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What is ballet dramaturgy?


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#1 Elizaveta

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 02:59 PM

Hi, I'm writing my master's thesis on Soviet ballet in the 1950s and 1960s and come across discussions of "dramaturgy" in ballet quite often in my research. Nevertheless, I can't quite seem to get a grasp on just what the term means in the context of ballet!

Any help, especially a more concrete example, would be of great assistance to me.

Thanks!

#2 leonid17

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Posted 08 March 2009 - 04:17 PM

Hi, I'm writing my master's thesis on Soviet ballet in the 1950s and 1960s and come across discussions of "dramaturgy" in ballet quite often in my research. Nevertheless, I can't quite seem to get a grasp on just what the term means in the context of ballet!

Any help, especially a more concrete example, would be of great assistance to me.

Thanks!


Elizaveta please find herewith my understanding of dramaturgy in the context you have outlined. In the first instance it is simply the process of dramatic composition and the manner in which elements of a ballet/drama/opera appear on the stage. It can also denote some who adapts a work for the stage and the person that carries this out can be called a dramaturge.

In the context of soviet ballet, the dramaturge falls into two roles.
Firstly you have a production dramaturge who prepares story lines of a production for performance. In this he will examine the script/libretto for any infelicities in respect of political thought and will possibly or probably add content to manner of representation of characters either decreasing or increasing their prominence. He will certainly act to create a unity of purpose through discussions with the artistic director, the choreographer, performers and composer, The work would be destined to reflect history as it is to be seen, current cultural ambitions and if that was not already covering political content that would be firmly addressed.
Before the above process had been undertaken I understand that somewhere in the theatres directorate there would have been placed a dramaturge whose role was to ensure that no member of the theatre attempted to infiltrate revisionist ideas in terms of artistic policy or in public statements.

I think some persons, certainly of the past would have said I have got it all wrong, but as the great British Prime Minister Winston Churchill is reputed to have said, "Russia is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma."
You can google away for more but I have found two links that might be of some small interest,
Best wishes.


http://www.artmargin...n...&Itemid=104

http://blog.oup.com/...okofiev_juliet/

#3 Mel Johnson

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Posted 09 March 2009 - 03:03 AM

In musical theater and other stage, there's a nickname for the dramaturge: Scene Doctor. Usually the Scene Doctor works on shows that haven't had their official opening, and the show hasn't "frozen" yet. Some shows opened, but never quite froze - Lerner & Loewe's Paint your Wagon comes to mind. Taking some shows to the Scene Doctor is probably not a good idea. The movie credit "Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, additional dialogue by Sam Bernstein" is an example. On the other hand, it probably was a very good idea to take Gayane back to the shop and change the libretto from the infamous "Ode to a Tractor" to a more humanist interpretation.

#4 Amy Reusch

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Posted 09 March 2009 - 05:58 PM

... must... not... say ... it... must not... :(

#5 leonid17

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Posted 12 March 2009 - 03:23 PM

Hi, I'm writing my master's thesis on Soviet ballet in the 1950s and 1960s and come across discussions of "dramaturgy" in ballet quite often in my research. Nevertheless, I can't quite seem to get a grasp on just what the term means in the context of ballet!

Any help, especially a more concrete example, would be of great assistance to me.

Thanks!




I think you might find the following of interest.
I found it is easier to type in Christina Ezrahi to open the PDF.
Best wishes
Leonard


[PDF] Christina EzrahiFile Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
Christina Ezrahi. International Symposium of Russian Ballet. The Thaw in Soviet Culture and the Return of Symphonic Dance ...
www.harrimaninstitute.org/MEDIA/01228.pdf -

#6 Elizaveta

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Posted 13 March 2009 - 06:56 AM

Many thanks for this great info!


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