Tristan and Isolde
Posted 05 April 2003 - 12:19 PM
What do you think of the sketches? How do you think this ballet will turn out? Who do you think will be casted for the imprtant roles?
Posted 05 April 2003 - 01:25 PM
The only Alleyne ballet that I have seen is Septet, which premiered in the All Stravinsky program a few years ago and has been performed again since then. The first time I saw it, I thought the choreography was fluid and coherent, but I found it a bit repetitive. The second time, I liked it more. Septet was a plotless ballet though. It seems his last ballet "Faerie Queen", also a story ballet, was a (relative) success.
As for the dancers, I read in Flare that Chan Hon Goh will be dancing Isolde. Rex Harrington will also dance a leading role, but I'm not sure if it's Tristan. That's about all I know right now.
Posted 05 April 2003 - 03:36 PM
Posted 04 May 2003 - 01:21 PM
I think perhaps it might be a good idea to look at the music...an original piece for this production. Needed some variety .....was very slow, throughout the entire ballet. This may have limited the choreography, which we found nice but simple. This may in fact have been the intent... Lifts, for example, were pretty straightforword, and the same pattern was repeated many times. Kudelka's lifts can be extremely intricate, not to mention dangerous at times...I guess I never realized how much we have grown to appreciate him as a choreographer!
I'll consult with dd and have more later.
Posted 05 May 2003 - 01:34 PM
Posted 05 May 2003 - 01:43 PM
Posted 06 May 2003 - 05:52 AM
Posted 07 May 2003 - 07:53 PM
Professor Doob puckered up so much, she reminded me a little of Iraqi Minister of Misinformation, Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf. Whiles others were semi-absorbed in the ballet, I giggled away to myself as Greta Hodgkinson and Christopher Body attempted the impossible: Dance the music of Michael Bushnell and Owen Underhill to life. The whole pointe of ballet is to dance music to life. For that to happen, the steps must go in concert with the music. Not that I didn’t enjoy the music. It was quite beautiful. Much of the choreography was likewise beautiful. Too bad the duo came together like peanut butter spread over cauliflower.
The same could be said for Hodgkinson and Body. Either they had a spat before the Sunday matinee I attended or they were too busy trying to recall the steps to bother with any acting. Quite a shame, considering the beautiful bodies involved, that they couldn’t whip up any passion for the dinosaurs in attendance who were no doubt lured by the NBoC’s playful tagline: Come to the Ballet!
Don’t come to Tristan and Isolde until the National reworks the music and choreography. As Mom2 said, the music was far too uniform and to fully tell the story, Alleyne will have to add another 15 minutes of choreography. The program felt a little too short at 2 hours minus a 20-minute intermission. The 2nd act looked like it was thrown together overnight. If Rex Harrington is to play the Uncle to Tristan again, he should consider adding some white streaks to his black locks to age him a little. Getting more of the company involved in the ballet would also be a good idea.
The only part of this ballet that doesn’t require revamping is the set and costume design by Kim Nielson along with the lighting by Gerald King. They transported me to a faraway world of mystery and passion. That alone should make it worth the trouble to fix this out of step Tristan and Isolde.
At a top price of $114 per ticket, the National possessed a lot of nerve to present this production. I wouldn’t have been this critical had the NBoC not blowed their own horn so much. There was nothing to blow over. As evidenced by the unusually critical reviews by veteran critics Michael Crabb, Paula Citron and William Littler, the NBoC had it coming. The unfavorable reviews were richly deserved. This duet of Tristan and Isolde is strictly PG.
Performance of Dancers: 13/20. Choreography: 9/20. Costumes, Sets, and Lighting: 18/20. Ballet Magic: 7/20. Music: 5/10. Story: 4/10. Rating: 56/100.
Posted 08 May 2003 - 04:03 AM
I agree with much of what you've said, and as always you articulate things so much better than I!
I do find myself wondering about the lighting, however. I agree that it certainly set the mood of the piece...problem was I could hardly see the dancers faces in some scenes (and I have good seats too; not in the nosebleed section). Perhaps I look too hard for some things...
Posted 08 May 2003 - 06:11 AM
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