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The music of La Bayadere: the different Lanchbery versions(...and the desperate need for the *REAL THING*)


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#1 sejacko

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 05:42 AM

I've always wondered why, on Bonynge's splendiferous Decca recording of the Lanchbery version of the score, they didn't include the little fast section of Nikiya's dance, just before she's bitten by the snake. This is especially strange since it *is* included in the Royal Ballet version, conducted by Lanchbery himself on the 1990(/91?) DVD, and the Bonynge recording was only made in 1992. I always miss hearing it at that point.

Perhaps the original version Lanchbery prepared for Makarova/ABT in 1980 didn't include it and it was published that way, and then just added "ad hoc" into the live performances. I'm sure it coundn't have been too hard for R.Bonynge to get Lanchbery's permission to add it (and maybe other dances that had been added upto that point) for the sake of the recording.

Of course the charming little "Danse Manou" (water-jug-balance dance) does not appear in the Makarova version at all, but happily it (along with several other delectable bits and pieces) is restored in the Nureyev/Paris DVD version (1992) -- again orch. Lanchbery but in a more authentic style this time. It's a real shame, also, that this Lanchbery/Paris version of the score is not available on CD. It sounds a little bit overblown in the acoustics of the Palais Garnier and a studio recording would have been welcome. (Is it my imagination or did someone once say there had indeed been a selection of highlights on CD of this version, or maybe I'm going mad..?) Either way, maybe the world simply didn't need more than one full-length (I'm deliberately avoiding the word "complete") La Bayadere recording at the time.

But the world DOES need another one now: COME ON folks at the Mariinsky, it's just plain SELFISH not giving us a recording the full Minkus version used in the reconstruction!!

#2 rg

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 06:29 AM

regarding the presto interlude for Nikiya with the basket of flowers in the Betrothal sc. i suspect it was part of the Royal Ballet telecast b/c Asylmuratova prevailed upon Makarova (or Markarova decided in this direction for Asylmuratova) to include this dance, which was not part of Makarova's original scheme from her 1980 production.
Around the time of the Maryinsky's Vikharev "reconstruction" of BAYADERKA the notes about the project included references to the scholarship and detective work required to put the full score back together after years of the re-arrangements (since the 1940s, for sure, but probably since when late '20s when the last act in the temple was dropped b/c the machinery to effect the destruction of the temple was no longer functioning and seemingly could not easily be repaired). In the end the Minkus score prepared for the new/old BAYADERKA was said to be copyright Maryinsky Th. Therefore i assume any movement toward a recording of this 'full' version would have to come from the Maryinsky itself.
Unfortunately in this regard, it seems the Maryinsky is no longer much interested in this reconstructed version of the ballet so it doesn't look encouraging for further performances of this production nor for the recording of the restored, complete score.

#3 sejacko

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 06:45 AM

In the end the Minkus score prepared for the new/old BAYADERKA was said to be copyright Maryinsky Th. Therefore i assume any movement toward a recording of this 'full' version would have to come from the Maryinsky itself.
Unfortunately in this regard, it seems the Maryinsky is no longer much interested in this reconstructed version of the ballet so it doesn't look encouraging for further performances of this production nor for the recording of the restored, complete score.


Maybe we should draw up a petition?

Jack

#4 carbro

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 12:08 PM

regarding the presto interlude for Nikiya with the basket of flowers in the Betrothal sc. i suspect it was part of the Royal Ballet telecast b/c Asylmuratova prevailed upon Makarova (or Markarova decided in this direction for Asylmuratova) to include this dance, which was not part of Makarova's original scheme from her 1980 production.

I now recall Assylmuratova in a guest appearance as Nikiya at ABT, and there, too, she inserted what weatherwax, on a different thread, calls the "little bouncy hysterical dance," where it hadn't been before. I remember it because it was so unexpected. I don't think I remember having seen it since in ABT's production.

#5 Mel Johnson

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 03:55 PM

And let's not forget that the closest thing we can come to an "original intent" Bayadere is the 1901 revival that got notated. One of the reasons that it was revived then was to restore bits and pieces that had got trashed since the 1877 premiere. There was a reason that people were so impressed with Tchaikovsky's insistance on a unitary score for his ballets. Other ballets had been almost a matter of having the music in a loose-leaf binder and adding and dropping numbers with all the gleeful abandon of a diner at a zakuski table. We may NEVER know what the original work looked or sounded like with any degree of certainty.

#6 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 07:10 PM

So, in which stage of musical accuracy does the Komleva/Abdyev '77 version fits into...?

#7 Mel Johnson

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 08:50 PM

Probably in the same locale as any other show that has seen continual revivals for a century, like HMS Pinafore or The Pirates of Penzance. In that latter, Linda Ronstadt cut in the Scena "The hours creep on apace" from the former. George Irving insisted on interpolating the patter trio "Now my eyes are fully open" from Ruddigore. Somebody I know wanted to do a production of the show as violated that way, and asked me if I knew what "that fast song" was and where they could get a copy of the score. I knew, and I knew who had a score, and I said I didn't know... :devil:


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