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Drew Jacoby joins Nederlands Dans Theater; Moscelyne Larkin; Jenifer Ringer and James Fayette welcome their second child.
After five years of pouring all her energies into Jacoby & Pronk, Drew Jacoby has decided to leave her artistic partnership with Rubinald Pronk to join Nederlands Dans Theater. (Pronk will continue his freelance career.)
For the fiercely independent dancer, it was time for a change. “It was exciting and fulfilling, but so exhausting that I was getting old,” she says, laughing. Working with choreographers Sol León and Paul Lightfoot, now also the director of NDT (see “Quick Q&A,” March), on Softly As I Leave You when she was a member of Morphoses was “one of the best experiences of my career. Their work is gut-wrenching to watch because it’s so beautiful.”
At that time, the choreographers asked her if she’d ever consider joining NDT. “I was flattered and jarred because I never have had an opportunity fall in my lap.” However, when it came time for contracts, Jacoby did not receive one from then-director Jim Vincent. Three years later, she reconnected with Lightfoot and León at the Holland Dance Festival last January, and within a week, she made her decision. Calling herself “impatient,” she says, “I’m never exactly where I want to be. I have moments of fulfillment, but I don’t know that I can grow on a real, deep level without that kind of creative atmosphere.”
She’s looking forward to expanding her repertoire with works by Mats Ek, Crystal Pite, and Johan Inger—and “I know it’s a minor thing, but the perks—free Pilates? Not paying for class? I haven’t had health insurance in six years.” She will miss her life and her husband in New York. “But I’m going to work at NDT. It’s going to be hard because I’ve had my own way. But I think to have someone tell me what to do is going to be refreshing.” —Kina Poon
Jacoby in Lightfoot León’s Softly As I Leave You. Photo by Bill Cooper, Courtesy Jacoby.
Moscelyne Larkin (1925–2012)
Co-founder of the Tulsa Ballet with her late husband, Roman Jasinski, Edna Moscelyne Larkin died in April in Tulsa.
Larkin was born in Miami, Oklahoma, to a Russian mother and a Shawnee-Peoria father. She was always proud of her mixed heritage. Though she began studying ballet with her mother, at 13 she traveled to New York City to work with an array of teachers, including Mikhail Mordkin. At 15, Larkin joined the corps of Colonel W. de Basil’s Original Ballet Russe, which toured South America during World War II. And she met principal dancer Jasinski, whom she married in 1943 in Buenos Aires. De Basil Russified her name to Moussia Larkina.
Athough the Jasinskis went to Europe in 1947 with Original Ballet Russe, the pair soon returned to the United States, appearing with Sergei Denham’s Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. With her name re-Americanized, Larkin was popular in such roles as the Waltz in Fokine’s Les Sylphides and the Cowgirl in de Mille’s Rodeo. In an interview in 2006, Frederic Franklin, premier danseur and ballet master of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, said of Larkin, “What a sparkler! She was our soubrette.”
Upon retirement from performing, Miss Larkin—as she was known to generations of students—and Jasinski taught ballet and formed a student company in 1956. The group was so warmly received that it developed into the current Tulsa Ballet, a lively professional troupe. Recipient of many honors, Larkin shared with Jasinski a 1988 Dance Magazine Award, in praise of the couple’s fostering “a dynamic bastion for classical dance in America.” Tulsa Ballet will host a memorial celebration of Larkin’s life in September. —Camille Hardy
Larkin with Jasinski in Paquita. Photo from DM Archives.
New York City Ballet principal dancer Jenifer Ringer and James Fayette, former NYCB principal and the New York area dance executive for the American Guild of Musical Artists, welcomed their second child, Luke Douglas Fayette, in April. Luke joins sister Grace Rebecca, 4. Ringer hopes to be back onstage for NYCB’s fall season.
Photo courtesy Fayette