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Rose Adagio balances

The Rose Adagio balances   84 members have voted

  1. 1. Is it necessary for Auroras to make the "crown" 5th position over their heads?

    • Yes - an Aurora who can't hold the balances shouldn't dance Aurora
      54
    • No - it's only 5 minutes out of a 2 hour ballet
      15
    • I don't care either way
      15

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131 posts in this topic

Sigh. It's a birthday party, not a final exam. I know I'm on the radical fringe here, but every time I watch that video (or any video of the Rose Adagio, frankly), I can't help but think how much nicer and more musical the choreography would be if each suitor just took Aurora's hand in turn and presented her in a lovely promenade with out the requirement that she get both hands up over her head and back down again first. Heck, I'd be just fine with a nice musical descent off pointe and a pretty relevé in between, too. I simply cannot stand to watch all the "Can I let go now? No? OK, I won't let go yet ... Now? ... Now? YES! NOW! WHEW!" fiddling around between Aurora and her suitors while they try to pull it off. The final effect is never worth it, IMO, and stre-e-e-e-e-tching the music out until everyone is secure makes my heart hurt.

OK. Rant over.

But, like it or not, there's always the element of excitement on technical tricks at the ballet. Yes, some struggle, but how beautiful to suddenly be faced with a ballerina who DOES NOT struggle. And THEN is when the step in question gets spoiled. Every time you see a butchered rendition, you will think.."Ahhh, I remember so and so doing this...and it was SO great...".

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But, like it or not, there's always the element of excitement on technical tricks at the ballet. Yes, some struggle, but how beautiful to suddenly be faced with a ballerina who DOES NOT struggle. And THEN is when the step in question gets spoiled. Every time you see a butchered rendition, you will think.."Ahhh, I remember so and so doing this...and it was SO great...".

Ah, to each his own! I don't find the kind of de rigueur, stand alone technical tricks that Aurora's balances and Odile's fouettés have sadly become particularly exciting in and of themselves. (I don't even like them as choreography, but that's a whole 'nother discussion ... ). Nothing makes my heart hurt more than watching a dancer whose artistry I respect struggle to execute a few seconds of stunt choreography that isn't really essential to the role. The things we need to know about Aurora's budding royal poise aren't conveyed by her getting her arms en couronne during her balances. Ditto for Odile's fouettés. If a dancer can execute the trick with artistry and aplomb, then great, do it! But otherwise I'd prefer to see something expressive and beautiful.

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Odile's fouettés have sadly become particularly exciting

Sadly for some..thrillingly for some others-(me included...)

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Well I'll go on record saying I love the Rose Adagio *and* the Odile fouettes - all 32 of them! I'd rather see single fouettes done well, than all the doubles, triples and swan arms ending with a stumble. 32 well done singles are exciting enough. I prefer a well executed Rose Adagio with the Fonteyn touches. If a dancer can't do them all, she shouldn't do the role.

I feel the same way about T&V, if the dancer can't do all the steps in the principal role, and do them beautifully then she shouldn't be cast. And if no one in the company can do the steps beautifully, they shouldn't dance T&V.

Some ballets are meant to have fireworks, or have evolved to have fireworks over time. SB, SL and DQ all have fireworks because principals are expected to have those skills!

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Jayne, I'm definitely with you re preferring singles done well -- especially when they are absolutely bang-on the music.

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I prefer a well executed Rose Adagio with the Fonteyn touches. If a dancer can't do them all, she shouldn't do the role.

I feel the same way about T&V, if the dancer can't do all the steps in the principal role, and do them beautifully then she shouldn't be cast. And if no one in the company can do the steps beautifully, they shouldn't dance T&V.

Some ballets are meant to have fireworks, or have evolved to have fireworks over time. SB, SL and DQ all have fireworks because principals are expected to have those skills!

For me it depends on whether or not the steps are essential to the role. A ballerina who can't execute all "the Fonteyn touches" can nonetheless dance a lovely and expressive Rose Adagio. Maintaining a beautiful line throughout her balances is far more important to creating the desired effect than getting both hands up over the head.

I'm privileged to live in a city that supports two major ballet companies and can play host to any number of first-rate visitors in any given year: I have the luxury to be picky about who should or shouldn't be performing ballet's great masterworks. But what if I lived somewhere else — a smaller city with a not-exactly-in-the-first-rank regional company, say, or a place where no first-rate company ever toured — should I be denied the opportunity to see SB just because the ballerina who was available to dance Aurora couldn't do all the steps with the level of perfection that a Fonteyn could?

I'd argue that SB, SL, and DQ have fireworks because audiences clap hard for them, not because one must have 32 fouettés to be a principal ballerina.

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