Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Charlotte teen dances into Wall Street Journal

If you go by the Wall Street Journal's dance critic, Charlotte-born Silas Farley must be a prize pupil at the New York City Ballet's school.

In a retrospective on NYCB's winter season, the Journal's Robert Greskovic mentions a Jan. 22 performance -- a tribute to company founder George Balanchine -- that concluded by spotlighting Balanchine's brainchild, the company's school.

Peter Martins, the company's artistic director, "conducted a ballet class onstage with advanced students from NYCB's School of American Ballet," Greskovic writes.
"The ... demonstration revealed a none-to-impressive selection of young dancers. Few presented any especially eye-catching expertise, through the strikingly tall, handsome and poised Silas Farley stood out."

Farley apparently stands out without even trying. In a 2009 New York Times story about a young-choreographers' workshop, dance critic Gia Kourlas turned attention onto him even though he wasn't actually part of the program.

"As dancers slipped in to watch their peers' rehearsals, a potential ballet master emerged in Silas Farley, a 15-year-old intermediate student from North Carolina, who modestly referred to himself as 'the cheerleader with a notebook,'" Kourlas wrote.

Armed with his pad, Farley was everywhere watching and learning -- even when he wasn't taking part in a class.

"(Fellow student Lauren) Lovette, like everyone at the school, adores Mr. Farley," Kourlas wrote. " 'Oh, man, isn't he a character?' she asked, laughing. "'He sees things, little details, that I may not see, like: 'These people are doing different heads, Lauren. Just letting you know.'"

Apparently Farley can't help turning heads.

(Photo with Ellen Hummel in 2007 by Jeff Cravotta)