Recent perfs at PAB reviewed in NYT
Posted 07 November 2008 - 11:56 AM
"The Pennsylvania company has been dancing [Ballo della Regina] since 2004, and the first-cast Amy Aldridge handles its ballerina role with a glow of confidence that no New York ballerina currently brings to it: her face and her smile take the light happily and help to put 'Ballo' across." I only saw the second cast--w/Martha Chamberlain in the lead--and found it serviceable--which, truth be told, was more than I expected. Seeing PAB do it made me realize as I never have before how idiosyncratic and personalized the soloist parts are to their original interpreters (only one of the PAB dancers, soloist Gabriella Yudenich, really made it her own, although I think corps dancer Rachel Maher brought the right energy to her solo and was fun to watch).
I was happy for the company to receive this glowing review, although I can't say I always agreed with or understood the basis for his positive assessment. For instance, he had lots of good things to say about Francis Veyette, the second-cast lead man in Tharp's Push Comes to Shove. I thought Veyette was certainly competent but not noteworthy (admittedly, I think this ballet is tough for a young cast in 2008 to pull off, for a variety of reasons I bet have been discussed on BT already).
But boy did he hate Kazimirís Colours, the Bigonzetti work that they did: "The central pas de deux ó man in shorts, woman in bikini ó expresses something that surely exists nowhere but in bad ballet: letís call it 'acrobatic dejection.'"
Posted 08 November 2008 - 10:24 AM
I must agree that Kasmir's Colours was not my cup of tea either. The company danced it well. I just don't get most contemporary ballet. The stage was dim, the costumes were not attractive. The angles were interesting and there were lots of difficult moves going on up there in the darkness. The Philadelphia audience certainly seemed to love the number. It was danced well, just not my favorite type of ballet.
I enjoyed Push Comes to Shove. Zach Hench seemed a natural for the male lead. I loved every moment of his performance. I also enjoyed Francis Fayette in the role, a slightly different interpretation bringing smiles at just the right moments. I was sitting near some ladies who had seen Baryshnikov in the role. They had such fun watching that I couldn't help but enjoy the production. I loved seeing the dancers enjoy themselves and their abilities to act in comedic roles. Great fun. Thanks PA Ballet for a great weekend.
Posted 08 November 2008 - 12:50 PM
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