The Rock Star Of The Ballet World Says Goodbye
Huffington Post - over 4 years
NEW YORK -- There are often cheers and shouts of "Bravo!" in the New York ballet audience. But screams? As in, adoring fans at a rock concert? Not often.
To some dance fans, though, Ethan Stiefel, the blond, athletic, longtime principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre, fit the rock-star bill nicely over his long career. A natural for the classics, with a beautiful and pure line to his dancing, he was able to play a perfect Siegfried in "Swan Lake" and then leap effortlessly into some edgier Twyla Tharp. (And yes, he also played the dishy Cooper Neilson in the silly-but-fun 2000 dance movie "Center Stage.")
So there were indeed genuine screams from high up in the rafters on closing night of ABT's spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House this past weekend. Stiefel, now 39, was saying farewell to ABT with a final performance as Ali the Slave in the campy "Le Corsaire," a 19th-century ballet full of slave girls and pirates and a pasha with a big belly.
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