art076

ABT in So. California, July 12-22: Rep, Othello & Sleeping Beauty

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Was anyone else at the opening night repertory program in LA last night?

I found it a lovely if subdued evening (especially compared to the last LA gala, which featured rock concert hollering from the audience). Symphonie Concertante was lovingly danced, with some gorgeous corps work and assured performances from Michele Wiles and Gillian Murphy in the violin and viola roles, respectively. Not sure if it's among the best Balanchine ballets, but it's a pretty confection dressed out in endless pink tutus. From above it looked like a wonderfully patterned flower garden.

The choice of pas de deux was odd: the Corsaire pas de deux was the brief 'bedroom' pas de deux in Conrad's bedchamber, where Medora and Conrad flirt around the cave before she gives him a potioned flower. It's too short to show off much of anything except some acrobatic lifts, and the Conrad has precious little to do in the gala format. David Hallberg nevertheless gave an impressive stage presence, while Irina Dvorovenko treated the thing as a gymnastics routine, showing off big extensions and her bendy back. Her curtain call was a grand ballet of its own...

And the Manon pas de deux was the drunken Lescaut/Mistress duet from Act 2 - another bizarre, short excerpt with no context in excerpt. Herman Cornejo made people giggle stumbling around drunkenly, while Stella Abrerra showed she can do quick splits and stuff, but again it was over before much could be seen. There are a bunch of other, much more interesting pas de deux in Manon, so why this one at a mixed rep?

The Don Q pas de deux was the only gala-type excerpt on the list, with Paloma Herrera and Jose Manuel Carreno. She didn't look so into it last night, from the beginning some of the bits looked half done - accomplished but with little effort. Kitri needs to own the stage in this pas de deux and really show off - Herrera gave us pretty placement and gorgeously arched feet, but no feeling or pizazz. Carreno did what he could in the context. Despite the understated performance, Herrera's stillness does seem to indicate that her Aurora would be quite nice.

Rodeo ended the night and was charming and adorable, with Marian Butler the cowgirl. It's not one of my favorite ballets, but my heart warms to the story when I do end up watching.

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And the Manon pas de deux was the drunken Lescaut/Mistress duet from Act 2 - another bizarre, short excerpt with no context in excerpt. ... There are a bunch of other, much more interesting pas de deux in Manon, so why this one at a mixed rep?

Good question. I thoroughly enjoyed the performances of Manon at the Met season -- that is, except for this pas de deux, which I find to be a mildly amusing joke carried way too far. To take it out of context is to is to rob it of any humor it has, and otherwise I don't know what the point is.

But I look forward to any further reviews, Art!

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The opening night gala performance was worth the price I paid for my ticket. I enjoyed the dances. I liked it that the opening number (Symphonie) was more formal, and juxtaposed with a decidedly informal ending number (Rodeo). And it was great to end the evening with such an upbeat number!

Having said all that, I do agree with Art's comments the lack of contexts within the excerpts. Without more specific stage settings/props, I didn't even know that Corsaire was supposed to be a 'bedroom' PDD.

Symphonie was well danced by Michelle and Gillian; both were technically on the mark. But Michelle, though, wore the same smile that looked more like a grimace. And something about her movements betrayed some sort of strain. Gillian, on the other hand, had a more gliding feel to her dance, and her face was relaxed and radiant.

Manon, well, they did try to provide some comic relief after Corsaire. And Stella's expressions did convey her alternating puzzlement with her partner's drunken antics with her delight to have his company.

Don Q PDD was definitely gymnastic with both dancers' big turns and big jumps. Definitely show material...it reminds me of those dancesport shows public television airs every year. Paloma effortlessly danced her dance, and at the end of their number her aplomb and easy demeanor made it look as if what she did was 'really no big thing'.

I saved Rodeo for last, and it is my favorite segment in the entire concert, no matter what the other audience said after the show "The entire last part was garbage." It was refreshing to watch dancers unrestrained by pointe shoes and observe the pretty shapes and arches of their feet through their ballet slippers. And for once, I got to watch male ballet dancers with their pants on! Their hip movements though were a little on the effeminate side for me, considering these guys were supposed to portray ranch hands. And how 'bout that tap dance performed by Sascha? I just loved it...the man can tap dance!

Not bad for an opening night. I would be interested in watching more ABT opening nights for comparison.

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Did Herman danced in last night's SL?I hope he will be able to dance with Sarah this Sunday's SL. :beg:

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No, Sascha Radetsky danced Bluebird. Hopefully, he is playing it safe so he can dance on Sunday :beg: .

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Per the OC Register in Figurante's link, above:

"Herman Cornejo, as the loyal lieutenant Cassio, went too far and hurt his ankle. Cornejo was there for the opening scene in act two, and then, after exiting as he was supposed to, was not seen again. A new Cassio came on as Cornejo's replacement."

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oooh.. bummer. Well, at least the reviewed sentiment is somewhat cohesive throughout the country

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California is lucking out! Kent as Aurora (I bought a ticket in NY but Kent was injured), Part as Lilac Fairy and Sarah Lane as Aurora (I hope it happens).

Are there any eye witnesses out there?

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...Part as Lilac Fairy ...Are there any eye witnesses out there?

Yes, California, please send us reports! Why didn't they let her do this in NYC? A role so beautifully suited to her talent and temperament.

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I went Thurs. night. I'm at a loss for words. I will say this: even tho the fairy tale characters do nothing but enter and exit with a few dancing steps, Kelley Boyd stood out. Beautiful legs, strong style ... all that in just 2 minutes of dance.

I'm going again Sat. night. Kent!

Giannina

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Sorry, I haven't had a chance to post much, but I've been to all three performances so far... and I will likely end up at the rest of the run, too. I know - I'm completely nuts, but I'm really enjoying myself. The casting is just too intriguing, and having a full length Sleeping Beauty is revealing so much good about the ABT's principal women.

I don't think it's that bad of a production, despite the rather poor reviews (they've been nicer here than they have been in New York - the production has reportedly been revised for California). There are plenty of better productions, and it's a bit sad that a company of ABT's stature doesn't have one of the great ones, but I think it's a decent enough one that gives the dancers an opportunity to do a full Sleeping Beauty.

New York reviews made it out to be overstuffed and overthought - what showed up on stage in Orange County was actually a fairly straightforward Sleeping Beauty. Many of the strange production elements reported from New York have apparently been cut - no flying faires, the Prologue shower curtain has disappeared, the Prince doesn't hang perilously from a web in Act 2 anymore - he just gets stuck in it on ground level. Kirkland and McKenzie said in an article in the LA Times this past Sunday that they've tinkered with and trimmed a lot of the production. 9 minutes off Act 2, Kirkland said (the article is in the links section somewhere). Plot complications still exist in the program synopsis, but they are actually fairly easy to turn blinders to on stage: The King and Queen still leave the kingdom after Aurora goes to sleep, and the Queen still cries a river of tears - but on stage, it mostly just looks like they ended up on the wrong side of the drop curtain...

Performances-

Add me to the Veronika Part fan club after Thursday's Aurora - her Vision Scene variation took my breath away with its plushness and musicality. I was in awe. The rest of the performance... well she's not really a natural Aurora, being taller than most everyone on stage, including the Queen, and carrying herself in such a womanly fashion as she does (I can imagine that her Nikiya in La Bayadere would be/was fabulous, as would her Lilac Fairy in Beauty). And there were inconsistencies - she seemd to loose steam during the Act 1 variation, resorting to a tired, low flick of her leg at the end of the diagonal walk-on-pointe bit. But she's a great classicist, with a gorgeous, expressive back and legs that naturally slide into high positions - and a beautiful face that reads to the back of the auditorium. Her Aurora characterization and dancing were just fine, though again, she's a bit too tall and womanly. Those Rose Adagio balances that were the cause of much chatter in New York came off very well tonight, without wobbles, but she did have panicky arms that quickly and nervously switched between supporting princes. My god, though - just those 2 minutes in the vision scene - I was in love for the rest of the performance.

At Tuesday's opening night, Gillian Murphy provided a very different type of Aurora - one could say more American in demeanor and technique. While Part was all Russian and glamorous, Murphy was the amiable girl next door. Murphy moves like an American, neoclassical dancer - nimble, quicksilver feet and dancing thrusted forward by a strong desire to move fast. She has solid technique, so the Rose Adagio came off without a hitch. Her fantastic turning ability gave extra sparkle to pirouettes, and she had this amazing jump going on in the Act 1 coda: when Aurora first enters, she does this split-jump thing diagonally across the stage (please forgive my inability to speak in ballet language) - Murphy looked like she was bouncing across the stage on a trampoline. It was quite the effect. Her characterization, though, didn't change too much between the three different acts. One could say she's good enough at playing the girlish Aurora that she carried that through the performance, but Murphy really impressed on every technical level so it didn't detract too much.

Wednesday night, Dvorovenko was a very pretty Aurora - secure technically and a very nice performance (It's too bad I didn't write up her performance before tonight, because I'm still gushing about Part's vision scene right now...) It was definitely a contrast to the Tuesday night Murphy performance - it seems Dvorovenko more naturally fits into the Petipa classical nature of the Sleeping Beauty choreography than Murphy. Dvorovenko did look fantastic: The glamor girl persona that she uses for many of her roles actually worked very well for Act I Aurora, coming as a princess to her birthday party, and Dvorovenko is also very capable of turning on the mature form of glamour for the Act III grand pas de deux.

All of the Prince Desires were impressive in the new, virtuoso male choreography that was put into the production (McKenzie's choreography?). Marcelo Gomes, with Part on Thursday, was my favorite - he such a natural and easy stage presence, and his prince was strong and yet totally tender and loving. Maxim Beloserkovsky was every bit the handsome prince to Dvorovenko on Wednesday, and Ethan Stiefel added a boyish enthusiasm to his Tuesday night prince.

Florine/Bluebird combos: I enjoyed tonight's Maria Ricetto & Carlos Lopez pairing the best, for their clean and bright execution. Sarah Lane & Sascha Radetsky on opening night were good as well, though not as free flowing - Lane already has such a wonderful ballerina stage presence for someone so young, so her Aurora is on Sunday could be very interesting.

Lilac Fairies: Ricetto worked the best so far on Wednesday (Abrera was Tuesday, Wiles Thursday), but none have truly impressed me yet. They all danced graciously and expansively, but don't project as much generosity and authority as the Lilac fairy should.

Sets & costumes: I thought the sets were, well, big. They're attractive enough, though the color palette thinly straddles the line between colorful and garish. They are more cartoony than opulent, but they work okay. I was very disappointed in the costumes. The Act 1 costumes were very bland, and while the important costumes (Aurora, Lilac, etc) were fine, many of the ensemble costumes looked silly.

The choreography is a combination of Soviet and Western/British traditions of Sleeping Beauty stagings, keeping the good stuff from both and merging it when one or the other doesn't work. I liked that, in the Prologue, the corps fairies enter first to herald the arrival of the other fairies - like in Soviet productions - but then the main fairies and the Lilac Fairies enter on the musical cues that Tchaikovsky composed into the score - just like in Western productions (puzzlingly not in the Soviet productions). There was some question on the first ABT Sleeping Beauty thread about where the Vision Scene and Vision Variation came from - it's the Konstantin Sergeyev choreography for the 1952 Kirov production, lifted in full. No Ashton vision variation here.

Phew! I will report more as I see the remaining casts... very excited now to see Veronika Part's Lilac Fairy on Saturday afternoon - Herrera is tomorrow night.

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I attended SB on Wednesday evening.....I do not have time to write . However, I must tell you that I had tears in my eyes during the first 20 minutes. I was angry, unbelievably disappointed, and in utter shock that a company of this stature produced a classic reproduction in such disarray, disregarding the importance of the story line, tampering with traditional choreography badly, and spending huge amounts of money on costumes that were beyond my comprehension of historical place and time, not to mention a color pallet equal to ToysRUs. NEVER have I reacted this way to any top professional classical story ballet production(......although ABT's Nutcracker comes close)

Why Why Why......I kept asking myself. Atleast the lead couple, Aurora and her Prince, were given beautiful costumes and danced with aplomb. My condolences to the corps, the Fairies and the rest of the cast. My guest was so confused by the storyline presented that she kept asking me questions throughout. So much of the lovely magic of the Petipa version were tossed away and replaced with second rate staging and choreography. What a mess. :D

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I went to tuesday's opening evening. The review in the OC register was so nice and kind. I'd never seen ABT before live, only on video. My expectations were too high, evidently.

IMO, The show was awful, not the dancers, but the show. I've never seen such an un-classical sleeping beauty.

Gelsey Kirkland, was a show stopper.

The costumes are heinous, the fairy cavilers look like dragoonflys from Cinderella, how embarrassing to be a fairy caviler in that costume, they wear tunics I thought. The four courtiers of aurora, also just ridiculously overdone in design and color and texture. The fairy's looked as though they'd been picked out of a bag of skittles. The garland waltz costumes screamed expensive fabric, but the tones were over the top. I understood where they tried to go with the minions, but the costumes looked out place given the choreography, it was too much costume for such little movement.

The sets were amazing, the drop that opened, and the drop in the hunt to start act III were both simply amazing. Quality of the sets aside they were huge, way too big, it killed the dancing, there was no room.

The dancing was fine, the choreography reminded me of nutcracker, in that it wasnt demanding. I'm not familar with how ABT works It seemed to me as though the artistic staff choreographed the ballet trying to save their dancers for a 40 show tour. It was the simple things that really got me. One of the signature steps in the blue fairy's variaton (pardon for not knowing name) are the hops en pointe with the leg en lair traveling devant to derriere. She hopped to passe and placed the foot in tendu derriere. She did it 3 times, it made no sense to me, I thought it went to arabesque. I dont know if that was her choice or the artistic staffs.

I didnt realize that Sasha was also doing Rodeo last week so maybe, but not really, thats an excuse for his bluebird variation. He did the traditional sixes into double tour to arabesque on the right side then ran to center stage did some more sixes to a double tour and finished... left side? no... it was a 32 count variation max. Again who knows if that was his choice or artistic staff. His partnering wasn't flawless.

The corps dances in the first act were incredibly dry, some of the choreography was left unchanged from ABT's previous version (I just did a version this season that Jonas Kage lifted from his experiance at ABT and was surprised to see the exact same steps). I make a living doing corps work and when thats the case you tend to really look forward to things like garland waltz. Its some of the only continuous and legitimate dancing you do in a show like sleeping beauty. The corps wasn't given anything to work with, what a boring job.

The Hunt Scene in the third act was cut mercilessly, it was made totally perfunctory. They brought the blind fold out for 16 counts and didnt develop the plot around it, so unless you'd seen a previous version it would have carried no substantial meaning aside from filling the music. The women brought their whips on stage, and the choreography didn't allow them to be used well at all. A big hunted but plastic looking pig was brought on stage, it was totally perfunctory not woven into the story at all, just marched on and then held at center stage. In previous versions the corps will do a little character dancing in this scene, that was cut.

The divertissements were a joke, because there was only one! They brought out little red and the wolf, and created parts for cinderella and her prince, and then the bluebirds did their dancing. Its a sick joke, I was at the show with co-works and all we could say afterwards was how messed up would it have been to be those dancers when casting went up. You think you've finally landed a nice role until you get to rehearsal and realize you are just going to stand on the scenery during the entire act, they climbed up and stood on the scenery. I cant even put into words how dissapointing it is to see a sleeping beauty where the only divertissement is the bluebirds. Whats the point of setting up the whole freaking act when thats all the dancing that actually gets done?

Then they went into the apotheosis that contained choreography from one of ABT's previous versions of the ballet.

I could go on, but I'm getting tired. The point I'm trying to make is that they are all darn good dancers, no ones going to argue that. The principals and soloists looked good, even if their variations were simplified considering their amazing wealth of talent. The corps was incredibly underused, I couldnt imagine doing the job they had to do. I've never seen a full length ballet so boring for the corps, even the character dances were compromised. They tried to trim the ballet, and they took out all the dancing. It was entertainment, it looked expensive, it was an incredibly easy ballet for the company. Aside from the sets, it wasn't a classic rendition of a classic. There are reasons and conscious decisions made at every step of the way for everything that goes into make a new ballet. Its obvious to me that I'm just too far removed from the environment that ABT finds itself in to understand what frame of mind or where this ballet came from.

If I'd paid for my ticket, I honestly would have asked for a refund. I'm not kidding.

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Its obvious to me that I'm just too far removed from the environment that ABT finds itself in to understand what frame of mind or where this ballet came from.

Join the club. We have regular meetings.

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Sat. night. Tonight we had Julie Kent. Lordy! Now she wasn’t flawless. She looked a lot older than 16, and in many instances you could see strain on her face. But her face also showed radiant joy and happiness; she just beamed. Her dancing was majestic; by that I mean she was in complete control and had nothing to prove to anyone. She wasn’t flamboyant, she never over emphasized anything. She was mature, professional, experienced, exceptional, and everything was done perfectly. If she did a double pirouette she did it slowly, perfectly turned out, and stopped where she was supposed to stop. Her work in attitude derriere (I think that’s the term) was gorgeous. Her attitude d. is entirely different than Part’s, who was Aurora Thurs. night. Part’s knee is more bent and somewhat below her ankle; Kent’s leg is almost straight, well turned out, and a lovely line from hip to toe. I think that’s a matter of how one is trained, but I find Kent’s much more beautiful. Needless to say the Rose Adagio was sublime, and she ended it with a pose in attitude that went on forever. I think her only weak point was her jumps, and they weren’t all that bad.

Carreno was Prince Desire. He was quite good, and it’s obvious that he and Kent are perfectly in tune with each other. However, I preferred Gomes’s Prince Desire of Thurs. night. I’m not sure I’m using the correct term but he seemed more grounded. He’s a big man yet he dances as if he weighs nothing; his moves are massive and cover a lot of space.

I was reduced to tears (of joy, silly!) a couple of times tonight. One was in the wedding pdd when, at the end, Kent and Carreno do those backward jumps in arabesque. It was like looking in a mirror … they were in such perfect sync. Not only was it beautiful to watch but it was a manifestation of a long rewarding partnership.

Gelsey Kirkland was supposed to be Carabosse tonight but it was Martine Van Hamel, as it was Thurs. I was disappointed as I would have loved to see Kirkland do anything!

Saveliev and Abrera were Bluebird tonight; Lopez and Riccetto danced the part Thurs. Thurs. was better. For one thing, in that final diagonal duet passage Saveliev and Abrera were not together whereas Lopez and Riccetto nailed it and it was one of the best I’ve seen; Lopez and Riccetto were somewhat separated from each other rather than elbow to elbow, and their unison was magnified by their separation. Does that make sense?

The Puss ‘n’ Boots and Red Riding Hood segments are deleted, but the segment in which Catalabutte is punished for overlooking a spindle goes on forever; does it really merit all that attention while the fairy tale characters merit none?

Misty Copeland was the Fairy of Valor. This is the first time I’ve seen her and I was glad for the opportunity.

This is not my favorite production of SB, but Julie Kent can save anything.

Giannina

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I'm with Giannina on Julie Kent - she was great, and really came alive in that Grand Pas de deux at the end. What I especially loved about it was the way she and Carreno looked at each other and responded to each other. It was such a tender, loving relationship between ballerina and cavalier, and perfectly expressed the love that Aurora and the Prince are supposed to be sharing in that pas de deux. At the end of the Pas de deux, when Aurora bows on the floor before coming up for the final promenade, Kent really bowed to Carreno in respect - and when Carreno extended his hand to her, he seemd to say "no, it's you who I adore". I liked that moment a lot.

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I'm with Giannina on Julie Kent - she was great, and really came alive in that Grand Pas de deux at the end. What I especially loved about it was the way she and Carreno looked at each other and responded to each other. It was such a tender, loving relationship between ballerina and cavalier, and perfectly expressed the love that Aurora and the Prince are supposed to be sharing in that pas de deux. At the end of the Pas de deux, when Aurora bows on the floor before coming up for the final promenade, Kent really bowed to Carreno in respect - and when Carreno extended his hand to her, he seemd to say "no, it's you who I adore". I liked that moment a lot.

That's wonderful. I bought a ticket to see Kent in NY but she was injured. You've described what I expected to see. I wish I had the chance.

Did anyone see Cornejo/Lane? Did it really happen?

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Did anyone see Cornejo/Lane? Did it really happen?

It sure did - a very impressive debut from Sarah Lane as Aurora. She was Aurora in Act I, coming in as an excited young girl. Of course, she probably is an excited young girl herself so this wasn't much of a stretch, but still it was refreshing to see the character of Aurora on stage as well as the dancer. The Rose Adagio balances were very, very secure - so secure, in fact that in the last set of balances, she held the third one for an extended period of time without grabbing for the next prince. So she got her balance applause early. All of her dancing was very clean, very bright and very attractive. The only somewhat unsure part was the Grand Pas de Deux, which looked labored, but the variation afterwards was lovely. What impressed me the most about the performance was her stage presence - already at such a young age she knows how to command the stage and doesn't feel timid about using as much floor space as she'd like to so that she can dance expansively. A very promising debut, and I look forward to seeing her progress in this and other roles!

Cornejo did a great job as the prince. He sailed through the air in his jumps, and they were particularly high and impressive during the Act III Grand pas de deux variation. What I liked about it, though, was that he maintained his noble, princely elegance throughout, and it never became blatantly showy. The audience gasped, yes, but I appreciated that he found a way to work this into the character.

A great afternoon of ballet. I'm all Sleeping Beauty-ed out... I wish I didn't have to do marathons like this to see ABT's full company, but such is life in a touring city!

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Very jetlagged, (just returned today, have to fly out again for work conference tomorrow :tiphat:) but saw Friday's and Sunday's performances of ABT at OCPAC.

FRIDAY (Corella/Herrera/Abrera/C.Corella)

As has been noted above, there were several improvements in choreography from the NY/Met version (thank all dance gods above) to Act II's Hunt-into-Vision scene(s), and encounter with Carabosse later. But mechanical mishaps still occurred--Lilac's hippogryff boat got stuck, so no ride for Desire, and some quick improvs needed, and those gauzy capes for Prince & Princess' final coronation/wedding finale were also forgotten/MIA.

HUNT Sc.: Not so many reveries, no more mime of drinking the 'river of tears', just a shorter 'swoon' (nap?), and afterwards, no more endless swooping around the stage by Desire supported by the manly sextet, just one short lift. So everything moved a lot quicker, and made a little more sense.

CARABOSSE' death sc.: Desire quickly gets caught by the 'grubs' and thrown onto web, but is only stuck for a short time because...(maybe someone read my previous BT post?) Lilac appears benevolently above, Desire is quickly released from web with a wave of her wand, AND he then gets handed a SWORD with which he kills Carabosse! No more passive victim prince! And no more high-wire acts.

Angel Corrella, in Act II at least, danced with his usual ballon, grace, and seamless fluidity. Besides speed, his jumps always have more of a 'floating' than 'power' quality, and such a light touch in between or soft landing, it's hard to catch the prep or recovery. And of course, no one can match his full use of epaulement and extension of line.

Can't say the same about Act III's GPdd variation which had its ups and downs. Though smooth and secure in Pas and noted interaction with his Princess, the variation's high thrilling tours, tight brises, and perfect fifths (expected please) near end had v. careless (dare I say sloppy?) footwork. (I wondered if jetlag had surfaced, but there was also mention of a smaller stage causing cramped quarters? Still, I don't think that's excuse enough.) The partnering was smooth, but again near the end, evident in spots: e.g. the fishdives were thrilling, but 3rd was a little tricky in placement though catch was ok. Of course with all that experience behind them, the acting/interaction between both partners was fine if not ecstatic. Overall, I thought Paloma was the better performer this night with her sure balances, sweet smile, generosity to partner and supporting cast, and overall strong technique that still retained an expressive grace.

SUNDAY mat.:

Oh my, what it is to have been at the debut of a star. I almost didn't make Sunday's performance--it was "Sold Out" and I was in standby line, and not sure I'd have to leave early to make flight home. But not only did I stay for the complete performance, I serendipitously ended up sitting near S.Lane's family and Kevin McKenzie. What a debut!! To use that overused, but in this case so apt, word: She was RADIANT!! You could feel that expressive glow in her every gesture, phrasing, and so beautiful and sure use of classical style. How appropos that the excitement, happiness, and satisfaction of secure and unafraid dancing was mirrored by dancer and character, and ultimately acknowledged by a rapt audience. They weren't the only ones shouting "brava" after the Rose Adagio, Mr. McKenzie added his too. (NOTE TO ABT: Please do something about pyrotechnics/fog afterFX obscuring clear views of stage during Rose Adagio!!! This is unforgiveable. I thought it was only a problem for those seated above, but even in Orchestra seating it was still noticeable and annoying.)

My only other complaint was that the pacing of the music throughout was almost glacial in its slowness! (I kept thinking of Makarova's white swan; too many Giselles; or wondering if Corella's speed on Friday, had affected my later perception?) but good for Lane's long balances. I also noted her shoes--very square box, and although almost knuckled over at times, still strongly held. What a night! I am SO happy for her, her family, and all those at ABT and elsewhere who will have the chance to follow her career now after this so impressive performance.

Herman Cornejo was also in very fine form, and mostly recovered from his injury earlier that week. He always danced perfectly clean, and his signature leaps still brought gasps (versus Corella's cheers). If his circle of jete entournants didn't have the height of Corella, they were still quick and smooth. No problems in variations' tours, fifths, or footwork. He was very elegant as the Prince, and managed the Act II reveries much more logically than many. His partnering was there for Sarah, but not overly evident. Grand Pas, was a little more precarious in spots or more thoughtful, but probably not evident to those seated further up or back.

And last but not least, I finally saw Gelsey perform after 25 years! And so lucky to see her Carabosse.

A standing ovation immediatly for all at the end. I was VERY sorry, I had to run after only one curtain call to make that flight out of LAX, for I truly appreciated the chance to see this performance.

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All of these reports are so very much appreciated. It's a relief to hear that substantive changes have been made to the S.B. production and that they appear to be improvements. Thank you so much, 4mrdncer, for the report of Lane's debut. I started to tear up thinking how excited the dancers, the audience and her relatives must have been. Let's hope that her brilliance opens the door a crack for other under-utilized talent. However, we really should write a new rule that these kinds of performances may not happen on the road.

So, they really got rid of the shower curtain?

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Yes, what a heartening report, 4mr. And I hope we get more changes before the production reaches New York again.

However, we really should write a new rule that these kinds of performances may not happen on the road.
I'm not sure, with younger dancers, whether it is better to debut in major roles in the pressure cooker that is New York. The stress of the occasion is intense enough. If a different venue can diffuse the intensity just a bit, I am willing to forgo the thrill of Being There.

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All of these reports are so very much appreciated. It's a relief to hear that substantive changes have been made to the S.B. production and that they appear to be improvements. Thank you so much, 4mrdncer, for the report of Lane's debut. I started to tear up thinking how excited the dancers, the audience and her relatives must have been. Let's hope that her brilliance opens the door a crack for other under-utilized talent. However, we really should write a new rule that these kinds of performances may not happen on the road.

So, they really got rid of the shower curtain?

Amen to all of that. I thank everyone so much for reporting from CA. This board is the best!

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