Now hiring male dancer for the 2013-2014 season!

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Attention male dancers! Ballet Fantastique is on a national audition search for a male company dancer for the 2013-2014 season. Please pass the information along! More info

ballet fantastique contemporary chamber company (in gorgeous eugene, oregon)

30+ WEEKS OF PAID WORK 2013–2014 SEASON + TOURING

ALL-ORIGINAL CONTEMPORARY BALLET REPERTOIRE

choreographer-producers donna marisa + hannah bontrager

2013–2014 season includes—subject to some change:

zorro (original score)

as you like it: a wild west ballet

tales from a floating world (live japanese taiko drumming)

Contract includes three new contemporary ballet premieres each season, plus touring. Competitive pay by the week and benefits, including shoes, massage assistance, and full physical therapy. Also available: additional opportunities for paid outreach and teaching work.

Competitive applicants will have strong classical ballet and contemporary vocabularies, and confidence with soloist and pas de deux work. Applicants must be a US citizen (or hold a green card or work permit), and are preferably 5’9” and up. Audition by DVD or in person (contact us for more details).

Additional skills of interest (desired but not requisite): Choreography, arts education, arts administration, dance instruction (ballet, contemporary, modern, jazz, pas de deux, and/or hip-hop).

Male Dancer Auditions

ballet fantastique male dancer audition flyer

Photo: Mikael Krummel and Greg Burns

Job opening: Male contemporary ballet dancer for Ballet Fantastique

Ballet Fantastique Contemporary Chamber Company is hiring a male soloist dancer beginning as early as January 2013 and as late as July 2013 (start date negotiable) for a full contract of 30 weeks of paid work including three new contemporary ballet premieres plus national/international touring as scheduled, with competitive pay by the week and benefits, including shoe allowance, physical therapy and massage assistance.  Contract also includes additional opportunities for paid outreach and teaching work.

We seek a new company member with talent, strength, artistic voice, a great work ethic and sense of humor, personality, and an insatiable appetite for what’s next.  Competitive applicants will have strong classical and contemporary vocabularies, and confidence with pas de deux work.  Applicants must be a US citizen (or hold a green card or work permit), and are preferably 5’9” and up.

Additional skills of interest (desired but not requisite): Choreography, arts education, arts administration, dance instruction (ballet, contemporary, modern, jazz, pas de deux, and/or hip-hop).

More information/full audition requirements

Please send DVD, resume and photos to:

Hannah Bontrager, Executive Director

Ballet Fantastique | 960 Oak | Eugene, OR 97401

or email info@balletfantastique.org

Feel free to pass this post/opportunity along!  Thanks a million.

Our Cinderella Tour Experience!

Dearest BFan fanatics,

Last weekend was one of the best whirlwinds of my life. Touring Cinderella: A Rock Opera Ballet to three towns in three days was intense, but well worth the exhaustion. I feel that the whirlwind began when James Fuller, a company member with Ballet Austin, arrived in Eugene to learn the role of the Prince. James was such a trooper! Learning such a demanding role in less than one week is no easy feat, and a special thanks must go to his incessant smile. There was literally not a single moment in which Mr. Fuller had a straight face, let alone a frown.

 

James Fuller as Prince Charming and Alanna Fisher as Cindy (Photo: Yin Yi)

Last Thursday we had our first run through of the show with the band since our performances at the Hult back in May. I felt, that considering James had just learned his part, and we were all a bit frazzled, that the run went swimmingly. There is something truly magical about performing to live music, and I personally feel that it allows me to throw away my inhibitions and just get into character. After rehearsing with Shelley and Cal and their band, I felt ready to tackle three towns in three days.

First stop: Florence, Oregon! We arrived in Florence knowing the environment- we had performed Beatrix Potter at the Florence Event Center during the holiday season. We marked through all of the pieces, warmed up, and became situated with the stage. We had such a receptive audience! Nothing makes me happier than the laughter of an audience while portraying a comedic character. Thanks for laughing, Florence!

The ride back to Eugene that evening seemed to last forever. We were all exhausted, and could barely keep our eyes open by the time we arrived home. The BFan dancers and crew quickly fell asleep and recuperated as much as possible before our warm-up class at 9am the next day. I’m not going to lie, I could hardly move during that class. I can’t attest for everyone, but I think that the majority of the BFan dancers were hurting that morning. Our bodies were tired. After class, we packed up, grabbed a cup ‘o’ jo, and headed to our second stop: Noti!

Noti was certainly a smaller venue, but with a lot of heart! Everyone there was so immensely friendly. They provided us with delicious fresh fruit, snacks full of protein, and ice cold bottles of water. This was also the sweatiest show of the weekend! It was about 100ºF outside. We performed in a gymnasium, which had our marley floor laid out (thanks to many of the BFan boyfriends). We had to accomodate ourselves to the new layout, which surprisingly took no time at all. I literally saw Ballet Fantastique become a versatile touring company right before my eyes! Noti also provided us with a delicious bbq chicken feast! I would use the word “taste-tastic” when describing that meal! Thanks for your hospitality, Noti!

Most of the BFan crew left for Portland that evening after the Noti show around 9pm so that we wouldn’t be stiff from a morning car-ride right before the Sunday show. We had some very hospitable friends and family in Portland who were willing to house us for the evening. Arriving at Lincoln Hall on Sunday morning was fantastic! We had an enormous amount of space in the dressing room backstage, and the theater was just beautiful in general. I felt quite relaxed and ready to give it my all that day. However, about two hours before the show, I became jittery. I think it was just the thought of performing in my hometown, where I had no idea who might be out in the audience. After the first couple of pieces though, I realized that it didn’t matter who was out there- I’m dancin’ ’cause I love it! In the end, the Portland show was amazing! The viewers seemed to really enjoy the performance, and everyone was incredibly receptive!

Whew! What an experience! Now, I sit in my room up in Portland, writing this blogpost, still recuperating from the tour, and thinking to myself, “Where will BFan go next?!”
Love,
Amelia (a.k.a. Meelz)

A Creative Social Media Outlet: Perfect for the Arts!

It’s a known fact that social media is taking over the online world. Ballet Fantastique (BFan) prides itself on its vast social media presence by using FacebookTwitterFlickr and more! Now a new site has been added to the BFan social media family. This site is known as Pinterest.

Pinterest is a virtual pin board. At first glance, it appears to be a site consisting of only pictures without content. But the site is unique; you can find great recipes, craft and wedding ideas, and our favorite: behind the scenes insight into BFan’s creative imagination. By clicking on the photos provided on the Ballet Fantastique boards, Pinterest users can view different artisitic content that sparks the directors’, choreographers’ and dancers’ interests! Some of our boards include:

1. “Cirque Inspiration”- A board dedicated to our upcoming fall show: Cirque de la Lune. It depicts photos of circus scenes in/of the 1930s. Very quirky and daring!

2. “Healthy, Delicious Ballerina Food”- This board gives the viewer different healthy recipes-my stomach’s rumbling thinking about it.

3. “Our Dancers”- This board celebrates the talented dancers of the Ballet Fantastique Company.

Other boards of ours include ballerina hairdo ideas, famous dancers and BFan performance content. Links to performance tickets and programs are also available on our Pinterest boards. What a great way for a creative company to interact with its audience! The performing arts are about visuals over words. This unique tool gives us at BFan the opportunity to show you other ways a ballet company can perform.

Wanting to emerge into the life of a ballerina? Or just interested in getting delicious recipes and crafty ideas? Dive into Pinterest and follow our boards! They continue to grow as we continue to grow as a company, and your support directly helps us do that.

Meet Alanna!

She’s the newest edition to the BFan company, and she’s traveled everywhere–well, to Costa Rica, Greece, and Germany, among other places–meet Alanna Fisher!

Freshly graduated from the University of Utah with a BFA in Dance, you’ll see her teaching our new Sparkling Stars class and, of course, performing in all of our shows.

Now for some Q&A!
Hometown:
Willow Creek, CA

How did you get into ballet? My mom got me
started when I was five or six. I don’t know why, or even if it was something that I was interested in. Honestly, I don’t distinctly remember a time when I didn’t dance, although I didn’t start as young as some.

Most memorable ballet experience? When I got the e-mail from Hannah telling me that Ballet Fantastique wanted me to join their company.

Biggest ballet challenge? Having strength… Especially when doing any sort of jump.

Favorite way to spend a day off? In Salt Lake City, where I went to college, my friends and I would go to our favorite coffee shop or restaurant on days off. We’d also go see movies at the Dollar Theater a lot. Mostly I just like doing things that aren’t related to dance.

Advice for aspiring ballerinas? Work hard!

Welcome to the Ballet Fantastique company, Alanna! We’re thrilled to have you with us!

Young dancers SHINE with us!!

Our Academy classes start September 10th! This season is all about new–new dancer, new students, new class! We’re incredibly excited to inspire all of our students, continuing or just starting out, to reach for the stars!

This season we’ve added a new class with the newest member of our chamber company Alanna! She’s bringing her expertise to SPARKLING STARS on Mondays.

We love what we do and want your child to as well!!

5 reasons to enroll your young dancer (or aspiring dancer) in our classes:

1. Our instructors have extensive experience working with children (summer camps or previous classes) and, of course, were once in their (pointe) shoes. Ballet’s complexity ensures that there’s always something for everyone to learn! So don’t fear–we are well aware of the potential to be easily overwhelmed and try our best to guard against it. If your child is having a problem, we are more than happy to give them individual instruction to help them achieve the best.

2. We teach using the Vaganova syllabus; It emphasizes learning technical steps alongside a personal, unique artistry, and builds skills from the bottom up. This means no one will start out at a level beyond their ability. But don’t take our word for it…
“In addition to technique, the dancers have something more.  It is a very good coordination with the expression, body, and musicality—in Russia we call it the ‘feel of the pose.’  Ballet Fantastique training is wonderful.”
Dina Fadayeva, Expert master teacher, Vaganova Method, 2010
Graduate of the Gitis Choreographic Institute, Moscow, Russia

3. Tuition ranges from $52 to $58 a month, but you’re not only investing in your child’s ability to dance, you’re making a down payment on their development of discipline, confidence and charisma. Although a season’s worth of hard work pays off most exuberantly during the final performance, the effects of our training seep into other areas as well: schoolwork, social activities, extracurriculars. Attention to detail and dedication is central to ballet, and nothing beats the elation of hard work paying off 🙂

4. Does your child love to perform? Do you want them to develop valuable social skills? The team is as important to ballet as the individual! Our small class sizes–the cap is at nine students–ensure everyone gets to know each other, along with receiving a great deal of individual instruction. Growing out of shyness starts with building confidence in interpersonal situations, and between our performances and intimate groupings, reaching a comfortable social level is no problem.

5. We offer so much more than ballet! For example, our classes include seminars that round out our students’ ballet education. Past seminars include tying the perfect ballet bun and yoga (stills from our summer session version are below). We also feature a wide variety of music (from Disney to Chopin) to advance children’s understanding of rhythm and melody. Connect kids to their bodies by promoting athleticism, teach them dietary responsibility and more with our classes.


The classes:

NEW! Sparkling Stars (rec. ages 4 & up)

  • Mondays 4:15-4:45 pm
  • Monthly Tuition: $52/month
  • With Miss Alanna

Shooting Stars (rec. ages 4 & up)

  • Wednesdays 4:15-4:45 pm
  • Monthly Tuition: $52/month
  • With Miss Leanne

Twinkling Stars (rec. ages 4-5)

  • Saturdays 9:30-10 am
  • Monthly Tuition: $52/month
  • With Miss Hannah

Rising Stars (rec. ages 6 & up)

  • Saturdays 10:15-11 am
  • Monthly Tuition: $58/month
  • With Miss Hannah

Full details and registration here.

Warning: kids who start dancing with us have been known to put on performances in their home living rooms every day of the week 🙂

It’s time for ballet camp!

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Photos of studio: Reathel Geary, 5d-Creative
Photos of young Ballet Fantastique dancers: Jerry Gowins
Meeting a Ballet Fantastique dancer photo: Taylor Jewell

Summer Fairytale Ballet Camps at The Academy of Ballet Fantastique are right around the corner (for boys and girls ages 4-7), and we wanted to give you a little taste for what our young dancers will be up to in the studio; after all, this is where the magic will be happening for many youngsters who are brand new to dance, and there’s something very beautiful about that! Like all BFan classes, there’s a lot more going on than just glorified babysitting. You will be truly astounded at what these kids can learn and do in just two hours a day for one week. I know that I am every summer!

We were the first to offer week-long themed camps in our area (starting ten years ago), and we’ve developed a special formula for what we do and how we do it. Each day begins with a full dance lesson, encompassing a Pre-Ballet syllabus that I developed years ago out of my UO Dance Department coursework. The syllabus includes fundamental concepts of ballet (including positions of the feet, arms, and the first forms of key ballet steps, like plie, port de bras, pas de chat, saute, etc.). It also includes key concepts of rhythm and music (e.g., adagio, allegro, andante, staccato, legato, and how dance works with music), the vocabulary of movement in space (points of the room, kinesphere or self-space, levels in space), lots of creative sparkle (structured choreography: in one class, we might be everything from lions, to clowns, to spaghetti, to magical beanstalks), and elements of working together (when to follow the leader vs. when to do your own thing, taking turns, etc.). We balance a lot of fun with motivated-yet-age appropriate expectations for what kids should know…and what are capable of learning (a lot!). Whether or not they will become the next Svetlana Zakharova or Mikhail Baryshnikov–or a schoolteacher–or a rocket scientist–these concepts equip young people with athleticism, musicality, confidence, and even social skills. You can tell how passionate I am about all this, so forgive the tangent/sermon. 🙂

Then, after our awesome daily dance lesson, we’ll delve into our story of the week! Rather than choose very general concepts (though I have to say that a camp themed after a color, e.g., “Pinkalicious Camp” sounds pretty darn fun–so kudos the local dance schools offering these!), we’ve always chosen real ballet stories for the kids to study.

This summer, young dancers can mix and match from the following list:
Swan Lake: July 11-15
Coppelia: July 18-22
Sleeping Beauty: July 25-29
Where the Wild Things Are: August 1-5

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Photos of City Center for Dance: Reathel Geary, 5d-Creative

Note: All camps are from 9-11 am, Monday-Friday, at our beautiful new City Center for Dance studio, and include all activities (craft, dance lessons, healthy snack, and end-of-the-week performance with costumes and stage makeup). Camps are $85 each or $150 for any two!

Studying the story includes Storytime and then watching a renowned ballet company perform the ballet story while we enjoy a healthy snack. Teachers facilitate discussion questions (From “Which character do you think that is?” to “Why is the music scary here?”). Next, we’ll participate in a daily craft related to our story, which might include a prop (like a crown that will be used in our Friday performance) or a miniature costume or set design, depending on the day of the week and the story in question (we don’t want to give it ALL away here, folks!). While we work on our craft projects, we’ll also listen to music from the story and discuss how it helps to tell the story’s action. Each camp morning finishes with a rehearsal of choreography for our performance at the end of the week! Some fun additional activities throughout the week include meeting a BFan company dancer in costume, a field trip to the public library’s dance section (with parental permission, of course), and a performance at the end of the week complete with costumes, stage makeup, kid-produced tickets, programs, choreography inspired by the original, and a viewing of the scenery and costumes that each young dancer would create in his/her own staging of the production someday. (We’ve got fun stories from past projects: one young man many years ago elected to give Von Rothbart, the bad guy in Swan Lake, gingivitis and a case of bad plaque in his costume design–“since Mr. Rothbart is so evil and irresponsible.”)

Parents will learn, too: Expect a full report on the ballet story, composer, and key musical moments during the Friday performance at the end of each Camp week.

Finally, another key ingredient that makes BFan’s Fairytale Ballet Camps so special is that they are limited in size to nine kids…so each young dancer truly gets a lot of personal attention from his or her teacher, creates some great new friendships, and feels comfortable to learn and reach their highest potential and to contribute creatively. We love what we do and know that you will too! Please help us pass the word along about our very Fantastique Fairytale Dance Camps (we still have a few spaces available in all camps, but our weekly Shooting Stars class on Wednesday afternoons is full).

You can learn more about the camps and register online here!

Psst: We also have limited space still available for some Professional Division Summer Intensive Program workshops (ages 7 and up)…just send us an email or give us a call!