Martine Van Hamel
Posted 07 November 1998 - 10:51 AM
Some days, I miss Van Hamel more than any of them.
Posted 08 November 1998 - 07:02 AM
Posted 08 November 1998 - 11:33 AM
The best Myrtha I ever saw was Mette-Ida Kirk, in Copenhagen, back when the Danes had an extremely beautiful and poetic production of "Giselle." She's a tiny woman, but queenly and, for this role, she was a demon. She danced as though anger propelled her dancing. She also had epaulement, something we don't see much of these days, and it's the best example I'd seen of how epaulement is integral to the choreography, not just one of those silly little old-fashioned decorations. When Myrtha jumps with epaulement, she really seems as though she is flying. It's as though the shoulders, with those teeny little wings, are propelling her; the legs are incidental. alexandra
Posted 09 November 1998 - 03:34 AM
Posted 09 November 1998 - 06:09 PM
alexandra (who loves Giselle, but, then, came to it in the mid-'70s and saw at least a dozen great ones)
Posted 09 November 1998 - 10:30 PM
I do love ballet!
[This message has been edited by Giannina Mooney (edited 11-09-98).]
Posted 10 November 1998 - 12:23 AM
I also love ballet, as do we all--but it is important occasionally to say something which might seem self evident. And I really like the way you write about ballet.
I have seen Kent, McKerrow and Jaffe in GISELLE. Kent was wonderful, if somewhat unconnected dramatically. McKerrow was sublime. But Jaffe--the kind of performance that one can recall in detail for years. It was a thrill to realize that I was in the presence of a true artist who both could completely inhabit a role and transcend it. She fused emotionally with the audience and simply gave us her Giselle unconditionally.
There have been other performances I have witnessed, not only in ballet, on the same technical and emotional level. I fervently hope that there will be more. But I have not seen one that surpassed it and doubt if I will.
Posted 10 November 1998 - 04:58 AM
Posted 12 November 1998 - 11:40 AM
Posted 20 November 1998 - 02:48 AM
Posted 20 November 1998 - 05:03 AM
Posted 05 May 1999 - 08:08 AM
Martine was an amazing Odette/Odile, just gorgeous in the second act, and a sexual dynamo in the Black Swan. She did get one Giselle that I saw with ABT, and it was so strange seeing her in the second act, facing down Jolinda Menendez' Myrtha. It was a promising debut for Martine, but she never had the opportunity to develop her character; after that one performance, it was back to Myrtha for her.
Regarding ABT's Giselles, I saw a bunch of them last year, so here are some thumbnail comments:
McKerrow/Malakhov: They're a wonderful partnership. They both obviously love to work out every minute detail of their characters together. There's a lot of subtle business going on between them in the first act, far more than any other pair I saw. I particularly loved the way they worked it so that when Albrecht kisses Bathilde's hand, Giselle is directly upstage of them, staring at the slowly developing kiss in growing horror. While no other pair actually buried this moment, only M&M made it the Big Moment it should be. McKerrow is a very intelligent and musical dancer. She looked a bit tired, sometimes, last year, but she's been looking great so far this season. And Malakhov is the best classical stylist ABT has.
Ananiashvili/Graffin: Nina was wonderful. Great acting, great technique, great everything. Go see her, if you see anyone. She looks even better this season. Graffin is, well serviceable.
Tuttle/Corella: The sleeper performance of the season for me. Corella was as you'd expect. Ebullient, charismatic and brilliant. The surprise for me was how much Tuttle brought up her own dancing; she was brilliant herself, I thought, not just technically, either; there were moments in the second act so poignant I was reminded of Kirkland. The rapport between her and Corella was astonishingly powerful. It was certainly the most powerful, emotionally, of any Giselle I saw, and I wish ABT would pair Tuttle and Corella more often.
Kent/Carreno: Well, I still don't quite get Julie Kent. Her first act was not good; this was a very one-dimensional Giselle. Her dancing in the second act was big and clear and flawless, but I still didn't get much sense of what her Giselle was feeling. Carreno is fine, big, strong and elegant, although he tended to overdo it with the cape in the first act, and someone should tell him that when one is throwing one's self at the feat of one's lover's freshly-dead corpse, one doesn't stop to toss off a snappy soutenu first.
Posted 05 May 1999 - 08:28 AM
Posted 05 May 1999 - 09:53 AM
When I finally met her to do a brief interview, I was amazed at how small she is. She was one who was always getting criticized for being overweight, or at least looking too large on stage (never bothered me).
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