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Program 7? (Ashton)Reports please?


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#1 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 09 April 2004 - 01:31 PM

Has it started yet?

Chime in, please.

Inquiring minds want to know!

#2 dirac

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Posted 09 April 2004 - 01:49 PM

It starts next Tuesday.

Also, as one who is still peevish because Ashton didn't get a program to himself, and who would have preferred to see his "Sylvia" instead of That Other Guy's, I register a pedant's protest against calling this the "Ashton program." (And not only does he have to share the program, but with a MacMillan ballet, God save the mark. ) :angry:

#3 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 15 April 2004 - 07:44 AM

Did anybody go yet?

Report in, please!

#4 Rachel

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Posted 19 April 2004 - 09:42 AM

I was thoroughly impressed with the matinee performance on Sunday, April 18. Not having seen SFB since Jewels of 2002 and having been disappointed with that performance and the general look of the company, I think that the company was in great form last night, everyone dancing well. Starting with Monotones I and II. I: the piece was well rehearsed, synchronized, executed well. Ashley Wheater explained that Monotones I was created to have more of a worldly feel in conrast with M II which supposedly reflected Man's landing on the moon. Since M I was worldly yet not earthy or passionate, it seemed like the dancers were just going through the motions. However, M II was sublime. Muriel Maffre was other worldly; with Brett Bauer and Moises Martin, they seemed to be in a trance - almost like high priests performing a sacred ritual. They danced with such chrystaline form - a string of legato phrasing uninterrupted.

Thais Pas was my least favorite work. There were a few momements of beauty, Julie Diana's entering bourres, and at the end when Solomakha was kneeling with his chest on his thighs while Diana lay on his back in a Fish position and was slowly turned from sided to side. It seemed to be too much of a mix of everything I've already seen: a combination of MacMillan and Cranko's Romeo and Juliet and La Bayadere.

Symphonic Variations with Rachel viselli, Nicole Starbuck, Elizabeth Miner, Jaime Carcia Castilla, Pierre-Francois Vilanoba, and Guennadi Nedviguine. I prefer the start of this ballet when just the three women are dancing so much more than the end. I don't think the more classical choreography of the men was anywhere near as good as the womens. The dancers seemed to be trying very hard to abide by Ashton's style: low, controlled arabesques and more angular and restriceted port de bras, however in doing so, they were stiff. The port de bras became more soldier like and less classically reserved and conservative. Nicole Starbuck did prover herself as a new soloist and Maime Garcia Castilly demonstrated a clean natural facility and technique that seemed so much less bulky and more refined than that of Nedviguine and Vilanoba.

This year Elite Syncopations was accompanied by an onstage band. This was my first viewing of this ballet and I loved it. Muriel Maffre, subing for Elana Altman in the Alaskan Rag was absolutely hilarious. Amanda Schull was adorable in the Golden Hours with Stephen Legate, demonstrating some real stage persona. Pascal Molat in the Friday Night solo was impressive technically, while demonstrating both wild abandon and comic ability. I actually was the least impressed with Julie Diana in the lead, as she seemed to be the least immeshed within her characterization.

Congratulations to SFB for a thoroughly commendable job! I am very pleased with the path in which this company is progressing.

Rachel


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