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Kirov in Hollywood: La Bayadère


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#16 Andre Yew

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Posted 29 October 2003 - 08:25 PM

I saw Vishneva performing Nikiya on Sunday at the Kodak Theatre at the 7PM show, and loved her performance. It was an emotionally complex characterization with Vishneva pretty much inhabiting the role. Irina Golub opposite her as Gamzatti was perfect as the spoiled princess you love to hate, and their showdown was filled with great tension. Leonid Sarafanov was a weak partner as Solor --- many of the lifts looked shakey, and I think at least one was aborted. But in his solo parts, he was astounding in his lightness and effortlessness. He had the cleanest double-tours I've ever seen. The corps were great. Vishneva was the highlight for me however.

I saw Jewels the next week at OCPAC on Sunday. Emeralds was light and frothy, almost like a sweet overture to the rest of the piece. Arms of the leading ballerinas, Daria Sukhorukova and Sofia Gumerova, were especially magical. In a last minute casting change, Vishneva, partnered by an attentive Andrian Fadeyev, danced Rubies, and amazed me with her complete transformation from last week's super-serious role to Rubies' flirtatious abandon. Her grand battements were easily lobbed up to her head in any direction, and her extreme extensions were used everywhere with ease and strength. The corps was amazing again, especially the ending of Rubies which resembled exploding fireworks. Lopatkina danced the lead in Diamonds with Danila Korsuntsev, and gave a warm and human reassertion of this act's distilled Petipa classicism. The corps was impressive in their unity of attack.

It was the first time I've seen Vishneva dance, and I'm absolutely floored. The Kirov corps was revelatory in seeing what a good corps can do. Now ballet-savvy friends tell me I have to see POB if I liked the Kirov. Sigh ... :lol:

--Andre

#17 Hans

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Posted 29 October 2003 - 09:29 PM

It is so wonderful to read all these reports! I can't wait until the Kirov comes to the Kennedy Center in January.

PS: Andre--some of us like the Kirov more than POB :lol: though with dancers that good, it's hard not to enjoy either company!


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