San Francisco Ballet in Costa Mesa, California
Posted 06 November 2008 - 11:31 PM
Posted 13 November 2008 - 11:57 PM
A wonderful night! Adding to it was sharing the evening with my seat mates of many years. We've had mixed schedules and haven't seen each other for quite a while; it was a reunion! It also dulled the memory of a horrid day of termite inspectors, dead car, and tow truck.
I'm going again Sat. night, and though I thought I'd be seeing the alternative program I'll see this one again. The cast will be slightly different; I'm looking forward to comparisons.
Did I mention that I had a good time tonight?
Posted 15 November 2008 - 12:07 AM
I have NEVER seen the 4 temperaments but after seeing so many photographs of it I was having flashing images in my mind as they reached several positions during the piece that were so familiar. I wonder if it might have been more meaningful to have seen the 4 T's at the beginning of the program and then seeing the more current material and understand what contemporary ballet and contemporary choreographers have drawn from the Balanchine innovations in choreography.
Very good crowd for a Thursday night and very appreciative. I was also with a group surrounded by friends, and it was a lot of fun. Am going again Sunday at 2pm.
I was really hoping to see Sofiane Sylvie she was originally on the program for Thursday but then it got changed. Maybe Giannina you will see her Sat night. Please give an update. I am sorry i am going to miss her. She is a favorite of mine.
I had a good time too.
Posted 15 November 2008 - 06:14 AM
Posted 15 November 2008 - 08:31 AM
Posted 15 November 2008 - 02:55 PM
Posted 15 November 2008 - 04:42 PM
Posted 15 November 2008 - 07:27 PM
Posted 15 November 2008 - 07:40 PM
Readiness is best. I hope all goes well, but -- well, i remember the Oakland fire. Indeed, WE have had huge winds most of hte day here in Berkeley and last night coming out of Merce Cunningham I saw a student throw away a burning cigarette and make a feeble attempt to stub it out and finished hte job for her after she'd walked on -- . It was like mkaing hte sign of hte cross before crossing he bridge, just saying my little prayer, but we're not out of danger here yet either (though hte winds have died down). You need to be ready to boogey if y'all have to -- And God knows, I hope you don't have to. Love, Paul
Dang! No ballet tonight! I live in Brea and parts of the city are burning. Our cars are packed in case we have to evacuate and I can't bear to leave the house under these circumstances. I'm sure we'll be fine but I want to make sure. Thank heavens I got to go Thurs.; SFBallet is a treat not to be missed.
Posted 15 November 2008 - 09:13 PM
almost as deadly as ballets with chairs.
I had to giggle at this -- I've certainly seen many dances, ballet and otherwise, using chairs, and admit that I get a bit edgy when I see another chair on stage. I've been pleasantly surprised by some, but not as many as I could wish.
And good thoughts to everyone in So. Cal. right now. We've been having big rains up here in the Northwest (very usual for this time of year) with flooding and mudslides. We're in between systems right now, but I wish I could send some of the moisture your way.
Posted 15 November 2008 - 11:12 PM
PET PEEVE: I have NO sympathy for smokers, the epitome of self-centered, inconsiderate behavior. And thanks to all the kind, thoughtful, people who prevent their damage from spreading beyond them.
Random observation: I used to think it was good to be poor in S. California...If you lived in the more ritzy hills/canyons you had to worry about fires, then when the rainy season came, you had to worry about mudslides because the fires burned away all the trees/undergrowth that held the soil. And if you lived on the coast, the winter storms (El Nino, or El Nina) washed your house into the sea. If you lived in Malibu you had to worry about all three, usually simultaneously.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 02:37 PM
Anyway, for the program itself, I was disappointed. The dancers are beautiful (OMG Nutnaree's feet!), but the choreography didn't live up to them. Short, probably unfair impressions:
Helgi's 5th season: cheesy, insipid music (by Karl Jenkins of diamond music fame ie. Palladio) with mechanically soulless movement. Totally forgettable, except for a nice pas in the middle for Katita and Davit.
Morris's Joyride: loved the Adams score, and Pascal Molat had a scorching solo as the guy in the short gold unitard, and clever and occasionally musical choreography, but it didn't hang together, and seemed entirely pointless.
Elo's Double Evil: goofy piece with the guys doing commercial jazz dance in jazz outfits, and the girls in classical tutus occasionally doing jazz isolations along with ballet. It reminds me of expensive restaurants trying to spiff up comfort foods, like high-end mac-n-cheese. Elo's piece looked like expensive competition dance.
Possokhov's Fusion: it's like a modern version of those jingoistic czarist ballets about the far east with stereotypes that appeal to the contemporaneous views (eg. La Bayadere). There was a really nice pas, and the lighting and set design were beautiful and worked well together, but his fusion of the dervish dancers with contemporary ballet didn't work, and felt forced at times. For example, at the end, the ballet dancers adopt the dervish vocab (basically jazz torso isolations), and that felt trite since there was no buildup to it.
Wheeldon's Within the Golden Hour: clever, beautiful, soulless. He has this trick of showing us his cleverest move right at the end as the curtains come down or the lights go dark, making me wish he'd started with that trick, and expanded on it. The loden green couple's pas that ended in the woman being manipulated as a kite was breathtaking, but isolated as a trick. He has a lot of talent, but doesn't seem to have anything to say.
Balanchine's 4Ts: it was remarkable watching this last, as none of the preceding pieces had advanced the art beyond (or even approached) this 62-year old piece. However, I didn't like SFB's dancing of it: too legato, smooth, and lacking in personality or a point-of-view. Everything was weighted the same. In many ways I preferred LA Ballet's performance of it, even if it was done with more modest technical means, which had more dirt, more roughness, and more physicality.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 03:01 PM
I agree that the pdd was lovely. I found the "dervish dancers" intrusive but then realized they probably were supposed to be!
Wheeldon's Within the Golden Hour: clever, beautiful, soulless. He has this trick of showing us his cleverest move right at the end as the curtains come down or the lights go dark, making me wish he'd started with that trick, and expanded on it.
I couldn't agree more; I found that bit surprisingly impressive.
The loden green couple's pas that ended in the woman being manipulated as a kite was breathtaking, but isolated as a trick. He has a lot of talent, but doesn't seem to have anything to say.
I don't know if we're referring to the same pdd. It was the 2nd pdd of the 3 and, manipulation or not I found it gorgeous.
Could you tell me who danced the passages to which we've referred? I really hated to miss it.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 04:11 PM
Within the Golden Hour was Sarah and Pierre-Francois Vilanoba. In the pas, at the end, he sat down with his legs straight in front of him, and held one of her legs while she leaned forward and down, almost touching the ground as she curled back up. The foot of her other leg, which acted like a pivot, was held in the crook of his two feet which were in a V, like first position in ballet.
Posted 16 November 2008 - 06:05 PM
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