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Meet NYCB's Interim Leadership Team

From left: Justin Peck, Rebecca Krohn, Jonathan Stafford and Craig Hall. Photo by Erin Baiano, via The New York Times.

On Saturday, New York City Ballet announced who will be leading the company while ballet master in chief Peter Martins is on a self-requested leave of absence amidst an ongoing investigation into sexual harassment allegations.


The decision, made by NYCB's board, was somewhat surprising. Instead of choosing one interim director, they appointed a team of four: resident choreographer and soloist Justin Peck and ballet masters Jonathan Stafford, Rebecca Krohn and Craig Hall. Stafford will lead the group.

Though the team is relatively green when it comes to the leadership side of ballet, all four are undoubtably familiar with the current workings of NYCB. Krohn transitioned from principal dancer to ballet master in October, while Hall, a former soloist, assumed the same role in 2016. Former principal Stafford has the most experience on that side of the studio—he began his duties as ballet master during his last season as a performer in 2013–14.

We wish the team luck as they step up during such a busy performance season. Dance Magazine will continue its coverage of this developing story, including Martins' future as it relates to NYCB.

In Memoriam
Alicia Alonso with Igor Youskevitch. Sedge Leblang, Courtesy Dance Magazine Archives.

Her Dying Swan was as fragile as her Juliet was rebellious; her Odile, scheming, her Swanilda, insouciant. Her Belle was joyous, and her Carmen, both brooding and full-blooded. But there was one role in particular that prompted dance critic Arnold Haskell to ask, "How do you interpret Giselle when you are Giselle?"

At eight, Alicia Alonso took her first ballet class on a stage in her native Cuba, wearing street clothes. Fifteen years later, put in for an ailing Alicia Markova in a performance of Giselle at New York's Metropolitan Opera House, she staked her claim to that title role.

Alonso received recognition throughout the world for her flawless technique and her ability to become one with the characters she danced, even after she became nearly blind. After a career in New York, she and her then husband Fernando Alonso established the Cuban National Ballet and the Cuban National Ballet School, both of which grew into major international dance powerhouses and beloved institutions in their home country. On October 17, the company announced that, after leading the company for a remarkable 71 years, Alonso died from cardiovascular disease at the age of 98.

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News
Rauf "RubberlLegz" Yasit and Parvaneh Scharafali. Photo by Mohamed Sadek, courtesy The Shed

William Forsythe is bringing his multi-faceted genius to New York City in stripped down form. His "Quiet Evening of Dance," a mix of new and recycled work now at The Shed until October 25, is co-commissioned with Sadler's Wells in London (and a slew of European presenters).

As always, Forsythe's choreography is a layered experience, both kinetic and intellectual. This North American premiere prompted many thoughts, which I whittled down to seven.

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News
Courtesy NBC

"Law & Order: SVU" has dominated the crime show genre for 21 seasons with its famous "ripped from the headlines" strategy of taking plot inspiration from real-life crimes.

So viewers would be forgiven for assuming that the new storyline following the son of Mariska Hargitay's character into dance class originated in the news cycle. After all, the mainstream media widely covered the reaction to Lara Spencer's faux pas on "Good Morning America" in August, when she made fun of Prince George for taking ballet class.

But it turns out, the storyline was actually the idea of the 9-year-old actor, Ryan Buggle, who plays Hargitay's son. And he came up with it before Spencer ever giggled at the word ballet.

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Breaking Stereotypes
Getty Images

As a dietitian specializing in dance nutrition, the most common DM flooding my inbox is "How can I drop pounds (specifically from body fat) and gain muscle?"

The short answer? Not happening.

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