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Bolshoi at ROH London 8-01-06 to 8-10-06reviews


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#16 Herman Stevens

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 12:31 PM

Especially since for Grigorovich he is the only real protagonist of the ballet.



well, that's just never going to happen in Swan Lake, unless Siegfried will whip out 32 fouettees.

many modern productions try to solve the Act I problem, and maybe there just isn't any better solution than a than letting it be.

in some ways the Grigorovich version compounds the problem by making Rothbart Siegfried's Evil Genius with the risk of the bad guy upstaging the good guy (as in Raymonda).

BTW I should say that IMO Grigorovich is one of the great 20th C choreographers (a fact not much enhanced by the obnoxity of his many hagiographies written in the same vein as political propaganda). Swan Lake is just not one of his happiest pieces.

#17 Buddy

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 12:46 PM

So if you miss a show, you can be pretty sure you'll have another opportunity next year.

Hi Herman. chiapuris was Unable(!) to get a ticket.

Still chiapuris should be a Role Model for us all following in the footsteps of his Noble Ancesters fifty years ago!----Cheers!
:blink:

#18 chiapuris

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 12:53 PM

Bolshoi, ROH London, Cinderella 9/8/06 2:00 matinee

Cast
Cinderella Ekaterina Krysanova
The Prince Dmitri Gudanov
All other roles same as 7/8/06 performance.
An announcement before the curtain: The Storyteller=A Melanin

The scenario of Cinderella is a story within a story. The storyteller (Prokofiev) lives in a small planet (Moon?) and has an assistant nicknamed Ptashka, who keeps things tidy for him. The storyteller is writing Cinderella and Ptashka, who reads it, agrees to play Cinderella. He takes her to the Stepmother’s house and the fairy-tale begins unfolding as we know it. Except that the storyteller serves the part of the Fairy Godmother.

Actually, I liked Possokhov’s choreography more on second viewing. (Also from much better seats).

Ekaterina Krysanova created a very moving portrayal with her brilliant technical facility and her slender silhouette. She shows a clear love for dancing that shines through and lights the stage. Moreover, Dmitri Gudanov was excellent. He seemed to have a much better day than Filin did the first night (7/8/06). He was technically cleaner and a much more ardent partner in the two adages.

Krysanova and Gudanov were well matched. I found the final adage was much more moving with Krysanova/Gudanov (than the first night’s), because I felt there was a chemistry between the two of them which showed in every gesture, every contact.
Their dancing matched the emotional pitch of Prokofiev’s music.

The Four Seasons superb soloists served as the fairies who provided gifts for Cinderella at the storyteller’s prompting. Each season had her own entourage. Spring (Andrienko) had Grasshoppers (K Abdulin, A Vodopetov); Summer (Kurkova) Dragonflies (S Gnedova, Y Lunkina); Autumn (N Osipova) Sunflowers (N Lomakina, N Nagimova, Y Grebenshchikova); and Winter (Kobakhidze) Bullfinches (I Prazdnikov, A Rybakov, R Tselishchev). Cinderella joins in the finale of the divertissement- one of the brightest tableaux of the ballet.

In my earlier review I called Woodall’s ballroom gowns bland. I don’t think that expresses accurately what I meant. It’s the bobbed-hair-with-bangs wigs and the gowns that, in my view, make the women dancers not look their best. Chic?
Perhaps. Fairy-tale elegant? No.

The third act still, for me, remains thin. I figured out the ponies are there as transportation for the prince and his four friends as they travel the world in search of the owner of the slipper left behind at the ball. The Krysanova/Gudanov final dance makes up for any lack. It was simply beautiful.

Alexander Vedernikov conducted with distinction. The orchestra was splendid.

Performance anecdote: Toward the end of the first act, a dropcloth that was supposed to be lifted got stuck on one side. The conductor stopped the music. Krysanova went up to the problem drop and started tugging with all her might. She pulled it down straight, so it could be lifted. Once she fixed the problem she went back to the storyteller who hadn’t moved all this time and she resumed the scene as the music started again. Heroic rescue. Tremendous audience applause.

#19 Herman Stevens

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 11:49 PM

Krysanova went up to the problem drop and started tugging with all her might. She pulled it down straight, so it could be lifted.


Atta girl, Cinderella!

So would you in hindsight say you liked Krysanova's C better than Zakharova's, or were you just better seated and suited to the choreography this time?

#20 canbelto

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 04:53 AM

I don't have a problem with Grigorivich's concept so much as its execution. Nureyev's version for the POB kind of has the same concept (with the tutor being sort of an Evil Genius), but Nureyev leaves more of the Petipa/Ivanov structure and musical arrangements intact, and he restores the mime.

#21 chiapuris

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 01:26 PM

[
So would you in hindsight say you liked Krysanova's C better than Zakharova's, or were you just better seated and suited to the choreography this time?


I couldn't play any rating game. I thought Zakharova was wonderful.
I thought Krysanova was wonderful. I did feel that the Krysanova/Gudanov partnership gave
a more satisfying 'Cinderella and Prince' duet.

#22 chiapuris

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 11:57 AM

Bolshoi ROH London The Bright Stream 10-08-06

Cast:
Zina Svetlana Lunkina
Pyotr Yuri Klevstsov
The Ballerina Maria Alexandrova
The Classical Dancer Sergei Filin
The Accordion Player Gennady Yanin
The Old Dacha Dweller Alexei Loparevich
His Wife Irina Zibrova
Galya Anastasia Stashkevich
Gavrilych Egor Simachev
The Milkmaid Anastasia Yatsenko
The Tractor Driver Alexander Petukhov
Zina’s Friends Victoria Osipova
Ekaterina Krysanova
Daria Gurevich
Anna Rebetskaya
Yulia Lunkina
Svetlana Pavlova

The Bright Stream is that rare phenomenon in ballet, a comedy, blessed with a zestful, melodic Shostakovich score. Its fresh choreography by Ratmansky, along with the tongue-in-cheek designs of Boris Messerer, fill the original libretto created by Fyodor Lopukhov.

Its farcical plot- even though stemming from the era of the socially commited Soviet dramballet- centers on the age-old theatrical gag of a husband (Klevtsov) courting his own, disguised, wife (Lunkina), while imagining he’s flirting with another woman. Other time-worn gags, such as cross-dressing (Alexandrova and Filin) to embarass foolish suitors (Zibrova and Loparevich), and a man impersonating a dog (Petukhov) to thwart a suitor’s designs (Yanin) on his beloved (Staskevich) provide additional fodder for dancing and mime that add up to an evening of delightful entertainment..

The scenario has to do with the visit of dancers and musicians to a Soviet farm collective for the celebration of the harvest festival. A local woman was a ballet schoolmate of the visiting ballerina; the local woman’s husband almost immediately starts flirting with the ballerina. Another older local woman is smitten with the classical dancer, while her older husband fancies the ballerina. The visiting accordion player goes after a student, whose boyfriend , the tractor driver, objects.

The ballerina sets the events of the second act by suggesting her school friend disguise herself with one of her dance costumes, and ‘dance’ with her own husband.. The ballerina will crossdress to meet with the older woman attracted to the classical dancer. The ballerina convinces her male colleague to dress as a sylph for the tryst with the older local man.

The tractor driver will dress as a dog to protect his girlfriend. And there you have the events of the second act..

Lunkina as Zina, the local girl with ballet training, is truly delightful. She is the most elegant country girl you can imagine in her close-fitting, short, white dress. Her mime was truly expressive and her dancing showed a linear purity, ‘love for dance in its own right’ in the setting of a comedy. Klevtsov was a fitting partner, strong, articulate. He has a muscular presence that harkens back to earlier male Bolshoi physiques.

Alexandrova showed her exuberant technique and open movements with a delicious flair for the comedic story line. Filin showed a generosity of spirit in his capacity for the farcical. He was truly amusing as the cross-dressed sylph, where the comedy lay in the appreciation of the gender-specific classical foot and leg technique of pointe dancing. In spite of all the prodigious skills displayed by Filin, the pointe work looked truly funny on a man. Alexandrova, en travestie, repeated a variation performed earlier by Filin full of sharpness and ballon, ending with a series of retires passes sautes, on one leg, with changes of direction.

The man as dog (Petukhov) was funnier than it sounds. He was a desperate dog. At one point the dog rode a bike to catch up to his pursued beloved.

Irina Zibrova and Alexei Loparevich as the old dacha dwellers created wonderful cartoon characters. I especially enjoyed Zibrova’s variations on ballroom moves with delicious timing.

The ensemble dances that closed the first act and those of the finale showed Ratmansky’s sure hand in manipulating large groups in interesting patterns. The sets, costumes, and the choreography were all first-rate. The same can be stated for the entire Bolshoi company. And so was the conducting of Pavel Sorokin and the Bolshoi orchestra.
A memorable evening.

#23 Helene

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 12:48 PM

Many thanks, chiapuris for these wonderful accounts of the Bolshoi visit to London. :clapping: The last time someone tried to describe the plot to me, he ended with, "you just have to see it," and I'm particularly grateful for your concise and coherent synopsis.

#24 Rosie

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 02:52 PM

Thanks chiapurisfor your review, Do you recommend me to see it?
The Bolshoi ballet will be guestdancing in the Danish Royal Ballet and they will prefrom the brigth stream, and i can´t decide if i want to see it or not :clapping:

#25 ami1436

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 03:18 PM

SEE IT!

I saw it Friday night with the second cast - Yatsenko, (someone replacing Klevtsov as Pyotr and I don't know who and there was no announcement or cast sheet!), Shipulina, Skvortsov. I was upset not to see Lunkina and Alexandrova, but I just couldn't make it on Thursday.

Some might think this as OTT, but I've never enjoyed the Bolshoi so much. Even though I've seen them in Pharaoh's Daughter, despite the plot, I've always felt that when I saw the Bolshoi I was seeing 'serious' ballet, if that makes sense.

This was just as serious technically, beautifully executed... but, I've never seen the Bolshoi, either live or in person, dance so joyfully. (beside Alexandrova in Don Q). It was a true delight. Yeah yeah I have some minor quibbles here and there, some parts work better than others, whatever. A delightful score, delightful dancing, and happiness all around. I've never heard the Covent Garden audience have such a good time!!!! At the end the *very* stately people who could afford to have the seats in front of my standing place were waving back at the dancers, some practically dancing along, lots of giggling and guffawing, but not in the 'be quiet' sort of way.

Hopefully next time we'll get this as a weekend matinee! This is one for all ages I think, and I actually think it would keep both my dad and my brother awake - which is saying A LOT.

*sigh* - I'm still smiling from Friday night....

#26 carbro

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 04:08 PM

I want to thank chiapuris, too. Your review brought me back to the Bolshoi's visit to New York last summer, reveling in the many delights of the Bright Stream. It is sheer pleasure.

Go, Rosie. I am sure you'll enjoy it. And as much as I enjoyed Lunkina's Ballerina, I would urge you to try to see Maria Alexandrova in any role she may be performing.

#27 Helene

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 04:52 PM

Rosie, the cast lists for the three performances aren't up yet on either the English or Danish versions of the Royal Danish Ballet website. (The Danish version has a lot more information about Swan Lake and Bright Stream).

The three performances are listed as:

9 September 8pm
10 September 12:00pm
10 September 8pm.

Please go and tell us what you think!

#28 Rosie

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Posted 14 August 2006 - 03:09 AM

SEE IT!

I saw it Friday night with the second cast - Yatsenko, (someone replacing Klevtsov as Pyotr and I don't know who and there was no announcement or cast sheet!), Shipulina, Skvortsov. I was upset not to see Lunkina and Alexandrova, but I just couldn't make it on Thursday.

Some might think this as OTT, but I've never enjoyed the Bolshoi so much. Even though I've seen them in Pharaoh's Daughter, despite the plot, I've always felt that when I saw the Bolshoi I was seeing 'serious' ballet, if that makes sense.

This was just as serious technically, beautifully executed... but, I've never seen the Bolshoi, either live or in person, dance so joyfully. (beside Alexandrova in Don Q). It was a true delight. Yeah yeah I have some minor quibbles here and there, some parts work better than others, whatever. A delightful score, delightful dancing, and happiness all around. I've never heard the Covent Garden audience have such a good time!!!! At the end the *very* stately people who could afford to have the seats in front of my standing place were waving back at the dancers, some practically dancing along, lots of giggling and guffawing, but not in the 'be quiet' sort of way.

Hopefully next time we'll get this as a weekend matinee! This is one for all ages I think, and I actually think it would keep both my dad and my brother awake - which is saying A LOT.

*sigh* - I'm still smiling from Friday night....


But is this a classical ballet or modern?

#29 Jane Simpson

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Posted 14 August 2006 - 03:52 AM

The Copenhagen casting is now up on the Bolshoi's English-language site, at

http://www.bolshoi.r...ex.php?id26=479

Note the line from the Swan Lake casts:

The Evil Genius - Dmitry Shostakovich (September 5, 6, 8), Yuri Klevtsov (7)

#30 carbro

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Posted 14 August 2006 - 05:57 AM

But is this a classical ballet or modern?

Classical. :)


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