Sleeping Beauty in DC, June 22-25reviews & comments
Posted 28 June 2006 - 05:33 AM
My favorite Bluebird is (was?) Jean Babilee, an enigmatic dancer of short stature--resembled a young Brando.
I concur with you on Babilee's Bluebird.
But I also liked (in that period) Brian Shaw (England) and Serge Golovine (France).
Posted 28 June 2006 - 08:18 AM
Perhaps Cojocaru impresses those least familiar with her dancing; I've been watching her as Aurora for some time now and although she makes a pretty little princess, I've yet to see any real development in the role.
OK. I thought I was weird, but Cojocaru also leaves me a bit cold --- her Aurora is rather flat in her development, and I don't think she ever completely overcomes her small physical stature in her dancing. She doesn't dance small, but you never forget that she's small either. But she does know how to use her back so beautifully. I was surprised at how weak her turns were on Sunday.
I thought Lamb was magnificently elegant: she is like classicism brought to life. The purity of her line no matter what she's doing is pretty breathtaking. I wish I had seen her Florine.
Nunez for me was probably my overall favorite Aurora. She has technical brilliance combined with her bright, sunny disposition, as well as the best command of the English style I've seen --- the way her upper body bends combined with the use of her head and shoulders. I loved her renverses that just lingered, and she had a triple in her act 1 solo that just lingered on improbably. I also thought she and Soares had the best chemistry of the 3 weekend shows I saw: act 2 was hot!
I liked that the 3 men I saw all had their own conception of the prince. Samodurov was dark and brooding, obviously unhappy, and while Soares was similar, he was also the most ardent in his pursuit of Aurora. Kobborg however tried to put everyone at ease and hide his underlying unhappiness with a smiling facade. I thought all 3 men were very fine technically. In the grand pas, Kobborg and Cojocaru looked very comfortable with each other, like they'd done this hundreds of times before, and they were really going for it all on Sunday, much to the audience's delight.
Speaking of style, I thought Ansanelli stuck out like a sore thumb because of her NYCBisms. To be fair, she's only been there for a few months, so hopefully in a couple of years, she'll be really great. She also looked very uncomfortable with her Lilac Fairy.
I also wish I had seen Nunez's Lilac Fairy, but I thought, except for Ansanelli, they were all very good, and of a consistently high level. I found Cuthbertson to be the most musical, as she played with the music and tempi, making full use of all the music, in her solo. In general, I liked all of the fairies, too --- the Royal Ballet has a very deep lineup of women soloists that are very good.
I found the Bluebird men a mix: there were great moments from each, but not one pulled it all together in one performance. Brian Maloney's beautiful arch in his pas de poisson for his solo was nice. Kenta Kura had by far the cleanest brise voles at the beginning of the coda. Yohei Sasaki was probably overall the cleanest, and had nice ballon and turns.
Florines, like the fairies, were very good. Yuhui Choe had an especially bright Florine.
The low points for me were the corps and ensemble work. The worst were probably the Lilac Fairy's attendents, but the fairies' cavaliers were pretty bad too. Moves were not synchronized, lines were crooked, arms and legs didn't match, etc. I was frankly very surprised to see such bad corps work.
BTW, did anyone else notice that Kobborg kind of stared at the Batmobile in wonder as it moved off-stage by itself? Even today, a remote-controlled car would be really cool!
As for the production itself, I found myself preferring the Sergeyev Kirov one more, surprisingly. I think I preferred its slightly more abstract nature which allowed the symbolism of the story to come through more clearly. The final struggle between the Lilac Fairy and Carabosse also seemed more important and consequential because of it. The Royal Ballet tells a great story, and the mime was wonderful --- the style and effectiveness of it is something no American company can come close to --- but it didn't have the epic feeling of the Kirov's that I saw last fall.
Posted 28 June 2006 - 08:38 AM
They sure did. And earlier, I'm pretty sure that he woke her up with a real kiss too. (Of course they're a real life couple). How sweet.
In the grand pas, Kobborg and Cojocaru looked very comfortable with each other, like they'd done this hundreds of times before,
Posted 28 June 2006 - 10:54 AM
And earlier, I'm pretty sure that he woke her up with a real kiss too. (Of course they're a real life couple). How sweet.
Nunez and Soares kissed each other during one of their curtain calls, which was really sweet, too.
Posted 13 July 2006 - 04:53 PM
Yes -- the electronic thunder was a bit jarring. On first night it startled my wife, who gave an involuntary yelp, which embarrassed/amused my children no end.
Mel's post on another thread reminded me of the evening's biggest cringe : the addition of electronic thunder (over Tchaikovsky's very clear musical thunder) at Carabosse's entrance. Yikes! Whose tacky idea was that? :bash:
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