For most people, ballet is fancy dancing in leotards or, occassionally, the punishment leveled at any Al Bundy-sort after forgetting about their ten-year anniverseries. For those who know anything about the sport or have known ballet dancers, however, the actual work and skill of this particular style of dance, to say nothing of the brutal backstage antics and politics that go into the artform, is the kind of stuff that would make John McClane sit down and weep for five straight days. There’s a reason why the artform has provided major directors, from Darren Aronofsky to Robert Altman, with substantial material to study and probe the stress and psychological damage that a life dedicated to an artistic talent can bring you. This might explain why Moira Walley-Beckett, a regular writer and executive producer of AMC’s Breaking Bad, turned to the world of ballet for her next project, Starz’s Flesh and Bone, based in and around the ballet community of New York City. Sarah Hay, who appeared in Aronofsky’s Black Swan, will play a skilled ballerina who must survive the slings and arrows of the professional dancing world, and all the massive egos that come along with it.
The show recently finished up shooting in New York City and will debut on November 8th on Starz. That’s a long way away but Starz debuted the first trailer for the series today, which features a lot of dancing and a lot of European-accented yelling, which is enough to pique my interest at least. Here’s the official synopsis:
“Flesh and Bone” follows a young dancer with a distinctly troubled past as she joins a prestigious ballet company in New York. The dark, gritty, complex series unflinchingly explores New York City through the eyes of Claire, played by Sarah Hay (“Black Swan”), an emotionally wounded but transcendent ballerina navigating the dysfunction and glamour of the ballet world. Claire’s self-destructive tendencies amid her vaulting ambitions drive her in compelling, unforeseeable ways, especially when she is confronted with the machinations of the company’s mercurial Artistic Director, played by Ben Daniels (“House of Cards,” “Law & Order UK”) and an unwelcome visitor from her past.
Flesh and Bone will have its series premiere via Starz on November 8th. Watch the trailer below: