I also want to add my thanks to Marge & emason for taking the time to share their recent ballet going experiences with the rest of us. Most interesting posts. Marge, I've thought of another reason why ABT's "Firebird" might have a whole flock of red birds that you state look like roosters when other companies get by with only one magical red bird - it's product placement for the Red Rooster restaurant in Harlem.
I never explained about the Yorkshire terrier. Further proof that loons gravitate to matinee performances!
I was sitting in the side seats; right after Act I began I heard an annoying jingling sound coming from the seat ahead of me, like a woman wearing too many bangle bracelets. But the person in the seat was clearly a man. A few minutes later I heard, "aarf, aarf" and saw a Yorkie sitting at his feet. WTF? Since when are you allowed to bring a pet to the theatre? I loathe dogs, but I would have just rolled my eyes if the dog wasn't making noise.
At the intermission I went over to the usher, who was already being harrassed by another woman, demanding to know why there was a dog in the theatre. The usher said she'd sent for her supervisor to deal with the situation.
Fine, I went to find emason and gush about how wonderful Act I had been.
I went back to my seat and the dog was still there! I went to the usher again, and she said she couldn't evict the dog, because it was a therapy dog and the man had a card to prove it.
Therapy dog, my a$$. Who needs a therapy dog to attend a ballet? I could understand if a blind person brought a seeing-eye dog to the symphony. But a Yorkie at a ballet? At the next intermission I told emason I was going to buy a goat and bring it to a ballet, claiming it was my therapy goat.
If the dog had gone berserk and chewed off someone's foot, wouldn't the theatre be liable?
Red Rooster, hmm?
I'm visualizing another plot now. Ivan wears white because he is a sous chef at a renowned bistro, and sets off to find the plumpest, juiciest chickens to turn into spicy wings and thighs. He is warned off by the red roosters, who are sworn to protect their mates from being turned into extra-crispy dinners. The ladies in green are vegan goddesses, named, naturally for their famous "Green Goddess" salad dressing, as well as being PETA activists. Katchei is an evil poultry farmer who has a vested interest in keeping the PETA ladies from picketing his chicken coops. Ivan vows to help the ladies spread the vegetarian cause but Katchei has other ideas and tries to beat him up. The head turkey appears and shows Ivan where the giant tofu cake is kept. He feeds tofu to Katchei and they all swear to go vegan and become broccoli farmers.
If anyone is going to tomorrow's matinee and wants to join emason and me for dinner afterwards, just say the word.
BTW, doesn't anyone want to propose something idiotic for me to do if my prediction fails to come true?
Well, since Ballet West got the reality show, maybe Ivan is supposed to represent Gordon Ramsey.
"'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney
Marge, loved your alternate version of a new storyline for ABT's "Firebird." Also loved your doggie at the ballet story. As for me, on Saturday at ABT some little kid in the orchestra started wailing at the climax of the balcony scene in "Romeo & Juliet." Sure broke the spell. Ms. emason long has believed that wherever she sits at a performance the talkers, crazies, coughers, crinkly candy wrapper people etc. etc. will find her. Perhaps you share the same bad luck.
If there is going to be a disturbance at a performance of Swan Lake, I can tell you exactly when it will occur: at the beginning of the white swan pdd, when only the harp is playing.
emason, where are we supposed to meet on Wednesday during the intermission?
I was thinking of going to the stage door afterwards, because I have a picture of Hee Seo that I would love to get autographed. (and a present for her if she signs it. )
I'm in the Dress Circle, so come up to that level, please, if you want to meet at intermission. Otherwise, please pick a spot to meet after, as I must admit I don't know where the stage door is.
As to talkers, Ms. Nancy is correct; they always find me. Haven't experienced a yapping dog though.
I'll do my best to get up there. If not, right outside the main entrance afterwards.
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.
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 think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.
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!
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?