2018 CORPS de Ballet International 20th Annual Teacher Conference
FLORENCE, ITALY: A TIME TO REFLECT UPON AND RE-EXAMINE BALLET’S RICH HISTORICAL ROOTS
GUEST CONFERENCE ORGANIZER
Heather Evertsen spent the first three decades of her life in the western United States. In 2009, inspired by a desire to give her six children an international experience, she moved to Italy. After a rough first year, Heather adjusted, adapted and learned how to navigate the ins and outs of living and traveling in Italy. Since then she has become a knowledgeable resource for those wishing to enjoy the culture, events, cuisine and la dolce vita of her adopted country.
Her vacation home in an authentic Florentine neighborhood hosts study abroad students and professors, artists, visiting academics and curious travelers. Recently she launched an exclusive day excursion to the famous marble quarries of Carrara. Her wealth of experience as a coordinator and organizer includes knowledge of current cultural events, museums, cooking classes, city tours and tailor made excursions for her clients.
Visitors and organizations wishing to experience Florence, Tuscany and Italy can rely on Heather as their on the ground contact for a hassle free and memorable vacations or events. Heather’s online site is www.Europavita.us
MARCO BENDONI NARTAK
Marco was already 26 years old when he decided to leave his life in the office to pursue his real passion: dance. Age was not a limit in his case. Marco was not looking to become the next Nureyev or to reach fame.
He was rather searching for a way to give a safe shape to the explosive physical energy that mother nature had gifted him with. He felt that through dance he could find a better knowledge of himself and a balance between his exuberant Tuscan spirit and a peace-loving disposition. However, his dedication, love, and passion did not go unnoticed. It was 1987 when Martha Graham, who was then visiting Florence, saw Marco performing one of her own choreographies, Primitive Mysteries and decided to grant him a scholarship to study with her company.
From that moment on Marco’s career moved fast in all directions. As a contemporary dancer he worked with Philippe Decoufle’ in Paris, Vicente Saez in Valencia, Simona Bucci in Florence and Luciano Padovani in Vicenza. He soon became an actor and performed as a mime in many opera houses all over Italy including the Communale of Florence and the Corte Ospitale in Reggio Emilia, just to name a couple.
He studied and became an expert in Commedia dell’Arte and for those who know Marco well, it is pretty easy to understand why. The way Marco moves and talks is almost from another century. He is polite yet witty, sensitive but ironic, he can be a minstrel or a nobleman, and an acrobat or a baroque dancer. In his seminars on Italian Comedy, the students find many physical challenges but they become aware not only of their body, but of their mind and emotions as well. As people go in and out of the Masks(Arlecchino, Pantalone, Capitano, Pulcinella…),they learn about their own personality, they start to see their own negativities, hopefully in a comic way, so that “they will start longing to become better humans” as Marco always says.
Since the death of Andrea Francalanci (Italian dancer and choreographer) in 1993,Marco took over, together with Bruna Gondoni, the direction of the Company “Il Ballarino”. For over 20 years they have been performing antique dances, from Renaissance to Baroque, in the most important festivals and theaters all over the world, from Europe to India, Russia, Japan, China, Mexico, Argentine, Chile, Venezuela, Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, Turkey, Syria, Morocco, Lebanon and the United States.
Outstanding was their cooperation with the Company Han Tang Yuefe for the show Memories Du Vents Du Sud (2010) in which Reinassance Dance and Antique Chinese Dance met and blended with elegance and beauty. During his long trips to Asia and Central America, and his studies at Libre Universite’ Samadeva in France, Marco learned several meditations tecniques as well as tai chi, ci gong, dervish yoga, reiki healing and many other physical and psychological disciplines that all together make Marco one of the most complete Wellness Operators to be found.
Last but not least, Marco is a teacher of Gurdjieff Sacred Dances and his lessons can be attended, mainly in Europe and NYC, according to his busy and itinerant schedule. Marco considers himself a never-ending student, always looking for more and more knowledge that eventually he loves to pass and share with those people who believe in universal energy and the power of human soul.
Bruna Gondoni, choreographer and dancer, followed the Sculpture course at the Accademia delle Belle Arti in Florence and also attended the ballet and contemporary dance classes at the Dance Theatre School and the Imago Lab in Florence.
Since 1982 she’s been interested in Renaissance dance, collaborating as an interpreter, choreographer and teacher with the Renaissance Dance Company “Il Ballarino” founded by Andrea Francalanci, with which she participated in many creations and tournées in Italy, Europe, America and India.
In 1988 she danced with the French company “Ris et Danceries” of Francine Lancelot in the creation “Tempore et Mesura” for the Biennale de la Danse de Lion and for the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.
In 1989 she took part in the television representation for the Thames TV of London “Una Stravaganza dei Medici”. Then she worked at the National Theatre of Strasbourg, at the Baroque Festival of Versailles and for the Celebrazioni Monteverdiane at the Teatro Ponchielli of Cremona. Since 1994 she has directed with Marco Bendoni the Italian Renaissance Dance Company “Il Ballarino”. She also danced and choreographed “Il Ballo dell’Ingrate” with the London Group Taverner Consort directed by Andrew Parrot and “La Dafne” directed by Gabriel Garrido for the Teatro Massimo of Palermo.
In 1996 she created for the dance company Le Ballet du Rhin the piece De la Bellezza. In 1997 Marika Bresobrasova (director of Académie Princesse Grace of Monte Carlo) invited her to choreograph the court dances during the 700 years of reign of Grimaldi Princes’ celebrations. In 2006 she danced and choreographed the “Ballo delle Ingrate” in the festival Torino Settembre Musica with Hesperion XX, director Jordi Savall.
Bruna has performed for the most renowned festivals in the world, both as a dancer and as a choreographer. She danced at the festivals of: Utrecht, Sablé, Ambronay, Baireuth, Haute-Jura, 67th Festival de Musique de Strasbourg, Wallonie, Medina of Tunisi, Palais de Beaux Arts of Bruxelles, Festivales Musicales de Buenos Aires, Camino del Barroco de Santiago, Baranquilla in Colombia, Cathédrales de Picardie, Kyoto, Boston Early Music Festival, Namur, Medieval Festival of Agia Napa (Cyprus), Palau de la Musica Catalana of Barcelona, and Internationales Bachfestde Schaffhausen. She also performed with the most important personalities in the world of the music like: Jordi Savall, Gabriel Garrido, Christina Pluhar, Denis Raisin Dadre, Jean Tubery, Alan Curtis, R.Clemencic, A.Parrot, Daniela Dolci, Chiara Banchini, Sigiswald Kuijken, Rolf Lislevand, Jean-Marc Haymez, Maria-Cristina Kier, and Jean-Pierre Canihac.
We can find amongst her most important choreographies also: the F. Caccini’s opera La liberazione di Ruggero dall’isola d’Alcina and the Balthasar Beaujoieulx ‘s Le Ballet Comique de la Royne. In 2009 she was in Taiwan for a month to dance with the Chinese Company Huan-Tang Yuefu (theatre and dance Nankuan) and for 3 years she’s been to India with the Company Musica Fiorita and she has performed with Indians dancers of Bharatanatyam. As a regular teacher she holds courses at the Haute Ecole de Musique of Geneve and at Dolmetsch Historical Society of London. She is invited as guest choreographer and lecturer at the Centre de Musique Ancienne de Geneve, at the Académie de Danse Classique Princesse Grace and at the Conservatoire Ranier III in Monaco, at the Conservatoire in Copenhagen, at Dolmetsch Historical Dance Society of London as well as at the Academie de Sablé. She danced and choreographed in the 2012 Carlo Carlei’s movie Romeo & Juliet and in the 2016 Garth Davis’ movie Mary Magdalene (in theatres in 2018).
Her activity as a researcher co-exists with her creative and choreographic work, thanks to her experience of different disciplines: historical research, renaissance, baroque, classical and contemporary dance, Tai-Chi, Dervish’s Yoga, Gurdjieff’s sacred dances and trekking in Nepal. For several years she has been attending the Libre Université du Samadeva to became a Professor of Dervish’s Yoga.
The Hamlyn School is one of the oldest and most important ballet schools in Florence, located in a XVI century historical palace near Ponte Vecchio, in the heart of Florence, and for over 50 years has forged professional dancers who are now all over the world.
The Hamlyn School follows the Cecchetti Method of the ISTD of London, has classes for children from 4 years old on, and prepares students for the Major Cecchetti Examinations and for professional career in classical dance.
The Direction of Nicoletta Santoro, Alessandra Alberti and Elisa Corsini has continued the tradition of Cecchetti Classical Ballet but introducing also contemporary dance and new occasions of performing on stage. For further information please have a look at our site www.scuolahamlyn.com and on our facebook page Scuola Hamlyn
Alessandra graduated from the National Academy of Dance in Rome, Italy with Zarko Prebil, earning her Diploma for Teachers. She also studied at Mudra, Bruxelles, which was directed by Maurice Béjart and Micha Van Hoecke. She studied intensely in New York with Mme Gabriela Darvash and with Anthony Basile; and danced professionally with John Neumeier’s Hamburg Ballet, Teatro Comunale in Bologna, Zurich Ballet, Spoleto Ballet, and others. Alessandra danced in choreographic works by Neumeier, Balanchine, Cranko, Robbins, and Petipa, etc. She teaches regularly at the National Academy in Rome, where she received her University Diploma in Ballet (II level), graduating with a dissertation about the Cecchetti Method. She holds Licentiate ISTD Cecchetti Faculty status and is an approved tutor for ISTD Teachers Courses. Alessandra has edited and translated many texts by Noverre, Blasis, Vaganova, Dauberval, etc. She has been the co-director of the Hamlyn School since 2000.
Elisa graduated at the Hamlyn School in Florence, Italy, studying with Franco De Vita, Raymond Lukens, Susan Brooker, Alla Ossipenko and Nicoletta Santoro. At 17 she received the Teachers’ Associate ISTD Cecchetti Faculty recognition, receiving distinction and compliments from the examiners Richard Glasstone and Gillian Dawson. Elisa holds the Licentiate Diploma ISTD and is an approved tutor for the ISTD Teachers’ Course for Cecchetti Faculty. She has taught at the Hamlyn School since 1998, where she is the main Cecchetti Teacher in charge of the preparation for ISTD Exams. Since 2014 Elisa has also been co-director of the Hamlyn school. She has been a guest teacher at several schools in Italy, and has taught master classes and workshops in Italy and in France for the Cecchetti Method.