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La Scala ballet company


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#1 antoP

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Posted 24 May 2004 - 10:40 PM

Saturday night I went to La Scala to see the last performance of the season: an evening dedicated to ballets on the music of Stravinsky'.
It was a triple bill: Balanchine's Rubies, Robbins's The Cage and Béjart's The Rite of Spring (the chosen ones were Massimo Murru and Sylvie Guillem).
The company is in a rather good shape even if in my opinion it's not yet ready to dance such a beautiful and complicated choreography as Rubies and above all hasn't the right style for The Rite. This made me think that it's not enough to be a professional dancer to dance everything. Even Guillem, a beautiful dancer with a beautiful body, wasn't in the right place, at least in my opinion. The Rite, a ballet I know almost by heart, needs a deep understanding of the movement and what I saw was a mere execution of the steps, sometimes not very accurate. I didn't like it very much, maybe because I had in mind the Rite I saw more than 20 years ago in the Arena of Verona danced by the dancers of the Ballet du XX Siècle, with Jorge Donn as the chosen one...Anyway the Rite is one of the few choreographies of Béjart which still has its fascination and doesn't show the passing of time.
What surprised and amazed me was Robbins's The cage. I didn't know it at all and I discovered a fantastic, very impressive choreography. Considered the fact that it is dated 1951, it's still very relevant. I liked it very much. I would much appreciate more info about this ballet. antoP

#2 Estelle

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 03:34 AM

Thanks for your review, AntoP- and welcome back! :thumbsup:
Who danced the main roles in "Rubies" and "The Cage"?

I was impressed by "The Cage" too when it entered the POB's repertory a few seasons ago (and it is interesting to notice all the similarities with "Giselle"'s second act). I hope that some people will be able to tell you more about that work.

#3 antoP

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 03:58 AM

Hi Estelle, happy to be here again. The soloists in Rubies were Gilda Gelati and Alessandro Grillo/ Marta Romagna.
In The Cage they were Sabrina Brazzo (The novice) Marta Romagna (The Queen) and Mick Zeni and Francesco Ventriglia as the Intruders. I've read about the relationship of this ballet with Giselle. I hope to know more.antoP

#4 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 07:19 AM

I'm so glad to see you again antoP!

Robbins, speaking in 1951 (the year of the ballet's creation) and quoted in Repertory in Review:

I don't see why some people are shocked by The Cage.  If you observe closely you must realize that it is actually not more than the second act of Giselle in a contemporary visualization.



#5 carbro

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 09:04 AM

All these years, have I been missing the part where Giselle strangles Albrecht? :blushing:

#6 Ari

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 11:58 AM

Robbins later said he was joking about Giselle, although I don't remember where I read this.

In the book Jerome Robbins, That Broadway Man, That Ballet Man, Christine Conrad quotes him as saying:

I had the score for about a year and a half, two years . . . I kept playing it, and I thought, ' . . . I know there's a dramatic line in it somewhere or other.'  And then I read a story about the Amazons, and thought, 'Why don't I do it about the Amazons?'

So I started it.  And I got about halfway through the first movement and . . . I thought, 'This is terrible . . . I've got to do better than that.'  So I kept reading and then I stumbled on material about insects and their prey.  And I thought, 'Now that I think I can handle.  There's a little twist.  It's a little offbeat.'  So I started that way, and bang, it just went like a dream.'



#7 antoP

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 01:23 PM

Thank you for your information. I realized that I misspelled the surname of Guillem and I don't know how to edit my post. Sorry for this.
antoP.

#8 Estelle

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 01:26 PM

AntoP: to edit your posts, you can click on the little "edit" icon with a pencil on the top right of the post. :blushing:


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