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Subject: "Who will Dowell's successor be?" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences What's Happening Topic #26
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Stuart Sweeney

02-06-99, 07:24 PM (GMT)
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"Who will Dowell's successor be?"
 
   The last few years have clearly been a traumatic time for the Royal Ballet. Surely what is needed now is an uncontroversial figure, who will be able to re-build on the traditions of the past while keeping an eye the future at the same time.

I'm sure everyone will agree that William Forsythe is the obvious choice.


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Jenny Delaney 06-06-99 9
  RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Rachel Holland 05-06-99 8
     RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? alison 07-06-99 10
  RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? David Leonard 04-06-99 6
     RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Enid Austin 10-06-99 11
         RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Bruce Madmin 11-06-99 12
  RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Jenny Delaney 02-06-99 1
     RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Eugene Merrett 02-06-99 2
         RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Della Lapwell 02-06-99 3
             RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Jeannie Szoradi 02-06-99 4
                 RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Jim 04-06-99 7
                 RE: Who will Dowell's successor be? Bruce Wall 03-06-99 5

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Jenny Delaney

06-06-99, 08:24 PM (GMT)
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9. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #0
 
   Actually, when you look at the field, I have a new suggestion - Ninette de Valois.

An established track record in the job, and a determined attitude that one could describe as "bloody minded" and defend in a court of law, obviously the chant has to be: "Bring back Madam!"

You could set her onto the builders at Sadler's Wells to finish the job as well. Brings a whole new meaning to the phrase "penalty clause".


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Rachel Holland

05-06-99, 01:04 PM (GMT)
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8. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #0
 
   How about Stephen Jefferies? As well as having danced with the company, he has also gained experience in directing a company elsewhere.


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alison

07-06-99, 04:40 PM (GMT)
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10. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #8
 
   Now that's a good idea. Why didn't I think of it?!


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David Leonard

04-06-99, 08:00 AM (GMT)
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6. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #0
 
  
How about Bruce Sansome, who is coming to the end of his dancing career and has shown a remarkable talent for keeping his nose clean recently.
And surely Deborah Bull must be in the running?



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Enid Austin

10-06-99, 08:01 PM (GMT)
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11. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #6
 
   I'm not so sure about Bull. Remember that TV special she made, around Christmas, when she scorned the tutu as too uncomfortable and old-fashioned, and made a big point of how traditional ballet wasn't good for the image of modern women? I haven't read her book, where I believe she comes across as an intelligent and articulate person, and maybe the TV programme was just trying to be clever and come at the subject from a different angle, but if those were her real views, I'm not sure she's the right person to be at the head of a company like the Royal. Enid


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Bruce Madmin

11-06-99, 07:14 AM (GMT)
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12. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #11
 
   Understand what you say re Bull. But the RB made a lot of its name on the back of doing new work and its an important dimension. Certainly something that needs to change in the company. Re going for AD I think Bull and Sansom are much more credible togther then each on their own. And Bruce would ease your fears, while Deborah gives encouragement that the new is very important.


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Jenny Delaney

02-06-99, 07:25 PM (GMT)
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1. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #0
 
   >>I'm sure everyone will agree that William Forsythe is the obvious choice.


Nonsense! What we need is a breath of fresh air, chasing all those absurd traditions such as salaries from the Royal Ballet. I suggest a joint venture from Blandine Ebinger and Michael Flatley.


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Eugene Merrett

02-06-99, 07:26 PM (GMT)
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2. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #1
 
   You have both missed the boat. The obvious choice is Derek Deane! Think of all the benefits - NO English dancers, no boring original works, lots of bubble gum choreography, and the British Cosmetic Surgery Industry would get a much need boost from girls needing breast removal and other cosmetic work.

Surely is that enough to make Deane the obvious choices!


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Della Lapwell

02-06-99, 07:26 PM (GMT)
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3. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #2
 
   >>Surely is that enough to make Deane the obvious choices!
>>

Maybe, except the rumour is that Deane is going to take over the Legat school in 2001.


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Jeannie Szoradi

02-06-99, 07:27 PM (GMT)
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4. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #3
 
   Why not a lady with brains & administrative know-how? I can think of several with a link to the Royal Ballet: Monica Mason, Antoinette Sibley, and Georgina Parkinson? Another possibility is Natalia Makarova...definitely brains & good taste; not sure about the administrative know-how. Makarova was on the short-list for ABT Artistic Director a few years ago, before Kevin McKenzie got the job. (Of course, in retrospect, Kevin ended up being a perfect choice for ABT.)


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Jim

04-06-99, 11:51 PM (GMT)
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7. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #4
 
   >Why not a lady with brains &
>administrative know-how?

And of course such a lady is Sylvie Guillem. Her recent production in Helsinki shows that she has what it takes, and her "political" inheritance form the Nureyev days in Paris will stand her in good stead. She has the authority and personal command to pull it off...


On the other hand, Lesley Collier might be capable of putting those pointe shoes back on the ground too...


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Bruce Wall

03-06-99, 09:39 AM (GMT)
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5. "RE: Who will Dowell's successor be?"
In response to message #4
 
   Jeannie, I agree with you.

On a serious note, I think it will not be in the least surprising to find that it will be someone associated with Dowell's time as a dancer during the end of ballet boom at ABT. I say this because he, single handedly, succeeded throughout his tenure as Director of the Royal Ballet to bring in every bit of repertory from that period, which was obviously a very signficant one for him. Moreover, given the statements of the current Executive Director, I would not be surprised if offers, as the Times suggested, did not go out to Tharp or Makarova. Certainly, I think it will be someone from the outside, given comments made by Mr. Kaiser recently and that, surely, cannot be at all a bad thing. Perhaps a bit of an off-the-wall choice, but someone who has certainly worked to build a company and has without question had long experience in the field himself -- one offering a chance to explore the growing face of Europe itself today -- might well be Arthur Mitchell. He has succeeded in building and re-building Dance Theatre of Harlem and surely that would not go amiss in the current political climate surrounding the RB. Somehow, I think that might be a little more realistic, in the current climate, than Forsythe.

Certainly there will be much interesting speculation prior to any decisions being made. There are also several Directing Couples leading substantial regional companies in the U.S. and elsewhere. Might 2 for the price of 1 also be a wise consideration? Of course it would depend on the stability of the 2; on the capacity of the 1.



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