Neumeier's NijinskyAny reports from Orange County?
Posted 14 February 2004 - 01:03 PM
Posted 14 February 2004 - 02:28 PM
Posted 14 February 2004 - 03:15 PM
It's coming to NYC and I'd love to know what someone thought of it.
Posted 15 February 2004 - 12:08 AM
Hamburg Ballet's "Nijinsky", choreographed by John Neumeier.
I almost didn't see this ballet and now I'm glad I did. This was a 2 act ballet. I loved the 1st act; you lost me in the 2nd. It's the story of Nijinaky's madness; a flash-back with scenes of his roles and his dance style and his relationships and his family and WWI. Act I. Dancing the leading role was Alexandre Riabko. It's a bravura role, and though I have no one with whom to compare him he did a very good job. Two other dancers were even better. Jiri Bubenicek, who danced the lead opening night and got raves, danced the Golden Slave and the Faun. He was spectacular as the Golden Slave, a sensual, graceful, exotic dance. As the Faun he struck "the pose" over and over again, crossing the stage slowly with "the walk". Best of all was Lloyd Riggins as Diaghilev. Didn't we just have a thread about cliche's such as "words fail me" which indicate the writer can't write? I'm struggling for words here. Riggins was in command of every situation; he was strong and self-confident. His duets with Riabko/Nijinsky were beautiful, and their deep relationship was evident. His dancing was superb. In making his dancing show strength and seriousness I cannot say Riggins made it look easy, as many dancers do, yet that style was perfect in this situation. He was masterful. The first act was a feast for the eyes, both for the dancing and the setting. I was either in tears or had a smile smeared across my face; great stuff! Act II was a lot more serious and not much fun. It dealt with Nijinsky's madness. WWI was a constant theme, and the focal point was the death of his brother, danced by Yukichi Hattori; his madness/death was a dance of contortions and gyrations showing his agony, and it was hard to watch because of its intensity.
The dance style was modern. Yes, the ballerinas wore pointe shoes but what they danced was rarely classical ballet. Scenes from various ballet, i.e. Petruschka, were included in Nijinsky's memories; one such memory that almost made me laugh was the Shades scene from LaB which got progressively more bizzare.
I enjoyed it once; I'm not sure how I'd feel seeing it a 2nd time. I recommend it. The audience went bananas; standing ovation. I sat (check thread on same subject) because from my seat I could see a standing ovation seated.
Posted 15 February 2004 - 01:42 PM
Posted 15 February 2004 - 06:47 PM
But the dancing was beautiful and I really loved the costumes -- period, yet stylized. Anna Polikarpova as Romola Nijinsky was quite lovely.
I chose to leave my dd's at home for this one and take a few fellow ballet moms with me. I think it was a wise choice. On the whole, though, very exciting to see something different.
Posted 15 February 2004 - 07:06 PM
Who danced the roles of Nijinsky and Diaghilev?
Posted 15 February 2004 - 07:06 PM
Not knowing what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed the performance. The acting (and dancing) ability of the dancers was amazing. I also really enjoyed the choreography and how well the dancers movement expressed the "story". A lot going on the stage at times and perhaps you really couldn't take it all in just watching the performance once . . .
Posted 15 February 2004 - 11:57 PM
I also have to say that this is the single strongest collection of male dancing I've seen. Ivan Urban was amazing as Diaghilev, and Jiri made me feel the awe audiences in Nijinsky's day may have felt at his technical prowess, as well as expressing the pain, frustration, and joy of his character (the family ballet class was especially touching). Hattori was scary. Otto and Riabko danced their roles very well, enough to make me wonder what they'd be like in the actual ballets.
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