dana Caspersen, William Forsythe’s wife and a former member of his company, Ballett Frankfurt, “develops choreographic methods that let groups address differences in nonverbal ways. Many of her projects center on participatory ‘action dialogues,’ which allow groups as large as 250 to tackle fraught issues like racism and polarization.” – Dance Magazine

Jazzercise, At 50, Is Big Business

“Countless workout fads have come along since the heyday of Jazzercise: Tae Bo, Pilates, Zumba, boxing, spinning, pole dancing. And yet Jazzercise persists: today, according to the company, there are more than seven thousand franchises, serving roughly two hundred and fifty thousand customers in twenty-five countries and grossing somewhere between ninety-five million and a hundred million dollars per year.” – The New Yorker

Kenneth MacMillan’s Manon — Femme Fatale, Enterprising Escapee From Poverty, Victim Of The Patriarchy? All Of The Above?

In the 18th-century source, a novel by the Abbé Prévost, Manon Lescaut was an archetypal siren, luring a helpless young nobleman to his doom; later operatic adaptations may have had more sympathy for her but weren’t so different. Yet MacMillan found in her one of his most powerful, and controversial, heroines, one that great ballerinas love to play. Alastair Macaulay looks at how their portrayals of the character have shifted over the years. – The New York Times

Raja Feather Kelly: How A Downtown Pop-Queer Experimentalist Became Off-Broadway’s Go-To Choreographer

“One reason, an obvious one, had to do with a close friend. As soon as the playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins started to pass his name along to people in the theater world, … he found himself filling a niche Off-Broadway. ‘I was working on new plays that wanted to have a physical life, but didn’t know how,’ he said.” – The New York Times

Moving, By Choice, From Ballerina To Administrator

Kathleen Breene Combs has been with the Boston Ballet for decades. now, she’s packing up her pointe shoes, putting on the business shoes, and moving to Rhode Island’s Festival Ballet Providence as executive director. Her interest in the smooth running of the back end came about when she got active in the union, negotiating dancers’ contracts, and morphed into something else when she got pregnant. – Pointe Magazine