Organizational breakdown threatens San Jose Cleveland Ballet's season.
Thursday, September 14, 2000
Things have suddenly gone grim for those increasing numbers of local balletomanes who''ve been attending performances by the San Jose Cleveland Ballet. The Cleveland partner of this major two-city company has abruptly shut down operations due to a major budget shortfall, leaving the otherwise solvent San Jose contingent in the lurch.
When asked by a KCBS reporter in a broadcast report last Friday if he "expected" to mount the long-planned 2000-2001 season, executive director Andrew Bales said, "''Expect'' is perhaps too optimistic a word."
Contacted on Sunday by phone, Bales (who is well-respected in Monterey County for his consulting work with Youth Music Monterey and Arial Theatrical) called the situation a "terrible catastrophe for the dancers, a great setback for them." Echoing that concern, company publicist Lee Kopp told us "this couldn''t have come at a worse time. If the Cleveland announcement had been made a month earlier, they could have made some alternate plans. A month later, they''d at least have had one paid performance behind them."
Although the plight of the dancers is and ought to be of major concern, the plight of the company that employs them is even greater. "Hope is very high, enthusiasm is strong and the logistics could be a nightmare," says Bales succinctly. "There is no question that this board will make very serious efforts to find a solution that puts the ballet on our stage, on our dates, that is substantially the same kind of season we''ve announced. Our board is not a group of people who are walking away. They''ve got more gumption than that. The ambition is there. But the challenge is great."
The San Jose season as announced opens Oct. 12 with "Celebrations and Odes," and includes "The Nutcracker" opening Nov. 30, "Notes from Europe" opening Feb. 22, a brand new "Don Quixote" opening Apr. 26, and "Made in America" opening May 3. Reflecting the Silicon Valley culture that significantly supports it, the company''s marketing department recently sent the media a CD-Rom promoting the season.
An emergency meeting of the board is in the works. "We''ll know what our options are and make an announcement with two or three days," says Bales. That is likely by Thursday, the date of this issue. Stay tuned.
Chamber Artists Wanted
The City of Monterey''s Cultural Arts Commission is calling for artists to perform during the 2001 Chamber Music in Colton Hall series. The intimate, candlelit concert room on the upstairs level of Monterey''s historic city hall always attracts sellout audiences to the January-March series. Requests for inclusion among the 2001 lineup of performing artists must be received at Colton Hall no later than 5pm on Sept. 28. For details, contact Susan Klusmire at 646-3858.
Join the Band
John Anderson invites all interested band musicians to join the Monterey Peninsula College Concert Band. Rehearsals are held Thursday nights at MPC, and repertoire is drawn from top college wind ensemble literature. Many instruments are available. For information, phone Anderson at 646-4205.
Pianist Lyn Bronson Sunday, 3pm. Carmel artist plays Haydn, Schubert, Liszt, Granados. Music Hall, Sixth St., CSU Monterey Bay. Free. 582-4085.