Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wooing the West.

Once upon a time, Utah was in a bad marriage with Jonas Kage, the Ballet West artistic director. It wasn't that Utah was bad or Kage was bad -- it was just a bad match. Utah liked pretties and tutus and swans, while Kage liked flesh-colored unitards and avant-garde Nazi war ballets. So this was how a typical ballet season looked for years: Sleeping Beauty (condescending pat on head), Nutcracker (condescending pat on head), Echoing of Trumpets (whack 'em up side the head). It got really abusive there at the end. My parents canceled their ballet season tickets.

But finally Utah and Jonas Kage realized they didn't belong together. They parted ways and soon Utah found an artistic director who understood her and was forgiving of her love for pretties and tutus: Adam Sklute, former artistic director of the Joffrey Ballet. He saw that while Utah didn't like watching war crimes en pointe, that didn't mean that she wanted to see the same three classical ballets over and over.* She wanted to be stretched a bit -- she just didn't want to be stretched too far too quickly (which of course is a concept any dancer dude should understand).

So he gave Utah her adored Nutcracker, but with a tricksy Christmas Eve twist. He gave her ballets she'd never seen before that were classically beautiful but stylistically different. He gave her some masterly faux-drunk Sinatra dancing. He may well have loved avant-garde Nazi war ballets, but he realized that he couldn't force Utah from Giselle to genocide in a couple of seasons, or maybe ever. He had to love Utah for who she was and kindly open her to new possibilities. And he did.

And they lived happily ever after. Or at least until the 2008/2009 Ballet Season.


Come to the Utah premiere of Madame Butterfly, opening this month! Mom and I got to watch one of the studio rehearsals today and it looks like it's going to be fantastic, beautiful, moving. With an invisible strongman lifting delicate butterfly geishas up through stage fog. And if you want to attend upcoming studio rehearsals, contact Ballet West to sign up for their email newsletter. I've been to a handful of the studio rehearsals over the past few years and they're always fun to watch (even when they're rehearsing avant-garde Nazi war ballets!)

*and over and over and over and over and over

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Buyer's market, but goin' fast.

To the scores of eligible* bachelors frittering away their youth on temporary love, longing for the day when they might possibly afford my eternal devotion:

Interest Rates are low! All offers considered! Now's the time, boys! Seize the dame!

I'm a-houseshopping at the moment and if you don't stop me, these childbearing hips will soon come with a 30-year mortgage.**

With much appreciation,***


* For my purposes this means 1) non-porn-addicted, 2) gainfully employed, 3) not living with mother. Really Good Excuses will be considered, though only for requirements #2 and #3.

** They already come with a cat, but she's unlikely to last more than seven. She's quite naughty and headed for a tragic and mysterious end.

*** Fifteen percent per year guaranteed, plus offspring.