Andrew Webb-Mitchell

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Dreams of Flight
Dreams of Flight is set in Kitty Hawk on a cold December morning in 1903. The Wright brothers are hard at work with final preparations to make the world’s first controlled powered flight. They briefly reflect on the immensity of the task they face but are now willing to throw caution to the wind. As they start the engine, the propellers begin to rotate; movement begins to wake in The Flyer, longing for wind in its wings.The first flight was made by Orville and lasted only 12 seconds, during which the airplane flew 120 feet. That same day, however, on its fourth flight, with Wilbur at the controls, the plane stayed in the air for 59 seconds and traveled 852 feet before a severe gust of wind severely damaged the craft.The Wright Brothers helped found modern aviation through their curiosity, their inventiveness, and their unwillingness to give up their vision.
Dances of Life and Death

Dances of Life and Death is an intimate portrait of Anna Pavlova as she prepares for the role in which she became most closely associated, The Dying Swan.

Anna Pavlova was a Russian ballerina of the late 19th and the early 20th century. She is widely regarded as one of the finest classical ballet dancers in history and was most noted as a principal artist of the Imperial Russian Ballet and the Ballets Russes of Sergei Diaghilev. Pavlova is perhaps most renowned for creating the role of The Dying Swan, a solo choreographed for her by Michel Fokine. The ballet, created in 1905, is danced to Le cygne from The Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint-Saëns. Pavlova was purported to have studied the movements of swans in depth before attempting her performance. In 1912, she bought a home in London called Ivy House, which had an extensive garden and a pond. Several pictures were taken during this time showing her entwined in an embrace with her favorite swan, Jack.

While touring in The Hague, Netherlands, Pavlova was told that she had pneumonia and required an operation. She was also told that she would never be able to dance again if she went ahead with it. She refused to have the surgery, saying "If I can't dance then I'd rather be dead." She died of pleurisy, three weeks short of her 50th birthday. She was holding her costume from The Dying Swan when she spoke her last words, "Play the last measure very softly."