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Alexandra

2004-2005 season - Discussion

5 posts in this topic

It's got to be difficult to produce on a final season by the departing co-directors while also trying to eliminate a deficit. Two new productions of one-act ballets is certainly doing the season as cheaply as possible.

I think it is a season that is at once marketable, celebratory of Stowell, and a tribute to Russell as stager and teacher with four core Balanchine ballets. Three of the full-lengths are my favorite Stowell ballets Romeo and Juliette, Nutcracker, and Silver Lining); I particularly love R&J with its Tchaikovsky quilt of a score. I also loved Ronald Hynd's The Merry Widow; I think it's a great ballet for drawing character-filled performances as well as wonderful dancing from the Company. Unfortunately, it premiered at PNB during the Dark Years at Mercer Arena, from which audiences fled in droves. It will be like a premiere for much of the audience.

In one of her Q&A's, Russell said that they'd wait to see how the rights to Symphony in C pan out in Taras' will, and that, hopefully, there would be a way to re-replace Ballet Imperial with it. I've got my fingers crossed. Now I'm just trying to guess who will be cast as the Prodigal Son and Siren. Wevers comes to mind immediately, and I can imagine Imler and Lallone as Siren.

I wished that Firebird was either Balanchine's or Possokhov's version, but there's no other Stowell one-acter for the year, and I am looking forward to Apollo and Tetley's Rite of Spring, and to Gibson's new ballet. I missed the program with Christopher Stowell's Zais, but Lamberena is a great audience favorite and is perfect to anchor a contemporary program.

While my dream ending program would have been Liebeslieder Walzer, it's perfectly understandable why Russell and Stowell's final production would be Silver Lining: everyone is on stage singing at the end. What an upbeat way to end the season and two careers.

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Quick question about the departure of Russell and Stowell - has enything been published/announced as to what the future of the company is going to be? ie., new director, etc?

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Quick question about the departure of Russell and Stowell - has enything been published/announced as to what the future of the company is going to be? ie., new director, etc?

Officially, the application period has officially closed (you can see the requirements on their website www.pnb.org) and the hiring committee hopes to make a decision sometime this autumn.

There are dancers and staff people on the hiring committee as well as board members and other specialists -- Seattle is a very process-oriented town and this is a familiar arrangement.

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There's been a change in the Balanchine repertory program -- according to a recent press release, Symphony in C will replace Ballet Imperial. I understand that Stowell and Russell had originally wanted to program the Bizet, but had difficulty securing the rights, so that seems to be resolved.

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