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ABT meets Baltimore Ballet


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#16 theo

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Posted 26 February 2011 - 06:10 AM

I started this thread in hopes of providing some exposure for Baltimore Ballet. I have seen them dance a couple of times and thought they were at least worth mentioning. I new if I added "ABT" in the thread people would read. What I did not expect was the direction the tread took. I have sat back and watched while things got a bit ugly and began to feel guilty for ever having spoken. But I'm glad to see that at lest some redemption has been possible. Tonight I see another local Maryland Company, Ballet Theater of Maryland. And I'm very much looking forward to it. I'm a New York Girl who's used to the likes of ABT and NYCB. I've seen Foteyn and Nureyev, Marcia Haydee and Richard Cragun and Suzane Farrell dance live. Yet I am not a ballet snob and I never turn a blind eye to a hard working local company. Dance is a beauty to behold and who are any of us to pick apart those who work so hard to bring to the beauty to us.

My 2 cents

#17 Tari

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 10:49 AM

Theo - your remarks are kind and balanced. Since you mentioned it, I'm curious how you felt about Ballet Theatre of Maryland's performance of Romeo and Juliet. I'm a new poster and I did see the performance but I am not a ballet expert and would appreciate your insight.

#18 theo

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 04:07 PM

Hi Tari,

It's an honor to be asked my opinion, thank you. I struggled with Baltimore Ballet's production of the Balcony Scene from Romeo and Juliet. The steps and movements were technically executed well enough, but what was missing was the emotion that this ballet really demands. I think acting is something the company needs to work on. Either that or they need to stick to works that don't require emotion to convey a particular story or choreographer's vision. I have only seen them perform a few times. One of my favorite performances of theirs was a piece called "Salome's Daughters," which is a modern work that was choreographed by Nejla Yatkin, one of Dance Magazine's "25 artists to watch in 2009." I was front row center for that performance and thought it suited the company (which has had several changes in the roster since then) very well indeed. They were natural in that piece and I would even go as far as to say they were dazzling.

I am no ballet expert either but I have been fortunate enough to have been exposed to it since I was very young and was blessed with the ability to see world class companies and dancers perform live. I even danced myself, but lacked the discipline, and probably the talent to attempt to pursue it professionally. Sometimes love is not enough. And I do LOVE this art form. I feel it in my bones (especially my feet) and in my heart when ever I watch a performance.

In my humble opinion, Baltimore Ballet appears to be trying to find its identity. They rely a lot on guest artists which I think may prevent them from truly developing as a cohesive unit/company on their own. They are worth watching though and as I said in my original post, going to see them at the Baltimore Museum of Art is a lovely way to spend an evening.

Theo

#19 Tari

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 08:24 PM

Hi theo,

Thank you so much for your thoughtful reply. I was originally asking about the Ballet Theater of Maryland performance, which you responded to so well on another thread (and I agree!), but your response on this thread also brings out a similar point - the importance of good, honest acting in dance. This is something I've noticed in my limited experience, that I most enjoy performances that evoke emotion, or a memory, or a better understanding of relationships, and those that lack that, while they can be great technically, are not that memorable to me. It's the honest emotion that makes dance relevant and fresh. And it took me a while to understand why so many companies were called "Ballet Theater" until I realized that the "theater" part was an essential feature!
Thanks for helping me put it all into perspective.

#20 theo

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Posted 03 March 2011 - 04:26 AM

Hi theo,

Thank you so much for your thoughtful reply. I was originally asking about the Ballet Theater of Maryland performance, which you responded to so well on another thread (and I agree!), but your response on this thread also brings out a similar point - the importance of good, honest acting in dance. This is something I've noticed in my limited experience, that I most enjoy performances that evoke emotion, or a memory, or a better understanding of relationships, and those that lack that, while they can be great technically, are not that memorable to me. It's the honest emotion that makes dance relevant and fresh. And it took me a while to understand why so many companies were called "Ballet Theater" until I realized that the "theater" part was an essential feature!
Thanks for helping me put it all into perspective.



#21 theo

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Posted 03 March 2011 - 04:29 AM

Tari,

I'm so sorry I didn't read your original post more carefully! I don't know how I missed that. I see clearly now that you were asking about BTM. I'm glad you got the answer you were looking for even if it was in a round about way.


Theo

#22 Zschoerper

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 07:15 PM

Last night I attended the performance of Baltimore Ballet's mixed bill which featured Pas de Quatre, Romeo & Juliet Balcony Scene and The Firebird. First let me say that I saw this company perform two years ago and they are much improved. Thanks in part, to some ABT help, some new blood and also some better fitting costumes with the exception of Juliet's. A baggy sagging long sleeved night gown does not work for the balcony scene!
Aside from Juliet's costume, the only other negative was the quality of the recorded music. Pas de Quatre in particular was obviously a recording of an old record. It was a bit distracting. On to the good news: The two stand out performers for me were ABT II's Aaron Smyth and Baltimore Ballet's Marianna Zschoerper. According to the program, this was Marianna's first performance with this company. She had lovely stage presence and light movement. She was a pleasure to watch. Aaron Smyth shone most brightly in this hometown production. I hadn't realized during the performance that he was from ABT II and I wondered, "where the heck did he come from" I will be interested to see if and how he progresses through ABT. He very well could be one to watch. There were children in this production, which I did not expect, but they were fun and their costumes did them justice. There was one very small young girl who rode on the back of one of the older male dancers who I thought was an eye catcher. All in all, I enjoyed the show. A hometown performance in a cozy venue is a nice way to spend an evening. And by the way, Mr. Catbas, the founder and artistic director of this company, did an amicable job as Romeo. I didn't want to leave him out.


Thank You Very much .I am miss Mariana Z. I am really glad you had enjoy the performance, nothing can be more magnificant than hear/ read, good comments about something you did , and spent so much love and energy with . Mister Catbas job also, I must admit . I am now dancing with Baltimore Ballet permanently. Me, my sister and some more dancers. I am sure see you around this Ballet world again very soon . Best regards. M.Z.

#23 bart

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Posted 05 November 2011 - 06:29 AM

It's wonderful to hear news of a company growing artistically. Belated thanks, theo, for your review of last March's performance. And thanks Mariana Z and your colleagues for being part of this renewal.

Sometimes I fear that ballet -- like opera -- may be on the road to a future of just a few super-companies surviving at the top of a pyramid, the base of which is languishing and in danger of disappearing. (Baltimore Opera, Ballet Florida -- the list of such companies is growing.)

The performing arts needs artistically ambitious, achieving companies at all levels. Congratulations, Baltimore Ballet.

#24 epee and pointeshoes

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Posted 05 December 2011 - 11:45 AM

There was one very small young girl who rode on the back of one of the older male dancers who I thought was an eye catcher.


This young lady is my dd. She very much enjoyed dancing the role of the 'lead creature' in The Firebird with the Baltimore Ballet Company, and thanks you for your kind comments! Thank you, as well, for bringing attention to the ballet world here in northern and central Maryland. Yes, it is a challenge with Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia so close by, but it is well worth the effort to nurture the art of ballet in this part of the state.

#25 theo

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Posted 06 December 2011 - 04:47 AM

[size=4][font=Arial]It makes me very happy to know that gifted people I wrote about last year (and their Mom's!) have read my words. Ms. Mariana and that wonderful young lady (lead creature), you were a pleasure to watch. Sorry I haven't had an opportunity to catch Baltimore Ballet this year. I'll be back though. I hope Baltimore Ballet is having a great season and that many folks come to enjoy it![/font]
.[/size]

#26 Zschoerper

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 07:56 PM

Thank you .
I am not with Baltimore Ballet anymore .
Looking for a new job now .
Mariana Z.

#27 carbro

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:33 PM

Wishing you success in your search, Mariana. :flowers:


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