When should they stop?
Posted 11 June 2001 - 07:34 PM
I saw Danilova countless times during the last 10 years of her career, and if she was to be judged on technique alone my feeling would be -- "it's time". But what a powerful stage presence she was--and I, for one, am happy that I saw her Odette and Swanilda and all the wonderful Massine ballets. I feel the same way about Alicia Markova. During the 15 years I observed her, her technique could only be described as "fuzzy" (you weren't quite sure what she was trying to do)--and she rarely raised her leg in arabesque above a 45 deg. angle (OK in "Giselle" and "Pas de Quatre" but it didnot quite work in Nutcracker PDD). For a few years she was the only one who danced "Taglioni", but once Alonso (in her glorious youth) took over the part, I finally saw the choreography that Dolin had devised. Notwithstanding all of this, I still feel privileged to have seen these two Ballerina Assolutas. This quality is very hard to come by.
Posted 12 June 2001 - 10:04 AM
Posted 15 June 2001 - 04:01 PM
I think a dancer needs to stop performing when everyone else can tell they are in pain. I wish Merce Cunningham would take himself offstage. Every time I see him, I ache in my own hips.
Posted 15 June 2001 - 11:42 PM
If some ballet company were to keep back a 'short' person as the techinician of the company, like how the Kirov was going to make Baryshnikov dance the Peasant pdd his entire life, does that mean that companies who believe in this kind of casting shorten the dancing life of their dancers?
Some people do escape the wrath of the artistic director and dance Albrecht but some people don't. I was reading this Pointe magazine entry on a day of Miranda Weese's life, and she explained how NYCB usually cast her in very techincally demanding roles and how certain parts were usually for the 'tall, grand ballerinas'.
If someone were to be typecast as technician, I think that's a bit unfair for those who are second choice to those 'tall, grand ballerinas' so fabled in ballet lore. I'm sure these people have their artistic gifts too, but what if the audience can only "see" them onstage as the evil-fast petit allegro soloist? Does that mean their career may only be confined to how long their bodies can carry out the execution of the steps?
Posted 16 June 2001 - 01:07 AM
Some dancers, when they are young, concentrate on their "techinique" because they have the energy and the power to dance technically. When they can't use that technique anymore, some dancers become true actors/actresses on stage by trying to focus more on their artistry. I think this is what is happening to Guillem at the moment. I actually think it's great that a young artist can use his/her technique all the way, as long as we see the artist "developing" into a real dancer as he/she grows older.
Posted 25 June 2001 - 12:33 PM
Posted 25 June 2001 - 06:13 PM
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