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Flexibility in choreography


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#16 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 23 January 2008 - 09:19 PM

what kind of audience does Miami City Ballet get down there?

In Miami, 90 % of the public are socialites with little or none interest in ballet...lots of furs and diamonds and pictures taken during the intermezzos for the social section of local newspapers...

#17 Klavier

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Posted 25 January 2008 - 08:37 AM

There's a big difference in "early music" and "pre-classic dance". In the former, the notation is relatively like the modern version of it, but in dance, the notations are highly subjective, and not very comprehensive, often just showing where the feet go, and the rest of the body has to look out for itself, deriving explanations by general rules laid out in text, or the all-too-rare pictorial cut.



The whole issue of historical performance of music (and the music that is affected goes back through the medieval period through at least the early 19th century) is extremely controversial, with extreme opinions varying from the idea that this music must only be performed on early instruments in accordance with the best research on early performance style, to the contrasting idea that it is impossible to recover an accurate understanding of how this music was performed and to attempt to do so is to jettison performance practices that have emerged from the later 19th century onwards. And all kinds of positions in between.

For example, there have been decades of notable performances of Beethoven symphonies recorded in the early 20th century by conductors like Toscanini, Furtwängler, Szell, Walter, Klemperer, et al., all on modern instruments and, despite many differences among them, relying on accumulated traditions of phrasing and tempo that have been passed down since the mid 19th century. And then there are the newer crowd of conductors like Gardiner and Harnoncourt who use period instruments and who often adopt the metronome markings Beethoven entered that many older conductors considered impossibly fast. Another notable controversy has to deal with the size of the choir to be used in performing Bach. No one any more will use the enormous choirs associated with Victorian performances of Handel's Messiah. But howls have greeted recent suggestions by certain historically influenced (or HIP) performers who are now suggesting the use of one voice per part for Bach's cantatas and masses. All sorts of other controversies center around tempo, ornamentation, instrumentation, vocal production, and phrasing.

So while the notation of music is doubtless more exact than that for ballet, there are numerous open questions, and even those who recognize that Bach was performed a certain way in his lifetime will ask: "Do we perform the St. Matthew Passion the way Bach would have wanted it, or do we reproduce the conditions he had to settle for?"

#18 innopac

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Posted 25 January 2008 - 11:28 AM

The whole issue of historical performance of music (and the music that is affected goes back through the medieval period through at least the early 19th century) is extremely controversial, with extreme opinions varying from the idea that this music must only be performed on early instruments in accordance with the best research on early performance style, to the contrasting idea that it is impossible to recover an accurate understanding of how this music was performed and to attempt to do so is to jettison performance practices that have emerged from the later 19th century onwards. And all kinds of positions in between.


Thank you Klavier. What I am wondering is if that same level of discussion of "historical performance", "performance practice" and "authenticity" exists in the world of ballet?


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