Wednesday, June 27, 2007

90,000 Miles of Roads

I recently read that Indiana has about 90,000 miles of roads. The factoid caught my attention because I am now in the process of printing out maps for our travel. Over the fourth of July weekend (July 4-8) we're going to cover more than 792 miles, mostly in Indiana. That only takes us up to 1PM on Sunday.

Still, we have nothing on the great ballerina Anna Pavlova. In the history of ballet, it is possible that no one toured more than her. During her career it is estimated that she toured about 500,000 miles. During one tour in 1925 of the U.S., she and her company played in 77 towns over 26 weeks, giving more than 238 performances.

That said, we are going to be traveling quite a bit. If you have any suggestions for music to load onto the MP3 player feel free to post them in the comments section.


When I add these long articles the previous articles move down and risk being lost. So I just wanted to remind you about Valery's audio podcast.

This Week in Dance History

June 30 2006: Arthur Lewis, the Brooklyn-born producer who found his greatest success on the London stage, died. He put together the West End productions of the Cy Feuer and Ernie Martin hits Guys and Dolls and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. and was associate producer of the team's Broadway hit Silk Stockings. He was also instrumental in bringing The Boyfriend, as well as the show's star, a young Julie Andrews, to the attention of his associates. During the 1960's, Lewis made a career out of producing New York hits on the London stage. Among his credits during this time were Little Me, Funny Girl, Golden Boy, A Thousand Clowns, Barefoot in the Park, The Solid Gold Cadillac, The Odd Couple and The Owl and the Pussycat.

July 1, 1941:American choreographer and dancer Twyla Tharp was born. Tharp has created more than one hundred twenty five dances, choreographed for five Hollywood movies, directed and choreographed two Broadway shows, written two books and received one Tony Award, two Emmy Awards.

July 2 1937: The Rockettes from
New York's Radio City Music Hall represented the United States in a dance festival at the Paris Exposition. They were awarded the Grand Prix de la Republique.

And on this date in 1974, Mikhail Baryshnikov disappeared from a reception for Bolshoi and Kirov dancers in
Toronto, Canada and defected to the west. Below you can see a clip of Baryshnikov in Giselle, courtesy of Youtube.

July 3, 1959: Moves, a ballet without music choreographed by Jerome Robbins made its debut at the Festival of Two Worlds. You can read more about Jerome Robbins on the website Andros on Ballet.

July 4, 2001: A total of 13,588 people danced to the song "YMCA" for five minutes prior to the baseball game between the Spikes and the Salt Lake Stingers at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium, Omaha, Nebraska, earning a place in the Guinness Book of World's Records. Two years later , the BBC Reports, organizers of Deal's Regatta attempted to break the record by a mass 23, 805 person "YMCA" dance, but the Guinness people rejected it for their next edition because they didn't provide any evidence that all those people "were in step with each other."

July 5, 1942: American dancer, choreographer, and director Eliot Feld was born. Feld has choreographed 133 ballets since 1967 including works for ABT, the Joffrey Ballet, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Pacific Northwest Balle New York City Ballet, The Royal Winnipeg Ballet and many more. An interview with Feld can be found on

July 6 1942: The students of the Perm Ballet School performed their first recital. It featured such future stars of the Russian ballet as Ninelle Kurgapkina, Irina Kolpakova, Yuri Grigorovitch, Nikolai Boyartchikov.

July 7 1891: Russian composer P. I. Tchaikovsky completes the first draft of The Nutcracker.

Quote of the Day

"Like Salad Shooters, mail-order catalogs and the flu, The Nutcracker has become a holiday fixture, the unappreciated fruitcake of the ballet world."- Sarah Kaufman, dance reviewer, Washington Post.