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Dance Audition/Workshop
Girls 9-13 years of age
Audition Date: Sunday, January 29 from 3-5pm
Place: Contemporary Ballet Dallas School
1902 Abrams Parkway, Dallas, TX 75214
214.821.2066, email: admin2@schoolofcbd.com
Audition fee: $15
Workshop Feb. 4-5-11 from 3-5pm is free
Pre-registration is encouraged

The New York Baroque Dance Company is looking for 12 young dancers,  between the ages of 9 and 13, to perform Mr. Preist’s Minuet, originally created for a girl’s school outside of London circa 1711.  The performance is with the Dallas Bach Society at Caruth Auditorium, February 12, 2011 at 7pm.  Prior ballet training is essential.  The twelve dancers selected from the audition will learn  the minuet in a 3 day free workshop held at the Contemporary Ballet Dallas School and taught by Catherine Turocy.  The workshop, in addition to teaching the dance to be performed, will include an introductory lesson in reading Feuillet dance notation and a lesson in proper court etiquette at the time of the first Lady Diana, ancestor of today’s Prince William and Prince Harry.

The Dancing Master, Josiah Priest, or Preist as his name was sometimes spelled, and his wife, Frances,  directed an academy for young ladies at Gorge’s House in Chelsea.  According to Jennifer Thorp, we are not certain this is the same Priest, but there is documentation  of a performer in London  by the name of Priest who is sometimes connected with the Stuart Court, “for in April 1673 a dancer named Isaac was one of several dancers (along with Mr. Priest) who performed as Venetians, a Spaniard, a Conjuror, Devils, and Shepherds, in a masquerade for King Charles II’s illegitimate son, the Duke of Monmouth (see Fig. 1). Mr. Isaac received ‘A Rich flowerd Venetian suite with all furnitures’ costing £28 17s 6d, and ‘A Spanish habitt’ costing £8 6s 2d, and either he or another Mr. Isaac and three others (Messrs Priest, Hazzard and Laine) each received a ‘bask habitt’, at 11 guineas per outfit. Two years later, in February 1675, Mr. Isaac was paid for his part in the Whitehall production of the masque Calisto, in which members of the royal family and the court performed alongside French and English professional dancers. Although he never held an official post at Court, it is known that he taught Princess Anne…”  Please visit this site for the sale of the Dance Journal Research issue which contains this fascinating article by Thorp: http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/dar/summary/v024/24.2thorp.html.

This free workshop offers an extraordinary opportunity to delve into the beginnings of ballet and to be introduced to the social connections at court which helped to support and develop the art form. The performing experience in joining The New York Baroque Dance Company on stage as a prelude to their concert with the Dallas Bach Society, Chamber Music and Dance from Versailles and London, will be a unique event in any child’s education as a young dancer.

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