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Ballets Based on Othello


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#16 swanchat

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 07:10 AM

I thought I saw a review of a recent production of Othello but can't remember which company or whose choreography. All I can remember is that Othello's face was painted blue. Does anybody know of this production? I've tried to find it again and can't. We are having a discussion about how the moor has been presented in ballet and theater throughout time and place and I thought it would be an interesting addition to the discussion.

#17 JMcN

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 09:43 AM

Robert de Warren did a production for Northern Ballet Theatre in around 1985. It was the first performance I ever saw by NBT. My most abiding memory is the dark makeup of the dancer performing Othello ending up all over the pale pink dress of Desdemona in the final scenes. I must have enjoyed it though because 25 years later I'm still an avid fan of the company!

#18 bart

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 10:12 AM

JMcN, this Othello rang a bell with me, so I Googled and came up with two photos of a production starring Isanusi Garcia (Othello) and Tatiana Lliabina (Desdemona). Desdemona's dress is now white, and Othello seems to have elimated or toned down the dark makeup. :wink:

You have to scroll down a bit to find the photos (past Nureyev, Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, Madame Butterfly and Eva Peron).

http://www.robertdew....org/page8.html

OFF TOPIC: I was excited to find Isanusi Garcia because, under the name Isanusi Garcia-Rodriguez, he has danced on and off with Miami City Ballet and is returning this season as a Principal. I would have liked to see his Othello.

#19 4mrdncr

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 09:23 PM

I thought I saw a review of a recent production of Othello but can't remember which company or whose choreography. All I can remember is that Othello's face was painted blue. Does anybody know of this production? I've tried to find it again and can't. We are having a discussion about how the moor has been presented in ballet and theater throughout time and place and I thought it would be an interesting addition to the discussion.


This month's (JULY 2010) Dance Magazine (or was it Pointe?) issue is generally about race issues in dance/dance companies, and there is a discussion and picture of a blue-faced Moor (I think in Petroushka rather than Othello) in an article by Joseph Carman. The ballet company wanted to excize any racist overtones in its depiction, and chose the color blue. I'm glad Blue Man Group didn't sue them for any copyright violations.

#20 bart

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 03:01 AM

Thanks, 4mrdnc. It is Dance Magazine (July 2010). The ballet was Petrouschka. The production was by San Francisco Ballet.

http://www.dancemaga...ic-or-Offensive

Every Othello I've seen has been more or less naturalistic in style. A Blue Othello would require something either futuristic or other-world, I should think. Shakespeare by way of Avatar.

You could do it with Limon's 4-character distillation i this way. ButI can't see it working in anything that attempted a more detailed story.

Unless, possibly, they ALL were color-coded? This could work for a sci-fi Romeo and Juliet, too, I imagine.

#21 swanchat

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 04:18 AM

Thank you all. It was Petrouschka. I remembered the blue Moor and thought is was Othello...

#22 JMcN

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 11:00 AM

JMcN, this Othello rang a bell with me, so I Googled and came up with two photos of a production starring Isanusi Garcia (Othello) and Tatiana Lliabina (Desdemona). Desdemona's dress is now white, and Othello seems to have elimated or toned down the dark makeup. :wink:


Bart - thanks so much for posting the link. When I scrolled down even further I found a poster for a triple bill that was absolutely unforgettable, including Rudolf Nureyev's utterly magnificent performance in Miss Julie. It must have been Robert de Warren's final season in charge of NBT as Christopher Gable took over the reins in the autumn of 1987.

Janet

#23 Helene

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 11:29 AM

Othello might be blue if James Cameron got a hold of him.

My favorite dance Othello is in modern dance, Limon's "The Moor's Pavane", a one-act distillation. I think Othello needs a very fine storyteller, especially without any set-pieces like the "Rose Adagio" or "Black Swan Pas de Deux".

#24 CarolinaM

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 09:13 AM

I know about another ballet based in Otello.

It’s from Goyo Montero a Spanish choreographer now director of the Nürnberg Ballet:

2005 "Desde Otello"
Full lenght piece.
Music:Claudio Monteverdi,Giuseppe Verdi,Itsvan Marta,John Dowland,Godspeed you Black Emperor.
Created for the Ballet Carmen Roche.
Performed in the International Dance Festival"Madrid en Danza 2006".
WInner of the Price "Villa de Madrid 2006"

http://www.goyo-mont...p=Choreographer

When searching about, I reached this link that is surprisingly working as near all fotoescena articles are no longer available. It is in Spanish but has some nice shots: http://www.fotoescen...esdeOtello.html

#25 miliosr

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Posted 03 August 2012 - 05:37 AM



Based on what little you can actually see of this piece, it looks fairly interesting. I especially like how the dancers make use of a very nontraditional space (i.e. the stairs, the walls). And nice to see Karl Paquette get out of that princely ghetto he's usually stuck in.

Did any of our French correspondents actually see this?

#26 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 03 August 2012 - 05:46 AM

http://www.sfgate.co...ory-3010200.php

#27 Alymer

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 02:30 PM

John Neumier has also choreographed a ballet based on the story of Othello.


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