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MCB tour to Paris, July 2011-- THEATRE DU CHATELET


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#31 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 11:28 AM

I'm feeling proud... :clapping:

#32 bart

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 12:13 PM

Cahill, thank you so much. The piece does not read as a review so much as an over-view of the company and an effort to grasp its unique look and character. Please excuse my wobbly grasp of French, but here's an example:

The lines, style, musicality, energy, and ensemble movement -- sophisticated constructions that Balanchine borrowed from Stravinsky to speak of America, or from Tchaikovsky to evoke his own Russian homeland -- these trademarks hold no secrets for this company. No great international company dances these masterpieces with the accent that Miami brings to them.


It's interesting to read Ariane Bavelier's comments on the dancers' bodies -- the women with "rounded thighs, full buttocks" -- the boys with "full chests and chiseled muscles, attacking [the steps] ... with the trust of a 'pompom child'." Pompom child? I'm not sure I understand the image.

The writer contrasts Miami's women, dancing Balanchine and Robbins, with certain "willowy ballerinas, cut as if by diamonds, queens of fire and ice ... who, in three steps, can give one the shivers."

The natural enthusiasm of the Miami dancers prevents them from crimes like that and doubtless has prevented them from inviting stars from other great companies for help in winning over the demanding Parisian audience.

Sounds like a rousing Symphony in Three Movements, reminding me of others equally bold and energetic back home in 2003, 2007 and 2009.

Enthusiasm ... Youth ... Freshness ... Originality.

These are the same words that many French fans used to welcome Balanchine and his New York City Ballet dancers to Paris in the 50s and 60s. Not a bad start for Villella and MCB in 2011.

Now I'm looking forward to the real challenge -- more detailed reviews, including specific evaluations of performances and dancers.

#33 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 12:35 PM

Now I'm looking forward to the real challenge -- more detailed reviews, including specific evaluations of performances and dancers.


And maybe one or two promotions...? :FIREdevil:

#34 cahill

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 12:45 PM

[size=2]Bart [/size]
[size=2]
[/size]
[size=2]Thanks for the clarification, I am [/size][font=Helvetica][size=2]using[/size][/font][size=2] google translate to try and read some of the posts. From twitter is sounds like LaValse went well tonight they are ending with Upper Room. I sure am looking forward to hearing reactions to this evening.[/size]

#35 CM

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 01:44 PM

Cahill, thank you so much. The piece does not read as a review so much as an over-view of the company and an effort to grasp its unique look and character. Please excuse my wobbly grasp of French, but here's an example:

The lines, style, musicality, energy, and ensemble movement -- sophisticated constructions that Balanchine borrowed from Stravinsky to speak of America, or from Tchaikovsky to evoke his own Russian homeland -- these trademarks hold no secrets for this company. No great international company dances these masterpieces with the accent that Miami brings to them.


It's interesting to read Ariane Bavelier's comments on the dancers' bodies -- the women with "rounded thighs, full buttocks" -- the boys with "full chests and chiseled muscles, attacking [the steps] ... with the trust of a 'pompom child'." Pompom child? I'm not sure I understand the image.

The writer contrasts Miami's women, dancing Balanchine and Robbins, with certain "willowy ballerinas, cut as if by diamonds, queens of fire and ice ... who, in three steps, can give one the shivers."

The natural enthusiasm of the Miami dancers prevents them from crimes like that and doubtless has prevented them from inviting stars from other great companies for help in winning over the demanding Parisian audience.

Sounds like a rousing Symphony in Three Movements, reminding me of others equally bold and energetic back home in 2003, 2007 and 2009.

Enthusiasm ... Youth ... Freshness ... Originality.

These are the same words that many French fans used to welcome Balanchine and his New York City Ballet dancers to Paris in the 50s and 60s. Not a bad start for Villella and MCB in 2011.

Now I'm looking forward to the real challenge -- more detailed reviews, including specific evaluations of performances and dancers.


Is" l'entrain du pompon child" something like " the energy/bounce? of a child cheerleader": There's something in the tarantella that puts me in mind of Toni Basil's" Hey Mickey" but I think the writer's mainly talking about the male corps?

#36 bart

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 02:16 PM

I want to thank our Member Buddy for his kindness in sending us the link to the MCB CASTING for all the Chatelet performances

http://www.lesetesde...-distributions/

Opening night was listed as follows:

Mercredi 6 juillet 20h :


Symphony in Three Movements

Katia Carranza Carlos Guerra

Tricia Albertson Daniel Baker Patricia Delgado Renan Cerdeiro

Afternoon of a Faun

Jennifer Carlynn Kronenberg Carlos Miguel Guerra

Tarantella

Jeanette Delgado Kleber Rebello

Ballet Imperial

Mary Carmen Catoya Renato Penteado

Patricia Delgado

Renan Cerdeiro Didier Bramaz




#37 Jack Reed

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 10:47 AM

Wonderful to see Catoya back and looking so lovely, after her long absence due to injury last season.

...

(Still kicking myself for not having made arrangements to be there.)


bart, I'm not sure I understand. (The first statement, I mean; the second one is easy!) It's always wonderful to see Catoya, but for the sale of accuracy, I think she returned in Diana and Acteon in Program II and has been dancing since then.



I'm feeling proud... :clapping:


He's feeling pride, I'm feeling envy. What other cardinal sins do our ballet addiction drive us to commit?

#38 bart

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 11:20 AM

bart, I'm not sure I understand. (The first statement, I mean; the second one is easy!) It's always wonderful to see Catoya, but for the sale of accuracy, I think she returned in Diana and Acteon in Program II and has been dancing since then.

Jack, Catoya has indeed danced this season -- including Spanish in Nutcracker -- but in a limited way. The Diana and Acteon, which I saw, was untypically reserved and held-back, with some simplying of the choreography. Those roles were steps on the way to recovery.

Dancing the female lead in Ballet Imperial, on opening night, is a very big deal. It suggests that she has overcome her injuries and is back to normal. . I should have said "back at the top of her form" rather than simply "back."

Is" l'entrain du pompon child" something like " the energy/bounce? of a child cheerleader": There's something in the tarantella that puts me in mind of Toni Basil's" Hey Mickey" but I think the writer's mainly talking about the male corps?

CM, I think you are right. Bavelier's reference seems to be to Symphony in Three Movements, which SEEMS to be the only ballet she saw. Maybe she was texting from the lobby during the first intermission? It might explain the run-on sentences.

#39 Estelle

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 12:48 AM

Just a few words in a hurry to say thay I enjoyed immensely the MCB performance that I saw yesterday at the Chatelet, and especially "Square Dance": I think I've completely fallen in love with that ballet (I had seen it for the first time two months ago in NYC by the NYCB) and Jeannette Delgado was absolutely lovely in it, charming and musical and light, and doing all those tricky steps as if it were the easiest thing on Earth ! I wonder if for example she's already danced "Sonatine", or some other works of the Verdy repertory ?

I got a bit sleepy during "La Valse", alas (the culprit is not MCB, it's a 10 months old baby girl who doesn't sleep through and has just had a third teeth which makes her nights, and ours, even worse...:-( ) and so couldn't appreciate it fully. But "Symphony in Three Movements" was wonderful too (it's a work I didn't like that much when I saw it for the first time about a decade ago, but now I tend to like it more and more each time- except I still don't like much those pinkish costumes for the female soloists which are quite unflattering !), the company performed it with much joy and energy and it was a great ending to the performance (much applaused !)

He's feeling pride, I'm feeling envy. What other cardinal sins do our ballet addiction drive us to commit?


Maybe gluttony: I'll see five other performances, but wish I could afford to see all the others!:-)

#40 bart

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 05:24 AM

Estelle, I'm so glad you enjoyed it. It's great to have your voice on Ballet Alert again. I hope you'll post as much as you can about your other performances.

MCB last danced Sonatine in 2008, choosing more ethereal ballerinas. But, I feel that Delgado is showing a lot more depth and versatility than people originally expected.. Whatever the part, i suspect that she would find a way to make it her own, something valid and definitely worth seeing. (Well, maybe not the Dying Swan. :wink:)

I suspect that it will be the MCB dancers' spirit and individuality that, more than anything else, will seduce the Paris audiences. The ARE unique. I keep recalling a visit of ABT to London a few years ago, performing yet another Swan Lake. One that had nothing special about it. Reviews were tepid and even puzzled. To tour successfully, a company needs confidence in its own personality. It needs a rep which it can infuse with its own energy and enthusiasm without violating the choreography. MCB seems to be bringing this to Paris.

On her blog, Tendus Under a Palm Tree, MCB dancer Rebecca King seemed overwhelmed by the audience response at the end of the Opening Night.

I have never been a part of such a long curtain call. The applause went on and on. It was such an amazing moment, I will never forget it. When the curtain finally fell, a rush of emotion hit us all. We had just done it! We had just debuted in France; we are now an international company. Everyone was embracing, crying tears of joy, and congratulating each other on a successful first Paris performance. I felt so proud to be a part of this exceptional group of dancers.

King includes a photo taken backstage, just after the final curtain. I can imagine the shared feeling: "I'm not ready to go back to the dressing room. I never want this to end."

http://tendusunderap...ning-night.html

#41 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 07:05 AM

It is indeed wonderful that Villella's company even being quite a small one compared to some ultra Principal-populated ones like the Mariinsky or City Ballet is able to have such variety of personalities onstage. The dual presentation of Delgado/Rebello in Tarantella and Kronenberg/Guerra in Faun just epitomizes the word "perfect casting". Both couples are completely different , and among the four dancers some of them are definitely technically stronger than others, but the way they were casted shows them in their brightest lights, hence masking to their advantage other weaknesses they might have.
re: J. Delgado. Since day 1 I made a note to myself to watch her, and I'm glad I've been proved right. Would she be casted in the company's upcoming run of Giselle then that will definitely prove a challenge to her, and here's someone who can't wait to see her dancing out of that left wing cottage... :clapping:

#42 CM

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 03:13 AM

"Paris hosts the Miami City Ballet"

France24 video in english. Interview with Edward Villella starts at around 5 minutes 20 seconds:

http://www.france24....elet-etes-danse

#43 CM

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 03:39 AM

"Paris hosts the Miami City Ballet"

France24 video in english. Interview with Edward Villella starts at around 5 minutes 20 seconds:

http://www.france24....elet-etes-danse


For the french speaking version of the programme, France 24 interviews Valery Colin, the director of Paris's annual dance festival, ".les etes de la danse". The interview is illustrated with different video and starts around 5 minutes 30 seconds

http://www.france24....-danse-chatelet

#44 bart

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 07:02 AM

Thanks, CM. So far, I've just had the time to look at the Villella interview. It's one of his best: he compresses a number of themes he talks about during his pre-performance talks. You can feel the charm that has been an important part of his success.

Villella has often talked about his experience of feeling that he had to hide his interest in ballet, from his father, the neighborhood guys, etc. Something parallel happened later on to Steven Caras, NYCB dancer, as presented in the documentary about his life and work: Steven Caras: See Them Dance. I would guess that many, many American boys have been discouraged from ballet dancing and have had to call on superhuman inner resources to hold the course.

The view that "boys don't dance" has had huge negative effect on the development of American male ballet dancers. I suspect that, as "dancing" per se has become more respectable, the message now is something more like this .... "REAL boys don't dance. Or at least they don't dance ballet."

It was good to hear Villella address this ongoing problem directly. Commenting on American culture, he says:

We have some homophobic circumstances that prevail.

Good for him for talking about this openly.

The performance clips from Symphony in Three Mvements (shot at the Chatelet) heavily edited. You do get a cumulative impression of speed and energy -- dancers hurling themselves into movement, while never loosing their technique. I have to believe that Balanchine would have loved it.

(Did I see Jeremy Cox among the dancers? Cox, who was in MCB's 2007 cast, is one of my all-time favorite dancers in this ballet.)

#45 iwatchthecorps

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Posted 14 July 2011 - 03:23 PM

My wife and I attended last night's performance of MCB at the Chatelet and will also attend tonight. Last evening we saw, 4Ts, La Valse, and Western Symphony. It was my first time to see La Valse. Since I am not a ballet expert, I will not comment on the technicality of the performance. I will however take a moment to relate my experience of sitting among what appeared to be a full house of local ballet fans. I understand that the house has been nearly full for all performances to date. There are MCB posters in the Metro, on the street, and on the busses all over the city. I felt that both 4Ts and La Valse were very warmly received. But, I felt a real energy in the audience for Western Symphony. It seemed that the audience, which was very young compared to audiences at MCBs other venues, recognized many of the tunes that wove their way through the score. Although the style may have been a little outside of the standard for French ballet, they embraced it. The applause at the end was huge and went on for many minutes. At the stage door, the orchestra (l'Orchestre Promethee) stood around whistling the tunes from Western. I think that is safe to say that Paris loves MCB and Western Symphony certainly worked well with the audience. Tonight we are going to see La Valse, In the Night, and Symphony in Three Movements. By the way, the Orchestra under the direction of Gary Sheldon was absolutely outstanding!

For those of you who tweet, you might have seen the MCB Paris hash tag "#MCBTakesParis." It is true!


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