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Santa Fe performance September 1


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#1 zerbinetta

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 12:48 AM

I was at the end of a long & detailed account of tonight's performance and had to excuse myself for a minute and when I returned the post had vaporized. I'm blaming the weather but I freely admit to being not at all brilliant on the conputer.

So, briefly, here is a precis of my thoughts.

Three ballets: "sans detour" by Dominique Dumais; "PointeOff" by Jorma Elo and "Two Have & Two Hold" by Dwight Rhoden.

And, yes, all three pieces had the women en pointe, for those of you who persist in thinking this is a dance company & not a ballet company.

The Elo was rather brilliant, to Bach arrangements by Busoni. The Rhoden, to Bach Piano #5 with a bit of 2 Paganini Caprices skillfully woven in was lovely & heartfelt. Both choreographers are skilled & remarkable in their musical sensitivity.

The Dumais, set to a hodge podge of 4 composers (Bach, Pergolesi, Glass & Cote) from 4 different worlds & as good as 4 different centuries made no sense to me, although the audience liked it quite a lot. Besides fudging around with the music because the steps are clearly more important, the most annoying aspect was the Lucia di Lammermoor character wandering through dancers communicating and bonding. You knew the end from the beginning - the Lucia girl reaching out to an exiting Tudoresque couplei n a gesture which, under most circumstances would be considered yearning but, in this case, came off as "Yeah, that's what I want". It got me grumpy, but then Elo came along.

The dancers gave strong, vivid & clean performances in difficult & strenuous choreography. My personal favorite is Luke Willis, with his beautiful pure line, stretched feet, open chest & his David Howard style ability to elongate the line from the hip joint. He's from the same school in PA that gave us Ethan Stiefel. My next favorite is Lauren Alzamora, who reminds me of V. Part in her quality of movement. I'm anxious to see her in adagio work. She's one of those dancers who commands the eye whenever she appears.

Yeah, this is the short version .. :)

#2 bart

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 06:33 AM

zerbinetta, I'm really glad you were able to retrieve (mentally, if not electronically) your thoughts about this performance. This really is a well-trained company, committed to an interesting and high-level rep. It's a completely different program from the one they toured down here with last winter -- but the artistic ambitions are obviously just as high. This is a company that wouldn't stoop to Dracula -- and, if they did, it would be in a witty commentary on the Dracula phenomenon by Moses Pendleton or someone like that.

The dancers gave strong, vivid & clean performances in difficult & strenuous choreography

I agree, and also notice that I put stars next to Luke Willis and Lauren Alzamora in my program from February. This is the kind of company -- and the kind of dancers -- you would like to be able to "follow" and become familiar with on a regular basis.

Has anyone else seen this program?

#3 zerbinetta

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 12:13 PM

The dancers gave strong, vivid & clean performances in difficult & strenuous choreography

I agree, and also notice that I put stars next to Luke Willis and Lauren Alzamora in my program from February. This is the kind of company -- and the kind of dancers -- you would like to be able to "follow" and become familiar with on a regular basis.


After posting (finally) I felt it was perhaps unfair to single out only two of the dancers, as any knowledgable balletomane could pick out any one of the others and feel equally enamoured. There are no weak links in the group and each dancer has a distinctive personality as well as fabulous technique. They are all musical & lyrical & well trained & maintained, joyful, enthusiastic & could hold their own in the "major leagues" but have chosen not to go that route.

What most impresses, I think, is that this is a true ensemble company, a chamber group of 10 -12 (depending on the rep) who really play well together. I went to a reception following the performance & saw that they are genuinely close offstage, too. And close with the directors of the company as well - AD Tom Mossbrucker & ED Jean-Phillippe Malaty. They are as much a "family" offstage as on, which only makes sense, I suppose.


That said, I'm really glad you lliked Lauren & Luke as well, bart. :huepfen024:

They will be doing a week at the Joyce Theater in NY in late January. I will post about it when I get the press release.


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