POB_fan, on 16 February 2011 - 04:59 PM, said:
I was at the Thursday performance, and although I thought that Tereshkina was a lovely Giselle and an ethereal Wili (which would have been enough on its own) it was truly the corps de ballet that blew me away, and that provided a sharp contrast to the renditions I have seen in the last few years from American and Canadian companies. This proved true both in the first act, with Giselle's friends, as well as of course Act II. Perhaps it seems self-evident that a Russian or European company with a state school (and in this case, where most of the corps dancers could probably come up with soloist contracts elsewhere if they wished to do so) would have a better corps de ballet than our American mix of dancers with varied training, but I was beyond stunned and blown away on Thursday - and perhaps the applause that came after the "swimming" makes up somewhat for the lack of repeated curtain calls, since I don't know that I've ever seen an audience applaud like that during corps dancing, although if you're going to, I suppose that is the classic moment. The corps was not at all robotic, and yet the incredible synchronicity with which they moved into B+ after a running entrance was something I had never seen before, not even at the Paris Opera, which I find to have a world class corps.
I totally agree about the quality of the corps on Thursday! I was simply blown away!
I also, unfortunately, noticed, not just at the Mariinsky performances, but at the past few ballets companies I've seen, the lightning speed at which the orchestra clears out of the pit. Ms. Tereshkina similarly acknowledged the all-but-empty pit in her bows on Thursday. It was embarrassing! Perhaps they don't realize that they aren't hidden from view, especially to the tiers. Or perhaps they're trying to beat the traffic rush? It is strange, because we as the audience are applauding the musicians and the dancers...