This just in from Hanna Rubin at Dance Magazine. The filming of the movie Center Stage 2 is currently underway in Vancouver. The original Center Stage came out in 2000 and was kind of a cult hit among fans of American Ballet Theater and NYCity Ballet starring as it did several dancers from those companies, including ABT’s lovely Julie Kent and heartthrobs Ethan Stiefel and Sascha Radetsky. It was cute in an ABC After School Special kind of way and detailed the drama taking place at training school for pre-professional ballet dancers replete with eating disorders, body-type issues, harsh disciplinarian teachers, and back-stabbing hyper-competitiveness. And there was a little love triangle in which Ethan, as the cocky womanizing shit, and Sascha, as the nice guy, vie for the attentions of the main female character. Blast if I couldn’t find a YouTube of the little dance competition between these two guys, my favorite part. But here’s one giving a good musical overview of the whole.
Anyway, according to Dance Mag, Ethan will be reprising his role, this time playing cocky-shit dancer as well as cocky-shit teacher 😀 This time the main character is a small-town girl, played by newcomer to the big screen (? — I can’t find anything on the web on her), Rachele Smith, who enrolls at the academy with hopes of making it as a pro ballerina but who is also passionate about hip hop, and is hence an object of scorn by some of her ballet classmates. Ethan, it appears, will be dancing some hip hop. Fun fun! And he sounds very excited about it. According to the e-newsletter: “‘It was fantastic! I’m not sure I was necessarily successful, but what was beautiful was the collaboration with the other dancers. At this point in my career, when learning something brand-new like this falls into your lap, it’s challenging and exciting.”
I hope the sequel is more sophisticated than the original, but even if it’s not, watching Ethan dance hip hop should be worth the price of at least one admission.