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  • Elizabeth Murphy - One of Pacific Northwest Ballet's Newest Corps Dancers


    Last month, Pacific Northwest Ballet announced its newest company members for the 2011-12 season. Elizabeth Murphy of Massachusetts, was one of the chosen few.

    In this article, Murphy talks about her start in ballet and how she keeps herself in top shape to keep up with the demands of her blossoming career. Read all about it here.

  • Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo's Bernice Coppieters On Dancing, Teaching

    Bernice Coppieters in Roméo et Juliette. Photo courtesy: The Prague Post, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo


    For the past 20 years, Bernice Coppieters has danced all of the leading roles in Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo's repertoire, including Juliet in "Romeo et Juliette". (Side note: We had the privilege of reviewing Pacific Northwest Ballet's interpretation of this piece back in 2009, in which Coppieters' beautiful fingerprints could be seen and felt throughout the entire evening.)

    Now this gorgeously complex dancer talks about one of her most rewarding roles to date: instructor.

    In her early 40s, Coppieters' age is not a sensitive topic of conversation, as one might expect. She isn't scared of the fact that her career as an active prima ballerina is very likely coming to its end. She says she is putting her focus in a different direction, working with dancers in companies around the world who are staging Maillot's productions.
    Read more here.

  • Winger Contributing Writer to Attend SAB

    Photo courtesy of Alston Macgill


    Thirteen year old Alston Macgill received a highly coveted invitation to attend the year-round program at School of American Ballet (SAB) in New York. Alston began her dance training at the tender age of 2, was one of the top 12 of the Youth American Grand Prix at age 11, and recently took top honors at the YAGP in Philadelphia. In addition to her outstanding talent, the young lady is also a contributor at The Winger! Read more about Aston's exciting journey here.

    Congratulations, Alston! :)

  • NY Ballerina Dances in the (Sweltering) Streets

    Photo Credit: Splash News


    In an effort to boost low sales, Sony devised a most beautiful ad campaign featuring a twirling (and no doubt sweating!) ballerina!

    Crowds gathered by the side of the road to watch as a prima ballerina in full costume danced alongside traffic on a busy freeway. The dancer was performing a sequence as she filmed an advert on 7th Avenue in Manhattan dressed in a full, lilac tulle tutu and structured bodice.

    In the past week, temperatures in New York have soared to 110F but the dancer pirouetted and leapt repeatedly to get the right shot for the Sony ad. Check out the photos from the set along with the remainder of this article here.

  • Bun vs. Bob: Which Do You Prefer?

    Simone Messmer, American Ballet Theatre


    "Going from long to short marks a drastic change in any woman’s life, but for ballet dancers it’s almost a political act. Long hair means femininity and a certain degree of submissiveness; cutting it all off flies in the face of tradition and of how a ballerina is perceived." - Gia Kourlas, The New York Times.

    Dancers - what do you think? Have you considered a more chic, modern style? Or do you prefer the traditional look of long, flowing hair? Read the rest of this article here and leave your comments below! :)

  • Modern Dance: There's an App for That!


    We knew it was only a matter of time....! ;) The first app featuring modern dance for both the iPhone and iPad is available now through iTunes. This free app was created by choreographer, Richard Daniels and showcases the talents of Carmen de Lavallade, Deborah Jowitt, Regina Larkin, Christine Redpath and Megan Williams. "Dances for an iPhone" is a revolutionary concept that introduces the first purely cultural category of App, according to Mr. Daniels." ~ quote You can read all about this technological feat (feet?) here. To download the app, click here.

  • Ballet Austin: Building Birds - The Grand Finale`

    birds ...and now, Ladies and gentlemen! The moment we've all been waiting for!

    Ballet Austin's gorgeous birds of "The Magic Flute" are ready for their close-ups! :) Woohoo!

    Don't they look amazing?! We just love how everything came together so beautifully! {Love that swoopy finishing touch!} You can all about this fanciful feathered tale (sorry, couldn't resist) here.

    Thank you, Ballet Austin for the terrific shout-out! We are honored and thrilled to have played a small role in your production's success. Thank you for the opportunity!

  • Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Midsummer is a Dream Come True

    Attending Pacific Northwest Ballet’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream will go down as one of the best experiences of my life. Up until that moment, I had only seen the company’s DVD version, which is wonderful by the way, but clearly not the same. And while I say this about nearly every PNB performance (I can’t help it; I’ve been a die-hard fan since I was a kid), I haven’t been this swept away by a ballet since PNB’s Romeo et Juliette.

    Pacific Northwest Ballet corps de ballet dancer Kiyon Gaines as Bottom and principal dancer Carrie Imler as Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, choreographed by George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust. Photo © Angela Sterling.


    The yummy, over-the-top scenery with its robust pink roses, a shimmering spider web (complete with a gigantic spider which—being the girly girl I am—could’ve done without) and an enormous green frog brought the mythical Athenian forest glade to life.

    Friday night’s cast featured Carrie Imler as the lovely and completely “duped” Titania, Jonathan Porretta as the arrogant Oberon, and Josh Spell as the deliciously mischievous Puck.

    Imler has such unique versatility, it’s insane. Her dancing was nothing short of diva worthy, while her displays of affection toward Bottom were most charming.

    And speaking of Bottom…kudos to Ezra Thomson! His performance as the bumbling buffoon turned donkey was so hilarious, I was wiping tears from my eyes. Thomson maintained a superb balance between smitten man (gazing down at Imler's bust -- ooh la la) and goofy animal (scratching at his fleas and continually trying to eat the small pile of greens on the ground) with aplomb.

    Pacific Northwest Ballet corps de ballet dancer Josh Spell as Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, choreographed by George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust. Photo © Angela Sterling.


    Josh Spell unleashed his inner actor as the wildly entertaining Puck. I must say, I’ve never witnessed as much charisma from Spell as I did that night. He truly *was* Puck! He completely captured the essence of his character, which I hope leads to more roles of this nature in the near future, whether in or outside of PNB.

    Next, I’ve got just two words for you: Jonathan Porretta. Need I say more? (No, of course not but I will for the sake of the review.) Whether he’s pulling out all the stops (did you see him as the Jester in Cinderella? Hello!), or holding himself back just a smidge as the slightly in need of anger management Oberon, Porretta delivers. It’s just that simple.

    Maria Chapman’s performance as the pining Helena was spot-on. I felt terrible for her as she chased after Lucien Postlewaite’s completely disinterested and downright disgusted Demetrius. (I mean, you can’t blame a girl for trying, right? Demetrius is quite a dish!) Chalnessa Eames and Olivier Wevers made for an adoring pair as Hermia and Lysander. Their tender glances and gentle embraces were nothing short of ahhh worthy. Especially enjoyable were the moments following Puck’s faux pas, as both Demetrius and Lysander fought for the affections of the completely baffled Helena, who in turn is doing everything she can to avoid being pummeled by the scorned Hermia. (Loved it!)

    Ariana Lallone gave a knockout performance as the gravity-defying Hippolyta. She wielded that golden bow like it was more of an extension of her arm versus an actual prop. And while I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again; the stage will appear decidedly empty without her presence next season. (Sob!)

    Pacific Northwest Ballet principal dancer Ariana Lallone as Hippolyta in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, choreographed by George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust. Photo © Angela Sterling.


    Rachel Foster’s petite beauty was highlighted to perfection in her role as the Butterfly. Her dancing was energetic, inspiring and just freaking awesome.

    Last but certainly by no means least (you know what I’m getting at right?), is the Divertissement in Act II. I’ve got to be honest and say that Carla Korbes and Jeffrey Stanton brought the house down with their completely flawless, absolutely thrilling performance. I didn’t think it was humanly possible to extend one’s arms back, back, back like that, but obviously I was wrong. (Thank you for setting me straight, Carla. :)) The applause they received was nearly deafening, but extremely well deserved. Bravo!

    Pacific Northwest Ballet's A Midsummer Night's Dream runs through April 17th. Tickets are available by visiting

  • Cynthia Gregory Keeps Dancers on their Toes

    Photo Credit: Virginia Trudeau


    Here's an outstanding interview with former prima ballerina, Cynthia Gregory. Gregory, who spent more than 25 years with American Ballet Theatre, currently works with Nevada Ballet Theatre and directs the Cynthia Gregory Center for Coaching. "Coaching is what I do best. People would ask me to help them with a role when I stopped dancing. They'd commission me to do that. Teaching has to do with the basics of class and technique. I'm much more interested in helping a 'finished' dancer when they're looking at a role ... it's like finding your voice." ~ Quote: Cynthia Gregory for the SF Chronicle. Read more...

  • Ballet Flash Mob

    This is hands-down, one of the coolest things we've ever seen! Check out this amazing video footage of a ballet flash mob that took place in Berlin last week as a promotion for "Oz--The Wonderful Wizard"! (Can you spot anyone in particular?)

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