I really thought there was going to be another blackout today in NY. I got on the 3 train about 9:25 a.m. just to stand, gripping the pole, and stand, and stand, and stand, before being told there was a loss of power and thus no local or express trains running on the 7th Ave. line. This news resulted in a mass exodus to the 8th Ave. line where several thousand profusely sweating, hysterically rushing, immensely frustrated people tried to pile into the first car of a C train, just so the train could sit and sit and sit in the station. About 15 minutes later, we were told there was a medical emergency and the train would be held indefinitely. I jumped out, landed a seat on a platform bench, and, deciding to screw being worried over being late to work, pulled out my Chris Anderson book — about which I will say more in a sec. When I finally boarded the next C train nearly an hour later, I honestly wondered if I should get right back off of it, thinking on such a hot day with one power-outage already underway, I may well find myself walking the 8 or so miles from the financial district to my apartment later today, which I did three years ago in brand new, un-broken-in shoes — not very pleasant. I had comfortable shoes on today, but have noticed the past few days a pain now in my left knee, in the exact location where I’d felt pain on my right knee when I was diagnosed with a meniscus tear. I haven’t been dancing a lot the past few weeks and after beginning to sense a jello-y presence accumulating on my lower butt, started myself on a regimen of demi and grand plies, days before I noticed the pain. Can I please bend my knee without injuring myself, for crying out loud!?!? Anyway, it wasn’t nearly so hot three years ago either. Today, it almost hit the 100 degree mark — was probably over that with the humidity. By the time I got to work, two hours after I began my normally 40 minute commute, I was dripping with sweat, and, being from Phoenix, where it’s often at least 110 degrees in the summer, I really don’t sweat on the east coast. I can’t imagine how hot a normal person must have been. If there would’ve been another blackout, there may well have been several heat strokes. We really really really have to do something, as a society, about global warming…
Anyway, I am horribly sad that the ABT has now ended its summer Met season, and am suffering from ridiculously serious separation anxiety. Therefore, I have posted on the photo page some of my favorite curtain-call moments featuring their incredible, world-class cast (because, with a company populated by such “characters,” rarely does the fall of the curtain signal the end of the show:):):). In particular, I find that I’ve developed a stupid little bad crush on baby principal David Hallberg. He’s such a little cutie — in addition to being a charming dancer with a very mature for his age, very regal stage presence, his entries in Kristin Sloan’s brilliant and ADDICTIVE blog, The Winger, are so well thought-out, and he’s quite sophisticated and cerebral, especially for a 24-year-old. Funny, since I’m first and foremost a writer and reader, I tend to develop crushes on dancers not through their dancing but either their books, or their interviews in magazines and books (e.g. Marcelo!) or, now, in their blog posts 🙂 I also think part of my ABT-detachment issues are stemming from the fact that now I really have to focus on my own dancing since I no longer have my favorites to watch and since my showcase is coming up in just a few months!!! Needless to say, it’s a lot easier to watch someone else perform (especially if that someone is the best in the world…) than deal with my own dance problems!
While not dancing a lot lately, I’ve started reading this book called The Long Tail. Normally, I don’t read a lot of non-fiction but Kristin (see how addicted I am???) posted about attending author Chris Anderson’s book signing party and when I read her link to his intriguingly original book-in-progress blog, then that same day received an email from Borders offering me, as a rewards member, a 30% discount on that very book, have had my nose in it for the past several nights now. His thesis is that the internet has fundamentally changed the laws of supply and demand so that instead of only a few big commercial, mainstream “hits” reaching and thus dominating the public mind, consumers are discovering smaller, alternative “niche” products. Online stores like Amazon and Netflix are realizing that while each “niche” product in and of itself doesn’t sell as well as one “hit,” taken together the “niche” products consistitute a market far greater than the “hit” market — a market the online stores, without the overhead costs of actual stores, are exploiting. This is great news for first-time or avant-garde book authors or filmmakers whose sales potential publishers and production companies find risky because, with online companies selling more non-mainstream products, we actually have a fighting chance of our good actually making it to the consumer:) But I wonder what it means for dance. Online advertising (e.g. Google) has opened up to smaller niche advertisers in the same way as online stores, Anderson argues. So alternative choreographers and small dance companies can better sell themeselves to the public. But dancers make relatively low salaries for the same reason stage actors do, and while a live performance (of which there is no equal of course) costs many many times what a taped one does and a tape has the potential, with the internet, of taking in many times that of a live show, I wonder if DVD is the future of dance. While nothing beats a live performance, I have many dance videos that I treasure and watch over and over again. While Nureyev directed filmed versions of himself and his company dancing, he proclaimed that he was a much better stage performer, as are many of today’s great performers with through-the-roof charisma, like Angel Corella. But, being too young to have ever seen him perform, those taped versions of Nureyev are the only way I “know” him, and, from viewing those tapes, he has become my favorite ever dancer. So, is it so bad if lots of people have access to dance solely on tape? Hmmm, it’s interesting to ponder. I have to finish the book though!
Very excited because I sent off for my Blackpool seat tickets today! True, the dance festival doesn’t happen until end of May 2007, but the cut-off deadline for seat ticket orders (standing room only tickets are available until about a couple of weeks before the event) must reach their England office by July 28th. So, if you think you’re gonna go, and you want to be guaranteed a seat, go to their website, download an order form, and fax or fed-ex it right away!