BalletX Opens 10th Anniversary Season With Nicolo Fonte’s Beasts

Nicolo Fonte and BalletX dancers rehearse a scene from "Beasts." | Photo courtesy of BalletX

Nicolo Fonte and BalletX dancers rehearse a scene from “Beasts.” | Photo courtesy of BalletX

It’s less than a week to go before opening night of BalletX’s tenth season and the company’s 10 dancers have just been dismissed for a lunch break after doing a run through of the second half of Nicolo Fonte’s new work, Beasts. The ballet explores the tension between man’s primal and civilized impulses. Sitting on a sofa in the lounge at the company’s rehearsal space, the Performance Garage at 15th and Brandywine streets, Fonte munches on a slice of pizza and discusses his evening-length world premiere commissioned by BalletX.

Fonte, a Portland-based New Yorker, has been in Philadelphia working with the company’s dancers since October 5th. But the 80-minute work, which explores what makes us who we are, our biology or the society we live in, has been in the works for more than a year with the choreographer carefully crafting an eclectic soundscape of music including work by Henrik Schwartz, Pete Townshend, Pink Martini, Patti Smith and Claude Debussy.

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There’s a Giant Pre-Work Dance Party in Rittenhouse Tomorrow Morning 

The best way to start your workday? Why, with a dance party, of course. And tomorrow morning, you can do just that: Last week, our friends over on Philly Mag’s Arts and Entertainment blog, Ticket, gave us the heads up about a huge pre-work dance party going down at Rittenhouse’s Coda (at 17th and Walnut streets) tomorrow morning from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. There will be dancing, there will be free coffee and tea, and it will, without a doubt, be the best way you’ve ever started your workday. And the best part? You can count your morning dance session as your workout for the day. So much #Winning. Read more »

There’s a Morning Dance Party Happening in Rittenhouse Next Week

Ticketleap, the team behind quirky local events like Dîner en Sweatpants and Pope Yoga, is throwing a morning dance party next Thursday at the Coda in Rittenhouse. It’s fittingly called “I Woke Up Like This,” a little nod to Beyoncé who will almost definitely be thrown into the mix for this pre-work-day pick-me-upper.

The party goes from 7 am to 9 am on Thursday, November 12th. Much like their other events, there’s no specific dress code, just wear whatever — as the invite says — inspires you to “get up early and shake what your momma gave ya.”

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Pennsylvania Ballet Launches Season With Help From Director Angel Corella’s Famous Friends

Photo by Alexander Iziliaev

Company rehearsal with Angel Corella | Photo by Alexander Iziliaev

If Philadelphia has been called New York City’s sixth borough then Pennsylvania Ballet’s rehearsal studio is beginning to feel a lot like Lincoln Center’s annex. Just last week, you could’ve spotted international ballet VIPs Angel Corella, Charles Askegard, Kyra Nichols and Christopher Wheeldon — all walking the halls of the company’s North Broad Street space.

The ballet world may be far flung, but, among its A-listers it appears quite cozy. Corella, Askegard, Nichols and Wheeldon are all friends and colleagues who danced either with both or one of the two major American companies: New York City Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. The company dancers are the lucky beneficiaries of all this artistic firepower imported down from New York.

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15 Things to Do in Philly This Weekend

I Tried It: My Search for Philly’s Best (And Sweatiest) Dance Class

Beginner's Hip Hop at Koresh Dance Company | Photograph by Gene Smirnov

Beginner’s Hip Hop at Koresh Dance Company | Photograph by Gene Smirnov

My legs are shaking, sweat is rolling into my eyes, and for about three minutes in the middle of it all, I have to focus what little energy I have left on not barfing. True, I’m just doing some aerobic dancing in Lithe Method’s Rock Steady class, but it’s intense aerobic dancing. Aerobic dancing on Four Loko. With complex choreography. I wonder: Is this how Kevin Bacon felt working on Footloose? Probably not — Kevin Bacon wasn’t attached to the ceiling with stretchy bands for added resistance. He also wasn’t taking breaks to drop down for a hard-core arms/abs/legs series. No, this is definitely harder than anything anyone has done ever — so when I finally figure out the moves and push through the whole routine (without barfing), it’s a major high. I’m killing it. Forget Kevin: I am basically a Laker Girl.  Read more »

Pavarotti Coming to Prince Theater … Sort Of

Luciano Pavarotti, via Shutterstock

Luciano Pavarotti, via Shutterstock

Some of the biggest names in classical music—the late Luciano Pavarotti, Plácido Domingo, José Carreras, Sondra Radvanovsky, Ekaterina Gubanova—are coming to Philly this fall, at least in digital spirit, as the Prince Theater launches yet another innovative series of programming that will feature big-screen broadcasts of performing arts. Read more »

Where to Dance in Philly in August

1st Thursdays at Brasil’s
Every first Thursday of the month, Brasil’s Nightclub provides hours of hip-swaying fun that makes Old City feel like Havana, Cuba. On August 6th, take free salsa lessons with Michael Andiono and enjoy music from special guest DJ Kevin NGO. Thursday, August 6, 9 pm, $7, Brasil’s Nightclub, 112 Chestnut Street.

The Total Destruction Dance Party at The Dolphin Tavern
The BroadZilla DJs are a trio of offbeat chicks who spin records wild enough to warrant a name like “Total Destruction Dance Party.” According to the Broadzilla Facebook page,“Expect underground disco anthems and twitchy punkfunk stompers.” Friday, August 7, 10 pm, $5, 1539 South Broad Street. 

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