Irek Mukhamedov's Farewell
Posted 03 October 2001 - 01:18 PM
Posted 04 October 2001 - 01:57 PM
Posted 05 October 2001 - 12:27 PM
His first dancing appearance was in Balanchine's Tarantella partnering Izabella Milewska, who had learned the role in just 24 hours. In my opinion it's a long time since he had the technique to provide any more than an outline of this number, but the audience adored him. If you remember Villella and McBride this performance was probably best not seen, although the Polish lady put up a good showing in the circumstances.
Mukhamedov also appeared in a number called Sita, all about an Indlian farmer and his wife 'lying' in the furrows of the newly ploughed field in order to fertilise the ground. Yes. Well; again very popular with his fans. He'd previously performed it with Asylmuratova, but this time was partnered by Mara Galeazzi from the Royal Ballet. Tamara Rojo and Slawomir Wozniak (also from the Polish National Ballet did pas de deux from Giselle Act II. I don't think this works as a gala number and on this occasion I didn't even think it was particularly well danced. Rojo was wonderful however as Aegina in an excerpt from Spartacus, partnered by Adam Cooper as Crassus.
If I hadn't seen Maris Liepa who created the role (and Boris Akimov) I couldn't believe anyone could be better in the part. Rojo was wonderful too. Dead serious; dead sexy, but definitely with her tongue in her pretty cheek. If, God forbid, the Royal Ballet should ever revive the idea of taking Spartacus into their rep, she would be amazing.
Evenlovelier though was Asylmuratova who is now, amazingly, a red headed beauty. She did a little number with Mukhamedov to two Louis Armstrong songs. Radiant, gorgeous, in a little blue sequined slip dress and pointe shoes. The sad thing is we shall probably not see her dancing in London again. I wish in a way that she'd brought her tutu with her, but any sighting of this lovely creature is worthwhile.
Four horsemen and a Lady, was a tango number for Mukhamedov, three other men and DAria Klimentova from English National Ballet. This is the first original choreography of Mukhamedov's that we've seen. He talks about expanding into a proper ballet and I hope he does. It was very entertaining with some interesting choreography. That for the men was very good, as you might expect, and there was also a nice duet for Mukhamedov and Klimentova, with some unusual partnering - again not unexpected. But it wasn't by any means recyling, or derivative, and certainly showed more promise than some of our so-called choreographic hopefuls.
The final number of the evening was an exerpt from Lorca Massine's Zorba the Greek, which was new to London. Students from Arts Educational School and English National Ballet School provided the corps very professionally. Mukhamedov was really at home in this as Zorba and Wozniak was excellent as John, stylish, virtuosic and with a real sense of character.
It was a really good evening, well balanced and well presented. Seemingly Mrs M did much of the organising and together they make a great team for getting this kind of gala on to the stage - something which is not as easy as many people seem to think. And I think I've sat through enough dreary so-called 'gala evenings'to be able to draw that conclusion from bitter experience.
Posted 05 October 2001 - 10:20 PM
I'm glad he got such a good ovation. He really deserves it. I think Mukhamedov was one of the greatest dancers of our time and I'm sad to see him go although I realize it's that time. I'm disappointed to read how the Royal told him they didn't schedule him. For such an artist, that seems cruel.
I thought Viviana Durante was supposed to perform at the gala as well. Did she? I don't remember reading that she did...
Thanks again for everyone posting about this.
Posted 07 October 2001 - 12:36 PM
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