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About abatt

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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  1. I hope this controversy does not cause Martins to refrain from presenting Odessa in future seasons. It is scheduled to return next season.
  2. Unfortunate news to report. Herman was apparently injured during the final act of tonight's ballet. Blain Hoven came out in his Espada costume and performed Herman's final variation in the coda w. Maria. I hope Herman is okay. Herman was doing such a great job all night. High jumps, fast spins and completely into the character. Maria K. can still do amazing fouettes and hops on pointe. For lack of a better way to describe it, in the wedding act she did the four cornered fouettes, which are very hard and are not often performed. However, I think her technique has declined in other areas. Her act I was underpowered. She appears to have limited range of motion for both forward kicks and Plisetskaya kicks. Blaine showed tonight that his a real pro. On a moment's notice he filled in for Herman.
  3. That time period conflicts with the NYCB season, so I doubt she will be doing it in Washington.
  4. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/19/arts/dance/city-center-new-season-the-red-shoes-and-brigadoon.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Farts&action=click&contentCollection=arts&region=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=1&pgtype=sectionfront She's alternating with the original lead, Ashley Shaw.
  5. I must give credit where it is due. Hee Seo successfully completed all of her Italian fouettes tonight. Lendorf was better tonight than on Wed afternoon. Shevchenko showed no signs of fatigue. In fact, she was even more relaxed and into the performance than at her debut.
  6. I didn't think Boylston traveled "a ton". She traveled a pretty straight line forward for some of the fouettes, but stopped traveling forward at around fouette 25, after which she remained in place. I don't have a problem with someone traveling a straight line forward. What is disconcerting is when people start zig zagging toward the wings and look like they might fall into the orchestra pit. Boylston was in control. I also was relieved and happy that she did all fast singles. In the past she was greedy in trying to do triples, and then ended up coming off pointe. She has learned it is better to do all neat,, fast singles than to lose control. I thought her jumps were breathtakingly high and covered a huge amount of real estate. Her Plisetskaya kicks in Act I were very impressive. She has always had the issues with upper body/arm placement. It's a little better than before, but she still has a ways to go with that. And yes, she sometimes does break character. All in all, though, I was pleased with her performance and the progress she has made.
  7. I hope Gillian is okay. I'm counting down the days until her Giselle w. Hallberg. By the way, they usually update the ABT performance calendar after 4PM. Thanks for the heads up, SZ.
  8. I was also at the matinee yesterday, and agree with all the comments above praising Shevshenko, Teuscher, Zhang and Richardson. I will also add that Blaine Hoven looked superb as Espada. I was slightly disappointed in Lendorf. He did nothing wrong, but his performance lacked verve. Also some of the partnering was a bit rough. Oh, and Ms. Hamrick has returned to the stage. She was a flower girl. Welcome back. I also went to the evening performance. Amazing performances from Simkin and Boylston. This may be Simkin's best role. He pulled out all of the virtuoso tricks in his tool box. Boytlson was also stellar. Stella and Hammoudi were excellent in their supporting roles as Mercedes/Dryad and Espada. Stella had no trouble whatsoever with her Italian fouettes. And Skylar Brandt was a spectacular Amour.
  9. I could have easily accepted laborious. Repeatedly coming off pointe, however, is unacceptable.
  10. There is a scene in the ballet Manon where she is passed among the rich male customers in a series of overhead lifts. Manon does not object, since she is a courtesan. But does the fact that she doesn't object in the context of the ballet being performed make it less offensive, or less objectifying? The objectification of women in opera and ballet has a long history, and is present in some of the famous works (Traviata, Manon to name a few). Does the fact that those women don't object and in fact have chosen a life of objectification in exchange for financial benefit change how we feel about what's on stage?
  11. I thought the reference to violence against women in Odessa was somewhat oblique. In contrast, when I saw With a Chance of Rain at ABT (you know, the one where James Whiteside grabbed Misty's boobs and played with them) I was immediately enraged and angry.
  12. I saw the performance last night. Murphy danced Kitri with crispness, sharp attack and vivacity. She radiated joy throughout the theater. Yes, she still does those triple fouettes with fan-waving arm variations in the wedding scene. She also still manages the Plisetskaya kick is Act I beautifully. Cory Stearns is no virtuoso, but he did well enough with his solo work, and was a good partner for Murphy. Whiteside was hammy and fun as Espada. Um, now we get to the weak link in the performance, Hee Seo. She was fine as Mercedes. However, she continues to falter as the Dryad Queen. She managed the first 2 or three Italian fouettes, but then imploded by repeatedly coming off pointe. This is not a new problem. It's an embarrassment that a principal dancer at ABT is so technically inept. If she can't do the role, split it up so that Seo only does Mercedes, and someone who can actually do the fouettes performs Dryad. Teuscher and Trenary were the flower girls. They were excellent. McKenzie should have had Teuscher do Dryad. Sarah Lane did Amour. She was, as always, wonderful. Cannot wait for her Giselle! Gabe Stone Shayer was exciting as the lead pirate or whatever that role is called. He did some very impressive work, with especially deep backbends. Does McKenzie think the audience is too dumb to realize Hee Seo's errors, or does he just shut his eyes to the problem? Sad to report that the house looked at least half empty.
  13. I saw Decalogue this afternoon, and I thought it was a very strong and worthwhile work. I also liked the music. The ballet is in the neoclassical tradition, and I thought that to an extent it quoted or referenced the Four T's and other Balanchine leotard ballets, as well as Polyphonia. It held my attention for the duration, and I look forward to seeing it again. The "falls" were intentional. This is a dense and difficult ballet, and it really should not have been at the end of the program. However, I suspect Martins knew that most people attending this program were there to see Decalogue, and would have walked out on the rest of the program. The other offerings on this program were very weak and unimpressive, in my opinion.
  14. I've heard of back injuries, foot injuries, knee injuries, shoulder injuries and neck injuries in dancers. I don't think I've ever heard of a broken arm injury in a dancer. How the heck did that happen. Please tell me that it wasn't caused during practice for The Times are Racing, when Amar has to do numerous one arm handstands. Best wishes to Amar for a speedy recovery.
  15. Mearns is okay now. Her back injury has subsided. She danced on Wed night in Pictures. However, they have lightened her load by reassigning the lead roles in Rodeo this week. It was supposed to be Mearns and Ramasar, and now it is Pollack and Justin Peck.