abatt

Retirements

39 posts in this topic

Neal did the role with Suzanne Farrell's company in 1999, and received a wonderful review in the NY Times from Anna Kisselgoff, who wrote:

Ben Huys did it for Farrell too, that same season. Neal, Huys, Boal . . . I wish she was still importing NYCB dancers, past or present.

AMEN

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Ben Huys was a beautiful, elegant dancer. I wish I had seen his Apollo.

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Maybe Nilas Martins is retiring, but it isn't being announced, because he won't be doing a farewell performance. I mean what could he dance? Certainly not Apollo!

They are reviving Duo Concertante in the spring season. Nilas used to do that role all the time with Y. Borree.

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I can't figure out from the website anything about what Albert Evans will be performing for his farewell... but if our votes counted, I'd be holding up two hands for Apollo...

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Philip Neal is one of several dancers (along with Damian, Miranda and Ashley) of whom I remember my first glance: he was doing "Hot Chocolate" in "Nutcracker" soon after he joined the Company, and just stood out so distinctively (he was wearing the purple tights) that I just had to find out who he was -- and have loved him ever since.

Albert was shamefully under-utilized, even for his choreography, which I found original, musical and intelligent. He also has a great sense of humor, which was especially important during Jock Soto's retirement performance, when Alfred messed up a letter in "God Save the Queen" at the end of "Union Jack!"

He and Philip are elegant, calm and graceful dancers and strong partners who I shall always remember fondly.

And on the subject of unacknowledged retirements, don't forget Judith Fugate and Lourdes Lopez.

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Albert was shamefully under-utilized, even for his choreography, which I found original, musical and intelligent. He also has a great sense of humor, which was especially important during Jock Soto's retirement performance, when Alfred messed up a letter in "God Save the Queen" at the end of "Union Jack!"

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Yes, I thought he was under-utilized as well. I thought that when Jock Soto retired, Albert might be cast more frequently. However, that never happened. In recent years, Evans became heavy and looked out of shape. To his credit, last year he looked very fit, as if something had finally motivated him to lose the extra weight and get into shape. It's a shame they have not brought back Red Angels recently, since that was created on Albert.

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Ben Huys was a fine Apollo. The stereotype of the Apollo Belvedere was the

last thing Balanchine wanted in this role; in fact, Peter Martins was only the

second dancer of this type whom Balanchine cast. He is quoted more than

once as saying 'Everyone dances Apollo like a statue; he's a devil, a rascal..!'

and the deviations from classical positions, epaulement, and deportment which

are extremely conspicuous in the role make this emphasis even more obvious.

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Ben Huys was a fine Apollo. The stereotype of the Apollo Belvedere was the

last thing Balanchine wanted in this role;I in fact, Peter Martins was only the

second dancer of this type whom Balanchine cast. He is quoted more than

once as saying 'Everyone dances Apollo like a statue; he's a devil, a rascal..!'

and the deviations from classical positions, epaulement, and deportment which

are extremely conspicuous in the role make this emphasis even more obvious.

I realize this is off topic, but a recent (sort of) rascal at the 2004 free ALL

BALANCHINE day at Symphony Space, Rasta Thomas was the epitome of this potrayal. He had been coached by Jacques d'Amboise, and IMHO, he was amazing. His face was so alive with character. He is one gorgeous dancer, although IMHO totally on the wrong aesthetic track. (Too bad for us.)

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Ben Huys was a fine Apollo. The stereotype of the Apollo Belvedere was the

last thing Balanchine wanted in this role;I in fact, Peter Martins was only the

second dancer of this type whom Balanchine cast. He is quoted more than

once as saying 'Everyone dances Apollo like a statue; he's a devil, a rascal..!'

and the deviations from classical positions, epaulement, and deportment which

are extremely conspicuous in the role make this emphasis even more obvious.

I realize this is off topic, but a recent (sort of) rascal at the 2004 free ALL

BALANCHINE day at Symphony Space, Rasta Thomas was the epitome of this potrayal. He had been coached by Jacques d'Amboise, and IMHO, he was amazing. His face was so alive with character. He is one gorgeous dancer, although IMHO totally on the wrong aesthetic track. (Too bad for us.)

You might find George Jackson's danceviewtimes review of Thomas' 2004 performances of Apollo and Prodigal with Dance Theater of Harlem interesting. It's here.

Here's a quote to whet your appetite:

For the record, Cooper's Prodigal on opening night was very likeable, and Thomas's two nights later was astonishing—danced big and acted ravishingly. When, peering over the tabletop, he first sees the Siren, his eyes lit up like a little boy's. As the naughty Prodigal, he gains our sympathy. As the penitent Prodigal, he displays the pain of martyrs in Gothic carvings.

A terrific Apollo from Thomas wouldn't surprise me in the least.

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A terrific Apollo from Thomas wouldn't surprise me in the least.

I saw it in Seattle with Dance Theatre of Harlem, and it was wild. Jackson describes it perfectly: "The god's daemon seemed to speak through him. "

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One of my favorite memories is of a stage rehearsal by Balanchine of Jean-Pierre Frohlich in the role of Apollo. As long-time NYCB goers know, Jean-Pierre was not the Nordic looking god we were used to because of Peter Martins. I remember this vividly (and forgive me if I've told this story on this board before) because during the rehearsal, I heard Jean-Pierre say -- after missing a part of the choregraohy -- something like, "nobody told me to do it that way." And Balanchine replying, "Nobody told me either." Jean-Pierre went on with the rehearsal, but it's a memory I treasure.

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One of my favorite memories is of a stage rehearsal by Balanchine of Jean-Pierre Frohlich in the role of Apollo. As long-time NYCB goers know, Jean-Pierre was not the Nordic looking god we were used to because of Peter Martins. I remember this vividly (and forgive me if I've told this story on this board before) because during the rehearsal, I heard Jean-Pierre say -- after missing a part of the choregraohy -- something like, "nobody told me to do it that way." And Balanchine replying, "Nobody told me either." Jean-Pierre went on with the rehearsal, but it's a memory I treasure.

Thanks for the confirmation. I've been meaning to ask if anyone else remembered him doing Apollo, but I kept telling myself I was mis-remembering (and people have said I was crazy when I say that saw him). I'm glad to say that I really DID see him in that role. It may have been only one performance. What is unique is that he was never a Principal, and I can't remember any other soloists as Apollo.

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This is a bit off topic, but on the subject of Martins and Apollo, I have heard him say that he didn't think Balanchine really likes his (Martins) version, that Balanchine thought the role should be demi-caractere. I saw Martins coach Ethan Stiefel at one of the Guggenheim Works in Process series, and Martins was wonderfully clear and vivid, stressing that it wasn't a classical role (feet forward, and not turned out, that kind of thing). Mary

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