Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
oberon

SWAN LAKE

45 posts in this topic

...appears at the NYCB website.

Three new Swan Queens: Bouder (with Millepied)

Sarah Mearns (with Nilas Martins)

Sylve (with Charles Askegard)

Share this post


Link to post
...appears at the NYCB website.

Three new Swan Queens: Bouder (with Millepied)

                                      Sarah Mearns (with Nilas Martins)

                                      Sylve (with Charles Askegard)

WOW! Quite the first major role for Mearns! Isn't Spanish this week her first solo with the company?

Share this post


Link to post

Mearns did appear in the lead of CHOPINIANA when Cynthia Gregory staged it for NYCB but I think at that point Mearns was still an SAB student.

Share this post


Link to post

JANUARY 10-15, 2006

TUESDAY EVENING, JANUARY 10 AT 7:30PM [Quinn]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: WHELAN

Pr. Siegfried: WOETZEL

Von Rothbart: La FOSSE+

Queen: ABERGEL

Jester: ULBRICHT

Benno: VEYETTE

Pas de Trois: LeCRONE, SLOAN

Pas de Quatre: BOUDER, SCHELLER, PECK, MILLEPIED

Hungarian: LOWERY, FOWLER

Russian: BORREE, EVANS

Spanish: BAR, HALL, MEARNS, J. STAFFORD

Neapolitan: DRONOVA, CARMENA

Princesses: GOLBIN, KROHN, LARACEY, BARAK, BESKOW, ARTHURS

Vision: HANSON

WEDNESDAY EVENING, JANUARY 11 AT 7:30PM [Kaplow]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: WEESE

Pr. Siegfried: ASKEGARD

Von Rothbart: EVANS

Queen: HANSON

Jester: GOLD

Benno: HANNA

Pas de Trois: HYLTIN, A. STAFFORD

Pas de Quatre: FAIRCHILD, SCHELLER, PECK, DE LUZ

Hungarian: RUTHERFORD, LIANG

Russian: KROHN, RAMASAR

Spanish: BESKOW, SETH, ABERGEL, T. ANGLE

Neapolitan: EDGE, HENDRICKSON

Princesses: GOLBIN, MULLER, LeCRONE*, SLOAN*, BAR, ARTHURS

Vision: RIGGINS

THURSDAY EVENING, JANUARY 12 AT 8:00PM [Quinn]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: RINGER

Pr. Siegfried: MARCOVICI

Von Rothbart: SETH

Queen: ABERGEL

Jester: HENDRICKSON

Benno: VEYETTE

Pas de Trois: LeCRONE, SLOAN

Pas de Quatre: FAIRCHILD, SCHELLER, PECK, DE LUZ

Hungarian: LOWERY, FOWLER

Russian: BORREE, EVANS

Spanish: GOLBIN, SUOZZI, MULLER, RAMASAR

Neapolitan: DRONOVA, CARMENA

Princesses: KEENAN, KROHN, LeCRONE, BARAK, BESKOW, RICARD*

Vision: RIGGINS

FRIDAY EVENING, JANUARY 13 AT 8:00PM [Kaplow]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: BOUDER*

Pr. Siegfried: MILLEPIED*

Von Rothbart: La FOSSE+

Queen: HANSON

Jester: GOLD

Benno: DANCHIG-WARING*

Pas de Trois: DRONOVA*, RIGGINS

Pas de Quatre: RINGER, A. STAFFORD, HYLTIN*, J. STAFFORD

Hungarian: RUTHERFORD, LIANG

Russian: REICHLEN*, HANNA*

Spanish: BAR, FOWLER, ARTHURS*, FROMAN

Neapolitan: EDGE, SEVERINI

Princesses: KEENAN, MULLER, LARACEY, ABERGEL, FLACK*, RICARD

Vision: RIGGINS

SATURDAY MATINEE, JANUARY 14 AT 2:00PM [Quinn]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: MEARNS*

Pr. Siegfried: MARTINS

Von Rothbart: SETH

Queen: ABERGEL

Jester: LAURENT*

Benno: CARMENA*

Pas de Trois: HYLTIN, A. STAFFORD

Pas de Quatre: FAIRCHILD, SCHELLER, PECK, VEYETTE*

Hungarian: BESKOW*, T. ANGLE*

Russian: KROHN, RAMASAR

Spanish: LOWERY*, FOWLER, ARTHURS, J. STAFFORD

Neapolitan: PISKIN*, PEIFFER*

Princesses: KEENAN, MULLER, LeCRONE, SLOAN, BAR, RICARD

Vision: HANSON

SATURDAY EVENING, JANUARY 14 AT 8:00PM [Kaplow]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: SYLVE*

Pr. Siegfried: ASKEGARD

Von Rothbart: EVANS

Queen: ABERGEL

Jester: ULBRICHT

Benno: SUOZZI*

Pas de Trois: LeCRONE, SLOAN

Pas de Quatre: RINGER, A. STAFFORD, HYLTIN, J. STAFFORD

Hungarian: RUTHERFORD, LIANG

Russian: BAR*, FOWLER*

Spanish: BESKOW, SETH, MULLER, RAMASAR

Neapolitan: EDGE, SEVERINI

Princesses: KEENAN, KROHN, LARACEY, BARAK, FLACK, ARTHURS

Vision: HANSON

SUNDAY MATINEE, JANUARY 15 AT 3:00PM [Quinn]

Swan Lake:

Odette/Odile: BOUDER

Pr. Siegfried: MILLEPIED

Von Rothbart: La FOSSE+

Queen: HANSON

Jester: HENDRICKSON

Benno: DANCHIG-WARING

Pas de Trois: DRONOVA, RIGGINS

Pas de Quatre: FAIRCHILD, SCHELLER, PECK, DE LUZ

Hungarian: BESKOW, T. ANGLE

Russian: REICHLEN, HANNA

Spanish: LOWERY, SETH, MULLER, J. STAFFORD

Neapolitan: PISKIN, PEIFFER

Princesses: KEENAN, KROHN, LARACEY, ABERGEL, BAR, ARTHURS

Vision: RIGGINS

Program and Casting Subject to Change

* First time in role

+ Guest Artist

# SAB Student

Share this post


Link to post

Oh God, now I'm going to have to see this at least 5 times.

Share this post


Link to post

And I won't see it at all!

Green green green.

Giannina

Share this post


Link to post
Oh God, now I'm going to have to see this at least 5 times.

Thanks for the laugh this morning! :wink::beg:

Fiendishly clever aren't they?

Share this post


Link to post

How long has Sarah Mearns been in the company? I confess I don't even recognise her name.

Share this post


Link to post
How long has Sarah Mearns been in the company? I confess I don't even recognise her name.

Sara Mearns performed in the SAB workshop in 2003 and served as an apprentice during the 2003-2004 season. She joined the company, i think, around spring of 2004. She was a Wien aware winner with Scheller at SAB in 2003.

-amanda

Share this post


Link to post

Mearns as Odette is a mistake and I mean it for her even more than for the audience. She's not ready for it. It's not the way a major company should function. You bring a dancer along the way you teach a kid to walk -- you want them to succeed, you don't want to set them up to fail or to disappoint -- you give them what they can handle increasingly. It's a big break for her no doubt, the "star is born" scenario will sell tickets ... but the best one can hope for her is that there will be diminished expectations and that she'll come out of it with the kind of modest success that leads somewhere else. I keep thinking back to Abi Stafford in Theme and Variations -- it wasn't a good thing for her in the end, it set her career back a couple of years and you can argue that she's only just now getting back to where she was then.

Share this post


Link to post

In fairness to Abi, her setback was due to a foot injury and was further complicated by a premature return to the stage. Now she is back, in great shape and dancing probably even better than she did pre-injury. Whether one liked her in THEME or thought she was ready for it at the time had nothing to do with the situation.

Share this post


Link to post

Point well taken, Oberon, except that putting dancers into roles whose demands are a thousand times greater than their accustomed fare can invite injury, ergo setbacks. I've seen it too many times. So, as a matter of fact, have you. :wink:

Share this post


Link to post

Abi's THEME came at a time when there were many injuries and the healthy ballerinas were filling in all over the place. I seem to recall she did four, the first one clearly under-rehearsed but she improved during the run. At the time I thought there were 5 or 6 other women who could have done it "better" (aside from the ones who normally danced it) but who knows the logistics of these decisions? I suppose they could have changed the ballet on all four nights.

My point is not whether this casting was appropriate or not, but simply that in the case of THEME it really didn't cause Abi's problems and that she danced some beautiful performances between the time she finished THEME and the time she sustained her injury.

Who can predict how Sarah Mearns will fare in SWAN LAKE? We've seen so little of her. It was a casting surprise to be sure. I'll be going to see her, and of course I wish her the best.

Share this post


Link to post

Well I wish I'd left Abi out of it. She's just fine now. But Sara has never even danced a solo. A director who puts someone into a full length Swan Lake in that circumstance -- how can you know what's going to happen. Much better to prepare someone don't you think?

Share this post


Link to post

Well, maybe they ARE preparing her. Who knows how long ago the casting decision was made? She may have been coaching & working on it daily for weeks.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm looking forward to hearing how all the O/O's dance.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm sure everyone on this thread wishes Sarah Mearns success in her debut, and I trust (or hope) she is being rehearsed and coached carefully, but this is very peculiar, not to say gimmicky casting. Fast-tracking ballerinas does seem to be in fashion in a number of ballet companies these days and, certainly, letting talent languish is a bad idea. But Odette-Odile is not just any bit of fast tracking, and rehearsing and coaching are not the same kind of preparation as performance. The latter is one kind of preparation Mearns decidedly lacks. Obviously the company believes she can make a "splash" and perhaps she will--and more power to her if she does--but Odette/Odile, perhaps more than any other of the great nineteenth-century roles, calls for a certain maturity (even in NYCB's somewhat abstracted and modernized version).

Share this post


Link to post

A girl has to start somewhere. How can you gain performance experience unless you are given a performance? I suppose she could go "out of town" and try it with some local company but wouldn't the resident "star" of such a company want such a plum role? Besides, how many smaller companies can stage a full SWAN LAKE?

I suspect if Kowroski were well and Somogyi feeling 100% (she did dance 100% gorgeously on Tuesday & Thursday, but those shorter ballets don't require the stamina of O/O) then they would be doing the Swans, and Mearns and possibly even Bouder would be on hold.

All the great Swan Queens did their first performance somewhere; will Mearns be a great O/O? Possibly not at first, but one can only gain the experience by doing it. Let's see what she does.

Share this post


Link to post

I think this is unfair to the audience, but much more so to the dancer, who has never danced anything nearly as taxing -- in terms of sheer endurance -- on a major stage. A girl does have to start somewhere, but to jump from second girl in the back in the opening ballet and the one on the left in the closing, to Swan Queen for three rather arduous acts -- well, it's hardly adequate preparation. Any dancer will tell you that the difference between rehearsal and performance is incalculable.

Still, she may actually have the whole package, and I do wish her well.

Share this post


Link to post

Well, carbro, you make alot of sense but the question remains: how does one get performance experience except by performing? Where would Sarah (or Ashley B, for that matter) dance her first O/O if not on her home stage? I can think of other girls in the Company who I'd love to see get a crack at this role, but they would all be first timers. If she fails, everyone will hate Peter even more. If she succeeds, everyone will blame him for not having given her big stuff sooner. To my mind, she herself will emerge unscathed no matter what happens.

Twenty years from now, we might be at the farewell performance of the great principal ballerina Sarah Mearns and, as the rose buds fall on her, we will say: "Hey, remember that first SWAN LAKE she did here?" Or she might quit dancing, move to New Mexico, and have 6 kids. Who knows?

As an aside, the box office lady told me SWAN is selling like crazy. I would imagine a huge number of the audience will not be holding their breath because this girl is attempting something big for the first time. Just the few of us will be aware of the situation, and will have knots in our stomachs til it's over.

Share this post


Link to post

I don't think the issue is that Mearns is a first-timer, but that she's inexperienced in general in solo roles. I've seen many reviews here of a number of other soloists and corps members who've danced soloist and principal roles, who from the standpoint of experience, might be better, if not ideally, prepared for a full-length.

Casting an inexperienced dancer as Odette/Odile seems to me like the equivalent of casting a singer who has only sung one of the minor Carmelites as Isolde. I hope this makes sense for Mearns in the long run.

Share this post


Link to post
. . .  how does one get performance experience except by performing? Where would Sarah (or Ashley B, for that matter) dance her first O/O if not on her home stage?

Uh, guesting with a smaller company or (as in the case of a friend of mine -- a professional -- for her first Odette), a school performance? Those opportunities exist!

Share this post


Link to post

Judging from this Youth America Grand Prix photo from nearly five years ago, she may have been working on Odile for a while.

http://www.yagp.org/eng/gallery.asp?setnum...me=2001&phnum=4

Do we KNOW she hasn't danced O/O, or more to the point, something long and taxing, somewhere else? Google doesn't seem to help...

Well, Peter must have seen it in her. After all, it is his ballet that he's risking. And has he ever been known to over-burden a young dancer?

Share this post


Link to post

Whoa! Gorgeous picture...thanks, drb!

Carbro, I had mentioned the possibility of trying O/O "out of town" earlier, but if most companies who could afford to mount a complete SWAN LAKE wanted a guest Swan Queen, they might want a "name"...and someone who has already done it. Also a local company would probably have a local "star" who would for sure want this plum role.

In a way the situation reminds me of a problem a sensational young soprano friend of mine is having: she wants to audition for various opera companies: "We only hire singers who have management. Have your agent send us your info kit"; so she tries to get an agent to sign her: "I only take on clients who've had professional experience already."

In reality, I think the Mearns situation has simply arisen because of the illness/injury/not-fully-recovered syndrome at NYCB. Probably when Peter planned this revival he thought he'd have Wendy, Miranda, Maria, Jennie, Jeni, Alexandra, Janie & Sofiane with Bouder - a quick study and technical whiz - on standby. Maybe Mearns has done it somewhere, maybe someone actually went to check her out in it or saw a video. Or maybe they see things just watching her in class like Merrill et al saw in Bouder.

As Hildegard Behrens once said, "You don't know if you can sing Brunnhilde until you sing it."

Now that I've seen that photo, I'm really piqued!

Share this post


Link to post
I don't think the issue is that Mearns is a first-timer, but that she's inexperienced in general in solo roles. 

Yes -- when I referred to lack of performance experience this is all I meant. I have no problem with debuts per se and quite enjoyed Monique Meunier's debut as Odette/Odile a few seasons back.

I also share the opinion that it is likely that injuries and illness have played a role in this casting decision, but on the face of it, it remains a peculiar one.

Share this post


Link to post
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0