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Pennsylvania Ballet

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NEWS
March 1, 2013 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
To ring up the curtain on its 50th-anniversary celebration, Balanchine-centric Pennsylvania Ballet will mount its first complete performance of a major gem in the master's crown: George Balanchine's Jewels . Later in the 2013-14 season, it will premiere new works by important contemporary choreographers Trey McIntyre and Matthew Neenan. In a nod to its own artistic lineage, the company will bring in pieces old (Balanchine's Serenade ) and new, by former artistic directors Christopher d'Amboise and Robert (Ricky)
NEWS
October 15, 1992 | by Janet Anderson, Daily News Dance Critic
The curtain went up last night at the Merriam Theater on the opening performance of the Pennsylvania Ballet's 29th season. This is a fairly significant marker in the company's tempestuous life - or in any performing- arts organization's life. The program itself is a rather odd mixed bill that juxtaposes one terrific abstract George Balanchine work, "Rubies," with a rather dumb Balanchine mood piece, "Scotch Symphony" - a reminder, if needed, that even Balanchine had his bad moments.
NEWS
December 15, 1990 | By Nancy Goldner, Inquirer Dance Critic
The lights flickered. The Christmas tree soared. The snow fell. The bed glided. The Nutcracker battled. The Mouse King died. The children pranced. The adults danced. And Marie never woke from her dream. It's Nutcracker time again. But not all Nutcrackers are the same. The production presented by the Pennsylvania Ballet, which bowed last night at the Academy of Music and will be there through Jan. 6, surely must be the most magical of all. The choreography is by Balanchine, the gentleman who turned Tchaikovsky's once-considered failure into a holiday ritual.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 2016 | By Ellen Dunkel, Staff Writer
Arantxa Ochoa, the director of the School of Pennsylvania Ballet, is the latest to announce that she is leaving the ballet. Hers has been one of the most-recognizable faces of the company for the last 20 years, and her departure, announced Tuesday in a letter from executive director David Gray, is an exclamation point on a tumultuous year. Ochoa will be moving to Florida in August to work at the Miami City Ballet School. Two others from Pennsylvania Ballet recently joined Miami City Ballet as dancers: former principal dancer Lauren Fadeley and corps de ballet dancer Amir Yogev.
NEWS
March 13, 2016
On March 3, the Pennsylvania Ballet presented the world premiere of artistic director Angel Corella's Don Quixote . More than 100 attended a special Don Quixote -theme dinner at the Academy of Music. The evening, which raised $99,450, was a Spanish-inspired event featuring cocktails and dinner, followed by the the Pennsylvania Ballet's performance of the classic. The company performed the ballet for the first time in its 53-year history.  
NEWS
October 24, 1991 | By Nancy Goldner, Inquirer Dance Critic
The Pennsylvania Ballet is the beneficiary of two grants in support of its forthcoming programs. The Knight Foundation awarded $300,000 to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington in support of the Pennsylvania Ballet's one-week residency there in October 1993. The Pennsylvania Ballet's appearance at the Kennedy Center is part of the theater's program of commissioning new work from six regional ballet companies. The Pennsylvania Ballet will be the last of six troupes to dance at the Kennedy Center under the program.
NEWS
July 24, 2014 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
The Pennsylvania Ballet has hired a new artistic director: Ángel Corella, a former principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre. The Spanish-born Corella, 38, whose appointment was approved Tuesday by the board, is slated to start part-time in September, then full-time in January. He succeeds Roy Kaiser, who announced his retirement in April and will step down in October. A ballet spokeswoman said Corella was not available for an interview. Corella, who was born in Madrid, joined ABT in 1995 and was promoted to principal a year later.
NEWS
June 2, 1990 | By Nancy Goldner, Inquirer Dance Critic
Giselle is the most perfect story ballet in existence, because dance and drama are perfectly fused. Hardly is there a moment of choreography that doesn't also further the narrative line. The story itself is also wonderful. About a count's betrayal of an innocent maiden, it touches the heart in a more direct way than the allegorical Tchaikovsky ballets, Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty. Even the Girl Scouts' ballet battalion could make a go of Giselle, so irresistible is the ballet.
NEWS
May 16, 2014 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
Pennsylvania Ballet's administrative leader is leaving. Michael G. Scolamiero, the ballet's executive director since 1997, has accepted the same post with Miami City Ballet. The announcement comes two weeks after artistic director Roy Kaiser said he would step down as soon as a replacement is found. Both changes come as the ballet puts in place a strategic plan prepared by Michael M. Kaiser (not related to Roy) to bring the company, in Scolamiero's words, "back to the top ranks of American ballet companies.
NEWS
March 9, 2014 | By Ellen Dunkel, Inquirer Staff Writer
Pennsylvania Ballet gave an encore of a signature work and added another Balanchine ballet to its repertoire for its opening Thursday night at the Academy of Music. Both were part of the company's yearlong 50th anniversary celebration. Carmina Burana has been in the troupe's repertoire since 1966, when John Butler staged his 1959 work on Pennsylvania Ballet to Carl Orff's secular cantata. In 2007, choreographer-in-residence Matthew Neenan reinterpreted the ballet with new choreography, costumes, and sets.
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ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 2016 | By Ellen Dunkel, Staff Writer
Arantxa Ochoa, the director of the School of Pennsylvania Ballet, is the latest to announce that she is leaving the ballet. Hers has been one of the most-recognizable faces of the company for the last 20 years, and her departure, announced Tuesday in a letter from executive director David Gray, is an exclamation point on a tumultuous year. Ochoa will be moving to Florida in August to work at the Miami City Ballet School. Two others from Pennsylvania Ballet recently joined Miami City Ballet as dancers: former principal dancer Lauren Fadeley and corps de ballet dancer Amir Yogev.
NEWS
June 12, 2016 | By Ellen Dunkel, STAFF WRITER
Pennsylvania Ballet is saying goodbye to more than 40 percent of its dancers on a somewhat unfinished note. Balanchine and Beyond opened Thursday night at the Merriam Theater, and it would have been a quiet finale to any season, since three of the four ballets were smaller group works. But this year, many contracts were not renewed and other dancers chose to leave as artistic director Angel Corella transitions the company into his vision. None of the dancers leaving has a sizable role.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 2, 2016 | By Jerome Maida, For the Daily News
WHEN I TOLD actress and Wizard World Philly 2016 headliner Lea Thompson that I had been a fan since she starred in All the Right Moves in 1984, the still-stunning actress chuckled. "I've been around a long-ass time, huh? Hey, it's good. Better than the alternative. " Thompson - who was one of the biggest movie stars of the 1980s, with films like Red Dawn , Spacecamp , Some Kind of Wonderful , and, of course, Back to the Future , and the lead of NBC's Caroline in the City from 1995 to 1999 - said in a recent phone interview she was looking forward to returning to Philadelphia.
NEWS
May 29, 2016 | By Ellen Dunkel, Staff Writer
Lauren Fadeley was a much-beloved principal dancer at the Pennsylvania Ballet before she left last week. She is already dancing with another company, Miami City Ballet, in her native Florida. On Wednesday, Fadeley, 31, launched a podcast, Rediscovering the Dream (on iTunes and Google Play), about the next steps of her career. She is a versatile dancer whose big breakout was the double role of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake in 2011, when she was still a member of the corps de ballet.
NEWS
May 16, 2016 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Staff Writer
Ruth Whitmore Williams, 75, of Gladwyne, an educator and philanthropist who lived up to her motto, "Love, teach, share," died Friday, May 6, of respiratory failure at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. "A dedicated trustee since 1994 and a loyal Scot forever, Ruth leaves behind - on this campus and in the hearts of her many, many friends - a legacy that will never be forgotten," said Georgia Nugent, interim president of the College of Wooster, which Mrs. Williams revered and supported.
NEWS
May 15, 2016 | By Merilyn Jackson, For The Inquirer
I n 1934's Serenade , the first ballet George Balanchine created after arriving in the United States, he wanted to make a statement against Hitler's fascism. Even with 20 or more lovely creatures in blue tulle, their pink tights peeking through, these beauties, gently raising their arms to the right in unison salute, recalled the Nazi era Thursday evening at the Academy of Music. Serenade fit artistic director Angel Corella's brilliantly planned bill, A Program of Firsts. Even before curtain up, conductor Beatrice Jona Affron set a simmeringly sonorous tone with the Tchaikovsky Serenade for Strings and kept raising the bar throughout the evening with fine music.
NEWS
April 30, 2016 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Staff Writer
B. Herbert Lee, 92, a businessman and philanthropist and grandson of the founder of the former Lee Tire & Rubber Co., died of respiratory failure Tuesday, April 19, at Waverly Heights in Gladwyne. Mr. Lee lived in Haverford and Bryn Mawr before retiring to Waverly Heights in 2008. He also maintained a winter home in Delray Beach, Fla. His family was once well-known as the largest employer in Conshohocken, according to the records of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. His grandfather J. Ellwood Lee created the tire manufacturing operation in 1912 as a spin-off from his J. Ellwood Lee Chemical Co., a maker of medical supplies that merged with Johnson & Johnson in 1905.
NEWS
April 28, 2016 | By Ellen Dunkel, STAFF WRITER
Change is constant in the dance world. But the suddenness and scope of the roster changes announced Monday for Pennsylvania Ballet stunned many in that world and out of it. Angel Corella, the company's artistic director and an international ballet superstar, said 17 of 43 dancers - nearly 40 percent - would be leaving the company. Twelve were let go and five are leaving on their own, including favorites such as Lauren Fadeley, who is going to to Miami City Ballet as a soloist; and Elizabeth Mateer, who will be joining the corps of the San Francisco Ballet.
NEWS
April 27, 2016
A story Tuesday incorrectly described the inspiration for the title of Beyoncé's Lemonade. It was a comment by the grandmother of her husband, Jay Z. A Tuesday story on announced staff changes at the Pennsylvania Ballet incorrectly named the union that represents the ballet dancers. It is the American Guild of Musical Artists. A story Tuesday about the city's new prisons commissioner inaccurately described her appointment. Blanche Carney is one of a handful of women nationwide to head prison systems.
NEWS
April 24, 2016
MANNA hosted Shut Up & Dance, a one-night performance produced and choreographed by Pennsylvania Ballet dancers at the Forrest Theatre. The April 9 evening started with a VIP party that featured signature cocktails and food catered by MANNA and Di Bruno Bros., and short presentations by VIP host Steve Korman and MANNA CEO Sue Daugherty. More than 1,200 attendees showed their support for the tradition that started in 1991, when Pennsylvania Ballet dancers decided to honor friends dying from HIV/AIDS.
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