It takes a real journalistic talent to describe disturbing facts in civil and narrative style as you did in your “Swan Song” article (Dispatch, Feb. 1-8). Cincinnati ballet lovers will be delighted and grateful to the mysterious “anonymous donor from Indiana” (as Cincinnati Ballet Web page stated) for staging a production of Swan Lake. Thanks to you and NUVO, I am more educated about the source of the $230,000 than our naïve neighbors from Ohio. I have learned that anonymous donors are the Clara Noyes Endowment Fund and Central Indiana Community Foundation.
The questions I have are why is the INDIANA Community Foundation investing money to Ohio, and why do I have to drive for two hours and cross the state line to enjoy classical ballet? Why his highness, anonymous donor from CICF, didn’t display its patronage in December of last year when Indianapolis was waiting for a traditional Nutcracker ballet? It was absolutely not noble of him to throw the dancers and staff of Indianapolis Ballet Internationale on the street to deal with their personal financial problems, including house mortgages and car loans. How many lives were ruined by that sad closure? (Some dancers went back to their native countries, unable to find contracts in the middle of the season.)
It would be more humane to have revealed the upcoming closure of the company in advance and “carrier transition” would go much smoother. Where was his highness when 100-plus Indianapolis kids in ballet school were told not to come to classes? (Tuition reimbursement for cancelled classes was never offered.) Could his highness be more caring and prudent by instead investing it in the future of Indianapolis ballet, perhaps to the Russian Ballet Academy? Is it what Clara Noyes would have wanted?
“Cincinnati affaire” showed me that everything is possible in the underworld of art where close, hidden connections are more important than public benefits and best intentions.
Perhaps in your next article you will report from the bankruptcy court. Perhaps anonymous benefactor will invest his money in purchasing the defunct Ballet Internationale’s decorations and costumes. Only this time please employ your investigative technique to unravel the real identity of his highness.
P.S. Several years ago Eldar Aliev told me that Swan Lake would never be staged in Indianapolis.