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ViolinConcerto

More Diaghilev Rep in London

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I received links to several articles about "Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle" -- performances in London, coordinated by Andris Liepa. They are presented at the London Coliseum. First, from The Express:

Friday April 15,2011

By Neil Norman

BRINGING together dancers from the Kremlin Ballet theatre company, plus guest artists from the Mariinsky and Bolshoi, Andris Liepa's dream project - subtitled Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle - delivers an unprecedented number of ballets created by Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes between 1909 and 1929.

also:

http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/04/13/48897669.html

http://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/review.php/31893/diaghilev-festival-programme-1-the-blue

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I received links to several articles about "Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle" -- performances in London, coordinated by Andris Liepa. They are presented at the London Coliseum. First, from The Express:

Friday April 15,2011

By Neil Norman

BRINGING together dancers from the Kremlin Ballet theatre company, plus guest artists from the Mariinsky and Bolshoi, Andris Liepa's dream project - subtitled Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle - delivers an unprecedented number of ballets created by Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes between 1909 and 1929.

also:

http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/04/13/48897669.html

http://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/review.php/31893/diaghilev-festival-programme-1-the-blue

After almost a years rest from the ballet, I attended what was described as a tribute to Diaghilev by the Kremlin Ballet.

Having seen the three programmes presented, I have to regrettably report that they were far from being a tribute.

Each work was announced from the stage by a less than endearing Andris Liepa in a style that to my mind, echoed the 1920's soviet speeches preceding performances for the new Russian audience who were unfamiliar with ballet. Each night he announced that he was the son of the outstanding Bolshoi ballet star Maris Liepa and proceeded to extensively describe the quality of what we were about to witness. This was a crass act and an indication that we were in for a bumpy ride.

Here are four newspaper reviews.

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/theatre-dance/reviews/the-diaghilev-festival-coliseum-london-2267389.html

http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2011/apr/14/les-saisons-russes-xxi-review

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/7370afe2-66aa-11e0-ac4d-00144feab49a.html#axzz1Jz09bYHO

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/f5e4f098-69be-11e0-826b-00144feab49a.html#axzz1Jz09bYHO

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Thanks, Leonid, and welcome back!!!

Yes, the critics seem to be in agreement about the impoverished attempts to reproduce the glories of the Ballets Russes.

Here are two other reviews, which agree:

http://www.bachtrack.com/review-blue-god-firebird-ballets-russes

http://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/review.php/31893/diaghilev-festival-programme-1-the-blue

Thank you for the welcome back.

It is a great shame as both "The Firebird" and "Scheherazade" could have been given a more authentic production if a liaison had been established with the Royal Ballet in the first instance and English National Ballet in the second.(see below)

Overall and most disappointing, was the recreation of both costumes and sets. Whilst not an absolute offence, almost all the sets lacked vibrancy and subtlety as did the costumes, which one knew from earlier recreations, various auctions and exhibitions over the last 49 years.

Having said that, I was thrilled to see the realisation of "Thamar", in which the recreation of Bakst’s designs, brought us closer to the original production, previously known from photographs and design illustrations.

Throughout the Kremlin Ballet’s productions, one was aware that the height, slimness and musculature of their dancers, diminishing the design effect and what one assumes was the original effect of the costumes movement conceived for smaller and stockier built dancers.

I was glad to have seen the productions, but could not recommend them without a caveat.

NOTE

The Kremlin Ballet used the Alexander Golovine original designs for "The Firebird" whilst The Royal Ballet use the later

Natalia Goncharova designs. The Royal Ballet's advantage is that it was staged for the company by Sergey Grigoriev and Lubov Tchernicheva with Tamara Karsavina coaching Margot Fonteyn and Michael Somes in the leading roles. English National Ballet's production of Scheherazade is descended from the Diaghilev production via the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and London Festival Ballet with exceptional performances given by Vassili Trunoff and Dudley von Loggenburg,for whom it seemed to be, entirely in his blood.

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Each work was announced from the stage by a less than endearing Andris Liepa in a style that to my mind, echoed the 1920's soviet speeches preceding performances ...
I am saddened to read this (as I am disappointed by reports of the program overall). :( One of Andris' many attractive qualities as a dancer was his abundant charm, and my perception of that charm was reinforced by a chance encounter in a supermarket.

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Each work was announced from the stage by a less than endearing Andris Liepa in a style that to my mind, echoed the 1920's soviet speeches preceding performances ...
I am saddened to read this (as I am disappointed by reports of the program overall). :( One of Andris' many attractive qualities as a dancer was his abundant charm, and my perception of that charm was reinforced by a chance encounter in a supermarket.

For an alternative view of Andris Liepa's presentation skills read:

http://www.theartsdesk.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=3488:the-blue-god/the-firebird-les-saisons-russes-du-xxieme-siecle-london-coliseum&Itemid=27

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