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Carnival in Venice


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#16 R S Edgecombe

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 03:40 AM

So the Perrot-prompted, politically pawky and podgy Pugni was also prolific? Indeed I didn't know that he had spawned a balletic mujik (I have the candy canes on tape, but prefer to think of the trepak as a Russian dance!) Just for the record, then, that famous photo of the fee dragee about to have the rug pulled from under her feet (a perilous moment re-introduced into Peter Wright's RB staging) is not A d'E but second-cast?

#17 Mel Johnson

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 03:48 AM

That's right, it's Varvara Nikitina and Gerdt. She's standing on a little wagon called a raika, and gets slid across the stage on a track. She was powered by burly stagehands, manhandling the wagon with a long pole that extended into the substage. And of course, Candy Canes are Russian, in a ballet from St. Petersburg. Stick candy doesn't travel well.

#18 R S Edgecombe

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 03:54 AM

I wasn't aware that there was a wagon involved. I don't think there is in the RB version. I just remember Lesley Collier looking very tense while Dowell tugged her along on a piece of filmy fabric. However, Nadia Nerina mentions being whizzed across the Bolshoi stage on a trolley in Giselle. They must have discontinued this effect, for it doesn't feature in my tape of a performance with Bessmertnova.

#19 rg

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 07:45 AM

when the royal staged, then dropped (tho' not until after it was videotaped), the whisked scarf/travel for sugarplum by her cavalier, i think it was attemped w/ out the reika, which i'm not sure is used in stages anywhere much these days, i suppose the garden may have had one once, but i suspect no more. or if it does it doesn't have the stagehandlers for it.
in any case it looks mighty precarious on the dowell/collier video - collier stands delicately on the gossamer scarf and is pulled a little distance on it by dowell before he ends the rather brief restaging of this 'magical' effect.
still that picture of nikitina and gerdt is a treasure, and repeats a seemingly traditional effect, pictured, for instance, in lynn garafola's 'petipa diaries': it shows fokine whisking karsavina on a net in 'the fisherman and the pearl' pas de deux from 'the king's command.' (incidentally this may have been karsavina's debut role at the maryinsky.)

#20 Hans

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 10:18 AM

I must have seen the misidentified photo, then.

That scarf moment in the Royal Ballet video is rather unnerving. Is it still performed that way? This is perhaps the only case in which I like the Balanchine version more--the ballerina always looks much more secure with someone to hold onto, even though she is on one leg.

#21 R S Edgecombe

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Posted 17 July 2003 - 11:14 AM

I suppose the prototype of all the whisked fabrics that impact on ballerinas' movements is the tartan shawl that enables silfiden to exit through the arm chair.


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