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Gaynor Minden's Online Magazine
November 2006
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Sale of the (Nutcracker) Season!
 

"A superb reference book—all the information today's students need but can't get just by taking class—every dancer's library should have it."
             —Angel Corella, Principal Dancer,                             American Ballet Theatre

     Save 25% on the ultimate reference book for dancers: The Ballet Companion: A Dancer's Guide to the Technique, Traditions, and Joys of Ballet by Eliza Gaynor Minden. Over 200 photographs of steps, positions, and famous dancers past and present. Technique tips, great ballets, dancers' health, etiquette, anatomy, insider info—it's all here. Hardcover with a pink ribbon page holder. Makes an elegant gift, too.

The first 20 to order will get copies signed by the author. Sale price: $22.50

Save 25% on ALL Gaynor Minden merchandise if your order includes The Ballet Companion and totals at least $100!

Sale runs through December 15, 2006. Click here.

Dance Notation

     Dance has always resisted recording, but there's been no lack of trying by ballet masters over the centuries. In 1588 Thoinot Arbeau published Orchesographie, a reference for court musicians and dancers that included a notation system and written descriptions of basic dance steps. Because the steps themselves were not complicated (women's feet and ankles couldn't even be seen under the costumes), the notation consisted mainly of floor patterns.

Read more.


     "The great joy of this first night [of The Sleeping Beauty] was the dancing of Alina Cojocaru as Aurora. Such grace and felicity in execution, and unaffected elegance in living in the music, were worthy of the greatest traditions of the ballet at Covent Garden. It was the performance of a wonderfully gifted ballerina."

     That's from Clement Crisp, the dean of English dance critics, in Ballet Review, Fall 2006. But one doesn't need Crisp's sixty years of experience (he even saw the legendary Margot Fonteyn in the role) to be delighted, astonished, and moved by Alina's dancing.

     A principal at The Royal Ballet, and a Gaynor Minden wearer since 2002, Alina was born in Bucharest, Romania. She studied gymnastics starting at age seven, then modern and popular dance. When she was nine she was accepted at the Kiev (Ukraine) State Ballet School, but at age ten she watched a performance of Giselle that grabbed her heart—she knew for sure she had to become a ballerina. Alina trained in Kiev until 1998 when at age 16 she attended The Royal Ballet School on a Prix de Lausanne scholarship. She danced with the Kiev Ballet for a year and then joined The Royal Ballet in 1999. Just two years later she was promoted to principal dancer. Read more.

     While in Florida for the International Association for Dance Medicine and Sciences conference (please visit www.iadms.org for more information), Sales Director Carlota Benoit and Sales Manager Kiley Stoker made a visit to New World School of the Arts in Miami. The intermediate and advanced pointe students listened attentively to a presentation on the history of pointe shoes and pointe technique and afterwards eagerly tried sample Gaynor Minden pointe shoes.

     In New York, Dance Teacher Liaison Karen Lacy and Managing Director Joanna Harp attended the "How to Love Your Pointe Shoes and Respect Your Feet" workshop presented by The School at Steps and Pointe magazine. Students, parents, and teachers participated in discussions with master teachers, a podiatrist, and professional dancers. Afterwards, all were invited to the Pointe Shoe Fair with representatives from leading shoe manufacturers. All in all, a very busy October for the sales team!



     It's not yet a household name, but Aria Alekzander has already caught the eye of some of the most influential people in the ballet world. As one of eight new dancers—four women and four men—to join American Ballet Theatre's Studio Company this fall, Aria recently moved from her hometown in Anaheim, California, to the Big Apple to begin a challenging and exhilarating phase in her career.

     After winning the 2004 regional Youth America Grand Prix title in California, Aria vied for the New York title in April and was named a finalist in the senior division. A few months later, she returned to the city to attend ABT's Summer Intensive and study with its world-renowned teachers in the studios that would soon be her home.

Read more.



Do you know a remarkable dancer? Please tell us. "In The Wings" is a regular feature of Gaynor Minden's dancer.COMMENT in which we profile an extraordinary dancer, nominated by our readers, who wears Gaynor Minden pointe shoes and who is not (yet!) a star. Perhaps it's a student who has been recognized with an award, a scholarship, an acceptance to a terrific school or program. Or maybe it's someone whose passion for dance is so strong that she has had to overcome an obstacle in order to pursue it. Or possibly it's a gifted teacher whose talent and generosity have enabled the next generation to soar.

Please send a brief description of your remarkable dancer (100 words or fewer), and a photo of her in her Gaynor Minden pointe shoes (along with permission to use it), to editor@dancer.com. Be sure to include a way for us to contact you, and your dancer.

     Dancers like Alina Cojocaru, this month's Featured GM Artist, are why I love my job. And it's not just because she's such an extraordinary dancer that I would, and have, dropped everything to see her perform. It's because she exemplifies the humanity and the generosity of spirit that is ballet at its best.

     As you can imagine, when Alina switched to Gaynor Mindens we were eager to put her in our ads. I called and wrote and called some more but Alina didn't get back to me so I figured she wasn't interested. Then one day the phone rang and there she was telling me that she'd like to do it. "Hooray!" I said to myself. "There's just one thing," Alina said. I gritted my teeth, fearing that she would ask for some outrageous compensation. "I have just been back to Bucharest and it's very hard for the dancers there, they are poor and can't get good shoes. So I was wondering if instead of paying me my fee you could instead send them Gaynor Mindens."

     Thanks to Alina's compassion and kindness, the dancers of The Romanian National Ballet no longer have to worry about their pointe shoes.

Cordially,
Eliza



Contact Us: editor@dancer.com
212 929 0087 ext 24

Visit www.dancer.com for more information about Gaynor Minden products and history.

Photographs: The Ballet Companion by Eduardo Patino, NYC; Alina Cojocaru by Johan Persson; Aria Alekzander by Gene Schiavone; Eliza Minden by Sardi Klein.




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