Ann Arbor performance and symposium
Posted 27 October 2003 - 03:16 PM
The Creating With Balanchine, moderated by Francis Mason, with Suzanne Farrell, Violette Verdy and Edward Villella (what a trio!) sounds particularly facinating.
Posted 30 October 2003 - 04:19 PM
Posted 31 October 2003 - 05:20 AM
Posted 02 November 2003 - 08:06 AM
Posted 02 November 2003 - 08:35 AM
Posted 02 November 2003 - 09:24 AM
Posted 02 November 2003 - 11:05 AM
By the way, I want to be first in line for that audience that gets to dance in a Balanchine ballet.
Posted 02 November 2003 - 07:17 PM
I'd specially like to know about Serenade//// actually any of it, so interesting. What did Farrell say about wearing a tutu? What did Mason ASK Tallchief? What did she answer? What was their conversation like?
I went to symposium once that Villella was at -- I got stuck in an elevator with him and a couple of other people, and he just started telling stories.... amazing experience. you're absolutely right, he is hilarious.
Posted 03 November 2003 - 07:05 AM
Souritz talked directly about the Petrograd milieu ca. '21-24. She tried to give a sense of what was available for Balanchine to see at that time; who was working and what was being performed on stage (not just dance but theater). It was very valuable.
The panel discussions with former dancers were delightful, and if you wanted reminiscing, they were great. If you were looking to expand the body of knowledge about Balanchine's choreography - well, that's different. Verdy is particularly articulate; she has a great deal to contribute (and has already)
Paul - Tallchief dodged every question she was asked, even the innocuous ones. It was rather odd. Farrell mentioned the tutu in the context of Diamonds, that she had not worn them often often before that point.
Farrell Fan - the songs were about 4 minutes long and wistful; quite romantic. Just me, but I wished they had not been sung by such an operatic voice. I think their intention was distorted; they're show tunes.
The paper on Serenade posited Georgian folk dance as a source for the movement. The source material offered to back this up was a performance tape from only a few years ago that represented a highly altered and theatricalized version of the dance itself.
Farrell's company did their Balanchine/Tchaikovsky program. Bonnie Pickard's Waltz Girl in Serenade was indeed notable.
It was a fascinating and wonderful congruence. It was also wonderful to see Balanchine's reputation strengthened and established in academia. I have reservations on some of what was presented. It's important to realize there are differing opinions and conclusions out there on much of the work presented.
Posted 03 November 2003 - 08:47 AM
Posted 03 November 2003 - 08:58 AM
I'm going to take back at least a portion of what I said on Tallchief as my own mistake. I asked her about Paris in '47 and the setting of Palais de Cristal. She talked about Baiser, Apollo (dancing with Michel Renault) and how much she enjoyed it; everything but Palais. But looking at Catalogue of Works, she didn't dance Palais, but Symphony in C in NYC the following year, even though she did go to Paris with Balanchine. So that could simply be a misunderstanding.
Two telling comments during that conversation: Francis Mason reminiscing about Massine and calling it "pretentious nonsense" in passing - he used Massine as an example of going to see ballet and disliking it before Balanchine. I promised him I would corner him at some point and make him defend that statement. I've now heard that from more than one person of that time; Kurvenal said something very similar here in a great thread from a while back, but I want details. Something in me has a question about the bad rap Massine is getting.
In a similar vein, Tallchief said that Balanchine was a "bad pianist. A wonderful musician but a bad pianist." Now, Tallchief was trained as a concert pianist, so I have to take her seriously, but Balanchine also had three years of conservatory education and before this gets perpetuated into the canon of legend about Balanchine, I'd like corroboration.
Posted 03 November 2003 - 04:47 PM
Posted 06 November 2003 - 04:23 PM
It's ironic, in this Age of Silver for programs of great interest to some of us Balanchinians, to have a conflict like that! (I mean, the Age of Gold was when he was running his own company and you could just pick some programs by their repertory and go and be delighted and amazed...)
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