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Miami City Ballet 2007-08 season


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#1 Dale

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 07:08 PM

The complete schedule hasn't been finished but the company released some early information:

Miami City Ballet 2007-2008 Season

Miami City Ballet’s 22nd Season Highlights include:
Jewels – One of the most glamorous ballets ever created, inspired by the rich depth and color of priceless gemstones – emeralds, rubies, diamonds – with a lavish new set designed by Tony – and Oscar Winner Tony Walton. Choreography by George Balanchine.

Bourrée Fantasque – the Company Premiere of a sumptuous Balanchine masterwork in the French Classical manner that also offers glimpses of the can-can, and includes exceptionally stylish costumes and a rousing full-cast finale.

“Aurora’s Wedding” – the extravaganza finale of the timeless classic The Sleeping Beauty – never before included in our subscription series.

Untitled World Premiere – A major Miami City Ballet event -- a special commissioned work by Twyla Tharp, one of today's greatest choreographers, danced to a new score by one of the world's greatest singer songwriters, Elvis Costello

While 2007-2008 programming is not complete and is subject to change, many favorites not seen in years are planned for this exciting season!

Current MCB Subscribers have received or will soon receive Subscription Renewal materials.

Subscription renewal prices:
A-1*: $450
A: $270
B-1*: $235
B: $198
C: $108
D: 68

*A-1 seats are the best A-section seats, and are available for purchase by Artist’s Circle donors; A-1 Nutcracker seats are available to all renewing subscribers now, prior to public sale. B-1 seats are only available at Carnival Center.

Order Nutcracker tickets with your subscription renewal by March 30, 2007 and get discounts on the best Nutcracker seats!

New Subscriptions will go on sale in May. We will begin accepting requests for priority seating in March. For priority seating, complete the order form inserted in Playbill at Giselle performances. This form will be available to the general public online on April 2. Please act quickly for best seating - completed forms (with payment included) will be handled in the date order they are received. For information call our Box Office at (305) 929-7010 or (877) 929-7010 toll free.

Single tickets for Repertory programs and Nutcracker go on sale August 1 through MCB’s Box Office and on September 4 through the theaters.

#2 bart

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 08:05 PM

Thanks for posting that, Dale.

Tops for me on the list is Jewels. MCB did this before I moved here, so all I've seen them do has been the Diamonds pas de deux. Has anyone seen their version of the entire work?

I would love to Albertson and Wong in Rubies and Kronenberg (probably with Guerra) in Diamonds. But I'm having trouble imagining an ideal MCB cast for Emeralds. Villella's pretty adventurous with casting, though, and often finds and brings out qualities in his younger dancers that are unexpected.

Bouree Fantasque! I first saw this in the days of wonderful stage personalities like Adams, Wilde, Kent, and Hayden. I love a ballet that makes very smart fun of "ballet." I wonder how well it will hold up given modern cultural sensibilities and expectations.

MCB did "In the Upper Room" very well -- and it has been a big success -- so a new Tharp commission makes sense. The Costello score may or may not bode well. Which Tharp will this be: a return to some of the great stuff done for ballet dancers years ago? or an endless, high-energy, easy-on-the-eyes-and-brain Broadway extravaganza?

#3 carbro

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 08:37 PM

My brother was a musician (guitar and pedal steel) and a huge fan of Elvis. His daughter is a ballet student. So it was with great excitement that my sister-in-law introduced me (in a car ride) to bits and pieces of a ballet score by Elvis Costello. It is titled Il Sogno, with passages named for the characters in Shakespeare's Dream. ITunes offers 30-second samples of 25 tracks recorded by the London Symphony -- not enough to say whether it succeeds or not as a ballet score.

I wonder if this is the Costello which Tharp is using.

Anything Tharp does is interesting -- at least in concept. I'm eager to hear what comes of this.

#4 drb

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 09:47 PM

Our friends above, at Amazon, give 20 30-second bits of Il Sogno, sort of impressionistic, tonal, standard orchestra, melodic, lyrical. So not likely the kind of his music she'd go for; more likely the creative stuff.
http://www.amazon.co...73331889&sr=1-1

#5 bart

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 05:52 AM

[ ... ] Il Sogno, sort of impressionistic, tonal, standard orchestra, melodic, lyrical. So not likely the kind of his music she'd go for; more likely the creative stuff.

I tried a number of selections, including items like "Puck II" and "The Fairy and the Ass," which I thought might provide some lively dance music. It struck me as being fairly thin and rhythmically uninteresting, though quite nice in it's way. I agree with drb: not much for Tharp to chew on here.

Besides, MCB has the dancers, resources, and aesthetic to do the Balanchine-Mendelssohn version. If they want to "dream," why settle for anything less?

#6 bart

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 07:42 PM

Here's the complete 2007-08 season (from a flier available in the lobby at Giselle):

Program I:
Jewels (Faure, Stravinsky, Tchaikovsky/ Balanchine -- "Lavish new set designed by Tony- and Oscar-winner Tony Walton.")

Program II:
Square Dance (Vivaldi, Corelli/ Balanchine)
Nine Sinantra Songs (Tharp)
Bouree Fantasque (Chabrier/Balanchine ("Company Premiere -- a Balanchine masterwork in the French Classical manner, stylish costumes, thrilling full-cast finale")

Program III:
The Fox Trot: Dancing in the Dark (Carmichael, Parish, Ellington, et al./ Villella)
Liturgy (Part/Wheeldon -- This brief and rather slender pas de deux was also performed this season. Villella has been effusive in his praise of Wheeldon.)
Tarantella (Gottchalk/Balanchine)
Aurora's Wedding (Tchaikovsky/Petipa -- "The extravaganza finale of the timeles classic The Sleeping Beauty.)

Program IV:
La Valse (Ravel/Balanchine)
"Untitled World Premiere" (Costello/Tharp -- "A major Miami City Ballet event -- a special commissioned work by Twyla Tharp, one of today's greatest choreographers, danced to a new score by one of the world's greatest singer-songwriters, Elvis Costello.")

Note that with Faure, Chabrier, and Ravel, we'll have a mini-French season coming.

For dates at various venues, check the website (click "Performances" -- then "2007-20080 Season"):
http://www.miamicityballet.org/

#7 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 22 July 2007 - 08:38 PM

Among all the works that will be presented, my biggest expectation is "Jewels". I've never seen the whole ballet live :dunno: , but i'm familiar with the Opera de Paris production, so that will be an interesting comparisson. In "Aurora's Wedding" i'm hoping to see Mary Carmen Catoya dancing . She's my favorite, followed by Katia Carranza. The Tharp/Costello production sound interesting too...so let's see what happens...
:tiphat:

#8 bart

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Posted 23 July 2007 - 06:15 AM

cubanmiamiboy, I'm studying the POB Jewels in prep for Program I.

I first saw Jewels during the NYCB premiere season back in the 60s -- when I was WAY too inexperienced to appreciate it as much as the ballet deserves. I remember liking Diamonds best, but mostly for Farrell. That's the part that remains strongest in my memory. Emeralds went completely over my head; I was a big Verdy fan but felt vaguely let down by the music and the ballet. I was excited, as was everyone else, by Villella and McBride in Rubies. I especially remember the intense and elated response from the entire audience -- all evening long.

You mention Catoya. She was in the original MCB production in the late 90s. Here's a review of MCB's 1999 "dazzling" performance during a visit to Berkeley. It sounds as though Catoya performed the Violette Verdy role in Emeralds. (There's also an appreciation of Ileana Lopez's Diamonds.) The review seems to be describing a unique MCB style (with more emphasis on personal gestures, and with the feeling of Rubies spilling over into Emeralds and Diamonds.)

MCB Jewels in 1999

Did any of our readers see this earlier run of Jewels? What did you think?

What do MCB fans hope or expect to see in this season's "Jewels"? Or, indeed, any other program this season?

#9 bart

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 04:02 PM

Good news! The emailed MCB Insider Newsletter reports that there will be "orchestra at all repertory programs."

Also, more information on the new Tharp piece:

... the World Premiere of a special commissioned work by one of today's greatest choreographers, Twyla Tharp, danced to a new score by one of the world's greatest singer-songwriters, Elvis Costello. The Tharp/Costello collaboration is a unique and innovative project that will include a nine piece rock band on stage along with a classical orchestra in the pit. The piece, featuring 22 of Miami Citiy Ballet's dancers, marks Tharp's return to ballet after years of working on Broadway!



#10 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 04:06 PM

Good news! The emailed MCB Insider Newsletter reports that there will be orchestra at all repertory programs



mmm...yummy!! :wub: that's always nice to know..!

:wink:

#11 Figurante

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 01:27 PM

Here is a great article giving some interesting insight to the MCb collaboration with Elvis Costello and Twyla Tharp....
http://www.palmbeach...ee_no_2_co.html


I’m a little disappointed that a rock band will be on stage for the dance along with an orchestra, but perhaps the scenario for the ballet requires it. I would have hoped that were Costello to make another attempt at a ballet that he would try to just use the orchestra, as he had done with Il Sogno.

Putting a band up there sounds crutchy, and I imagine its appearance will have to be integrated with the action or it’s just going to be a distraction. It also seems to say: This is a piece of celebrity performance art, and therefore you’ll excuse us if it’s less than Stravinsky.


This sounds really interesting and innovative.... I have to wonder how the dancing is going to be incorporated around such a thing. Hmm...

#12 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 02:00 PM

Here is a great article giving some interesting insight to the MCb collaboration with Elvis Costello and Twyla Tharp....
http://www.palmbeach...ee_no_2_co.html


I’m a little disappointed that a rock band will be on stage for the dance along with an orchestra, but perhaps the scenario for the ballet requires it. I would have hoped that were Costello to make another attempt at a ballet that he would try to just use the orchestra, as he had done with Il Sogno.

Putting a band up there sounds crutchy, and I imagine its appearance will have to be integrated with the action or it’s just going to be a distraction. It also seems to say: This is a piece of celebrity performance art, and therefore you’ll excuse us if it’s less than Stravinsky.


This sounds really interesting and innovative.... I have to wonder how the dancing is going to be incorporated around such a thing. Hmm...


Hmmm... :angel_not:

#13 Jack Reed

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Posted 23 August 2007 - 03:14 PM

A couple of thoughts on reading through the thread:

The POB DVD of Jewels is not bad as a warm-up for MCB's performances -- I'm assuming they'll be on about the previous level, or, more likely, considering how the company has advanced in recent years (I'm thinking especially of La Valse, Dances at a Gathering, and "Ballet Imperial", actually Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 2 with its earlier version's title), better even than that -- because it's really not just an attenuation of Jewels as any video wold have to be -- video can't make the effect you get in the theatre, but the best of it can take you in that direction -- however, the POB video, I insist, isn't among the best, and when you go into the theatre I think you will pleasantly surprised, maybe even shocked, continuously, right through the evening. So if you only look at that, you'll go in "set up" for something different, and much nicer.

Even if you have a second-rate seat, you'll have it all evening and not be distracted by the video's indecisiveness about how they were going to go about it, and mainly, you'll see dancing which is not exactly like Balanchine's company did but is very much in that line, certainly to the point of thrilling, while the POB dancers don't give you that, although they do give you something else nice in its place. bart, have you also looked at what there is of Jewels in the "Choreography by Balanchine" pair of DVDs (most of "Emeralds" and the "Diamonds" pas de deux)? That is authentic Balanchine, that is like Stravinsky playing or conducting Stravinsky, let's say, or Copland conducting his own music. Try comparing that with the POB performance, to the extent you can see it.

Yes, I do remember a little seeing MCB's Jewels previously, and without recourse to my notes, I remember Emeralds and Diamonds as being more successful for me than Rubies was, whoever it was in the Verdy role really recreating that, really infusing it with life, but McBride and Villella, especially that dynamo Villella, are hard to follow in my experience.

Indeed, it was their performance at the Ravinia Festival in the 60's that hooked me on Balanchine-ballet; I hadn't learned well enough yet how to listen to music, and so the Faure' ballet went past me - ho, hum - but Stravinsky's Capriccio happened to be a minor favorite of mine, so that I felt I already knew every witty note and phrase, and as I followed the dancers' every accompanying witty step and gesture, I was completely sucked in. B. H. Haggin's enthusiastic comments, the only ones I knew then, had not prepared me for the actual experience (I don't think the POB DVD does either). (NYCB stopped coming to Ravinia soon after; eventually I figured out what was missing from my life and started making regular visits to New York, from 1973 until 1986, to restore it.)

#14 bart

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Posted 23 August 2007 - 04:07 PM

Thanks for that, Jack, especially about the theater experience being superior to the video experience, even with less than ideal sightlines. You can focus more when YOU choose where to look, I find. I'm going for seats in different parts of the house to get the best over-all coverage.

Your post piqued by curiosity about the first MCB performances of this ballet. Croce's review of the 1992 Jewels is reprinted in Writing in the Dark. Among the MCB dancers she mentions there are:

Emeralds
Marielena Mencia in the Verdy role
Myrna Kamara in the Paul role
Arnold Quintane in the pas de trois
Mabel Modrono in the pas de trois

Rubies
Marin Boieru of Romania, in the Villella role
Maribel Modrono (Mabel's twin sister) in the McBride role
Myrna Kamara in the tall girl role

Diamonds
Iliana Lopez in the Farrell role
Franklin Gomero as her cavalier

While admitting that dancers like Mencia and Lopez were not trained as Balanchine ballerinas, Croce was very positive about the qualities they each brought to their roles.

Marielena Mencia is not the dancer to restore the Verdy role -- she's not even remotely a Balanchine dancer -- but her mettlesome performance of the wonderful "bracelets" solo was a rebuke to the elaborate faking we see at NYCB. Mencia and Iliana Lopez are Villella's two senior ballerines and were already formed stylistically when he hired them. Lopez, with the same disadvantage of being untrained in Balanchine style, knew what to aim for in the Diamonds adagio. Partnered securely by her husband, Franklin Gamero, she succeeded in adding scale and consequence to her dancing and heightening the soft luster she has by nature; I have never admired her more.

Of Karmara she writes:

The most exciting dancer in Jewels, the most exuberant and the wittiest ... Other dancers may have performed both the bighearted, space-straddling showgirl of Rubies and the role I think of as Melisande's in Emeralds, but not usually in the same performance, and not like this. Kamara has recreated both characters; her natural energy unleashes something new on the ballet stage, and Villella is giving her chances she has never had before.




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