Sascha Radetsky Quotes

  1. I hadn’t really thought about doing any acting at all post-‘Center Stage.’
  2. An ex-ABT ballerina, while staging a ballet for the company, once followed a dancer into the bathroom to deliver notes through the stall door. She was known to bark – literally, like a dog – during private rehearsals.
  3. I think I tended toward the Russian training because my first teacher taught a version of Vaganova, and it was drilled into me that that was the best system, and also at the time there were a lot of great Russian stars.
  4. Most dancers are less eccentric than driven. It starts young. When other kids are at the playground, we’re in the studio, endlessly drilling jumps and adjusting our socks.
  5. Ballet has a very small audience, unfortunately.
  6. American Ballet Theatre’s rehearsal studios are at 890 Broadway, an old building where exposed pipes clank and hiss in uneven accompaniment to piano music. The high ceilings wear a toupee of dust. The wall paint peels like a newbie ballerina’s toes.
  7. It’s an unfortunate reality of being a male dancer that it’s not really looked upon… it’s not appreciated.
  8. People come and go, and I’ve certainly had experiences with overbearing figures and conflicts here and there, but for the most part I’ve found the dance community to be really supportive and I’ve formed some lifelong bonds, like with Ethan.
  9. If age someday grounds my feet and wilts my port de bras, what vestige of the old life will be left? The signs that I was a dancer will gradually fade like stripes on a beach towel. Even my knowledge of the art form, reaped in sweat over decades, could be lost over time.
  10. Performing, not rehearsing, is a dancer’s raison d’etre, and I’ve been lucky to ‘etre’ in some extraordinary places – Cuba, Paris, Mongolia. In particular, a two-week stint in Greece leaps to mind. We danced in the Acropolis’s Herodes Atticus amphitheater, once a venue for gladiator spectacles.
  11. At 11, I went to Misha’s school for two summers. So when I wasn’t in that school, I was taking classes at David Howard or Robert Denver’s studios – kind of legendary places – and there was one summer where Alexander Godunov sort of took me under his wing; the memory’s a little murky, but I felt as if I was his project for those weeks.
  12. I think guys, because we share a history growing up of being stereotyped, because there are fewer of us in the dance world, that contributes early on to a bond among us. A lot of us share stories of being harassed or teased growing up – there’s a certain deep camaraderie that’s formed through that shared struggle.
  13. I’m doing a little bit of acting, but I can’t really say it’s going to be a career or even that I’m really suited to it. It’s a whole other craft you have to study and be passionate about.
  14. My injuries are more due to attrition than accidents. I have a couple of herniated discs in my neck, and that more than anything else – I had a flare-up last December, and I had actually made the decision to retire before that, but that just cemented the choice. I was flat on my back.
  15. ‘Center Stage’ reached people that, as live performers, we would have never had the opportunity to reach.
  16. Twyla’s works are complex, and they really push you as an athlete and push you spiritually as well. Before doing a Twyla ballet, you have to get everything in order: You have to get a good night’s sleep, you have to eat well, you have to be in great shape, and then you just go and leave it all out there.
  17. Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s version of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ is my favorite full-length ballet, Sergei Prokofiev’s breathtaking score a favorite composition of music. As a student of martial arts, I loved drawing my sword in defense of my Capulet kin.
  18. At Moscow’s Bolshoi Ballet Academy, I studied under a brilliant and fiery teacher. This tiny, stuttering old man flew into a rage if his students’ white socks failed to reach mid-calf level. Nor could he tolerate floppy hair. We wore hairnets to class – an athletic brigade of short order cooks.

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