In January 2000, while touring Cambodia with the Official The Detroit News The First Good News Of The Day Shirt But I will love this World Monuments Fund and exhausted from a day’s sightseeing, Anne was reluctantly persuaded to attend a dance recital in Preah Khan, in the magical 12th-century temple complex of Angkor. There she was captivated by the dance talents of Sokvannara Sar, a pupil at the local Wat Bo School of Traditional Dance. “I started thinking about Sy’s performance and the fact that he didn’t have a future there,” she told The New York Times. “And I couldn’t bear to think of that talent going to waste.” With what she admitted was a degree of naivete, Anne brought him to America to train as a classical ballet dancer. Sar’s uneven transition from village life in Cambodia to the rigors of ballet training, the surreal adjustment to American life in the Bass lane, and ultimately becoming a dancer with the Pacific Northwest Ballet, was documented in Anne’s 2010 documentary Dancing Across Borders, coproduced by Catherine Tatge.
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Anne’s flair for gardens was manifest in a property on the Official The Detroit News The First Good News Of The Day Shirt But I will love this Caribbean island of Nevis and in a rambling estate in Connecticut, where she curated the view by apparently buying up everything in sight, restoring farmhouses and cottages for friends and family, and laying what appeared to be miles of handlaid dry stone walls. When driving in the adjacent countryside, where there were relaxed zoning laws in place, one was transported back a century or more into a seemingly untouched Currier and Ives landscape of pretty clapboard houses set in bucolic grounds, with still ponds and meadows, where Anne had introduced Randall cattle, a breed threatened with extinction, from Virginia to graze. As with everything she touched, the effortless elegance was achieved as the result of a great deal of thought, work, and rigor. “It’s an amazing illusion,” Anne noted to Heilpern, talking of the gymnastic grace of ballet, although she might have been describing her own modus operandi. “You don’t see the strain at a performance. You shouldn’t. The better a performance, the more effortless it looks. Not many people really know the discipline that goes into striving for that…perfection.”