Albert Schweitzer: The Humanitarian Who Inspired a Ballet

by OBT historian Linda Besant I’m the ballet historian at OBT, and many people know me as a total ballet geek. When they ask me, as they often do, “What’s your favorite ballet?” I’m stymied, because I love so many. But I do have a “must see list.” If a ballet on this list is… Read More

“Ballet in Bifocals” reading at Powell’s Books

In 2004, after taking adult absolute beginner and beginning ballet class at OBT for four years, OBT’s Dance Historian & Lecturer Linda Besant wrote an essay called “Ballet in Bifocals” that was published in “Open Spaces,” a regional quarterly magazine. It’s both a humorous and thoughtful look at the rewards and perils of attempting ballet… Read More

Gargouillade and Entrechat: the Filigree Footwork of Square Dance

by Linda Besant“More steps per minute than any other show in town,” said dance writer Nancy Reynolds of Square Dance. For fifty years, audiences have been wowed by this non-stop ballet: “Tempos that could only be called lickety-split.” (Manchester, 1958)  “Filigree footwork that requires the most astonishing technical dexterity.” (Kaplan, 1988) “The speed of the… Read More