Paul Parish

Cecchetti, Carabosse, and Blue Bird

6 posts in this topic

Lucy, one of the excellent pianists at Berkeley Ballet Theater, brought up this question after class this morning.

How early did the Apotheosis fall away from the production history of the ballet? The entrances are all there in the score, and WHERE IS CARABOSSE?

Which leads to this question: Since Cecchetti doubled as BOTH Carabosse and Blue Bird, what did he do at the Apotheosis, when one would suppose both characters were required to present themselves? This question has probably come up before -- RG, Doug, and Alexandra probably konw the answer, and maybe more of us -- but I don't, and would like to.

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wasn't it croce's assumption that a 'double' was likely carried on for the final cortege and apotheosis?

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Cecchetti is definitely the Bluebird in the polonaise, and has his entry at the restatement of the dance's opening theme. Fairy Carabosse has her entrance during the B period of the music, together with her rats and her chariot made from a wheelbarrow. It is definitely my impression that they got a character actress-dancer to do the old fairy, except that now she's a GOOD fairy, because she's happy she's invited to the wedding! Forgiveness makes everything beautiful again!

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Marie Petipa was also replaced as the Lilac Fairy in Act III I believe--I believe she played either Cinderella or The White Cat in the divertissement.

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Yes it was--and from photographs of both productions it looks quite faithful. It's too bad they edit it on that great New year's Eve in St Petersburg and serve Champagen on stage instead--though you can see the backdrop and the archways coming down for it. I believe Carabosse and Lilac are featured amongst the gods in the clouds in the back.

(The Imperial ballet didn't seem to have much of a problem replacing dancers halfway through a ballet, I know that in one ballet--was it Raymonda?--the ages P Gerdt was replaced as the leading man for the final dance variation by the younger Legat.)

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