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What do you think of the Balanchine Celebration?

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25 replies to this topic

Poll: What do you think of the Balanchine Celebration? (7 member(s) have cast votes)

What do you think of the Balanchine Celebration?

  1. It's great! What a birthday bash!! (1 votes [2.13%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.13%

  2. On balance, it's a good way to celebrate Balanchine's centennial (5 votes [10.64%])

    Percentage of vote: 10.64%

  3. It could be worse. They could be doing no Balanchine. (12 votes [25.53%])

    Percentage of vote: 25.53%

  4. It's a disappointment (14 votes [29.79%])

    Percentage of vote: 29.79%

  5. It's an outrage (15 votes [31.91%])

    Percentage of vote: 31.91%

  6. Other (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%


#1 Alexandra


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 08:51 AM

I can't resist. This calls for a poll.

Please feel free to expound upon your answer below, including what you like about the season as announced, what you would do differently if you ruled the world, etc.

#2 Farrell Fan

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 09:55 AM

I don't like anything about the season as announced -- the arbitrary classifications, the precedence that Martins takes over Balanchine in the first part of the year, the fact that, except for Harlequinade and a one-night-only Orpheus, there are no major Balanchine revivals scheduled. Did I miss them? It's all packaging without appropriate content. The press release as flim-flam job. I was eager to read what the New York Times made of it but there was nothing in today's paper. I suppose we have to wait till next week. That makes me even angrier. The Balanchine Centennial is a once-in-a-lifetime event and NYCB appears not only to have muffed it, but to have desecrated it.

Suzanne Farrell should be in charge of NYCB.

#3 Nanatchka


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 10:29 AM

"This calls for a poll."
This calls for a drink.

#4 Guest_Helena Handbasket_*

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 10:38 AM

Perhaps we could all amuse ourselves by planning "The Peter Martins Very Special 100th Birthday Season" I can't quite come up with anything at the moment, but maybe that's just me.

#5 carbro


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 10:38 AM

Huge irony here:
NYCB is clearly using the unique opportunity of Balanchine's 100th Birthday to launch a huge, empty marketing gimmick. During the Master's lifetime, one of the complaints was the extremely low key of the company's marketing efforts. But then, NYCB eschewed vulgarity on stage and in the media. Publicity? How common!!!

This is clearly business-as-usual, slightly rearranged, and wrapped with garish, oversized ribbons.
:) :eek: :mad: :eek: :mad:

#6 Terry


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 10:41 AM

It is unfortunate that the company is using a large amount of its funds to privilege newer works rather than Balanchine's, but looking at it from the brighter side, they still are performing 54 Balanchine ballets. I think it could've been worse. Ideally, it would be wonderful if they could revive a chunk of earlier works by Balanchine, but with an AD who likes to choreograph his own works, it just won't happen. This isn't just a problem with NYCB, if you look at any other companies, you see the same kind of trend with 2nd generation ADs. (A serious question for "Ballet in 21st C") Anyway, why Stroman? Her choreography doesn't have any roots in classical ballet...But like what Dale said in another post, this could've been the programming for any other season. It would've been a nice season for 2004-2005, for example. On the other hand, the only thing I really like in this new season is the idea of a chronologically-oriented programming, presenting works from Balanchine's roots (from 19th C), his staple works (20th C), and then Balanchine-influenced works (towards 21st C). This is a nice idea. Then again, the programming is a little too heavy on the 21st C side in comparison with the first two periods and considering the fact that it is BALANCHINE'S bday. (Btw, I am happy to hear that S. Sylve is joining the company. I think she fits well into the repertory.)

#7 bobbi


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 03:26 PM

I voted for "disappointment" because there are so many Balanchine that haven't been done in years and I was so looking forward to seeing. Just for one: there's no Baiser de la Fee, one of his absolute gems.

All the arts in New York City are facing difficult challenging times in our current economy. So I am upset by the allocation of NYCB's precious resources: i.e., the amount of money it will take (1) to mount new works and (2) to bring the Georgian State Company to perform. This means that there will be less money available to "fuss" over (read coach) the few Balanchine ballets that are revived.

#8 Mel Johnson

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Posted 28 June 2003 - 03:36 PM

Originally posted by Helena Handbasket
Perhaps we could all amuse ourselves by planning "The Peter Martins  Very  Special 100th Birthday Season"  I can't quite come up with anything at the moment, but maybe that's just me.

"Something humourous, but lingering. With either boiling oil or melted lead, I fancy. I forget which. Boiling oil figures in it somehow, but I'm not sure."

Sir W.S. Gilbert
The Mikado

#9 kfw


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 05:12 PM

Amen, Farrell Fan. Bring her back, and let dancers who danced for Balanchine come in and coach to their heart's content. And pay'em so much that there won't be money left over for new Stroman and Eiffman pieces.

#10 JRB



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Posted 28 June 2003 - 05:17 PM

This leaves it up to Retired NYCB members to carry on their own celebrations in their own way. Look around the country, are there any possibilites?

#11 carbro


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 05:22 PM

But JRB, when I chose to move to the Upper West Side in '75, it wasn't so that I could travel the country in search of Balanchine. He was right here, so so must I be!

#12 Dale


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 05:28 PM

We should all go to the New York Performing Arts Library and have our own Balanchine 100th Birthday celebration. Watch tons of videos of Tallchief, LeClerq, Adams, Villella, Kirkland, Toumanova, Farrell (and yes) Martins etc... in Balanchine. Then go to Uncle Vanya's or the Russian Samovar and eat a good Russian meal with vodka and toast the master!

And, we can leave NY during the heart of the NYCB Nutcracker season and go to Washington D.C. to watch Farrell's company do an all-Balanchine program.

#13 Alexandra


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 05:32 PM

Miami City Ballet does a Balanchine festival every year, in effect; nearly it's entire rep is Balanchine. San Francisco Ballet will do a substantial Balanchine repertory. Ballet Arizona (Ib Andersen's company) will do two full programs in the spring. One could do very nicely (if one had the time and money) following Balanchine around the country :)

#14 Michael


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Posted 28 June 2003 - 07:41 PM

The insincerity and dishonesty of this are deeply offensive. This crosses a line, it is the first time I have frankly felt that, on balance, a change in management would be proper.

A person should not be in charge of this company who does not in his (or her) heart love producing Balanchine. The first requirement of a ballet master at NYCB is respect, from the heart, for that repertory. Actions speak louder than words.

#15 BW


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Posted 29 June 2003 - 04:52 AM

I second Dale's suggestion to have "our own" Balanchine Celebration.

As disturbing as this NYCB program is, and I know that you all have deep feelings about this, there are only a few options: Begin a letter writing/email campaign to NYCB with copies to appropriate entities including The Balanchine Trust and make your own plans for the centennial celebration.

It does seem to me that Dale's suggestions are really worth considering for those of us who are interested and able.

P.S. All this said, I'm sure I'll still be in attendance during the year at The NY State Theater. ;)

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