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Gaynor Minden's Online Magazine
October 2006
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Save on Tights!

       How we love nice fresh tights!

       This month only, you can buy two pairs, and get a third FREE. Our soft, luxurious microfiber tights feel great and let you move with total ease. Available in pink convertible and black footless. Only online.

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What Class Expects of You



       In today's world of instant informality and less than perfect manners, ballet class provides an oasis of true courtesy and dignity, a remnant of the royal decorum of the Baroque age. Studio etiquette may seem mysterious at first, but its importance soon becomes apparent. You are creating an environment conducive to learning, and you are physically demonstrating the esteem in which you hold your art, your teacher, and your fellow students.

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       Melissa Hayden, who died this summer, was one of America's greatest ballerinas. After a legendary performing career she went on to become one of its most highly respected teachers. She was a principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre and the Ballet Nacional de Cuba, but it was as a principal dancer with New York City Ballet, where for over twenty years she was a star in an officially "starless" company, that she is best known.

       She danced a huge repertory that included just about every one of the company's leading parts, and she originated the principal roles in some of George Balanchine's greatest works: Divertimento #15, Agon, Liebeslieder Waltzes, Stars and Stripes, Episodes, Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet, and many more.

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       When Eliza Minden was developing the Gaynor Minden pointe shoe she consulted extensively with medical professionals who treat dancers. The company still maintains close contact with the medical world in order to keep up to date on developments that could improve dancers' health and safety. Communication flows in both directions. On September 28 Eliza and Kiley Stoker, Sales Manager and veteran fitter, made a presentation on pointe shoe fitting to the doctors and physical therapists at the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries in New York City.

       Coming up this month, from October 19th to 22nd, Gaynor Minden will again sponsor the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science Annual Conference, as we have for nearly 15 years. Carlota Benoit, Sales Director and Kiley Stoker will fly to West Palm Beach, FL for the event which is expected to draw hundreds of dance medicine experts from all over the world. "IADMS promotes medical, scientific, and educational activities aimed at enhancing the treatment and training of dancers with the ultimate goal of improving dancers' health, well-being, and performance." If you're in the area we strongly encourage you to stop by the West Palm Beach Marriott Inn on October 22nd for the Teachers Day which focuses on the physical and psychological well being of teachers of all ages. Please visit www.iadms.org for more information on the conference.


Strength, Passion, and Perseverance: Jennifer Cadden

       Jennifer Cadden has just graduated from Philadelphia's prestigious University of the Arts with a BFA in Ballet Performance, honored with awards for Best Ballet Performance and Best Overall Dancer. Impressive accomplishments for any dancer—and a stunning achievement for one who was told, seven years ago, that she might never walk again.

       Jennifer suffered a catastrophic foot injury while dancing the Dawn solo during a performance of Coppélia at Ballet Theatre of Scranton. She underwent numerous surgeries, involving pins and screws, to repair a snapped ligament and dislocated bones; she had to be off her foot for nine long months. Her surgeon thought it unlikely she would ever dance again; he wasn't even sure she would be able to walk.

       Undaunted by a grim prognosis and determined to dance, Jennifer worked hard, recovered, and went on to become a beautiful dancer. And she's a successful dancer too: Jennifer will be taking her Gaynor Mindens on the road with her at her new job with the Broadway 1st National Tour of the Twyla Tharp/Billy Joel hit, Movin’ Out.


Do you know a remarkable dancer? Please tell us. "In The Wings" is a regular feature of Gaynor Minden's dancer.COMMENT in which we profile an extraordinary dancer, nominated by our readers, who wears Gaynor Minden pointe shoes and who is not (yet!) a star. Perhaps it's a student who has been recognized with an award, a scholarship, an acceptance to a terrific school or program. Or maybe it's someone whose passion for dance is so strong that she has had to overcome an obstacle in order to pursue it. Or possibly it's a gifted teacher whose talent and generosity have enabled the next generation to soar.

Please send a brief description of your remarkable dancer (100 words or fewer), and a photo of her in her Gaynor Minden pointe shoes (along with permission to use it), to editor@dancer.com. Be sure to include a way for us to contact you, and your dancer.

       Thank you for the wonderful response to last month's inaugural issue of dancer.COMMENT. You took advantage of our special on leotards; you nominated remarkable dancers for our "In the Wings" feature, and you passed us along to your friends. We're off to a terrific start.

       It was with great sadness that I learned of Melissa Hayden's death. She was an unforgettable performer—such power and brilliance. I saw her dance several times. I also had the privilege of working with her last winter and I'll treasure the experience the rest of my life. She endorsed our pointe shoes and agreed to appear in our ads so I flew down to North Carolina School of the Arts, where she taught, for the photo shoot. I was somewhat intimidated at the thought of giving direction to this legendary ballerina but she was fantastically obliging. Moreover she gave 1,000 watts of her radiance to every single shot. She was glamorous; she was humorous; she was indefatigable—and she was 82. At the end of the session, having never complained or betrayed the slightest bit of discomfort or impatience, she was limping, I noticed, and moving at a snail's pace. The shoot must have been a huge effort for her but she never let on. Our sympathy goes out to her family, her colleagues, and her students.

Cordially,
Eliza

Contact Us: editor@dancer.com
212 929 0087 ext 24

Visit www.dancer.com for more information about Gaynor Minden products and history.

Photographs: Tights by Eduardo Patino, NYC; Melissa Hayden by Rick McCullough. Dancer: Cortney Conner;
Jennifer Cadden by Gabriel Bienczycki; Eliza Minden by Sardi Klein.

 



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