Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, OBT/25


Arts & Books
Oregon Ballet Theatre is turning 25, and it wants to celebrate. The company’s season opener, OBT/25, acts as its party, and with it comes a reflective mix of past works paired alongside a world premiere. This, understandably, leads to a night of truly diverse dances, all connected by a common feeling of festivity. One thing is for sure: OBT knows how to throw a party. Artistic director ...   More
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 KAITIE TODD

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Create


Arts & Books
“I’m a bit of a reality TV show junkie,” says Oregon Ballet Theatre artistic director Kevin Irving, holding a velvet bag tied with gold ropes, à la Project Runway. The dancers, wearing rehearsal clothes, stand in a line behind him. The two dancers whose names are selected from the bag will be the performers in a stunt that seems almost cruel: a public rehearsal, under Irving’s direction, ...   More
Friday, May 30, 2014 AARON SPENCER

The Last Dance

Oregon’s premier ballet company is losing its premier ballerina. Alison Roper, after 18 seasons with Oregon Ballet Theatre, is retiring, performing for the final time this weekend. In this Celebrate   More
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Celebrate


Arts & Books
So get this: At the end of this show, people throw roses. Roses! As if this were Europe! Point is, bring roses to this show, because you get to throw them.The show, of course, is Celebrate, Oregon Ballet Theatre's season closer and the last performance for principal dancer Alison Roper, who's retiring after 18 seasons with the company. Roper's been all over local media in the past few weeks, from our Q&A ...   More
Friday, April 18, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Hotseat: Alison Roper

The retiring ballerina talks about her favorite moments, mishaps, injuries and next steps.


Arts & Books
Alison Roper retires from Oregon Ballet Theatre this month after 18 seasons with the company. The 40-year-old ballerina has been with the company longer than any other dancer—in both of its appearances at the Kennedy Center, and even as the lead in Swan Lake while five months pregnant. Calm and driven, she dances with quiet sensitivity but has the athleticism to stick difficult moves with a gentle ...   More
Thursday, April 17, 2014 AARON SPENCER

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Reveal


Arts & Books
Alison Roper begins Bolero with steely energy, surrounded as she was in 2008, when the piece premiered, by metal panels that gradually rise as Ravel’s snare drum-driven score increases in intensity. Within moments, Artur Sultanov bursts gallantly from stage right and rushes to her, completing the time warp to six years ago when the pair first danced the piece by Nicolo Fonte.  Sultanov, who at ...   More
Sunday, February 23, 2014 AARON SPENCER

The Nutcracker

Busby goes big.

The Nutcracker makes Busby Berkeley seem like an austere minimalist. Compared to that ballet’s sumptuous, self-satisfied bliss, synchronized swimming might as well be a hockey fight. Oregon Ba   More
Wednesday, December 18, 2013 MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Scoop: Gossip Says Name the Bridge for Working Kirk.

SLANTED AND DISENCHANTED: Portland dance-rock group the Slants’ four-year battle with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is moving to federal court. In 2009, the USPTO rejected the band’s at   More
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 WW Culture Staff

Live Review: Oregon Ballet Theatre, Dream


Arts & Books
Under the tutelage of new artistic director Kevin Irving, Oregon Ballet Theatre presented two very different pieces Saturday night. Dream, the season opener for Oregon’s premier dance company, has something old and something new. The show opens with Nacho Duato’s Por Vos Muero, a contemporary contribution from Irving who has ties with the prominent choreographer, and concluded with former artistic ...   More
Monday, October 14, 2013 AARON SPENCER

Punk de Bourrée

How ballet and punk rock keep a Wisconsin farm boy from flying off the rails.

Growing up, Michael Linsmeier milked cows in rural Wisconsin. His family lived in a town of 1,600 people along the shores of Lake Michigan and grew half the food they ate. Linsmeier spent most o   More
Wednesday, October 9, 2013 AARON SPENCER


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