Natalia

Flames of Paris

29 posts in this topic

Looking at youtube, unfortuantely, I have to say it's not so good as it was 40 years ago :) . Alexandrova's body position is too straight in famous traveling hops backward, arms too weak during "turn in pas de bourree". Boys have to slide more down after fouette in the air together. The leading men should lean more forward after emboite and so on ... :(

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Thank you for posting that, Lidewij, but, to me, the character dancing is so lightweight, it's a real disappointment.

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I echo the thanks for posting.

It is so wrong. At one point, Alexandrova's arms appear to be flapping almost like a swan...SWAN LAKE? No, no, no - this is so wrong. Lightweight from the guys, too. What a bummer.

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I agree. Far too light, far too 'classical'. I think it was a sad day when the major Russian companies stopped having recruiting a group of specialist character dancers - that is to say not those dancers who play Kings, Queens, Dukes, Pashas, etc, but a group of dancers who did things like the Danse Basque, Taras Bulba, the dances from Ivan Susanin, the national dances in Swan Lake, etc.

When the Kirov came to the Festival Hall in London in 1970 - they brought a repertory consiting mainly of short pieces, including excerpts from Gayaneh, Taras Bulba, Flames of Paris and Ivan Susanin - and those character dancers were terrific. I remember them as absolutely holding their own in their own way against wonderful dancers like Kolpakova, Komleva, Makarova, wonderful Soloviev and even our first sight of the young Barishnikov. There was a remarkably beautiful young women Olga? Zabotkina who did all the principal women's parts in these numbers and she was wonderful.

However, I have to admit it was pretty odd in the extract from Vainonen's Nutcracker to see as the Cavaliers in the Rose Walts a procession of gentlemen of markedly heavier build than the four young men supporting Kolpakova. I had the distinct impression that it was some years since most of them had gone on stage in white tights and white wigs.

But seriously, it was one area where you had to say that russian companies beat their western counterparts hands down, but now they're all young, thin and light.

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