GENUINE - Tulsa Ballet by fdh56iuoui


									                        November 2009                Marcello Angelini, George Kaiser Family Foundation Artistic Director            Vol. 1 Issue 2

                 My                                                                                                               Dear Friends,

                                                                                                                                  Here at the
                                                                                                                                  Ballet we are
                                                                                                                                  all in awe.
                                                                                by Marcello Angelini                              Dracula was a

                                                                                                                                  huge success,
                                                                                                                                  both artistically
Over the years, people have asked about my The Nutcracker, in relation to how it differs from                                     and financially.
the “original” version and about this show being a departure from the “traditional” version of the                                I so enjoyed
classic. But is it really? Yes, it is unique, but it’s equally traditional, based on The Nutcracker and                           seeing       the

                                                                    The Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffman.                             difference in
                                                                                                           the two casts that alternated in the
           First, while Tchaikovsky’s famous score lives on, the original choreography has been            lead roles. They were so different,
              lost. As for the story, there are two accounts of the narrative: the well-known 1844         Alfonso commanding and muscular,

                  tale of Alexander Dumas, used to craft the first performance of The Nutcracker           Yi elegant and feline in the title role.
                   in 1892, and the original tale upon which Dumas’ story was based, which
                                                                                                           And both danced so well in the part
                                                                                                           of Frederick. Karina was sweet and
                    Hoffman penned in 1812. Most major ballet companies have commissioned
                                                                                                           innocent as Svetlana while menacing
                    new choreography for this annual tradition – some based on Hoffman’s story             and passionate as Flora. And it was
                     and some on Dumas’. It is Hoffman’s account that inspired me to create our            a pleasure seeing Soo Youn back on
                            version of The Nutcracker as it has many more layers and moral lessons.        stage, making an expressive Flora and
                                                                                                           a graceful Svetlana. To paraphrase
                                  The choice of the setting for this ballet, the 1920’s in Paris, was      our President, Mme Jackie Kouri, in
                                  made purely in the interest of visuals. Since arriving in Tulsa          a conversation we had after the last

                                  15 years ago, I have always been in awe of the wonderful Art             performance of Dracula, the depth
                                  Deco architecture, and this setting allowed me to pay tribute            of talent and artistry of the company
                                 to my adopted hometown. Additionally, I felt it was important             is just remarkable! To make this

                               to create a ballet that would appeal to children and adults, to             experience even “richer”, we broke
                               dance enthusiasts and to first-time attendees. And, of course, the          Tulsa Ballet ticket sales records in
                                                      choreography had to challenge the dancers.           the 53 years history of the company.
                                                                                                           And not by a small margin, but by a
                                  There are few essential passages in the novel that make up the           good 50%!!!
                                   backbone of the story. The first few are simple to transpose. It
                                   is, after all, Christmas Eve, and Marie receives her Nutcracker         We are now preparing a wide variety
                                                                                                           of works for the upcoming shows.

                                   doll as a present for this occasion. She falls asleep holding
                                                                                                           Edwaard Liang just arrived to create
                                   her wooden hero and dreams of mice coming to attack her.
                                                                                                           his first work for Tulsa Ballet that will
                                   In her dreams, she is protected by her beloved doll but it is           premiere this spring in Pop Culture.
                                   ultimately young Marie (this is the original name of the heroin         Ma is working on a piece that will
                                   of Hoffman’s novel) who saves the Nutcracker from attack by             be presented exclusively for the

                                                                                  the Mouse King.          Winter Celebration Gala: a full ballet
                                                                                                           that will be seen only that night
                                   In Marie’s dream, it is her love for the doll that compels her          here in Oklahoma. Of course there
                                   to face her fears and confront the Mouse King. And it is this           will be plenty of dancing, humor
                                   gesture of overcoming her fears that allows her to grow up in           and twists during the course of the
                                   front of our eyes. And finally, it is her ability to see beyond         performance… And it goes without

                                     the looks of the Nutcracker that allows her to discover the           saying that wherever you go in the
                                                                beauty within her valiant cavalier.        building you are assured to hear
                                                                                                           the music of The Nutcracker being
                                        The essence of The Nutcracker which relates to the holiday         played in some of our studios.
                                       spirit is that of renewed generosity and kindness. It’s about
                                       celebrating the beauty of the human soul. The Nutcracker is         I look forward to seeing you at
                                       not just about dolls, candy canes and imaginary kingdoms;
                                                                                                           The Nutcracker and the Winter
                                                                                                           Celebration Gala.
                                                             it’s about true, innocent, untainted love.
                TH E N U T C R A C K ER
    Calley Skalnik to Reprise the Role of Marie in The Nutcracker
    In 2003, when Marcello Angelini recreated his version of The Nutcracker,
    we saw many changes in the holiday classic: new costumes, new sets, new
    choreography, and a newly named leading character, to follow the original
    E.T.A. Hoffman fairy tale. Out with Clara, and in with Marie! The adult Marie
    is typically danced by a principal or soloist in the Company, however, the role
    of the young Marie is danced by a student. This role is a coveted honor many
    little girls dream of. Tulsa Ballet holds open auditions each year for the role of
    Marie and all of the children’s roles in the production. For the third year, Calley
    Skalnik will receive the honor of stepping into the shoes of Marie, a promising
    ballet student at the Paris Opera in the 1920’s. Calley has been a student of
    Tulsa Ballet Center for Dance Education since the school opened in 2003. She
    is successfully advancing through our Pre-Professional levels and the quality of
    her training shows!

    Recently, I found out a little more about Calley’s experience as Marie:

    Tulsa Ballet: How many years have you been in The Nutcracker?
    Calley: I first auditioned for the Nutcracker when I was six, and … although
    I didn’t make it, I learned the importance of being quiet in the audition room!
    The second year I auditioned, I was cast as a toy solider and since then have
    been a mouse, in the ballet class/ party scene and finally, this being my eighth
    year in The Nutcracker, I have been cast as Marie (for the third time)!!!

    Tulsa Ballet: Did you dream of one day dancing the role of Marie?
    Calley: Definitely! As soon as I was in the “Nutcracker World” of rehearsals and
    performances I had always dreamed of dancing as Marie. Not only because of the
    character and dancing roles of Marie, but also because the girls who have played
    the part of Marie over the years were dancers that I looked up to and admired.

    Tulsa Ballet: How does it feel to be chosen for the third time as Marie?
    Calley: It is so exciting!!! Every year the anticipation for the audition starts
    early… around July! Many work hard in preparing for this and I am very
    honored to dance the charming role of Marie.

    Tulsa Ballet: What is your favorite scene to perform in The Nutcracker?
    Calley: My favorite scene would have to be the party scene, everyone is on
    stage…the Company, Nutcracker (in wood and puppet form), Mouse King,
    and of course all the children! It is an important scene for Marie, because it
    develops her character, showcases her dancing and her love for the Nutcracker.
    This is the scene where she meets her hero!

    Tulsa Ballet: Tell us about a memorable experience from The Nutcracker.
    Calley: There have been many, many memorable experiences over the years
    of The Nutcracker, but this is one I will never forget! Several years ago I was
    backstage and could not find my dance bag. I was positive I had brought it so
    I retraced my steps back out the theater. There it was, lying in the snow in the
    middle of the street with tire tracks all over it! Through all of the performances
    that day, I had to wear wet and cold ballet shoes! Lesson learned… keep track
    of the dance bag!
Last year’s Winter Celebration Gala was such a great
success. Fun, entertaining, filled with great dance,
humor and memories. Therein lies the problem!
We spent a year thinking (worrying) about how to
top such a fun evening. Worry no more, this year’s
gala will be just as much fun, if not more so, than
its inaugural performance. We have a rich menu of
works that will include the Oklahoma premiere of
Ma Cong’s Luscious, a work that you will only be
able to see at Winter Celebration. Ma created this
work for Ballet Iowa last season and is happy to
share it with his audience here in Tulsa. We’ll have
an excerpt from Dracula, of course revisited…
and a competition that you will be judging. We’ll
have a short preview of the new Edwaard Liang
work that will see its World Premiere in April in Studio K
and, of course the Snow Scene from The Nutty Nutcracker. And we also hear that two of
our Principal male dancers will debut as choreographers. Alfonso and Yi have joined forces to create their first-ever short
ballet. Don’t tell Ma Cong, but he is the star. We hear the music might include the theme from the movie Rocky among
others, that there is some weight-lifting included in the “World Premiere” and that the title of the work might be Revenge!
We wonder what this is all about…
Performance tickets are limited and are selling out quickly. If you haven’t done so yet, call Carrie in our box office and
reserve your tickets to an evening of great fun, remarkable entertainment and phenomenal dancing!

                       Where in the World is Ma Cong?
                       You may have noticed Ma Cong was suspiciously absent from all seven performances of Dracula.
                       This had some worried that he had left Tulsa! Never fear, loyal fans, our Ma is back
                       in the studios this week preparing for The Nutcracker and our Winter Celebration.
                       However, he spent most of the last month traveling around the country creating
                       ballets for other companies. He used to be our rising choreographic star. Well,
                       the secret is out! A few years ago, Dance Magazine named Ma one of “25 to
                       watch” and today his career as a choreographer has really taken off.

                       Just this season, Ma will be creating new works for Houston Ballet II,
BalletMet in Columbus, Ohio, Richmond Ballet and Smuin Ballet San Francisco. Those were not
the only offers he received, but the only ones he could accept without giving up his career as a
dancer. Going forward, harmonizing his national schedule as a nationally-known choreographer and
his Tulsa schedule both as a choreographer and as a dancer, will be a balancing act. We love to see him
on stage, but we recognize his talent and his voice as a dance maker. And let’s not forget that, among
all those engagements, he needs to find time to shop. In fact, among all the prestigious awards he won
during the past few years, there is one that defines Ma as a person: The recently announced Oklahoma
Magazine’s “People with Style” award.

Ma’s local fans won’t need to wait long to see some of his new work. The company will perform three different
Ma Cong ballets this season – Carmina Burana, first performed by Tulsa Ballet in 2006; a brand new creation to
be set on Tulsa Ballet this season, which will premiere at Studio K in April as part of the Pop Culture series; and
Luscious, a new piece to be performed by Tulsa Ballet exclusively at Winter Celebration on December 3, 2009.
                                E D U C AT I O N
     Following the unexpected departure of Mr. Kaltakchian due to complex immigration issues, Tulsa
     Ballet has undertaken an extensive search for outstanding teachers to continue our commitment
     to superior dance training to the Tulsa community. After three months of literally searching the
     world, dozens of applications and six on-site interviews, we have secured two exceptional teachers
     for our school. Ms. Stephanie Murrish and Mr. Daniil Gaifullin will join School Principal, Ms.
     Liudmila Polonskaya, as full time faculty members of our Center for Dance Education.

     Stephanie and Daniil enjoyed a rich dancing career with Ms. Murrish being a private student of
     the legendary Maestro Celli and finishing her studies on full scholarship at the Stedelijk Instituut
     voor Ballet, in Antwerp, Belgium, while Mr. Gaifullin graduated from the prestigious Bolshoi
     Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia.

     They both danced as principal dancers with companies around the world, including the
     Cincinnati Ballet under the direction of Ivan Nagy, the Sarasota Ballet, Donetsk Ballet in Ukraine,
     Ballet Mississippi and the Ballet de Santiago in Chile before taking over the artistic direction of the
     Amarillo Ballet and later opening their own school in the same city. (cont. on page 6)

                                                                                         Leaping into Learning
                                          This autumn,         the teaching artists of Tulsa Ballet Center for Dance Education (TBCDE) have
                                          been busy hosting students from local elementary schools here in our very own studios through our
                                          education program, Leaps Ahead, as well as preparing to go out into schools across the city through the
                                          traveling version, Leaps in Motion. These programs give students the experience of an authentic ballet
                                          class while improving self confidence and self discipline, and offering valuable exposure to the arts.
                                          Leaps Ahead is well under way, with Marshall Elementary 2nd and 3rd grade students having finished
                                          their six-week program, and Wright Elementary 3rd grade and deaf education students currently
                                          participating in the program. During just these two programs, we have reached over 168 students
                                          already this year, seeing many new faces, as well as many familiar faces.

     Cortney McElroy                        One of the many familiar faces in the halls of Tulsa Ballet is that of Cortney McElroy. Cortney was
                                            identified through Leaps Ahead last year for a full scholarship to train at TBCDE. She has returned to
    us this year as both a Leaps Ahead participant and as a ballet student. Cortney stands out not only because of her talent for ballet, but also
    because of her ability to overcome. Cortney is deaf, though to watch her in ballet class you would never guess it. She follows instructions
    just as well as any of her classmates, and with the aid of our sprung-wood floors, she feels the beat of the music, keeping her in perfect
    time. Cortney has made the coveted transition from the Open Division into the Pre-Professional Division this year, and is growing in her
    technique and artistry, as well as self-confidence and poise. Cortney’s mother, Tiffany Falls writes, “My daughter is not an ordinary
    child…and I have always told her that she can be anything she wants to be, regardless of her circumstance. This scholarship
    has given her reason to believe it’s true.” We are so very pleased to have her training with us at TBCDE, and look forward to continue
    watching her grow as a dancer.
    As the benefits of education outreach are becoming more widely recognized, the demand for our programs is growing both in the Tulsa
    area and across the nation. Tulsa Ballet is continually striving to expand the reach of our programs in the community. We are very proud
    to announce our newest partnership with Tulsa’s own Bama Pies and Lanier Elementary. Bama Pies has adopted Lanier, and seeing the
    value of our traveling outreach program, Leaps in Motion, Bama has agreed to fund this program for Lanier for the first time. Tulsa Ballet
    is very grateful for this opportunity and thanks Bama Pies for helping to foster this new partnership.
    Through Leaps in Motion, generously funded by the George Kaiser Family Foundation, we will be working with five more Tulsa Public
    elementary schools this year, in addition to Lanier Elementary.
    Originally funded by the MetLife Foundation and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation beginning 4 years ago, the
    Leaps programs are also supported by The H.A. and Mary K. Chapman Foundation, the Sherman E. Smith Charitable Foundation, Spirit
    AeroSystems, the Hispanic American Foundation and other community partners.
               Outreach in OKC                                                                                   It comes as no surprise
                                                                                                                 every year that the
                                                                                                                 holidays seem to arrive
                                                                                                                 earlier and earlier. In
During the Oklahoma City run of Dracula, Tulsa Ballet conducted several
                                                                                                                 fact, I was shopping for
local outreach efforts for the community including inviting the students                                         last minute Halloween
of area dance schools to watch the company take class on-stage before the                                        candy a few weeks ago
opening night performance. Pictured below is Artistic Director Marcello                                          amidst echoes of holiday
Angelini speaking to a group of more than 150 students and parents who                                           music already playing
observed the Company warm-up and then participated in a question and                                             from the store’s intercom
answer session. Marcello talked to the students about the life of a professional                                 system. As we all know,
ballet dancer and encouraged them to approach their dance studies with                                           even though the holidays
hard work and dedication every day.                                                                              are supposed to be about
                                                                                     spending time with family and friends and hoping
Tulsa Ballet also invited 3 students from area university dance programs to          for peace on earth, it’s also the time of year when
perform alongside the professional company in the production. “Dracula               the economy spikes, particularly for the retail,
is a huge ballet that requires at least 38 performers on stage, not including        hospitality and entertainment industries. So, it’s
understudies, some of whom fly in the show as the Count’s brides. We were            no secret that The Nutcracker continues to be one
thrilled to be able to fill some of these roles with excellent local talent,” said   of the biggest “money makers” for performing arts
Marcello Angelini. Oklahoma City University senior dance performance                 organizations across the world. As is often the case,
majors Kristen Stanley and Tracy Halso and the University of Oklahoma                most non-profit organizations are always looking
dance major Collin Eckhoff supplemented the company and got to                       for new ways to bring in extra revenue, even if
experience firsthand the rigors of performing a ballet as complex and difficult      it means rehearsing for a holiday show while the
                                                                                     temperatures outside are still in the 80’s.
as Ben Stevenson’s Dracula. Of her students performing alongside Tulsa
Ballet, OCU’s Ann Lacy School of American Dance and Arts Management
                                                                                     The magic of the holidays also encourages people
Department Chairman Jo Rowan stated, “I am pleased for our dancers to be
                                                                                     to celebrate the spirit of giving. In fact, not only do
collaborating with such an excellent organization as the Tulsa Ballet.”              individuals feel better when they give to others, but
                                                                                     also several articles and books attribute multiple
                                                                                     health benefits with the very act of giving. In The
                                                                                     Healing Power of Doing Good, the book’s author cites
                                                                                     specific case studies where performing good deeds
                                                                                     has helped provide a cure for physical ailments. No
                                                                                     kidding! He also introduces the term “helpers high,”
                                                                                     relating to the physical release of endorphins in our
                                                                                     body when we help others.

                                                                                     So, during this holiday season let’s continue to turn
                                                                                     our thoughts toward other people, especially the
                                                                                     TB dancers during the grueling performance weeks
                                                                                     of The Nutcracker! We would also appreciate your
                                                                                     consideration as you make your personal end-of-
                                                                                     year giving plans. It’s a great way to help you feel
                                                                                     good all over.

                                                                                     Happy Holidays from all of us at Tulsa Ballet and
                                                                                     best wishes for the coming year.


                                                                                     Scott Black
                                                                                     Managing Director
                                    Holiday Cheer for Those Who Need it Most
                                    Each year as the air chills, excitement for the impending holiday season grows.               You
                                    prepare your shopping list for the family dinners, yummy goodies, and children’s gifts. You invite
                                    your loved ones to attend The Nutcracker so that you can share this evening of holiday magic.

                                    But for many, there will be no family dinners or gifts.

                                    Thanks to generous community supporters, more
                                    than 2,000 social service clients will have the
                                    opportunity to experience the magic of the holiday
                                    classic, The Nutcracker, during our annual Hope for
                                    the Holidays event.

                                    On December 10, clients from more than 40
                                    community agencies such as Make-a-Wish, Children’s
                                    Medical Center and Big Brothers/Big Sisters will be
                                    treated to a performance of the magical holiday ballet.
                                    Adding to the occasion will be delicious QuikTrip
                                    cookies and juice from Highland Dairy, along with a
                                    visit from several popular winter characters.

                                    Tulsa Ballet offers thanks to the Robson Companies
                                    and the Zarrow Foundations for presenting this
                                    special performance of Tulsa Ballet’s The Nutcracker.
                                    Without their generous support, we would not be
                                    able to offer this treat to so many Tulsans who need a
                                    little holiday cheer.

                                    Have Lunch with Tulsa Ballet
    Come Inside Tulsa Ballet, a special lunchtime event offered once a month.                This is a fun, informal way for you to learn
    more about the company, as well as the school and outreach programs. We’ll have a light lunch and watch the dancers rehearse for
    an upcoming ballet. We’ll also tour the 50,000 square foot facility, including six large studios and a theater that was just built last
    year. I hope you will join us for this “insider’s view” of Tulsa Ballet! Upcoming dates are December 4, January 8 and February 5 at
    11:30 am. Call 749-6030 to RSVP.

    (“New Faculty” cont. from page 4)
    Tulsa Ballet Center for Dance Education is thrilled to welcome them to Tulsa. They will start full time on January 4th, 2010, but will
    spend a few weeks on site as guest teachers before that time. During a recent visit to Tulsa, Ms. Murrish said, “I am delighted to join
    the Tulsa Ballet team and look forward to contributing to the growth of the school and TBII. I feel this is the perfect place for us to
    foster our professional growth while being part of a thriving organization with high artistic standards and strong commitment to its
    community and students.” Mr. Gaifullin seconds these thoughts and adds, “This is the perfect place to raise a family. We both love
    the city, its surroundings, the family oriented feel of the community and the friendly attitude of everybody we have come in contact
    with. That, coupled with an exciting work environment, seems to be the ideal place for our family.”

    We welcome Ms. Murrish, Mr. Gaifullin and son Nikolas, to Tulsa!

                                                                                 Take your best guess and WIN!
                                                                           Question: How many Pointe Shoes are used each
                                                                            year by all 28 Tulsa Ballet dancers combined?
                                                                                              Mail your answer to:
                                                                                           Best Guess c/o Tulsa Ballet
                                                                                            1212 E. 45th Place South
                                                                                                Tulsa, OK 74105
                                                                            The WINNER receives a t-shirt autographed by all the
                                                                                         Tulsa Ballet dancers.
                                                                           Deadline is December 20, 2009. The winner will be contacted
                                                                                     and listed in the January 2010 newsletter.

                                                                                       Pollo alla Romanesca
Staying Healthy         can be a challenge during flu season, especially           (A typical chicken recipe from Rome)
when you work as closely as the company dancers do. It’s not uncommon
for more than half of the company to be ill during The Nutcracker, but     Ingredients for four people:
“the show must go on!” This year, Matt Coughlin and his company            Chicken thighs, three pounds
IIB sponsored immunizations for the entire company and staff of Tulsa      Four slices of Parma Ham
                                                                           One clove of Garlic
Ballet. On Friday, October 2, the Visiting Nurses Association brought
                                                                           Two glasses of dry white wine
flu shots to the studios at 45th and Peoria in Tulsa and made sure every   One and half pounds of fresh, ripe tomatoes. You can also
dancer was prepared for the season. Thanks, Matt and IIB, for keeping      use canned chopped tomatoes, it’s just as good (and faster!)
us on our toes!                                                            Parsley, olive oil, salt, pepper

                                                                           1. Clean the chicken of its skin, dry it, cut it into pieces if not
                                                                           already cut
                                                                           2. Mince the garlic and the parsley, put them in a salad bowl
                                                                           with few table spoons of oil, one glass of wine, salt, pepper,
                                                                           leave to marinate for a couple of hours.
                                                                           3. If you are using fresh tomatoes, put them in a pot with
                                                                           boiling water for a minute or two, peel them, get rid of the
Tulsa Ballet supports                                                      seeds, slice them and place them in a container. Otherwise,
                                                                           just open the cans…
the Salvation Army
                                                                           4. Once the marinating time is over, place the chicken in a
Tulsa Ballet Toy Drive: Bring a new, unwrapped toy to the Tulsa Ballet     frying pan with few tablespoons of oil, let it brown, add the
office through December 10 and receive a “Ballet Buck” good toward         other glass of white wine, let it evaporate, add the tomatoes,
holiday and ballet merchandise.                                            salt according to taste and cook for 40-50 minutes to an hour
Red Kettle: Join us at the PAC before The Nutcracker performances,         on low heat.
Dec. 17-20, climb up to the “Red Kettle” and help support others           5. When the chicken if fully cooked, remove from the heat
during this holiday season.                                                and add the Parma ham finely cut.
For more information visit
                                                                           6. Mix it well, adjust salt and pepper and serve. If your
Salvation Army Tulsa Metro Area Command
                                                                           guests like it, take the compliments. If not, blame it on me…
1616 South Main • Tulsa, OK 74119 • (918) 587-7801                                           Buon Appetito!
Winter Celebration
Studio K
Dec. 3 at 7pm

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