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Françoise

POB's DON QUIXOTE

38 posts in this topic

At first, I don't have biased views about dancers, but I think I have the right to explain my own opinion :devil: . If I don't love some dancers, it's because I'm waiting a certain stylicism from POB dancers, and don't want see just jump a dancer, even good are the jumps :shrug: but I go to see them to hope change my advice :) !

Yesterday, I look the second performance of Eleonora Abbagnato and Karl Paquette, premiers danseurs of POB. It's sure that they are not spanish, they are all both blond hair, but they understood completely the mood of the ballet and it was a very good performance, totally in the spirit of Noureev !

Eleonora is very surprising, she has beautiful arabesques, she was very well partnered by Karl Paquette. At the second act, she is a beautiful vision, very "woman", maybe is it the default of the dancer, she is perhaps too woman for the part. But she plays all the ballet, even in the Grand pas where she doesn't forget she is Kitri who's married to Basilio and she is not just dancing a gala pdd :) ! She smiled, have the good look, she makes beautiful variation, perhaps castagnettes was not too joyfull. Her vision is also interesting despite sets problems, and she completely succeed in the fouettes. She seems happy on stage.

Karl Paquette is not the technician for the first act where the choreography is completely by Nureyev, but he succeed completely in the third act, where it's the traditionnal version, except at the end of his variation but even etoile lacks some steps in this variation. He makes a beautiful manege of coupés jetés and is a very good partner, no problem with the portés at one hand, which are long and without difficulties, no problem in adagio, and his play is very interesting too and he is a pleasant Basilio :wub: .

Isabelle Ciaravola was absolutely wonderful as Queen of the Dryads :thumbsup: . she tries to balance at each leg raise of the beginning of the variation, and she is musical, lyrical, really a pleasure for the eyes :wink: . Myriam Kamionka is a cute Cupid. As Kitri's friends, Dorothée Gilbert is absolutely complete and has completely understand Nureyev style, she doesn't raise her legs, and has the good movement of head and shoulders, Karine Villagrassa is interesting too, but has not the technic of Dorothée and some pdd are not completely together.

Nathalie Riqué is the most beautiful Street Dancer of the serial, she has the vulgar attitude of the character and is good dancing. Against Yann Saiz as Espada, makes me laugh, he is too much :P and he dances Fandango as Zapateado :dry: !

Emilie Cozette is very dissapointing, she was a great hope of POB, two or three years ago, but she seems lost all her qualities :shrug: !

It was a good evening, where we have a true dance couple on stage.

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After the young and the POB dancer, it's no the time of the guest artist. First of the both, Roberto Bolle, the second will be Carlos Acosta with Aurélie Dupont.

Roberto Bolle is really interesting, he is an handsome dancer as the French POB dancer and he has this stylicism necessary to the part. He seems to have not problem with the technical parties and is a pleasant Basilio :wub: ! At the beginning of the variation of the third act, he made a long balance and his leg doesn"t move at all. He danced the part without "circus", but with handsome, stylicism, and he has completely understood Noureev stylicism ! He is a good partner and he seems to have work with Agnès because we don't see difference due to a lack of rehearsals :) !

Agnès Letestu is a less interesting than with Mathieu Ganio, but she seems to be injuried at the beginning. She just danced, she played, but she was less convincing than with Mathieu. She seems to be in a gala part at the end and not at the Marriage of the two characters !

Aurore Cordellier is better and better in Queen of Dryad, Myriam Ould Braham is a cute Cupid with technical and spirit ! Nathalie Riqué is always the best Street dancer, but Yann Saiz is not really an Espada as I love him. He is always too much, and makes me laugh in the fandango with the noise of his shoes on the floor :dry: !

Vanessa Legassy and Emilie Cozette are Kitri's friend but lacks of peps ! Dorothée Gilbert is one more time extraordinary as Bridemaids, she plays with music, balance, slow and quick tours, and so on. Really a future etoile on stage :) ! Emmanuel Thibault in gypsy boy was very dissapointing, he is not made for this part where he jumps less higher than all the other gypsy corps, and he lacks of authority in this part. But I think Gypsy boy is not his technic :shrug: !

Simon Valastro is a good Sancho Pança, less vulgar than Fabien Roques, and Jean-Marie Didière is unforgettable as Don Quixote where he is a poet, an old man lost in his dream.

I hope that Bolle will come next year to dance Sleeping Beauty, because he is really dancer as I love :rolleyes: with all the handsome and the joy of dance on stage !

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Françoise, thanks for keeping us posted on POB's Don Q run. I've read your report with great interests particularly on how you loved Robert Bolle's Basilio. He is a regular visitor to Covent Garden so I had more than a few opportunities to see him in the past years; for instance in the last season in La Bayadere and Romeo & Juliette, and on both occasions he didn't do for me. I don't know why - he is indeed quite handsome, ideally built and certainly of height any tall ballerinas would dream of dancing with. Also as a partner he was very secure; but a fine danseur noble? In my opinions, no. Perhaps it was just I saw him in wrong repertoire!

>>Yann Saiz is not really an Espada as I love him. He is always too much, and makes me laugh in the fandango with the noise of his shoes on the floor

Oh I'd love to see his 'too much', over-done Espada! After all isn't certain excessiveness something we expect from this role?

>>Jean-Marie Didière is unforgettable as Don Quixote where he is a poet, an old man lost in his dream.

Thanks for this... I was also impressed by his presence throughout the performance, perhaps slightly got sentimental as he is leaving us soon..... (that's what I've heard.)

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Jean-Marie Didiere is officially retired since next season but they invit him to dance Don Quixote part and also Madge the sorceress in La Sylphide in next june-july.

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Robert Bolle's Basilio:  He is a regular visitor to Covent Garden so I had more than a few opportunities to see him in the past years; for instance in the last season in La Bayadere and Romeo & Juliette, and on both occasions he didn't do for me.  I don't know why

I'm afraid I agree. My reason for not liking this dancer is his poor musical phrasing. I can overlook certain failings in technique, but an unmusical dancer is one I avoid.

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Too many dancers are unmusical and I don't see it in Bolle's Basilio :P .

But everybody don't hear the same thing with body musicality :shrug: !

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Hello! Did anyone go to the Dupont-Acosta performance/s? Any thoughts on that partnership? Thanks!

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I saw yesterday night Aurélie Dupont and Carlos Acosta, and I must say I really loved their pertformance. Aurélie Dupont became a true actress on stage and is a perfect Kitri, she looks sometimes in the way of Katharina of The taming of the Shrew, but she is the character with her hot temperament. She added too many things to her view about the part since two years. She is always good technically, even if the Dulcinea variation was not what I'm waiting for her, she didn't really stay in balance on her toes, as she seems have a problem, but she had no problem with balance in the adagio third act and in her fouettés. It was a Kitri that Nureyev should love :wub: !

Concerning Acosta, I found him very interesting, he has a kind of handsome and don't make just "circus" as too many cuban dancers, his jump are high, with fine reception, his "double assemblées" were all perfect. His coda in the third act was a great moment of dance, what a beautiful manege of coupé jetés ! And his play is fine, his couple with Aurelie goes well and he is a wonderful partner ! I really enjoyed him :thumbsup: .

In the second role, Isabelle Ciaravola was always so wonderful as Queen of the Dryad and she tries to make balance at each developpé and she has lyricism and poetry :wub: . Mélanie Hurel is not really interesting in Cupid, she dances very well, but she is not Cupid in her play. She is too shy. Yann Saiz is always too much in Espada, Eleonora Abbagnato is technically good as Street dancer but she is not too vulgar for the part. In Kitri's friend, I don't like Mathilde Froustey who is "too much", she raise too her leg, move too her arm, her face and her neck, against Myriam Ould Braham is perfect, she has stylicism, don't move too many :shrug: !

Dorothée Gilbert is always perfect in Bridemaids even if she seems a few tired on stage yesterday night.

Corps are perfect and I don't forget Jean-Marie Didière as Don Quichotte, so good, Mallory Gaudion is funny in Gamache and Fabien Roques is also very good as Sancho Pança.

A very good evening :D where public seems to love, it's the first time dancer are so applaused, and they have till a standing ovation.

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A review by Clement Crisp:

http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?p...p=1016625900929

Excerpt:

Interpretations by the ensemble were unfailing in energy and in delight, and the Opéra's orchestra under Paul Connolly played with grand responsiveness. I have already reported on the exhilarating readings by those twin angels Dorothée Gilbert and Emmanuel Thibault.

I also saw Eleonora Abbagnato and Karl Paquette as Kitri and Basilio, somewhat below their best form in matter of dramatic verve, and a fizzing interpretation by Laetitia Pujol (who took to the stage like an Exocet missile) and the ebullient Benjamin Pech, rejoicing in the wall-of-death difficulties that Nureyev offers Basilio.

He also mentions "Audiences eager, house-filling" but it was not true for many of the performances of this long series (16 performances): when I attended it, there were many empty seats (so that we could actually move to more expensive seats :grinning: ) and I've been told it's been the case several times. Perhaps programming at the same time this "Don Quixote" and Ek's "Giselle" in Garnier wasn't a very good idea.

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Thank you, Francoise, for your review. Its seems to have been a thoroughly enjoyable evening. I wish I could have been there!

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Concerning Acosta, I found him very interesting, he has a kind of handsome and don't make just "circus" as too many cuban dancers, his jump are high, with fine reception, his "double assemblées" were all perfect. His coda in the third act was a great moment of dance, what a beautiful manege of coupé jetés ! And his play is fine, his couple with Aurelie goes well and he is a wonderful partner ! I really enjoyed him :)

Françoise, thanks for your thoughts. I've seen Acosta over the years with Royal Ballet, and to me he's always been a polished, very elegant danseur noble. His performance rarely lacks smoothness, and he's always been a nice guy - no hint of a dark mind, etc. Too nice, perhaps, for certain roles, and at times he looks a bit too reserved. But as to technical strength few dancer could compete, I think!

On FT review by C. Crisp: Estelle, do you agree with his closing line? I wonder if Mr. Crisp's views would be as robust and rosy as this same time next year - with all those 'radical' programming! :rolleyes:

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Naoko: you mean his "But ballet truly matters in Paris."?

Yes indeed, when reading that, I thought thet he probably was too optimistic, considering the next season with so little real ballet... :)

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