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Everything posted by volcanohunter

  1. volcanohunter

    The Bolshoi under Vaziev

    "...одна Коппелия". "Адна" is Belarusian. Just sayin'.
  2. volcanohunter

    Who rules today?

    On balance I find these sorts of discussions unproductive, but I like this definition, because it is a good indicator of who rules my world. There are three active dancers for whom I've crossed oceans on multiple occasions. Two of them are men.
  3. volcanohunter

    "The great malaise of the Paris Opera Ballet" !!

    It can also be inertia, particularly if offers and incentives keep coming your way. Is it so hard to believe that an innately talented person, who sails through POBS exams, then a POB audition, then the promotion competitions, may assume that she has found her calling and not stop to consider an alternative? And then reach her mid-40s and realize that she doesn't know how to do anything else? Some years ago there was discussion on the board about a report which found that most ex-dancers ended up teaching dance, not because they wanted to do it, but because it was the only marketable skill they had.
  4. volcanohunter

    "The great malaise of the Paris Opera Ballet" !!

    Because she was good at it. But having an aptitude for something doesn't mean a person enjoys doing it. To give you a more prosaic example: me in grad school. Straight As, one scholarship after another and total misery. In fact, I always did so well in school that it never occurred to anyone, including myself, that I flat-out, absolutely detested every minute of it.
  5. volcanohunter

    "The great malaise of the Paris Opera Ballet" !!

    Apparently when Dupont and the company were discussing her final performance she decided on dancing Manon with Hervé Moreau. But when he became unavailable, the management would have said, unfortunately Moreau is injured, but Mathieu Ganio, Josua Hoffalt and Florian Magnenet are available, and at that point she expressed a desire to dance with Robert Bolle, on national television. How could Ganio and Hoffalt not take that as a slight? She may have been within her rights to choose an outside partner, but that decision could not benefit company morale. She probably wasn't thinking about "the team" when she made her choice, but it was bound to come back and haunt her when she was put in charge of that same team.
  6. Decisions on approving or rejecting visa applications are not made by computers but by individuals. A presenter may have been successful in obtaining a certain type of visa a dozen times, but the 13th time a different consular officer may decide that the basis for approval is inadequate. If Kim applied through the (now closed) consulate in St. Petersburg, and Smirnova and Tissi through the embassy in Moscow, the applications would have been processed by different people who applied different standards.
  7. Remember that several years ago Edward Watson was unable to obtain a work visa to appear at a gala in the U.S., and he certainly isn't Russian. Since these visas were denied to a Russian and an Italian alike, I suspect it has little to do with nationality, and more to do with the visa application itself. Or just an ornery consular officer.
  8. volcanohunter

    "The great malaise of the Paris Opera Ballet" !!

    I didn't realize Roberto Bolle was Russian. I was also unaware of the Russian origins of Millepied's other guest Solor, Isaac Hernandez. Additionally, I didn't realize that Seoul was in Russia
  9. volcanohunter

    "The great malaise of the Paris Opera Ballet" !!

    At the time I thought that importing Bolle for Dupont's farewell performance was a disgrace, especially since it was televised to the nation. In effect it was Dupont's repudiation of her male colleagues, and I can understand why they would still resent her. If I recall correctly, she had previously danced the ballet with Josua Hoffalt. Imagine how he felt when Dupont elected to dance her last performance with Bolle rather than him. (It's not as though the Dupont-Bolle partnership was one of long standing and popular repute!) Obviously she wasn't director at the time, but this lingering resentment is a handicap now that she is boss. Perhaps there is an element of impolitic self-absorption in her character that makes her a poor candidate to manage the careers of others.
  10. A film of John Neumeier's Nijinsky, performed by the Hamburg Ballet, will be released in North America on DVD and Blu-ray on April 20. The performance stars the incomparable Alexandre Riabko as Nijinsky, Carolina Agüero as Romola and Ivan Urban as Diaghilev. https://www.cmajor-entertainment.com/movie/nijinsky-a-ballet-by-john-neumeier-744304/ If you are in the EU or can work around the geo-block, the performance is also available for viewing on demand on Arte Concert until April 21. https://www.arte.tv/de/videos/069869-000-A/nijinsky/ (Although the end credits are wrong: the Harlequin and Spirit of the Rose were danced by Alexandr Trusch, the Golden Slave and Faun by Marc Jubete. )
  11. volcanohunter

    Maria Kochetkova leaving San Francisco Ballet

    Earlier this month I spent 12 hours on a flight from Munich to San Francisco. I wouldn't exactly call it a good time. Sure, Asian destinations are closer from San Francisco than Miami, but if most of Kochetkova's gala destinations are in Europe, I can think of home bases much more convenient than the Pacific coast of the United States.
  12. volcanohunter

    "Manon" Osipova-Shklyarov "Friday the 13th" April

    I've flown in and out of Moscow from a number of cities, including Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Munich, Vienna, Warsaw and Minsk. Those flights are pretty much like any other flights within Europe. But the British Airways flight from London to Moscow is a surreal experience, because I swear that two-thirds of the plane is taken up by first- and business-class seats, and coach is a small area at the rear of the plane. That's an indicator of precisely what sort of Russian "punters" travel to and from London on a regular basis, and I reckon Osipova is quite effective at attracting them to the ROH.
  13. volcanohunter

    Neumeier's Nijinsky on DVD/Blu-ray

    Yes! When the Hamburg Ballet brought Nijinsky to San Francisco five years ago I remember Maria Kochetkova took to Twitter after opening night to declare that Riabko was one of the greatest dancers she had ever seen. About a month later when he performed the role in Toronto Svetlana Lunkina took to social media to say the same thing. Every time I talk to dancers and Riabko comes up in conversation, their eyes get really big and they say, "he's a genius." I agree: he is one of the greatest dancers I have ever seen, a Terpsichorean genius, and this is his crowning role. Thank heavens it has been committed to film, even if the rapid edits are maddening. He's also got the constitution of a horse. I get the impression that he's never injured, and his casting is shuffled only when he has to fill in for someone else. Riabko was 39 when this performance was filmed, and I'd like to know how many other dancers at that stage of their careers have this degree of technical virtuosity and just plain stamina. The dramatic portrayal, with 17 years of performing the part behind it, is off the charts.
  14. volcanohunter

    Neumeier's Nijinsky on DVD/Blu-ray

    I'm afraid I don't follow. Could you please clarify?
  15. volcanohunter

    Binet Allegations

    I would also like to know who is snitching. Whoever is leaking information about dancers before they've made public statements on these matters is behaving very unethically. By the way, whatever happened to the exposés Frank hinted would be forthcoming in the Toronto Star? If there were substance to these allegations, I would expect the Star to jump at the chance to expose their rivals at the Woodbridge Company, but it hasn't, so to me this looks like a smear campaign directed against Karen Kain's leadership. Here I will reiterate for the umpteenth time that I am no fan of Karen Kain, that her programming is uninspired to the point of being pedestrian, and that I wouldn't blame any dancer for leaving the company in search of a better repertoire. But this doesn't make her corrupt, just unimaginative.
  16. volcanohunter

    "Manon" Osipova-Shklyarov "Friday the 13th" April

    But that wasn't the substance of your initial argument. Now you're just moving the goalposts.
  17. volcanohunter

    Royal Ballet roster changes for 2017-18

    Apparently Golding enjoyed dancing with Natalia Matsak because he is returning to the National Ballet of Ukraine to dance in Swan Lake on May 15th. https://www.opera.com.ua/afisha/lebedine-ozero-34
  18. volcanohunter

    "Manon" Osipova-Shklyarov "Friday the 13th" April

    I suppose Lauren Cuthbertson, Francesca Hayward, Sarah Lamb, Laura Morera and Marianela Nuñez are all chopped liver. It's only one opinion, of course, but I would choose any of them over Osipova each and every time. Last I checked, all but two of the POB's étoiles are French, and the exceptions aren't Russian. There aren't any Russians among the Royal Danish Ballet's principals. If there are more Russian dancers working abroad than there are non-Russian dancers working in Russia, perhaps this has more to do with living and working conditions in Russia than anything else.
  19. volcanohunter

    Nureyev's Falling Out at POB - Why ??

    It's even worse than you can imagine. Nikiya loses her big entrance down the temple steps, the High Brahmin does solo dancing and standard pas de deux choreography, so his interactions with Nikiya are practically indistinguishable from her interactions with Solor, there is no oath over the sacred fire, the Rajah does some of Solor's parterning in the engagement party grand pas, Aya is the one who attempts the stabbing...of Nikiya, the snake is put into the flower basket at the end of the fight scene, which rather spoils the shock at the betrothal, there is no offer and rejection of the antidote. Ay, ay, ay...
  20. volcanohunter

    Nureyev's Falling Out at POB - Why ??

    Ah, but y'all have probably never seen the abomination Stanton Welch staged in Houston, where all of Nikiya's variations are rechoreographed, Aya wears pointe shoes and a costume practically indistinguishable from Gamzatti's, the D'Jampe music is used for a male quartet, there is a fire god and a dream god, as well as a golden idol, although he doesn't dance, and where the shades make their way down the ramp in a weird syncopated rhythm. The fact that the temple comes crashing down at the end (because Gamzatti stabs Solor for refusing to marry her) does absolutely nothing to salvage the production. Plus Welch uses the gawd-awful Lanchbery orchestration. After that, I promise you, Nureyev's version looks a lot less offensive.
  21. volcanohunter

    Anthony Dowell

    Today, 16 February 2018, Anthony Dowell turns 75. So I just had to post this video of him performing the variation Frederick Ashton created for Peter Wright's production of The Sleeping Beauty in 1968. Half a century later, this performance still hasn't been bettered. Not even close. (If I've missed a Dowell thread somewhere on this forum, my apologies for starting a new one.)
  22. volcanohunter

    Anthony Dowell

    Tchaikovsky's score includes a Sarabande that goes between the wedding pas de deux and the finale. Very few productions use this music. In 1968 Frederick Ashton used a shortened version of it to choreograph a solo for the Prince that goes between the hunt scene and the vision scene in Act 2, and it has been an integral part of Royal Ballet productions ever since. (I never saw Makarova's short-lived production, so I have no idea whether it was incorporated there.) Rudolf Nureyev's production uses the Sarabande at the beginning of Act 3 as a dance for Aurora's parents and the court.
  23. Let's hope for better North American distribution. http://www.roh.org.uk/cinemas 23 October 2017 Wheeldon/Talbot: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 5 December 2017 Wright/Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker 28 February 2018 Wheeldon/Talbot: The Winter's Tale 27 March 2018 new McGregor/The Age of Anxiety/new Wheeldon all-Bernstein program 3 Mary 2018 MacMillan/Massenet: Manon 12 June 2018 Petipa, Ivanov (Scarlett)/Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake (new production)
  24. volcanohunter

    Neumeier's Anna Karenina

    It took place entirely in dining rooms, including the duel and the final meeting between Tatiana and Onegin. It's almost a theme in Tcherniakov's productions. There was his Don Giovanni in Aix which took place entirely in a wood-panelled room, and his il trovatore in Brussles, which was set entirely in the lobby of a seedy hotel. Saves money on sets, i suppose. I was amazed when his Macbeth, set in a suburban neighborhood, included inklings of outdoor scenes. For me perhaps the funniest thing was his follow-up at the Bolshoi, Ruslan and Lyudmila, because the curtain came up on a large and heavily decorated hall and a stage full of singers in colorful traditional costumes with lots of fur trim, though it did seem to me that they were anachronistic. But the audience gasped at the sight and applauded. Eventually I noticed that there were two large television screens at the back, and that the costumes were indeed a historical mish-mash, and then i realized that he'd set the first scene in a tacky Russian wedding palace, and that he'd thumbed his nose at the audience once again, and they'd fallen for it hard. Still, Vishnevskaya's reaction to Eugene Onegin was nothing in comparison to the reaction of the Poulenc estate to Tcherniakov's production of Dialogues des Carmelites in Mumich, because they actually sued to have the DVD taken off the market, and for a while they succeeded.
  25. This program is selling very poorly. I don't expect the scalpers will make much of a profit.