Miami City Ballet All-Balanchine (Program III)

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“Pas DE Dix” and “Bouree Fantasque” coming next…

I need to apologize for my delayed posts on Program III, but when in Pediatric finals, i had to get over the temptation to be nearby the computer and Ballettalk...i go out and study in the Public Library...

"Pas de Dix". Saturday March 1/08

PDD was also a first timer for me. Somehow i knew that this was going to be fine within my sometimes not to broad taste spectrum, due to its XIX Century feeling being one of Balanchine's three treatments of beautiful Glazunov's "Raymonda" themes . Again, curtains rose and there were the couples , the female dancers richly costumed with tutus by Haydee Morales after Karinska against a simple backdrop implying Ballroom environment. (I'm loving Morales' sense of tradition, bravo Haydee! :( ) This time Deanna Seay (I missed Catoya on the role, Jack! :mad: )and Rolando Sarabia were the white-clad soloists showing some precision work, much of it for Seay en pointe. It appeared to me that there was a dropped pointe derrière kick in one of the later sections; I've notice , however, that Balanchine's choreographies (at least what I've seen so far) are tricky and many times purposely off beats and off balances , so that it may be the viewer,(me and my too critical eye this case, even not being able to do a miserable plie myself) rather than the dancer, who’s off balance. Done with some demanding solos for the eight-dancer corps, as well, PDD was another easily-passed test of stamina for Eddies' troupe.

The Dancers

Ms.Seay, a beautiful proportioned Principal ballerina, looked perfectly at home in her role . Being already 10 years as a Principal with MCB, she really stood out there with the sparkle and clarity of her dancing and with the lovely resiliency of her pointwork. (Again, the earlier technical observation maybe occurred only in my head...IDK). There was an appealingly sensual feeling on her solo variation and she really filled the stage with her radiance and apparent joy in dancing, though there were moments when her extensions to the back needed to be cleaner and more daring.

Her partner this time was my all time favorite Sarabita (aka Rolando Sarabia). Sarabita, as usual, as always , as just what i expected , was a standout with his perfectly projected "Danseur Noble" manners, his attentive dancing service to his ballerina and his always impeccable pirouettes and slowed down perfect endings . With no doubt, as he ages, even lacking his early years extreme flamboyancy , he has acquired a calm air that perfectly supports his clear classical technique and a style noticable for its confidence and airiness (even carrying a rather built up physique, as somebody mentioned earlier).

Note: I loved the chemistry between Seay and Sarabia. Both are experienced dancers who really know how to "get you" without struggling with extensions up to ears (in her case) . As for him, i just pray that he gets casted in Swan Lake next season... :beg:

The other four couples were Zoe Zien and Ezra Hurwitz, Jennifer Lauren and Daniel Baker, Kyra Homeres and Michael Breeden and Leigh Ann Esty and Daniel Sarabia, (Rolando's brother). I really need to mention them because they were perfectly coupled, and they were all smiles and joy through the whole ballet. Again, my reverence to Juan Francisco LaManna and his Opus One Orchestra with its magnificent interpretation of the Glazunov's music. The hungarian spirit was at ita full blast.

Bravo again, Eddie! :bow:

I am assuming you saw Neil Marshall as "Elegie Boy" not Dark Angel (who is a woman) as you had referred to him. I understand there was a discrepancy earlier in this thread as to the correct name for this role.

Oops! :blush: , yes, thank you for the observation. I just saw the clarifying post...

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Thank you cubanmiamiboy, I enjoyed reading that (and the other reviews in this thread, of course). :wub:

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I'm glad that Seay and Sarabia worked so well together. Your comments Sarabia's style are very helpful. I've noticed the strange balance between calm, confident solidity as a partner and the ability to release suddenly into light leaps and airborne turns (with soft, beautiful landings). I'm glad you got to see him when he was very young and can give us an insight on the changes (and deepening?) with time.

Looking forward to hearing what you thought about the truly unfamiliar ballet in the program: Bourree Fantasque.

:angel_not: I know we have a number of MCB fans on BT. Was anyone else at the Miami performances? What were your reactions and thoughts?

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Bouree Fantasque was a great closer to the program. Everything from the costumes, to the music and dancer's energy made it a great ending to the program. As Edward said in his talk, he is surprised that it is not performed anymore. I would love to see it again! Ditto on cubanmiamiboy's comments above about the Miami performances.

Does anyone know where to get the ballet music of Bouree Fantasque by Emmanuel Chabrier? I have tried Itunes (not usually a great source for ballet music) and Borders. Any ideas?

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I haven't noticed a recording of exactly that music, as a ballet suite, but I believe the pieces, all by Chabrier, are the Joyeuse Marche , Bourree Fantasque, Prelude [or Overture] to Gwendoline, and Fete Polonaise. I've never heard a recording of the Gwendoline Prelude, but I haven't looked for a while either. (I'd like to have this music to see what memories of the ballet it brings back. Is that perhaps also your strategy?)

There was a really superb 1965 recording by Ansermet and his Geneva orchestra (L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande) of the first and last pieces on the London label (currently listed as 433720 at; he got the fragments tossed wittily around the orchestra in the first part of the March clearly presented in continuous phrases, for example. There's also a 1987 recording by Michel Plasson with the Toulouse orchestra which is much less clear, both as to recording and performance, but it has the three fast movements. John Eliot Gardiner has also recorded some of this music, but I find his conducting rather crude, sometimes to the point of violent.

I'm even less of a Paul Paray fan, but his CD has all four pieces, according to the photo of the cover on (The NYCB site says otherwise, incidentally; too bad.) You could click on the ad at the top of the page, and BT will get a little payment. (There are some other recordings by artists I have never heard, or even heard of, so I can't comment on them.)

Edited by Jack Reed

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“Pas de Dix” and “Bouree Fantasque” coming next…

My usual appologies for being delayed...School, always school...but here it goes.

Bourree Fantasque

When i was reviewing all the discussions on the"Bourree Fantasque" revival by MCB, I thought that all the amply discussed formula of this ballet about inverting conventional ballet style would appeared too "Unconventional", specially within Miami's audience. (I always think that newyorkers have the bennefit of Balanchine's tradition on these matters, they've seen all this works before, so they can relate, compare and understand better). But against the odds, i think Eddie's troupe succeeded because, with no pretentions, they basically succeded in capturing the humor of the first movement, with its tall girl-short boy duet and more important, the right neo-romantic perfume on the second, even the dancers not being too experienced in the Romantic Ballets . As some said earlier, however, a ballet created in 1949 for the New York City Ballet cannot be danced in the same way by Miami City Ballet in 2008 , but still, such a ballet created by such a genius, like water, found its own level. Thus, the miamian ''Bourree,'' did work. The present casts add their own touches but , as some reviewers has confirmed, still remain faithful to the original choreography.


The opening duet played off the now well known and amply discussed discrepancy between a tall girl and a short boy. The short boy on Saturday 1 night performance was Corps de Ballet member Alexandre Dufaur, and he was charming: cleverly athletic and full of self-deprecating good humor. His partner that night was Soloist Andrea Spiridonakus, who handled the flashing footwork admirably. However, on Sunday2, Corps de Ballet member Allyne Noelle and Soloist Alex Wong (everyone's but me new favorite, as i observed) played down the tall-girl, short-boy comedy aspect more convincing , bringing out a new playful quality.Noelle equaled Spiridonakus technically and turned out to have a real gift for comedy, (i still remember her well done portray of the "pin up girl" from Rubies whe they did Jewels). She just beamed with personality , being a delightful surprise as a delicious coquette with her twirling fan and flexed feet. Wong, who is way more appropiate on this role and who often gets misscast, overdid a bit in the mock-stumbles but turned into a convincing lovesick suitor.


This was my favorite movement. It was sooo romantic. Much of Balanchine's movement themes keep the dancers in ballet's second position, feet apart and oftenflexed for comic effect. In this romantic section, eight women stand bowed in second position, feet apart, and then rotate their torsos and arms upward. Like Degas's ballet girls come to life, and like hands on a clock, they signal the duration of a questing episode.Principal Patricia Delgado,poised and virtuosic, seemed to

be longing for destiny and found it briefly in the person of Soloist Yang Zou . She danced mysteriously andwith power..Zou was her secure partner, althought i would loved to have seen Principal Carlos Guerra on the part. On Sunday they repeated the cast, perfectly fine .They danced prettily and precisely ; it would be very interesting to see Delgado in a wider range of roles.


This last section was led just as correctly with merry bravura.The final couple on Saturday was all fire, with super energetic Principal Tricia Albertson, (my favorite Rubies leading lady) and Soloist Daniel Sarabia, (the promising Sarabita's brother) ,who handily held their own . On Sunday it was Corps de Ballet Daniel Baker who was visibly enjoying himself despite all the difficult one-arm lifts,(for a moment i sensed an almost dropping during a fish dive, which didn't happened thank God) and Principal Soloist Jeanette Delgado (my praised Princess Florine during the past AW), who came out of her customary well-behaved shell and filled the space around her with bold breathtaking projection.


Dancing under glowing John Hall's lights, Eddie's troupe joyfully danced to the threepieces, all united by beautiful Chaubrier score offered by great La Manna's Opus OneOrchestra. This 1949 work was presented with its humor and dynamism, dignifyied without being overdone. Laughs were heard here and there, and the difficult choreography with rapid footwork en pointe was donewith brio and joy. MCB's dancers totally met the challenge. For a moment i really didn't know where to look at, specially by the finale, with all the complicated choreographic patterns being delivered at the same time by everyone. Now i really have to mention the rest of the names for BF:

1st Movement: Elice Mckinley, Rebecca King, Amir Yogev, Jennifer Lauren, Cindy Huang, Ezra Hurwithz, Ashley Knox, Leigh ann Esty, Michael Breeden, Ruiz, Sara Esty and Daniel Baker

2nd Movement-D'Addario and Tiffany Hedman, Talcot and Maira Barriga, Dlizabeth Smedley, Christie Sciturro, Katie Gibson, Lisa Reneau

3rd Movement-Kyra Homeres, Zherlin Ndudi, Zoe Zien, Marc Spielberger, Elizabeth Keller, LA Esty, H.Riascos,Chaz Meszaros, King,Esty, Stephen Satterfield, Bradley Dunlap, Amanda Weingarten, Ashley Knox, Marshal and Toshiro Abbley.

Bravo to Barbara's designs after Barbara (Matera/Karinska :clapping: )

Again, Well done, Eddie!! :(

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