Balanchine's Midsummer Night's Dream
Posted 10 February 2007 - 03:02 PM
What a privilege to have Balanchine's choreography of this story, and I salute Mikko Nissinen and Sandra Jennings for their great work.
Posted 10 February 2007 - 03:45 PM
Bale starts with the premise that A Midsummer Night's Dream is a bad ballet, and, in that light, the rest of the review isn't surprising.
Posted 10 February 2007 - 07:25 PM
It's interesting to see the Paklendaiz designs when I'm so familiar with the Karinska/Walker ones. In some ways they're a good deal better, in others more frou frou.
Posted 11 February 2007 - 03:55 PM
First off, I was impressed by the size of the audience - a few scattered single seats in the Orchestra and fairly full balconies - not a full house, but a very promising turnout on a cold February night (I'd say Mikko is doing a better job with the ballet than Danny Ainge is doing with the Celtics).
I saw Lorna Feijoo as Titania and she was great. Not as dramatic on the stage as her sister, but every bit the dancer - and I though even stronger. Kathleen Breen Combes, Tai Jimenez, Pavel Guerevich and Yury Yanowsky were the lovers. The dancing was good but their acting was very good. It reminded me of the level of mime more typically seen in Europe.
Gabor Kapin did an excellent job as Bottom - his acting while wearing a donky's head was inspired. The biggest delight of the evening was Joel Prouty as puck. His performance reminded me of Jim Sofranko (of San Francisco Ballet). Both have tons of technique they to use to benefit the choreography rather than show off.
Larissa Ponomarenko and Roman Rykine were excellent in the Act II Pas de Deux. With all of the showmanship of Act I it was refreshing to see Act II start with 10 minutes of fabulous classical ballet. It felt to me as though Mr Balanchine had inserted the classical Pas into a comic ballet the way a choreographer might insert comic relief into a serious ballet.
I need to mention the children, who are an important part of the ballet. I thought children in a ballet means the type of marching and mugging I see in most Nutcrackers, but these kids really danced! And they were VERY good. If these kids stay with Boston Ballet, we'll be seeing something special in about 5 years.
Posted 13 February 2007 - 05:59 AM
I attended Saturday night's performance, and will be attending again this Thursday to see a different cast.
I not only loved seeing the children so involved on stage with the ballet, but there were also many in the audience who were thoroughly involved - laughing at the right bits, applauding. It was great.
Posted 13 February 2007 - 04:40 PM
Three cheers for Mikko, for making Boston a ballet force to be reckoned with!
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