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June 2020 issue

Posted on May 28, 2020

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All of the team at Dancing Times hope you are keeping safe and well in these difficult times. We have been very touched by the messages we got from readers over the past month saying how delighted they were to receive the magazine during the lockdown (you can read a selection of them in Letters). Happily, I’m glad to say we are back again with our June issue, which I hope you will find engaging, despite the lack of actual dance performances taking place around the world at the moment.

Dance under lockdown

Jonathan Gray finds out how dance professionals have been coping with the restrictions COVID-19 has placed upon them

Dance Lockdown June“Frustration at not being able to complete something professionally is also expressed by Elly Braund, a former member of the Richard Alston Dance Company (RADC) and now a freelancer. At home in London with her partner, Braund says, ‘My contract with RADC was finishing at the end of March, so we were actually in the process of moving out of The Place [where the company was based], which had to come to a standstill when lockdown came in.

“‘All the work I had lined-up for spring and summer has been cancelled or postponed. For some of which, a percentage of, or my full fee, has been honoured, but not for any work later on. So the lockdown continues, and during a time when I might have been auditioning and travelling to take workshops, it has become a moment of inner reflection – I’m glad for that in a way. After a long period of time in a company, and at this point in my life, it feels important to take some time to slow down and question what is in my heart that is calling me. ’”

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Part of the conversation

Michael Crabb talks to Karen Kain, artistic director of National Ballet of Canada

Karen Kain June“MC: It must be a blow to see your new production of Swan Lake postponed.”

“KK: It certainly is; and then having to work through so many possible scenarios. My brother, Dr Kevin Kain, is an internationally-respected expert in infectious diseases, particularly malaria, and for a long time he’s warned me that something terrible like this could happen. Now it has and it’s mind-boggling. For the first few weeks I was in despair; then I just snapped out of it. We have to plan as best we can, and it’s not just us. All the live performing arts are affected, globally, and we all commiserate.”

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Dancer of the Month

Isabella Gasparini, a soloist with The Royal Ballet, is interviewed by Margaret Willis

055 June DT 2020“It was the sixth week of lockdown and, while our Dancer of the Month was getting used to taking class in her living room each day, she was not happy about one aspect of this abnormal living. ‘Just when I’m at home all day and have so much more time on my hands,’ began Isabella Gasparini, ‘I find out that the Open University [OU] has shut down and I can no longer continue working on my two courses – English Literature and Creative Writing. I can’t understand it, as the OU is home-based and done on the computer, so we wouldn’t be in contact with anyone. I’m in Level Two, so am really upset I can’t keep studying.’”

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Also in the June issue…

Christopher Hampson welcomes the changing face of performing arts in the digital age

Matthew Paluch asks what do we know, and what can we learn from teaching during a pandemic

Paul Arrowsmith reports on the ballet of the Teatro Massimo in Palermo

James Whitehead considers the impact of COVID-19 on the ballroom and Latin dance scene

Igor Stupnikov reviews Lauren Cuthbertson in The Sleeping Beauty with the Maryinsky Ballet

Nicola Rayner goes online in an attempt to dance from dawn till dusk

Jack Reavely remembers Benny Tolmeyer

Alastair Macaulay sees recent performances of three classics by The Royal Ballet at Covent Garden

Debbie Malina examines how people with visual impairment can improve their sense of wellbeing through participation in specialised dance classes and theatrical experiences

Laura Cappelle reports on the situation at the Lyon Opéra Ballet

Jack Anderson enjoys New York City Ballet online

Marianka Swain speaks to photographer Karla Jacobs

James Whitehead, Phil Meacham and Simon Selmon suggest ideas for dancing at home

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Cover June2 cleanStuttgart Ballet returns to work, Joanne Clifton’s fundraising jive, Dance School of the Year 2020, Lincoln Center performances available online, Royal Academy of Dance cancels the 2020 Fonteyn competition, The Balletboyz and RKO film classics on BBC iPlayer, Fire Island Dance Festival cancelled, we look back to June 1980, plus Nikolai Boyarchikov, Denis and Thora Hart, and Anne Heaton remembered in Obituaries

The June issue is now available in some branches of WHSmith – or you can buy your print copy here or buy your digital copy from all good app stores


Simon Oliver has been production editor of Dancing Times since 2010 and is highly experienced in design across print and online magazine production. Throughout his career, Simon has worked on a diverse range of subjects including music, family history, book collecting and poker.

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