As audience members, we usually gawk at a dancer’s consecutive turns and flying leaps, but from the perspective of sculptor Linda Klarfeld, it is the intricate and fast-moving positions of a dancer that she wishes to immortalise in bronze. Before our Sylvia Dress Rehearsal performance, we were honoured to have Linda Klarfield, a celebrated Australian sculptor to talk about how she intertwined her artistic gifts and her admiration of ballet in her 6 dance-inspired bronze sculptures. In this talk, her sculptures were brought to life by two talented young students from Allegria Dance Studio.
Her talk detailed her tedious process of sculpting and modelling, of her obsessive observation with the placing of an index finger, or the positioning of a hip bone. Her artworks capture positions that are impossible to hold, as Linda described that her bronze sculptures will stay ‘en pointe’ for 2000 years. As she was never a professional dancer, she leaned on the technical eye of David McAllister and Robert Albert to critique and examine her plasticine sculptures before casting them in rubber/plaster moulds. Using these moulds, she would cast the sculptures in wax and detail any imperfections. At one point, she recalled she had been so obsessive in perfecting the detailing of the hands and materials, she had overlooked that she had cast a dancer with (literally) two left feet. After creating a ceramic mould with the wax sculptures, she would melt out the wax and pour in the bronze.
Bronze is characterized by permanence and strength; hence, Linda relies on it to hold impossible poses with impeccable balance. In her statue of the pas de deux from Giselle, she highlights how her greatest challenge was locating the position’s centre of gravity. In this statue, the ballerina is not yet at the top of her lift, and Linda explains that she located the centre of gravity as being slightly off-centre, as the two dancers pull up and away from each other to maintain balance. We have all seen these lifts in arabesque, with the risen leg stretching through a 90-degree angle, however, the eye always misses the moments before the picture. Linda’s sculptures make that moment tangible to help incite a feeling of excitement about what is about to happen, to bring the sculptures to life in what feels like a real-life pas de deux.
This whole process would take around 6 months for every sculpture, however, in every finished result, you can clearly see the admiration and dedication Linda has for her dancers and her art. We thank her for sharing her unique insight into the world of sculpting and ballet with our members, and commend her on her beautiful artworks.
Sculptor Linda Klarfeld
All photos were taken by Lexy Potts.
The final dress rehearsal for The Australian Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker, the ultimate Christmas Ballet in its most enchanting version.
There’s nothing like a traditional Nutcracker to get you in the mood for the festive season. And there’s no traditional Nutcracker as magical as Peter Wright’s.
The artistic director of Birmingham Royal Ballet has created a gold-standard production of this beloved party piece, remaining faithful to the feel of the 19th-century original. Tchaikovsky’s last great score for ballet, with its lively motifs and bewitching melodies, draws us into the story of Clara, a young ballet student celebrating with her family on Christmas Eve. When the clock strikes twelve, we enter the realm of dream … and Clara is whisked to the Land of Sweets in the arms of her Nutcracker Prince.
Veteran designer John F Macfarlane exquisitely evokes the world of this picture-perfect ballet: whirling snowflakes, crackling fires, band-box soldiers, a Christmas tree that grows until it brushes the ceiling and a Sugar Plum Fairy in luscious candy-floss pink.
With the holidays around the corner, there’s no better way than The Nutcracker to rediscover the childlike joys of the season, or to create your own family tradition.
Tickets on sale from Monday 23 September.
If you do not wish to book tickets online, please download our booking form here and return to the FAB office by email or post.
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With The Nutcracker just around the corner, the season for Christmas drinks is upon us. Join the Friends for Christmas drinks and canapés, joined by our special guests, Royal Ballet alumnus Gillian Revie and former Australian Ballet soloist Andrew Wright.
Gillian Revie began her lengthy and successful career at 11, training at the Royal Ballet School. Her 7 years of training and 23 year career as a soloist and principal artist at The Royal Ballet has granted her the upmost respect in the Australian dance world. She now runs her own successful ballet school which is renown for ballet technique and fostering beautiful and passionate young dancers. Gilly has performed on international stages with the most prominent classical characters, such as The Nutcracker’s Sugar Plum Fairy, promising her to be a interesting figure from an international dance world.
Andrew Wright is the definition of Australian dance, having joined the Australian Ballet Company in 2004, after studying in Christine Waters School of Dance, Victorian College of the Arts and graduating as Dux from the Australian Ballet School. Andrew is still active within the Philanthropy team at Australian Ballet, giving you the chance to learn exclusive knowledge about the happenings of Australian Ballet.
Christmas is a special time for the ballet family and Friends, so join us and learn a fun fact to share at Christmas dinner!
Don’t miss out, book early as places are strictly limited.
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Join us for a champagne brunch with conversation celebrating costumes and an array of irresistible silent auction and raffle items raising money to support The Australian Ballet.
With Special Guests
David McAllister AM, Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet
Musette Molyneaux, Head of Costume Wardrobe
and featuring a performance by Sydney City Ballet, under the direction of Lucinda Dunn OAM.
A highlight in our social calendar, this event is not to be missed!
Tickets can be bought individually or by the table, with a strictly limited number of tickets available for the VIP table and the opportunity to sit with David McAllister and Musette Molyneaux.
Our sumptuous brunch menu consists of 2 glasses of sparkling wine, fresh fruit, pastries, hot plated main followed by chocolates. A cash bar will also be available.
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The Friends celebrated the beginning of the Sydney ballet season with our annual event Meet the New Dancers on 2 April at The Royal Automobile Club of Australia, to introduce the future stars of The Australian Ballet Company.
Together with Steven Heathcote, our Members were entertained and introduced to the new young dancers, including Sara Andrlon, Jocob de Groot, Thomas McClintock, Annaliese McDonald and Tyson Powell.
FAB Life Member Alan Jackson hosted the event and fellow FAB Councilors Jeremy Moller and Tanya Barrington presented a cheque of $3,500 to The Australian Ballet Pointe Shoe Fund.
We thank our long term sponsors Mr Rebbell Barnes, Showface Make-Up, and Bloch for their continued support at this event.