Natalia

Kirov Raymonda w/ Kolpakova FINALLY on DVD!

47 posts in this topic

I hope to read more opinions as the DVD's get delivered.

I hope to hear from other viewers too. But Helene, special thanks for giving us a report so soon after you got your disc!

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Wow, I'm glad that it's on its way to our mailboxes and that Helene and others have actually received it.

I got the same 'further postponement' notice as Cliff received and thought to myself, 'This is the last time that I believe Kultur's promises for release." Hopefully, they won't 'bait' us like this in the future -- promising something in time for the holidays, only to postpone release time and time again. Most frustrating. But at least it's now finally on its way. Hurrah!

I'm only sorry that I got everyone's hopes up by starting this thread, by citing the original release-date. I had no way of knowing what a 'delay-bomb' this would turn out to be. Sorry, everyone.

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It's a VAI release.

I would not be surprised if this was an industry issue, with smaller runs being knocked off the presses for restocks of blockbusters that were big holiday buys. I received the same notices for the Met Opera DVD's, which were released on Decca.

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Thanks for that, Helene. VAI. Hmmm...wasn't that the company that issued the Jacques D'Amboise DVD that also experienced many delays with issuance following the original announcement? It was worth the wait.

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The DVD is now listed on VAI's website. And Amazon has shipped mine :thanks: Hopefully we'll all have ours soon.

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I just got mine and will watch it, I hope, tonight. If I'm remembering correctly from the VHS tape I saw a long time ago, one of the "friends" is Olga Iskanderova - I'll let you know what I think/see later.

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Mine just came, too. I see that Ludmilla Kovaleva -- now a famous teacher at Vaganova Academy...Vishneva et al -- is one of the two Dream soloists.

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the NYPL dance coll. cat. lists its off-the-air? initial telecast/recording as follows:

Raymonda 1980. 135 min. : sd. color

Notes :Telecast by BBC II-TV, London on June 29, 1980 as part of their Dance Month 1980 series. A presentation of Soviet television Recorded during a performance at the Kirov Theatre, Leningrad. Hosted by John Drummond.

:Choreography: Konstantin Sergeev after Marius Petipa. Music: Aleksandr Glazunov. Scenery: Suliko Virsaladze.

:Performed by the Kirov Ballet Company. Cast: Irina Kolpakova (Raymonda), Sergei Berezhnoi (Jean de Brienne), Gennadi Seliutskii, (Abderahman), Angelina Kabarova, Yuri Potemkin, Alexander Marveev, Nina Soldun, Olga Iskanderova, Valentin Onoshko, Vitali Afanaskov, Nina Sahnovskaya, Ludmilla Kovalova, Alisa Strogaya, Murat Kumisnikov, Irina Gensler, Nikolai Ostaltzov, Anelina Kashirina, Vladimir Popuhov, Evgenia Ipatova, Vladimir Kolesnikov, Ol'ga Vtarushina, and members of the company.

re: visaladze - the credits for the remastered SPARTAK presented at this year's 'dance on camera' festival spell his name in cyrillic w/ the letter 'e' (or 'ye') as the first vowel. i trust this is an error on the filmmakers' part? surely if his name were spelled that way it would be transliterated as VERSALADZE rather than VIRSALADZE?

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The Kolpatkova/Berezhnoi "Sleeping Beauty" DVD (Kultur) has extensive credits, down to the gamekeeper. From there, I found the following overlaps:

Queen: Angelina Kabarova, and I'm assuming she's playing the Queen in "Raymonda" as well

Catalabutte: Gennadi Selyutski, who dances Abderakhman (both named)

Canari and Golden Fairy: Olga Iskanderova. I didn't think the Golden Fairy and Canari looked like the same dancer, and I would have matched each to a different friend. (Maybe I need new eyeglasses.)

Violente: Olga Vtarushina.

I didn't see any of the other women in the "Raymonda" listing in "Sleeping Beauty."

I loved both of the women in the dream sequence. The only solo I didn't like was the second soloist in Act II. I think that her solo is better than Raymonda's solo (which follows it), but that the dancer's phrasing was awkward.

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Here is the full detailed casting on this Raymonda, from my sister-in-law in St. Petersburg:

Raymonda – Irina Kolpakova

Jean de Brienne – Sergei Berezhnoi

Abderakhman – Gennadi Selyutsky

Countess Sybill – Angelina Kabarova

Rene de Brienne – Yuri Potempkin

Herald – Alexander Matveev

Henriette (does 1st var., Act II) – Olga Iskanderova

Clemence (2nd var, Act II) – Nina Soldun

Bernard – Valentin Onoshko

Beranger – Vitaly Afanaskov

Dream Variation 1 – Nina Sakhnovskaya

Dream Variation 2 – Ludmilla Kovalova

Saracen dance leads – Aliza Strogaya & Murat Ramisnikov

Panaderos (Spanish dance) leads – Irina Gensler & Nikolai Ostalsov

Mazurka leads – Anelina Kashirina & Vladimir Lopukhov

Csardas leads – Evgenia Ipatova & Vladimir Kolesnikov

Act III solo variation – Olga Vtorushina

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Thank you, Natalia, and thanks to your sis-in-law.

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I took my time watching it--one act at a time over a few days--trying to let what I saw sink in. I came away disappointed. Many years ago (1946) I saw the Balanchine/Danilova version and was always pretty much dismissive of it.--the ballet, not the performers. At that time, most audiences were not receptive to the 'antique' ballets. We had yet to see the full Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty. The only 'long' ballets around were 'Giselle' and a 2-act Nutcracker. Since that time I have seen most of the Raymondas in the theatre or on tape, and I have come to the conclusion that I was much too harsh on that first version I saw.---the costumes and scenery were by Benois, and they make the Kirov scenery (A-g-gh! those awful drapes) and that silly feather on Kolpakova's head......What really has me 'venting' now is the performance of Kolpakova. To be sure, she is a charming dancer and does indeed have beautiful port-de-bras. The 'pas Hongrois' is my favorite variation, one which I always look forward to. I really could not believe what I saw---flapping hands, and broad Pepsodent smiles. If you are still reading this, bear with me for a moment while I go into a "you-should-have-seen" mold. Alexandra Danilova--that was a Raymonda. She was mysterious, and had a sphinx-like 'above-it-all' demeanor--and those gorgeous legs in the bourrees and the quick passe-releves was really something to see. Today, I am grateful to have seen Ananiashvilli.

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I consider it my duty to counter the previous post. Sure, the Kirov production is pretty dowdy and Kolpakova's hat in the last act is funny (so is some of Olga Iskanderova's overexcited dancing), but......the tone of the ballet is mostly enthralling and matches Glazunov's score wonderfully. In Act One, the sequence of the "Romanesca" pas de quatre for Raymonda's friends in heeled shoes followed by her dreamy solo with the scarf....fantastic. And Kolpakova? What I see in her performance is the epitome of Petipa classicism -- she never hurries, tenses or worries, just serenely and beautifully offers the choreography with supreme confidence and clarity. I haven't seen much dancing that surpasses her "Vision Scene" adagio for floating ease and grandeur. And to think she was 47 at the time....amazing. She doesn't try to be mysterious and Hungarian in that last variation; she doesn't have to. She's the same beacon of beauty she has been all along. I urge anyone interested in the Maryinsky, in Raymonda and in classical dancing to see this DVD.

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Now it's clear I got all of the women mixed up. Many, many thanks Natalia, for posting the cast list :clapping:

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I consider it my duty to counter the previous post. Sure, the Kirov production is pretty dowdy and Kolpakova's hat in the last act is funny (so is some of Olga Iskanderova's overexcited dancing), but......the tone of the ballet is mostly enthralling and matches Glazunov's score wonderfully. In Act One, the sequence of the "Romanesca" pas de quatre for Raymonda's friends in heeled shoes followed by her dreamy solo with the scarf....fantastic. And Kolpakova? What I see in her performance is the epitome of Petipa classicism -- she never hurries, tenses or worries, just serenely and beautifully offers the choreography with supreme confidence and clarity. I haven't seen much dancing that surpasses her "Vision Scene" adagio for floating ease and grandeur. And to think she was 47 at the time....amazing. She doesn't try to be mysterious and Hungarian in that last variation; she doesn't have to. She's the same beacon of beauty she has been all along. I urge anyone interested in the Maryinsky, in Raymonda and in classical dancing to see this DVD.

I totally concur with you. I received the dvd yesterday and my impression is that this is indeed a collector's item.

I just don't know where to begin. Irina Alexandrovna was in a word - flawless. Acts 1 - 3 were a revelation on all fronts and by all participants. In contrast, on the Bolshoi tape, Semenyaka's interpretation was more extroverted and coquettish with a flourish. But Kolpakova's Raymonda was a choreographic recitation of Glazunov's score. This is 'bel canto' master dancing.

Variation 1 - Irina's entrance and 1st variation were crystal clear, her classical purity and authority beyond compare.

Variation 2 - the scarf variation: Poetry in motion.

The Dream pdd - I shed tears of joy!

Variation 3 - Irina had total control of her body in the center work of this variation; and her transition to the coda was effortless. Her transitions to every coda in this performance were effortless.

Variation 4 - Semenyaka alternated her hops en pointe, many ballerinas do. Irina executed these without alternating, and by delivering one lightening entrechat with each hop en pointe in the diagonal down to stage left.

Variation 5 - She danced this to Glazunov's original tempo, (for once), and didn't slow it down to a 'beat' where it would

make Makarova look at her watch. The bourrees were each identical fine diamonds, crisp and skimming the stage. Her

caractere port de bras was Magyar and exemplary. As for "flapping" hands, Sylvie Guillem was the extreme anti-thesis;

she began this variation as if she were lighting a match.

I think that the Bolshoi's duel scene in Act 2 is more violent, more cinematic and more convincing than this version.

I laughed out loud when Abderakman knocked Jeanne's helmet off of his head. At least the costume design dictates

that it look like a knight's helmet, and not the white plumed silver samovar that the Bolshoi Jeannes wear. A+++ to

the Maryinsky's 1980 ensemble! :). As far as the scenery and costumes are concerned not to worry; I saw the current staging last year and thankfully, it's been upgraded :D . However, in the Apotheose, Raymonda and Jeanne ride off into the sunset on what looks like two baby dinosaurs. These are supposed to be horses in full armor, but even the Budweiser Clydesdales aren't as big as these moving props at the end of the ballet. I adore the beautiful lift that we first see in the Dream sequence before the waltz and pdd, and at the end of the ballet. I hope they reinstate this lift at the end for New York.

The Music Corner

Shirokov conducted the score beautifully, and put the music under their feet.

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....

I totally concur with you. I received the dvd yesterday and my impression is that this is indeed a collector's item.....

You can add me to the 'thumbs up' group! Kolpakova is extremely pure and classical. What a joy to finally see this performance on a clear, sharp DVD with music and visuals synchronized! This is a benchmark performance, no doubt. I've seen Makhalina, Vishneva, Lopatkina and others in this very production. As much as I love the newer ballerinas, they are all topped by Kolpakova's purity...although Lopatkina's Ice-Princess delivery of the clapping solo is pretty special. :)

I had to laugh while reading Cygnet's note about the dino-horses in Mariinsky version. I don't recall seeing them recently at the Mariinsky; instead, Jean carries Raymonda across the back of the stage in that tough-looking low lift that was seen earlier. If you want to see horses... POB wins the prize for the biggest & fastest-moving Raymonda "horses on wheels" -- in the duel scene, which becomes a joust between Jean and Abdelrakhman. I wonder if anyone has ever fallen off those lovelies during performance? It's possible, as fast as they move.

p.s. NYC will see the infamous feather-topped cap on Raymonda this April, when the Kirov presents Act III as part of Program One.

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p.s. NYC will see the infamous feather-topped cap on Raymonda this April, when the Kirov presents Act III as part of Program One.

Oh, I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

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In the Bolshoi version, Jean de Brienne appears immediately in the first scene, and he and Raymonda dance together, clearly as an involved couple. Tutus and pointe shoes are prominent. Abderakhman appears first in Raymonda's dream in the second scene. In the Mariinsky version, Abderakhman is introduced to Raymonda and the court in the first scene; Jean de Brienne appears in that scene on a tapestry. His first live appearance is during the dream sequence, and the dancing between them is formal and serene. The women in the first scene wear long dresses and dance in heeled shoes.

I hope to read more opinions as the DVD's get delivered. I hope, too, that someone here recognizes the dancers who portray Clemence and Henrietta. One dancer is a little shorter and more muscular than the other*, but I have no idea who they are.

It's funny, when I first had only seen the Bolshoi Semenyaka version I didn't even know who Henriette was--all the other girls just kinda blended together for me--I didn't realize it was a major character.

As for the changes you mention--the Marrinsky version (though I think it's been edited--it's shorter than the Bolshoi one anyway) is closer plot wise to the original production--having a portrait of Jean, Abderakhman introduced in the opening scene, the court ladies in "real" shoes, etc.

I have a 1980s book called "The Authorised Bolshoi Ballet Book of Raymonda" (I also have Sleeping Beauty in the series--I found them by chance used but I imagine they have ones for a bunch of the major ballets) and it's a great reference though the translation from the Russian is sometimes laughably awkward and all the pimping of everything Soviet as the Best gets a bit tiresome. Grigorovich goes into a LOT of description about all the past Bolshoi versions, and why he ddi the changes he did and the book repeatedly says (as it did about his Sleeping Beauty in that book) that this is by far now the best production of the ballet in the world. Still it's a fascinating book with gorgeous imagery and there are things I like more in the Bolshoi production (I love that they still use the White Lady who is in the original production but I seem to remember is gone from the Kirov--although why they don't use her in the duel scene where she causes Jean's victory--and you briefly even hear her music theme--is beyond me--however I've heard that the White Lady is no longer in the version the Bolshoi does).

I do think it was smart of Grigorovich to have Jean enter in Act I and establish a relationship with Raymonda.

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Ok, Natasha, you convinced me...

Just ordered the DVD...(Oh, God...that credit card... :) )

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HAHAH it's a danger... I *never* see ballet DVDs I want in the stores, but of course online thanks to Amazon it's too easy. Let us knwo what you think of it when you get it!

Updated to add that I got the DVD and it's phenomenal--even with the dated quality I'm so thankful to have this great performance. I mentioned on another board that the audio/visual synch seemed a bit off--one example was at around the 1 hour, 20 minute, 48 seconds mark, Aberakham's clapping sound happened a split second before he clapped-- I was told on another forum that perhaps I had a badly synched bootlegs as there had been rumours of such, even though mine seemed fine I got another edition from Amazon and it has the same slight problem. Anyone else notice it? I assume it just comes from such old and maybe not well kept source material, and the transfer between during formats (for example at 1:40:46 or so there's a sudden jump in the music that doesn't sound like it was done in the orchestra)

Still I feel foolish complaining about such a wonderful performance--i knew Kolpakova would be wonderful but wasn't quite ready for how PERFECT the corps are.

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I just rewatched this DVD--needed a Raymonda fix and one thing I never noticed before, is the synch between sound and visual seems off in certain parts--briefly. In Act II there's one time when Abderakman claps for his entourage and you hear the claps LATER (similarly during the sword fight the sword sounds sometimes seem off, but I *think* this may be someone in the orchestra pit helping make the sounds and being off). A few times the video "skips" a bit which seems to be a way to get it back in synch--and for the most part it appears to be perfectly in synch. Could this be somethign done when converting from PAL to NTSC? Or something else? Anyone else notice? (some of the Hungarian dances ankle clicks are off too but most are on....)

ANYWAY that detail aside--and I make it sound like it happens more often than it does--it was great to see. Lately, I've been watching and reading much more about the Bolshoi staging, so it's interesting to go back to the Kirov now. It certainly seems less grand (it's funny how even the Kirov stage which is massive looks a bit small after the Bolshoi), and Grigorovich did improve the stuff with Aberakham dramatically in his staging--but there's much I prefer about the Kirov's, and even with no White Lady missing they seem to have kept details I imagine are in the original staging that the Bolshoi dropped (little bits of mime with the letter, the tapestry, etc, the entr'acte before the dream with a much more elaborate set, the knights/cavaliers for some of the corps in the dream, the boy pages, the famous Raymonda entrance scooping up the roses). A treasure to have.

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The Kolpatkova/Berezhnoi "Sleeping Beauty" DVD (Kultur) has extensive credits, down to the gamekeeper. From there, I found the following overlaps:

Queen: Angelina Kabarova, and I'm assuming she's playing the Queen in "Raymonda" as well

Catalabutte: Gennadi Selyutski, who dances Abderakhman (both named)

Canari and Golden Fairy: Olga Iskanderova. I didn't think the Golden Fairy and Canari looked like the same dancer, and I would have matched each to a different friend. (Maybe I need new eyeglasses.)

Violente: Olga Vtarushina.

I didn't see any of the other women in the "Raymonda" listing in "Sleeping Beauty."

I loved both of the women in the dream sequence. The only solo I didn't like was the second soloist in Act II. I think that her solo is better than Raymonda's solo (which follows it), but that the dancer's phrasing was awkward.

Yes, the credits on that sleeping beauty production starring kolpakova and berezhnoi are wrong:

Canari fairy: Olga Vtorushina

Violente: Olga Iskanderova

Also are mistakes in Act III fairies names:

Gold fairy: Natalya Spitsina

Silver fairy :Natalya Apodiakos

Sapphire fairy: Olga Iskanderova

Diamond fairy: Gabriella Komleva (this one is correct)

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