Read Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear: Inside the Land of Ballet by Stephen Manes Free Online
Book Title: Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear: Inside the Land of Ballet|
Date of issue: September 1st 2011
ISBN 13: 9780983562801
The author of the book: Stephen Manes
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 28.81 MB
Edition: Cadwallader and Stern
Read full description of the books Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear: Inside the Land of Ballet:In a scuffed-up studio, a veteran dancer transmits the magic of an eighty-year-old ballet to a performer barely past drinking age. In a converted barn, an indomitable teacher creates ballerinas as she has for more than half a century. In a monastic mirrored room, dancers from as near as New Jersey and as far as Mongolia learn works as old as the nineteenth century and as new as this morning.
Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear zooms in on an intimate view of one full season in the life of one of America's top ballet companies and schools: Seattle's Pacific Northwest Ballet. But it also tracks the Land of Ballet to venues as celebrated as New York and Monte Carlo and as seemingly ordinary as Bellingham, Washington and small-town Pennsylvania. Never before has a book taken readers backstage for such a wide-ranging view of the ballet world from the wildly diverse perspectives of dancers, choreographers, stagers, teachers, conductors, musicians, rehearsal pianists, lighting directors, costumers, stage managers, scenic artists, marketers, fundraisers, students, and even pointe shoe fitters-often in their own remarkably candid words.
The book follows characters as colorful as they are talented. Versatile dancers from around the globe team up with novice choreographers and those as renowned as Susan Stroman, Christopher Wheeldon, and Twyla Tharp to create art on deadline. At the book's center is Peter Boal, a former New York City Ballet star in his third year as PNB's artistic director, as he manages conflicting constituencies with charm, tact, rationality and diplomacy. Readers look over Boal's shoulder as he makes tough decisions about programming, casting, scheduling and budgeting that eventually lead the calm, low-key leader to declare that in his job, "You have to be willing to be hated."
Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear shows how ballet is made, funded, and sold. It escorts you front and center to the kick zone of studio rehearsals. It takes you to the costume shop where elegant tutus and gowns are created from scratch. It brings you backstage to see sets and lighting come alive while stagehands get lovingly snarky and obscene on their headsets. It sits you down in meetings where budgets get slashed and dreams get funded-and axed. It shows you the inner workings of Nutcracker, from kids' charming auditions to no-nonsense marketing meetings, from snow bags in the flies to dancing snowflakes who curse salty flurries that land on their tongues. It follows the tempestuous assembly of a version of Romeo and Juliet that runs afoul of so much pressure, disease, injury, and blood that the dancers begin to call it cursed.
Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear uncovers the astounding way ballets, with no common form of written preservation, are handed down from generation to generation through the prodigious memories of brilliant athletes who also happen to be artists. It goes on tour with the company to Vail, Colorado, where dancers contend with altitude that makes their muscles cramp and their lungs ache. It visits cattle-call auditions and rigorous classes, tells the stories of dancers whose parents sacrificed for them and dancers whose parents refused to. It meets the resolute woman who created a dance school more than fifty years ago in a Carlisle, Pennsylvania barn and grew it into one of America's most reliable ballerina factories. It shows ballet's appeal to kids from low-income neighborhoods and board members who live in mansions.
Shattering longstanding die-for-your-art clich s, this book uncovers the real drama in the daily lives of fiercely dedicated union members in slippers and pointe shoes-and the musicians, stagehands, costumers, donors and administrators who support them. Where Snowflakes Dance and Swear: Inside the Land of Ballet brings readers the exciting truth of how ballet actually happens.
Read information about the authorStephen Manes (born 1949) wrote the "Digital Tools" column that appeared in every issue of Forbes until recently when he took a break. He is expected to return in the future. He is also co-host and co-executive editor of the public television series "PC World's Digital Duo," a program he helped create.
Manes was previously the Personal Computers columnist for the Science Times section of The New York Times and a regular columnist for InformationWeek. He has been on the technology beat since 1982 as a columnist and contributing editor for PC Magazine, PC/Computing, PC Sources, PCjr, and Netguide. The now defunct Marketing Computers named him one of the four most influential writers about the computer industry and called him "a strong critical voice."
From April 1995 to December 2008, he also wrote the "Full Disclosure" column, anchoring the back page of PC World.
Manes is coauthor of the best-selling and definitive biography Gates: How Microsoft's Mogul Reinvented an Industry--and Made Himself the Richest Man in America. He also wrote The Complete MCI Mail Handbook and programmed much of the Starfixer and UnderGround WordStar software packages.
Manes is also the author of more than 30 books for children and young adults, including the Publishers Weekly bestseller Make Four Million Dollars by Next Thursday! and the award-winning Be a Perfect Person in Just Three Days!, which was adapted for the public television series Wonderworks. His books include the cult favorites Chicken Trek and The Obnoxious Jerks and have won a commendation from the National Science Foundation, International Reading Association Children's Choice awards, and kid-voted awards in five states. His writing credits also include television programs produced by ABC Television and KCET/Los Angeles and the 70s classic 20th Century-Fox movie Mother, Jugs & Speed.
Manes is currently serving his fourth term as an elected member of the National Council of the Authors Guild, the country's oldest organization of book authors. Born and raised in the hills of Pittsburgh, he now lives in hillier Seattle.
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