cubanmiamiboy

What's your favorite "Ballet Waltz"?

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Being a huge fan of waltzes has made me love certain sections of given ballet scores. Tchaikovsky's "Big Three" all have beautiful ones...(my # 1 favorite being the # 2 number in Act I of the '77 Swan Lake score: "Waltz: Tempo di Valse" ). Minkus also seems to had been a fan-("Bayadere","DQ") . Are you also fond of them?

What's your favorite "ballet waltz"...? :flowers:

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Black Swan Waltz (although I don't think it's called that), that's like pure Champagne. And all the Ravel Waltzes in Balanchine's and Ashton's 'La Valse' (they both have 'La Valse', but Balanchine's also has 'Valses Nobles et Sentimentales'.)

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And all the Ravel Waltzes in Balanchine's and Ashton's 'La Valse'...

Oh, Patrick...glad you reminded me of B's ballets!. (How did I skip him...?) Glinka's "Valse Fantaisie" is also right there all the way on top! :) (been playing it lately a lot while driving.. :wub: )

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The Sleeping Beauty waltz and the Valse Lente from Sylvia. And the Liebeslieder Walzer. Impossible to only pick one ballet waltz :) !

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I have always loved the waltz in the middle of Tudor's Lilac Garden, it was very inspiring to dance to it. My other favorites are in Mr. B's Raymonda Variations (at the beginning of the ballet) and the pas des fiancees in Act 3 of Swan Lake.

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Ashton's "Voices of Spring" waltz.

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If I have to pick only one, it's Delibes' "Naîla" waltz, whether it's choreographed, or just used as an entr'acte.

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Rosenkavalier section of Vienna Waltzes......

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The "Vot tak surpriz" waltz and chorus from Tschaikovsky's opera "Eugene Onegin." It's not strictly a ballet waltz, although John Taras made a lovely dance for some SAB students to it way back in 1981 for a Tschaikovsky Festival group effort called "Tempo di Valse."

Once you hear it you just can't get it out of your brain. Dum DA di dum dum, dum dum dum da da da da da ... now I'll be humming it for hours and might even attempt a swirl or two on my way to the kitchen for another cup of coffee.

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Rosencavalier section of Vienna Waltzes......

Have to admit that's pretty irresistible, all long white gloves and the rest. I much prefer it in this environment than in the opera, which I find an irritating and contrived work despite the music. Here. it's as if the Johann Strauss and Lehar waltzes find their fulfillment in the Rosenkavalier, and you don't even have to think of Octavian.

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o Christian, this is IMPOSSIBLE! How to choose!!!

But here goes -- to actually dance to, there's nothing that tops Invitation to the Waltz (Spectre de la Rose) --it makes you want to fly, you just get carried away on it. The spring is in the music,

To hear, or to see in the theater, the waltz from Serenade sweeps me up. it's so beautiful.

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The Waltx from Serenade is divine. Darci was totally inside this music the several times I saw her do it.

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I second Juliet's Rosenkavalier Waltz, but I also love, more than any of the other waltzes in Liebeslieder (what a rich vein of waltzes there!) the slow "pushing" waltz in Part I currently danced by Wendy Whelan plus one, the duet with the backbends.

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O yes, that is gorgeous!

Delibes is unbelievably beautiful.

So is the slow waltz from Sylvia, the kind of thing you have to call ravishing

(Comes after the intermezzo on that clip, about one minute into it)

If I have to pick only one, it's Delibes' "Naîla" waltz, whether it's choreographed, or just used as an entr'acte.

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There are some lovely suggestions already, but my personal favourites are the waltz from the 1st act of Raymonda, and the one at the very end of the Nutcracker (so not the waltz of the flowers). :sweatingbullets:

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Don't know why, but whenever I'm anxious or troubled about something, I always start humming the princess' waltz from Act III of Swan Lake. (but without all the stop-starts, fanfares and repetitions!)

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Don't know why, but whenever I'm anxious or troubled about something, I always start humming the princess' waltz from Act III of Swan Lake. (but without all the stop-starts, fanfares and repetitions!)

Ah...because you're humming the '95 uninterrupted Drigo's revision... :)

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It's very hard to choose. My favorites waltzes are:

Prokofiev: "Cinderella" - the Grand Waltz from Act 2 and Slow Waltz from Act 3; "The Stone Flower," the Mistress Waltz from Act 1 and the Precious Stones Waltz from Act 3."

Minkus: "La Bayadere" - the Act 2 wedding waltz, and Act 3 Shades' opening Waltz, 2nd Shade variation, and Shades' Waltz Coda.

Chopin: "Chopiniana/Les Sylphides," waltz.

Ravel: "La Valse"

:huh:: Tchaikovsky: "Yevgeny Onegin" Waltz, Valse Mélancolique from Suite No. 3., Valse from Symphony No. 5, and the first movement from Symphony No. 4; (it's in 9/8 time 'moderata con anima,' but it's still a discernable waltz).

Back to topic: Waltz of the Snowflakes, Valse Bluette and Farewell pdd from Act 3 of the '95 "Swan Lake," (the Farewell pdd "Un poco di Chopin," is actually a mazurka, but it could pass for a waltz). "The Sleeping Beauty," the Lilac Fairy prologue variation, Act 1 Garland Waltz, Act 3 Gold Fairy and Cinderella variations.

Glazunov: "Raymonda" - Act 1 opening Waltz and Dream Waltz.

Delibes: "Coppelia" - Swanilda's Act 1 variation and Act 3 Hours Waltz

Delibes: "Sylvia" Waltz

Adam: "Giselle" Grand pas des Wilis Act 2

Pugni/Delibes/Adam et.al. "Le Corsaire" Le jardin animé waltz Act 2

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It's very hard to choose.
I agree completely, cygnet. So many choices, all of them wonderfully danceable.

I have two off-topic questions regarding Chopin. Ballade No. 1 is in 6/8 time (mostly). It's exquisite, with mood and tempo variations that make it quite suitable, I think, for a pas de deux.

Does 6/8 constitute a "waltz"?

Has any ballet ever used Ballade No. 1 -- or indeed any of the Ballades?

While I'm at it -- and thinking of "Dances at a Gathering" -- does a mazurka qualify as a "waltz." Both are in 3/4 time, after all.

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I think G Minor Ballade is 6/4, which is somewhat different from 6/8, not often used and I think probably never for fast music (as tarantellas, and much else). I don't know if it's ever been used for ballet or dance. 6/4 would have more to do with phrasing, so that the two groups of 3 are bound together in some sort of kinship; although in some hands, it would sound very much the same if just changed to 3/4. Maybe some think Ballade No.1 could be used as a waltz, I don't think it's possible, although I've no doubt it could be danced to effectively if the right choreographer came along, just as Liszt was to 'Marguerite and Armand', and Liszt wasn't to 'Mayerling'.

No, a Mazurka is not the same thing as a waltz. There are many pieces in 3/4, 3/8, and 6/8, and 9/8 that aren't waltzes. It has to do with the character of the work as well as the meter. It may be that there have been some pieces in 3 (all forms of it) that have been choreographed as waltzes, but which weren't intended as waltzes in their original, purely musical form. I could think of a lot of examples along all these lines, but somebody else help me out (historians, please) until the humidity subsides a bit.

And although 'A Month in the Country' uses Andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise, that easily demonstrates that any of the ballades could be used effectively, although I don't know if anybody currently choreographing would have the sensitivity for Chopin that Ashton had. The exquisite A Flat Ballade is one of Chopin's most French works (you won't hear the Polish roots in this one), and it seems ideal for use in ballet to me.

Edited to add: There are a number of reasons Chopin would choose 6/4 for the ballade, though, one of which is that 3/8 or 6/8 would somehow indicate something slightly more rapid, whereas the quarter notes (of the 6/4, or even if it was written in 3/4) give the notes a weight that eighth notes just don't have. And that first section (after the muscular intro) is nothing if not sober and very serious.

Not that writing in 3/4 always makes conductors keep from speeding up to way beyond any 3/8 or 6/8 we're used to. The Nutcracker I saw at NYCB in 2006 had Waltz so speedy it was quite absurd, and that's quarter notes. So glad I got to see Ms. Mearns as Odette/Odile after that yeomanry as DewDrop: after that, there was no way I could ever dislike Ms. Mearns as Odile (even though you're supposed to): She is a good sport.

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Thanks, patrick, for explaining the distinction between 6/4 and 6/8, and mazurka-waltz. Listening again to the entire piece, I realize that the "waltz-like" beginning (after the introduction) does begin to shift a bit as the piece goes on.

There are a number of reasons Chopin would choose 6/4 for the ballade, though, one of which is that 3/8 or 6/8 would somehow indicate something slightly more rapid, whereas the quarter notes (of the 6/4, or even if it was written in 3/4) give the notes a weight that eighth notes just don't have. And that first section (after the muscular intro) is nothing if not sober and very serious.
Fascinating. It's precisely this quality of weight and deliberation that I like so much -- with the more tempestuous contrasts -- and which made me think it would work as choreography for an especially expressive pair of dancers.

Perhaps, on second thought, it would be TOO sober, too dull for a ballet? A common quality of most of the danceable waltzes mentioned on this thread is the feeling they give of driving forward (sometimes gliding, sometimes bouncing). 3/4 time is perfect for making one feel that.

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Perhaps, on second thought, it would be TOO sober, too dull for a ballet? A common quality of most of the danceable waltzes mentioned on this thread is the feeling they give of driving forward (sometimes gliding, sometimes bouncing). 3/4 time is perfect for making one feel that.

My feeling is that it wouldn't be too sober, just because of the way Ashton used Chopin in 'A Month in the Country', as I noted (I think the use of Chopin there is peerless, by the way, definitely up there with the Fokine). It just wouldn't need to be 'waltz-like' or necessarily light. Not all of Schumann's Davidsbundlertanze is light, either, or even much of it, and that's just one of hundreds or thousands. Of course it's not a 'danceable waltz', but there's a big world of movement and music combinations to be tapped out there. The most likely explanation for not using it or more dramatic Chopin (or maybe even any) is that doesn't seem to the fashion any more, does it--you know, the grand Romantic manner which Ashton was still capable of doing, and Balanchine in s different way as well, of course (not necessarily talking just about Chopin, of course.)

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Some that haven't been mentioned (I don't think!) include the waltz between the Ballerina and the Moor in "Petrouchka," and two from "Coppélia": "Valse de la poupée" in the second act, and "Valse des heures" in the third act.

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It's very hard to choose.
I agree completely, cygnet. So many choices, all of them wonderfully danceable.

I have two off-topic questions regarding Chopin. Ballade No. 1 is in 6/8 time (mostly). It's exquisite, with mood and tempo variations that make it quite suitable, I think, for a pas de deux.

Does 6/8 constitute a "waltz"?

Has any ballet ever used Ballade No. 1 -- or indeed any of the Ballades?

Chopin's first Ballade is used in Neumeier's "Lady of the Camellias". It's a dramatic pas de deux for Marguerite and Armand after she has seemingly abandoned him.

If I'm not mistaken, Jerome Robbins made use of the third Ballade in "The Concert".

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Chopin's first Ballade is used in Neumeier's "Lady of the Camellias". It's a dramatic pas de deux for Marguerite and Armand after she has seemingly abandoned him.
Thank you for that information, DanceActress. I had forgotten this (or, worse, never noticed it :excl: ), despite my love for the piece.
If I'm not mistaken, Jerome Robbins made use of the third Ballade in "The Concert".
You're right! (I checked the play list on Wikipedia. :) ) It's the last selection -- , which should be, if I recall correctly, the change-of-pace number after the Mazurka when the husband acts out his fantasies.

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