Monday, December 22, 2003

Ballet Done Right

I am not a fan of the ballet. Let me amend that: I am not a fan of sitting in an audience and watching -- in two dimensions -- the stage as a ballet troupe athletically presents their program.

Robert Altamn's latest flic, with, of all people, quirkey Canadian Neve ("First off, don't call me Ne-Vee") Campbell gets it right.

The film adds a third, and of course, fourth dimension to the ballet scenes with the help of DP Andrew Dunn, a God of the perfect shot.

Dunn gets camera shots from up in the stage lights, the wings, from behind the stage and he catches the gossamer costumes as well as the elaborate and draining movements.

Altman gets the "social macrocosm" and Neve Campbell is terrific, but the real star here is the camera, and the man behind it: DP Andrew Dunn

And here's something I wrote on in April in the In and Out:

"In: And, closing on a positive note, the white wine slurping cucumber munching Fifth Avenue set got together to support the ballet (yuck! The Corsair doesn't eat swine, and the Corsair sees no redeeming social function in ballet, excepting Neve Campbell's performance in The Company, which was sexy) in a civilized manner. Fashionweekdaily reports, 'As the 100+ crowd gathered for the luncheon, young ballerinas in tutus from The American Ballet Theatres costume archives mingled with the ladies who lunch, who were all wearing their very best Carolina Herrera outfits. The darlings of New York society think Dayssi, Blaine, and Muffie mingled with the editors Kerry, Amanda and Kristina. During lunch, Carolina Herrera staged a presentation of her fall collection for guests, followed by one-on-one consultations.'

"What other occasion would there be for braised artichoke bottoms with fava beans.Fucking rabbit food. No wonder the Old Money Upper East siders are so mean. Hunger from all that dieting and the rabbit food!"