My own edition of the Nutcracker.
Posted 26 December 2010 - 09:42 AM
So here is my second edition-(and I hope the definitive one... )
The concept of an adult Clara. Vainonen. Lezhinna proves that this is possible without having to look too bizarre.
The overture. Balanchine. Love Nuremberg's view from the roof tops.
The opening scene. Vainonen. The outdoors sequence with the snowy sidewalk and the guests arrival is beautiful.
Sets for the Silberhaus house. Balanchine
The party scene. Vainonen. Love the party kids dancing around the Christmas tree, and of course, the girls in pointe shoes.
The life size dolls divertissements. Two choices here.
Balanchine's Harlequin and Columbine-(love all this Commedia dell'Arte stuff)
Alonso's re-introduction of the three "Petroushka" characters, and their original little stories...
The Battle scene. This is a tough one. I really like the innocent, vintage feeling of Balanchine's, but also Baryshnikov' choreographed Nutcracker movements, and Alonso's stylized mice on pointe. It could be a mixed of the three...i guess.
The transformation scene. Vainonen. Love the beautiful PDD between Clara and the Nutcracker-turned-Prince here.
The Snow Scene.
Alonso-after-Fedorova-for-BRdMC Snow Queen/King PDD.
Snowflakes' choreography. Balanchine. One of the strongest points in his version. Just glorious, amazing, beautiful!!
Introduction to Confiterimburg.
Alonso's parade of Matryoshka dolls.
Sir Peter Wright's introduction of BOTH the Sugar Plum Fairy and Prince Coqueluche to welcome the special guests.
Balanchine's mime of the little prince, telling the story. (Essential for the coherence of the whole thing).
Spanish Dance. Balanchine. (Lourdes and Nilas were beautiful)
Arabian Dance. Balanchine. Great speeding of the music, which usually gets sooooooo looooooooong in many stagings. Also his Odalisque has a more interesting choreography than the extensions-showing ones from other productions...AND pointe shoes.
Chinese Dance. Balanchine. Love the porcelain-doll feeling of his characters, and the box concept. Also the grand ecartes for his male lead here.
Danish Dance. I can't decide here. I have three strong candidates. Baryshnikov. There's this cute couple of shepherd/shepherdess, with the little story of the guy disguising as a wolf and scaring away the ballerina. Balanchine's with his lovely ballerinas and Vainonen's delicious rococo Pas de Trois for the three kids. A tough one here.
Russian Dance. Balanchine. Historical based and very exciting to watch.
Mother Cigogne. Balanchine. Love his polichinelles-(something I discarded in the past, IMC)
Waltz of the Flowers. Balanchine, of course..the other strong point of his staging. Just BREATHLESS. Also love his Dewdrop. Special mention to Vainonen's romantic, closer to the original choreography with the waltzing couples, also great.
Grand Pas de Deux. Ivanov choreography, Sir Peter Wright's staging. Always my winner, as you all know. The beautiful adagio, the two variations where they go, the whole thing. Also love the rococo feeling of his costumes.
Grand Finale. Balanchine. He really knew how to present all the characters at the end, and the only version with a real "apotheosis", with the flying troika.
As you can see, my current options difer greatly from those of my pre-NYCB-DVD times, which can be viewed HERE.
Posted 26 December 2010 - 08:40 PM
I'm sorry for Balanchine, represented only by Arabian.
See...? 10% last year vs. 90-( )-% of today. That's life...always subjected to unexpected changes...
Posted 27 December 2010 - 06:17 AM
I've known the Balanchine from childhood. I guess you could say that this became my default version, as Alonso's was for you. You have encouraged me to revisit videos of several different Nutcrackers in a relatively short period of time. I now have a set of fresh visual images that allow me to imagine your composite version. It sounds good to me.
Posted 26 November 2012 - 08:16 AM
Here it is, at its best moments.
The Snow Queen/King PDD
The Snow Scene
The presentation of The Nutcracker's sisters, the matryoshka dolls
Part II coming up...
Posted 26 November 2012 - 08:52 AM
Waltz of the Flowers
Grand Pas de deux
Sugar Plum Fairy variation
Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:17 AM
Dance of the Marzipan Mirlitons
Russian Dance, Balanchine's also-(didn't find a clip of its own...)
(Note that everybody is on pointe here...from Clara to the mice to the Spanish females to the odalisques...)
Posted 26 November 2012 - 04:50 PM
Off Topic: The photo of Tiler Peck/ Dewdrop sailing through the air (today's NY Times) was one of the most exciting photos I've seen in a long, long time. Who knew such vitality could be expressed in a single still photograph.
Go to photo # 3 of five.
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