Tag Archives: KQED

Violette Verdy. 1933-2016

11 Feb

For some odd reason comments about Violette Verdy written yesterday, along with some comments about Misty Copeland’s coverage on KQED’s Independent
Lens, didn’t make this blog’s printed record. So I will try to rectify.

Facebook messages have been warm, loving, nostalgic and Carol Egan managed
to post a coaching session of Verdy against the background of the Opera in
Paris that is captivating, judicious and clearly supportive.

I remember her coming to San Francisco as a guest artist on two occasions
when I was still a correspondent for Dance News. The first was
when Kimiko Sugano supported her appearance with Edward Villella for a
Pacific Ballet season when Alan Howard was artistic director. I was invited to a pre-performance gathering and was introduced to Verdy who appeared to have read my 1000 word columns in that departed dance journal. I have forgotten how the conversation progressed but I remember expressing my irritation over Maurice Bejart’s use of the opening sequence in a Bharata Natyam concert for an elaborate, sexy exposition which showcased Suzanne Farrell. Verdy smiled with understanding and said, “Ah yes, Maurice is clever but he ia a plagerist.” I could have hugged her, for her appraisal was spot on and, of course, she agreed with me. Violette Verdy!

The next time she appeared was when San Francisco Ballet had a season at
the Palace of Fine Arts, just before Michael Smuin came back from American
Ballet Theatre. At the opening , Verdy danced The Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux,; I can remember where I was sitting for her final movements came downstage on the diagonal. There was the crispness within the lyricism, the Gallic inflection punctuating the music and the correctness of the canon.


Dance Bliss – Mark Morris

27 Mar

A note by Alistair MacAulay in the New York Times recently led me to query KQED when we would get to see a classic Mark Morris scheduled for Friday March 27 in New York City. The on-line times even had snippets of the broadcast.

KQED responded to my query with the following:

“Great Performances #4005 “Mark Morris Dance Group: L’Allegro” is currently scheduled to air on KQED Life Monday 3/30 8pm-10pm, with an early morning repeat on the same channel Tuesday 3/31 2am-4am.”

So for those to whom it matters, prepare yourself for blisss.

Pascal Molat Cooks!

18 Mar

Those following this rheumy, woolly western eye commentary will remember I recorded  Joanne Weir’s session over KQED’s Life Channel with Joan Boada. I ended my observations with the exhortation “more dancers, please.”

I’d love to credit my stated desire for a recent session on the same program with Pascal Molat, another principal dancer with San Francisco Ballet.  But I suspect the arrangements were made, and the session taped, a long time prior to my blogging. But I have to I commend someone, anyone, on their taste in selecting one of my favorite dancers in said company.

Joanne Weir and Pascal did something with salad as I recall, and I believe also with chicken.  The ultimate charm of the session occurred near the end when Molat grabbed Weir with the comment, “Shall we dance,” whirled her around a bit and then concluded, “Let’s go eat chicken.”

It stands to reason that dancers and food are great friends.  Thanks to Joanne Weir, we’re getting good reinforcement to that truism.  En Avant, mes amis!

Joan Boada, Principal Dancer, San Francisco Ballet

16 Jan

As an armchair cook, I find great enjoyment in watching a series of weekday afternoon cooking shows on KQED Life.  I think it’s 54.2.  It runs Lydia Bastianich, Julia Childs , Jacques Pepin, Joanne Weir and Cooks Illustrated. I take away one or two tips daily useful for my culinary routine.

I think it was Friday that Joanne  was cooking a lamb stew, Spanish style,  the cuisine of the Iberian peninsula being her recent love. She had for her one-on-one student someone who looked decidedly familiar and I said to myself, “That’s got to be Joan Boada of SF Ballet!”

Sure enough, Joanne said, “Today we have a very special guest, Joan Boada, principal dancer of San Francisco Ballet.”  Boada turned out to be a quick learner because as he said, “We have to  observe…”

Boada’s presence on the program was an interesting subliminal advertisement for the coming season, starting with “Onegin” January 26;  the Gala formally opens the season on January 19.

Thank you Joanne.  More dancers, please.