Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Marge_Simpson, Jun 11, 2012.
Got it - no problem if you can't get/don't want to come up. Outside afterwards is fine.
I have survived Firebird and I am here to tell the tale. Epiphany of the night: Ratmansky hates Mother Russia, to come up with this tripe.
Kaschei is clearly a demented pharmaceutical scientist living in a forest of deformed lipstick tubes. He has imprisoned all the scientists he can lay his hands on, and he has them feverishly working on creating a new lipstick in a color to be called Firebird Red. The maidens in green with the silly 1950s feathery cocktail hats on their heads are clearly members of the secretarial pool (think Desk Set or The Best of Everything). The head Firebird takes exception to all this; she wishes to keep her color to herself and remain unique - well, as unique as she can be with at least 8 other similar firebirds on the loose.
Chaos ensues until Ivan arrives to rescue everyone with the Firebird's help.
As mentioned upthread by Morgan La Fay, Osipova is magnificent; she does truly fly across the stage.
Note to Marcelo Gomes: Honey, white is not your color. Please have it written into future contracts that you do not have to wear white tights (Siegfried, Swan Lake) or a white ice cream suit (Ivan, Firebird) ever again.
You haven't seen him do Apollo.
I'll make a one-time only exception for this.
Look what I found! Excerpts from the "Cast of Characters" presentation that ABT did at the Guggenheim in April:
Thanks Marge. That's was fascinating.
We all had to take "character" and so did my daughter-and now I don't think I see it ever anymore in curriculums in my neck of the woods. Rarely. We saw classes taught at Southwestern Regional Ballet Association Festival about 3 years ago-that's the last. Of course this video was more encompassing about presentation than what I'm refering to as "character class" but it is still something I wish was still taught more widely. I think the emphasis nowdays (grass roots level anyway) is on technique and "tricks" and getting your variation down perfect for YAGP. Depth, acting, character-not so much.
Every dance student should watch this video!
I found an interesting clip with Natalia Ospiova. So elegant! So classy!
We had separate classes in character and mime at Academy of the Washington Ballet. We had character twice a week at least in lower school (7th to 9th grades), and mime once a week all the way through both lower and upper (10-12) school.
One of these days I'm gonna crash your night at the Ballet, Marge and EMason!! Sounds like you are having fun- I have been dying to catch one for quite some time now. Your recommendations are most welcome on what to see!
You are welcome to crash any time you want. I am going to Le Corsaire next week on Friday the 6th. I'm not sure what Marge has on her schedule.
Last week we went to a matinee of Romeo and Juliet. Marge wanted see Alex Hammoudi do Romeo and I thought, why not? We had different experiences, because I was up in the Dress Circle and Marge was down in the Orchestra. It got good reviews down below. Marge and I talked to one woman who cried, she thought it was so beautiful.
Unfortunately, it didn't play so well up above. Only Sascha Radetsky, as Tybalt, had the necessary experience, charisma, gravitas, stage presence or whatever - take your pick - to really make an impact. Hee Seo made a lovely Juliet, but everyone else was just kind of underwhelming. There were no principals in this cast, just soloists and corp members, and while they have to cut their teeth on these roles at some point, most of them just weren't ready to play to the whole house.
I do want to give a shout out to corps boy Arron Scott though. He did Mercutio and he was the first one I have seen in a long, long time who did not overdo the death scene. It was a pleasure to see a Mercutio who did not go O-T-T.
Marge and I played fangirls after and went to the stage door so Marge could get Hee Seo's autograph, and Marge gets a big gold star for giving Seo a lovely present.
Marge, where is your review?
I saw Swan Lake at ABT tonight. It was Angel Corella's farewell performance. I really enjoyed it*, and what an ovation he got at the end! All the principal dancers (as well as his family, I think) came out and showered him with flowers, and the audience demanded curtain call after curtain call.
* I know it's not fashionable here to like ABT's Swan Lake, but I do anyway, so sue me
Rumor has it that Angel is going to poach some more ABT members before he goes back to Barcelona. Good riddance to Kevin if this is true!
I haven't reviewed R&J because I am sooooo peeved with ABT this season. I attempted it several times but didn't post, because it kept turning into a rant. I will post tomorrow when I am feeling more serene.
Oh, that would be sweet if he did. Besides getting rid of McKenzie, they'd get to live in Barcelona!!!!!!
I don't know. Angel's company has been having some financial difficulties, what with the state of Spain's economy and the eurozone crisis. He might be focusing on paying the present dancers' wages before poaching ABT members. Nevertheless, I wish him all the best with his company. Vaya con Dios!
Mary Cargill, one of my favorite dance critics, wrote about Corella's last "Swan Lake" with ABT for danceviewtimes:
What a lovely review.
How I wish I'd been able to see the performance.
Here's a photo that ABT just tweeted. Unfortunately it's web quality. I bet the original by Rosalie O'Connor was a stunner:
A new article just published in the NYT (dated tomorrow) about the retirements of Corella and Stiefel:
I want to go to Sarasota!
I'm intrigued by the "Carreno's Collectibles". I wonder what sort of items he plans to put up for sale? Something more interesting than a smelly old shoe, I hope.
Today's big ABT news:
Alex Hammoudi promoted to Soloist, Hee Seo promoted to Principal
Susan Jaffee leaves ABT to become dean of North Carolina School of the Arts
I'm feeling very smug right now. And happy for Alex.
There was a nice article about Alex in Dance magazine last year:
Kickstarter is soliciting donations for a film about Marcelo Gomes. Info here:
I love that for $25+ backers get a digital download of the film, and for $50+ backers get the download of the film and outtakes.
I love that for $250 you get all of that plus the chance to see him in rehearsal.
Marge, if you or another FSU-er can get to Sarasota this year or perhaps next year for the ballet program in August, I would be happy to share my experiences. I went there for vacation several years ago & stayed in the Hyatt hotel used by the ballet program - the nicest hotel I've ever been in. We got a great offseason discount & a similar program for chamber music was going on. We got to hang at the pool with the instructors & heard two concerts (one students only for free) & one by students & pros in the lovely concert hall about a block away from the hotel. The nice town library was across the street & the town bus stopped there so there was good public transportation. We also took the bus out to one of the beaches & visited the nearby Ringling Museum, with its mansion, circus museum, restaurant building & lovely grounds by the water. It's a great place to visit.
OK, I finished up my ABT season by going to Le Corsaire on Friday night in the godawful heat. The heat made me cranky and I realized that I hated the Jardin Anime scene; I thought it was too twee for words and the pastel-colored costumes made me bilious. The cast was Cornejo/Conrad, Reyes/Medora, Vasiliev/Ali, Sarah Lane/Gulnare, 3 Odalisques were Melanie Hamrick, Kristi Boone and Christine Shevchenko. Daniil Simkin did Lankendem (and was quite good, actually) - he got a thunderous round of applause as the first cast member on stage. I really think at least 3/4 of the audience thought he was Cornejo.
Vasiliev tore up the stage; that guy goes for broke, and he did something I, at least, have never seen on the ballet stage before. He had Reyes hoisted 88 feet up in the air over his head in THE Pas and he was carrying her to the back of the stage; at one point he just stopped and lifted his back leg so he was balancing on 1 foot while she was up in the stratosphere. We've seen that move a zillion times in ice dance lately, but ballet? For me, mais non. You could hear the thud of a 1,000 jaws hit the floor when Vasiliev executed that move.
Of the five women I listed above, only 1 of the Odalisques, and, alas, I don't know which one, was rock solid in her pointe work. You know, the big ta-da finish - go up on pointe at the end of your variation and wait for thunderous applause. 4 of the 5 women had the wobbles; no one actually fell off pointe but they all had hops and extra steps to stay up. Kudos to whichever Odalisque actually nailed it.
Overall, I did enjoy it though; it was a fun summer night that was not too demanding on the intellect.
He set up shop in Sarasota? I was there in March. It's really nice.
Just as an FYI, I've heard great things about Iain Webb and the Sarasota Ballet. I tried to get there last February, but couldn't make it work out.
The Marcelo Gomes documentary is just under $20K, the 2/3 point, although people can withdraw pledges until the last minute. The deadline is 3 August, 18 days from now. I'm guessing the donation curve is a spike at the beginning and then a lesser one at the end. The filmmakers have just sent an update listing some of the blogs on which it has been publicized, including Aunt Joyce's Ice Cream Stand.
I saw some of the Sarasota Ballet do Diamonds with the Suzanne Farrell Ballet last year. They looked good. I also saw one of the soloists or principals (whose name escapes me) guest with another company, and her turn in bothered me, though the rest of her dancing was good. They are coming back next year with Les Patineurs as part of the Ballet Across America series so I will go see them.
My cousin is a soloist with the Sarasota Ballet