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Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Mike Piazza will make his ballet debut in Miami on May 3

Well…Piazza did say he was a James Dean type in his freakishly out-of-step book.

Longtime big-league catcher Mike Piazza will make his ballet debut on May 3 as the gangster in Miami City Ballet’s production of George Balanchine’s Slaughter on Tenth Avenue at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami.

I’d be less inclined to believe this had I seen it on Monday, but it doesn’t appear to be an April Fool’s joke. From the release:

  Piazza will not be dancing, leaping or catching ballerinas. But he will be sporting a 1920’s-era gangster costume, throwing out a few lines Al Capone-style and then sitting back and watching the stage come alive with dazzling dance routines, a gorgeous Strip Tease Girl, a tap-dancing Hoofer and the colorful Ladies of the Ballet.

  It was Piazza’s six-year old daughter, Nicoletta, a student at Miami City Ballet School, and MCB’s Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez, who, together prevailed upon him to pinch hit as the Gangster in Slaughter on Tenth Avenue for this May 3, one-night only, guest appearance. Although this is not Piazza’s first acting experience – he’s been a spokesman for Pert Shampoo and appeared in the TV sitcom Married with Children and the movie Two Weeks Notice – he never imagined that he would appear on stage as a cast member in a ballet production.

  “It’s going to be a lot of fun seeing the reaction of my two little girls,” said Piazza, who played for the Florida Marlins, the New York Mets and is the author of The New York Times best-selling memoir, Long Shot (Simon & Schuster, 2013). “My oldest daughter is a student at Miami City Ballet School and for her to have the opportunity to see Daddy on stage is my little gift. I’m looking forward to it.”

Piazza, 44, begins rehearsing for his one-night only performance in a little less than two weeks.

Repoz Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:35 PM | 19 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dodgers, mets

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   1. Rough Carrigan Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:53 PM (#4402502)
You think those guys jump like that naturally?
Baryshnikov . . backne!
Nuryeve . . backne!
   2. ecwcat Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:55 PM (#4402505)
Don't take the bait.
   3. Steve Treder Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:58 PM (#4402509)
It's a trap!
   4. cardsfanboy Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:59 PM (#4402511)
It’s going to be a lot of fun seeing the reaction of my two little girls,” said Piazza, who played for the Florida Marlins, the New York Mets

I think writers just like to have fun pointing that out.
   5. Shooty would run in but these bone spurs hurt! Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:05 PM (#4402518)
Mike Piazza's two "girls"

Meet us at the statue of Willie Mays, Mike.
   6. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:05 PM (#4402519)
It is my dearest wish for this to be true. But we don't live in a universe in which people get their dearest wishes very often.
   7. Lassus Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:08 PM (#4402525)
Miami City Ballet is no joke, so Pizzas's daughter probably has some skills.
   8. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:16 PM (#4402533)
Neither was that Korean War, but that doesn't mean that NPR's report of rescue bunnies was true.

Actually, on second perusal, this story looks slightly more plausible. But my defenses are high this time of year.
   9. vortex of dissipation Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:21 PM (#4402537)
Ballets often use athletes, actors, and other celebrities in non-dancing parts to get publicity. Pacific Northwest Ballet used Memphis Grizzlies basketball player Quincy Pondexter when he was a star at the University of Washington in their production of The Nutcracker, and just last year used actor Tom Skerritt in their production of Don Quixote.
   10. Publius Publicola Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:27 PM (#4402545)
OK, so he really is gay.
   11. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:40 PM (#4402558)
Don Mattingly performed in a production of The Nutcracker in Evansville, Indiana.
   12. Bourbon Samurai, what price fettucine? Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:42 PM (#4402564)
The Oakland a's use to have their stars perform in the nutcracker every year. McGwire, etc all did it. Don't know of they still do it now.

*note, not a steroids joke they really did
   13. Walt Davis Posted: April 02, 2013 at 09:44 PM (#4402642)
Don Mattingly performed in a production of The Nutcracker in Evansville, Indiana.

Nah, that was John Kruk.
   14. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 09:54 PM (#4402656)
Kruk got his balls busted on a much bigger stage than that.
   15. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 02, 2013 at 10:07 PM (#4402685)
Piazza would be great in "The Temple Dancer," at least until Clemens hit him in the temple.
   16. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 11:38 PM (#4402807)
from Wiki
Slaughter on Tenth Avenue is a ballet with music by Richard Rodgers and choreography by George Balanchine. It occurs near the end of Rodgers and Hart's 1936 Broadway musical comedy On Your Toes. Slaughter is the story of a hoofer who falls in love with a dance hall girl who is then shot and killed by her jealous boyfriend. The hoofer then shoots the boyfriend.

The ballet is integrated into the plot of the musical by the device of having two gangsters watching it from box seats in the theatre in which it is staged. They have orders to shoot the leading dancer (played by Ray Bolger in the original production). The dancer, who has been warned just in time, evades them by suddenly dancing at full speed even after the ballet actually ends, and finally two police officers enter and arrest the gangsters.

watta necco
   17. Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili (TeddyF.Ballgame) Posted: April 03, 2013 at 12:30 AM (#4402837)
One of my co-workers used to dance for Miami City Ballet. I can confirm that it's top of the line where toe shoes are concerned.

To add to the list of jocks making quasi-novelty appearances dancing, I remember Herschel Walker performing with the Fort Worth ballet company back when.
   18. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: April 03, 2013 at 12:33 PM (#4403154)
If it's a story of a hoofer, shouldn't they get ARod rather than Piazza?
   19. gef the talking mongoose, amorphous lefty blob Posted: April 03, 2013 at 12:54 PM (#4403188)
played by Ray Bolger in the original production

Supposedly a distant relative (my mother's mother's maiden name was Bolger), which if true would also make him some sort of kin of Travis Jackson's (whose grandfather, a Bolger, was my great-uncle, or something along those lines). Who knows? I've never looked into it.

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