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Vaganova Graduation 2010


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#1 CarmelaSMira

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 05:37 AM

Did anyone see the Vaganova Graduation Performances this year, and is anyone aware of new dancers who have been taken to the Company? I believe that in this class was Alexandra Somova (sister of Alina), as well as Sasha Saveliev and many other big talents?

#2 Mashinka

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 06:38 AM

A Somova Mark II ? Suddenly I don't feel well :crying:

#3 aurora

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 08:15 AM

A Somova Mark II ? Suddenly I don't feel well :crying:


Someone put up videos (tagged only Vaganova)of what appear to be the graduation performance. Most of the text is in Russian. I don't want to id the person in case the videos get pulled (though it doesn't seem an issue in Russia).

I didn't see any Somova, though it is true I didn't watch them all. One of the girls however, who did a duet from Esmerelda, I thought quite interesting.
At first glance one might think she would be of that ilk--tall-seeming, VERY LEGGY, blonde. But her extensions were not in any way extreme and I thought her rather charming in fact.

#4 Natalia

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 09:15 AM

No sighting of "Junior Somova" or Mr. Savelyev in the various fora, vids, photo albums. From what I see on the 'net and hear from acquaintances in StP, this is an "OK but not brilliant" class compared to other recent graduations from which the Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky troupes selected many novices. The most likely prospects to enter the Mariinsky troupe would be Olga Smirnova, Viktoria Brileva and Kristina Shapran among the girls and maybe Viktor Lebedev (with a year to go in the school?) and Alexei Popov among the guys. The most exquisite performer among the ladies, IMO, was Brileva who, according to the YouTube posting, is coached by Assylmuratova. It's hard to judge by little films, though.

The class appears to have included a very capable American girl, Keenan Kampa, who danced the Corsaire pdd-a-trois. Quite an honor.

#5 Azulynn

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 09:58 AM

Olga Smirnova & Kristina Shapran still have a year of school to go if I understand correctly. Viktoria Brileva, Oksana Marchuk, Alisa Soboleva were in this year's graduating class and are among the candidates to join the company I think.

#6 CarmelaSMira

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 12:43 PM

You know what does confuse me about the Vaganova graduates is the sometimes marked difference in the age of graduates of the same year - does anyone have any reason why that is? I assumed the pupils graduate when they are 18 and then now that they added the extra year in 2007, at 19. But this does not seem to be universally the case.

Take 2008 graduates, for example: there were Mariinsky joiners who were born '89 (making them 19) but a few born in '88 and at least 1 from '87. Are there different "courses" which makes difference in graduation age occur, or do the pupils just enter the Academy at different ages?

#7 Jane Simpson

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 06:12 AM

On another thread, Marga linked to some photos of the Varna competition by Stanislav Belyaevsky, and I noticed that on another page he has some wonderful pictures of the Vaganova academy - 200 altogether including a lot from last year's graduation performance. No captions unfortunately.

#8 Cygnet

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:13 AM

Mashinka wrote:

A Somova Mark II ? Suddenly I don't feel well :crying:

I have seen her face, but I've never seen her dance. Nowadays there's really no way to tell what the Russian ADs are looking for, or why they make the choices they make. Sometimes it's crystal clear; other times it's a mystery. It's basically a matter of personal preference - especially in the House of Blues. Will "lightening strike twice in the same place?" In nature it doesn't happen. In ballet if it happens it's rare: The Feijoo sisters are an example. It's also rare when ballet siblings both rise to the top in the same company: One usually overshadows the other. The late Natalia Bessmertnova & Tatiana Bessmertnova, and Gelsey & Johnna Kirkland are other examples. The elder Somova doesn't compare with the Bessmertnovas, Feijoos or Kirklands.

Mashinka, I won't say 'don't worry,' as it's not yet confirmed whether she placed, had a showcase piece, how she fared, and whether she got any offers. In order for the Mariinsky, or the Mikhailovsky, Eifman etc. to hire her on the spot, she would need to be featured in a pdd or a showcase piece. She would also have to nail it. Well, that isn't necessarily true: In 2003, Alina was given the lead in "Paquita," but I digress. There's no news of anything like that having happened for Alexandra. Suffice it to say there aren't any official commencement videos (rehearsals or performance), like there were last year on the Theatre website. So, until they update the roster, or post a video link, or name names in the news icon, we won't know whether Sasha made the cut or not. If she did, we'll know.
The Somovi look exactly alike, only Sasha is (still) a brunette.

#9 Catherine

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Posted 27 August 2010 - 09:33 PM

A bit late, but I just have time to stop at the forum now and I saw this thread.

...Olga Smirnova, Viktoria Brileva and Kristina Shapran among the girls and maybe Viktor Lebedev (with a year to go in the school?) and Alexei Popov among the guys. The most exquisite performer among the ladies, IMO, was Brileva who, according to the YouTube posting, is coached by Assylmuratova. It's hard to judge by little films, though.


Indeed, Natalia, based on what I saw a year ago (2009) on stage for the grad performances, and again this year inside the Vaganova Academy during the examinations, Viktoria Brileva was the one who caught my attention the most*. She is breathtaking to behold, was the most polished in her class and just simply exquisite. IN particular, aside from her classical technique she was (oddly) stunning in the character dancing --which I would not suggest is her emploi at all (and pray to God it will not be, she is far too talented for that).

*I have to qualify that statement though because Olga Smirnova is equally exquisite but in another way -- fair haired and long limbed. Brileva has dark hair and pale skin and I believe is a bit taller. Both are ballerinas-to-be. It's already in them, and that's visible.

I thought Shapran still had a few more years to go because when I first saw her in graduation performance and commented on her she was very VERY young yet. I now can't recall which year it was but I think she hasn't yet graduated? I remember talking with you about her before though - definitely an eye catcher in her class.

p.s. not yet used to this new "face" of the forum template but it is quite sleek. Kudos to the development team :-), I like it.


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