Thursday, September 10, 1998
Excellent article on carpal tunnel ("Hand Stand," Aug. 27). I would like to add that many massage therapists take special training to be able to help people with this problem. Employers with people doing repetitive motion jobs would save a lot of down-time by employees by having massage therapists come in at least once a week to work on wrists, neck and shoulders. Also I would like to suggest that people with this challenge check into nutritional therapy. Most doctors have minimal training in nutrition. It has been well documented for years that vitamin B6 will provide relief/cure carpel tunnel syndrome.
In Praise of International Ballet
After reading a couple of recent articles regarding the International Ballet Academy in Coast Weekly and risking initiating a "he said/she said" debate, I felt compelled to offer a broader prospective. The worst case scenario is that we might elevate the current dialogue.
Six years ago, when I first moved to Pacific Grove, I searched for a ballet school to continue my classes. I had studied primarily at the Dallas Ballet Academy, Dallas, Texas and had no illusions of duplicating the quality instruction that I was accustomed to. My approach was that almost any class would be better than no class. This proved to be unwise and simply inaccurate. After approximately a year, I resigned myself to life sans ballet curriculum.
Last fall I stumbled upon a new ballet school in Pacific Grove. I watched with great interest as the studio evolved and prepared for classes. I started taking classes--initially uncertain of the quality and much to my surprise and pleasure found the curriculum to be outstanding. I continue classes to this day.
Alexei and Ronna are extremely talented dedicated professionals. The program they offer is exceptional, from the care in preparing the physical facility to the incredible performance of a full-length Nutcracker approximately five months after the studio opened, through the ongoing recitals and class instruction. They are not pretentious, they take an enormous interest in each student whether he/she is a potential prima ballerina or an adult beginner. This is rare in the dance community.
Quite frankly folks, do you know of any successful business person who opens a new business and advertises second rate products or service? Perhaps the anonymous critics should come and take a class--anonymously, of course.
The financial hardships that the International Ballet Academy are experiencing are the same for any ballet organization around the country. Unfortunately, the art of ballet as it attempts to survive in this country is viewed as expendable. Save the ballet company that has a wealthy patron that takes a particular interest, most companies suffer through great financial hardships. The source of the problem is an uneducated public. I am sure both Alexia and Ronna would welcome anyone who would like to observe class to attend.
We would be best served as a community to unite and support our artists. In turn the dance community would be better served by embracing each other and celebrate their differences in order to provide the best service/product to the community. Why not have an annual joint Dance Showcase wherein all the groups and companies come together for one performance. Perhaps the Coast Weekly would like to sponsor such an event. We should be supporting our artists. They truly bring beauty to our community
NADINE D. ZARAT
Shocked by Letter
Although I don't know Charles Page personally, I was rather shocked at the childishness and irrelevance of his response to Keith Vandevere's letter about the dam. >(CW, Aug. 27). Rather than directing his remarks at any of Keith Vandevere's points he, in effect, not directly, said that Mr. Vandevere is both ignorant and apathetic.
Beside the fact that name-calling serves no purpose, except perhaps to allow the writer to embarrass himself, Mr. Page's letter struck me as downright silly. Obviously, Keith Vandevere is not apathetic, or he wouldn't have written a long, well-thought-out letter to the Weekly, nor would he have spent the time he has in considering and researching the issue of a dam. As for his being ignorant, if this were true, thousands of the rest of us in Monterey County would be equally so, since we agree with Keith.
Live Music Alive and Well
Why do I have the sudden urge to let Chuck Thurman rest his anxious little head on my shoulder while I whisper "There, there?" (What's Up Chuck? August 27). Calm down, Chuck. And you too, Mac, if you're out there.
It's interesting that both main music columnists are bemoaning the woeful state of live music on the Peninsula at the same time. There are numerous reasons that the Monterey "scene" often fails to keep pace with Santa Cruz, San Jose and San Francisco. Interestingly, they are not the reasons mentioned in both articles last week (El Nino? Anti-smoking ordinance? Give me a break.) Talk to all the local promoters for a clearer understanding of the problem.
Monterey, the town with which I am familiar, could attract almost any level of performer in any genre (You think they'd rather play Duluth?) I haven't presented a single artist who hasn't been thankful for the opportunity to just be here. But I have also watched city council meetings during which a Carmel businessman's plan for a full-blown jazz club in downtown Monterey was rejected because of the fear expressed by the mayor, et. al., that late night club-goers would cause trouble in the Safeway parking lot. No solutions offered, just fear. Doesn't sound like a supportive environment, does it? Musicians can't perform where there are no venues.
Another problem lies with the columnists themselves, who convince their readers that free concerts are a wonderful new trend. While that's obvious, it's destructive to the "scene." Why is it that "city folk" don't blink at $40 covers? What are we, "music bumpkins" gasping at $15 prices for the same quality acts?
Some concerts are natural sellouts in spite of the music. Give me a glass of wine and a gorgeous backdrop and I'd pay to see a Pekinese on a penny whistle. Filling a club nightly all year around is indeed hard work, and much of the blame for small turnouts absolutely lies with promoters such as myself, burn-outs trying to do too much without assistance. But what is undeniable is that people will turn out when the music is high quality. And they will sit in ridiculously cramped, overheated quarters, on butt-breaking chairs to do so.
With that in mind, starting in February of 1999, a nonprofit organization will be filling the current concert void. The newly formed Monterey Bay Traditional Music Society, started and directed by individuals who loved the quality of music at Morgan's, will be bringing performers from the folk, blues, bluegrass, country, and jazz worlds to the Monterey Peninsula.
Everyone needs to take part to create a vibrant music scene; promoters, media, advertisers, sponsors and audiences working towards a common goal. This area can and will have the music it wants. I'm a little tired of folks saying that this ain't Santa Cruz. Thank goodness.
I was surprised to read your piece about Mom-and-Pops fighting back in the Aug. 27 issue. Though my business, PC People, fits the definition of a one-store enterprise, the 27 men and women who work there with me hardly see themselves as endangered species.
Despite competition from chain stores and mail order houses, we prosper because we offer our customers better value. People buy from us--and come back for more--because our prices are fair and our staff knows its business. "No busy signal support" is not an empty slogan in an ad, but a daily mantra in our store.
Somewhere around town there may be small businesses subsisting on "pride and pity," but don't forget about the heads-up stores that drive the local economy.
Clarifications and Corrections:
Regarding a statement made in a story about local media in the Sept. 3 issue, Sherry McCullough from KBOQ called to say that KBOQ is still owned by herself and Stoddard Johnston. The station has a joint sales agreement with New Wave Broadcasting, but New Wave has no ownership in KBOQ.
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