New York City Ballet Retirements
New York City Ballet Principal Dancers Jenifer Ringer, Janie Taylor, Sébastien Marcovici, and Jonathan Stafford will retire in 2014. Jenifer will have her final performance February 9 in Dances at a Gathering and Union Jack, Janie and Sébastien on Saturday evening March 1 in Afternoon of a Faun and La Valse, and Jonathan Stafford on Sunday, May 25 in Emeralds and Diamonds. Janie and Sébastien, who married in 2012, will move to Los Angeles where he will become ballet master with the L.A. Dance Project, founded by Benjamin Millepied. Jonathan will become a ballet master with the company and will continue to teach at the School of American Ballet according to The New York Times.
Bribery Scandal at the Bolshoi
Joy Womack, the first American to join the Bolshoi Ballet, quit the company after alleging that one of the company’s directors (not Artistic Director Sergei Filin according to Joy) demanded $10,000 to secure a role, according to The New York Times.
From the Times: “Ms. Womack has declined to name the Bolshoi official who said a $10,000 payment would get her a soloist role. She said the figure was mentioned after she had repeatedly pressed managers about her desire for prominent roles. Since her graduation, she was offered few chances to perform, she said.
“‘Don’t you understand that you are an American?’” Ms. Womack said she was told at one point. “‘You have to be smarter about this. You have to find out who you have to pay.’”
When a Bolshoi official mentioned the $10,000 figure, Ms. Womack said, “that was a starting bargaining point.” She added, “It’s not a secret that there are many dancers who have given presents.””
A former principal dancer, Pavel V. Dmitrichenko, is on trial in Moscow on charges that he arranged an acid attack in January that nearly blinded Filin.
Ballet dancers, DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME! Splits atop two backward moving Volvo trucks. This is cool!