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NYCB Spring Season 2011


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#61 ViolinConcerto

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 05:50 AM

In his pointed, opinionated way, Robert Gottlieb asked one of the questions we've all been wondering about: who or what is responsible for the incredible quality of dancing, especially in the Balanchine repertory, this season? (Here's the link to his article in "The Observer.") My own guess is that the question really comes down to WHO is responsible? Is someone new is coaching, or acting as Ballet Master? Has someone who really clicks with the dancers begun to work with them?

Does anyone have any insight into this?

#62 Ray

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 07:05 AM

Here's the link to his article in "The Observer."


I love this line from Gottlieb's review, re Seven Deadly Sins: "Sloth, Pride, Anger, Gluttony, Lust, Avarice, Envy? No. Taylor-Corbett's sins were deadlier: Blandness, boredom, confusion, vacuity, dreariness, pointlessness, pretention [sic]."

#63 Slant

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 06:37 AM

"Who or what is responsible for the incredible quality of dancing." Well, the dancers concluding a successful but tedious contract negotiation right before the start of the season didn't hurt. It probably energized them some.

#64 abatt

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 07:31 AM

I love this line from Gottlieb's review, re Seven Deadly Sins: "Sloth, Pride, Anger, Gluttony, Lust, Avarice, Envy? No. Taylor-Corbett's sins were deadlier: Blandness, boredom, confusion, vacuity, dreariness, pointlessness, pretention [sic]."



For the 2011-12 season, they are once again programming every performance of Vienna Waltzes with the Seven Deadly Sins. :wallbash:

#65 Colleen Boresta

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 08:44 AM

I have loved every ballet performed by NYCB during the 2011-12 season except for The Seven Deadly Sins. To me it's incredibly boring and I couldn't understand any thing Patti Lupone was singing. (I know this has already been mentioned). When I saw her in Gypsy in 2008 I could understand her perfectly. I think Ms. Lupone tends to overannunciate (if that's a word.) At first I thought it was the infamous acoustics of the David Koch Theatre. But when I saw West Side Story Suite I understood every word they sang. Maybe that's because I know the songs so well. I'm not sure. Did any Ballet Talkers have trouble understanding the words sung in West Side Suite? Would I see Seven Deadly Sins again? Only if I wanted to see the other ballets in the program. (And I do so love Vienna Waltzes.) I've sat through many a boring Peter Martins ballet to see the Balanchine/Robbins ballets before and after, so I'm sure I can sit through Seven Deadly Sins again.

#66 abatt

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 10:16 AM

Here's a link to a NY Times article regarding NYCB's Chase Finlay and the amazing season he is having:


http://www.nytimes.c...arts/index.html

#67 ViolinConcerto

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 07:47 AM

The "flaw" in "Diamonds" last night was a scary tumble by Maria Korowsky. She got up quickly and continued, but everyone's heart was in their mouth. I hope she didn't injure herself!!!!!

Any word????

#68 liebs

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 10:43 AM

Inspite of the fall, she gave a beautiful performance. Great amplitude, soulfulness and musicality. Askegard was a terrific partner and they had great rapport. As a whole, Jewels was a little uneven but had many strong performances. I thought Reichlen was witty and sexy in Rubies and A. Stafford was lovely in the "arms" solo.

#69 Krystin

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 08:27 PM

I just returned from the June 3 performance of Jewels, and it was a fantastic evening! The night started with Tiler Peck debuting in Emeralds. Ms. Peck's musicality is stunning, and it was on full display in this role. She had especially lovely moments in the swift bourree turns. This was my first time seeing Sara Mearns perform (she did the second solo in Emeralds). I was looking forward to making my own decision about her since I have heard such glowing reviews from critics. Luckily, Ms. Mearns did not disappoint. She really seems to have a presence that draws your eye right to her, and I don't know if I've ever seen a dancer use her back so well. The corps seemed very in sync and Emeralds is easily my favorite portion of Jewels.

When Rubies began, there was an audible gasp from the audience at the dancers' striking beginning pose. The costumes were gorgeous, and the quick tempo and intricate steps for the corps were very well danced. Savannah Lowery reads very tall from the audience, and she did a stand-up job with her very quick choreography. Megan Fairchild and Joaquin de Luz were the other Rubies leads. de Luz has great attack in his dancing and was a joy to watch. However, to me Ms. Fairchild came of as cutesy and not much more. She completed all of her footwork and turns, but I was left wishing she had given more artistry.

The final treat of the evening was seeing Wendy Whelan in diamonds. Ms. Whelan uses her arms very long arms incredibly, right down to her fingertips. Her placement is impeccable but she is also a real performer. Tyler Angle had a strong debut as her cavalier. Megan LeCrone and Gwyneth Muller both stood out in a good way in the demi-soloist roles.

I was in the first ring and didn't see many open seats in the audience from my vantage point. I'm excited to come back for the Sunday matinee mixed-rep performance. Sorry to hear about Maria K's spill in the Thursday night performance. I saw her walking on my way over to Lincoln Center for tonight's show and she seemed to be walking completely normal!

#70 christine174

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 08:53 PM

Kowroski: She was obviously startled after the spill, as were we all. After a brief pause of disorientation she quickly got back to work and looked totally fine.

#71 christine174

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 08:58 PM

And Reichlen was great!

#72 Krystin

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Posted 04 June 2011 - 09:16 PM

I was excited to compare a different cast of Jewels to the Friday evening performers tonight. Abi Stafford started off the evening in Emeralds, and I have to say I didn't find her as captivating as I had found Tiler Peck the previous evening. Jeni Ringer was great in the second Emeralds solo, even if her extensions weren't fantastic. She makes you remember that the best ballet dancing is about more than high extensions and multiple turns.

This cast of Rubies was about as opposite as possible from the Lowery/Fairchild cast. Tess Reichlen is a marvel! She is technically perfect and every move was exciting. And just when I didn't think anyone could even come close to Tess's level of dancing, Ashley Bouder came onto the stage. She attacked the steps with pure gusto, and the excitement from her dancing seemed to ripple through the audience. She articulated steps that I thought Megan Fairchild glossed over the previous evening. The corps was strong and in unison, and I felt like I had seen a very special performance when the curtain came down on Rubies.

When Maria Kowroski began Diamonds, a thought crossed my mind that this ballet suited her so well that it looked like it could have been made for her. Her sky-high extensions produced audible gasps in the audience, and Charles Askegard showed highly developed partnering skills. I'm sure the tall women in the company will miss Askegard when he retires next season.

It is incredible how different a dance can seem with a fresh cast. I think my dream cast with this run of dancers would be Tiler Peck and Sara Mearns in Emeralds, Ashley Bouder and Tess Reichlen in Rubies and Wendy Whelan in Diamonds.

#73 Slant

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 07:43 PM

Here's a link to a NY Times article regarding NYCB's Chase Finlay and the amazing season he is having:


http://www.nytimes.c...arts/index.html


Amazing? In what way? The fact that he stumbled and nearly fell in several of the Apollo performances I saw (I saw three in addition to one private rehearsal)?

#74 melange

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 09:55 PM

I was worried that Maria Kowroski might have injured herself in Thursday's Diamonds, and so was greatly relieved when the curtain rose on Jewels Saturday night without an announcement that she was replaced.

Normally, I find Diamonds to be a bit bland, but when the lead couple is very good (for example, last night, as well as with Philip Neal and Wendy Whelan last year) their extended pas de deux can a real treat.  Last night Kowroski and Chuck Askegard danced it beautifully.  His partnering was flawless and both executed their solo jumps and turns superbly.  She looked glowingly at him throughout and he glowed back at her.  I found the performance somewhat poignant in its way because it's one of the last times I'll see the Chuck and Maria Show, a traditional pairing I love.

The stately latter portion of Emeralds, featuring the four principals and three soloists, ending with the three men kneeling, makes this my favorite act of Jewels.  I thought it was danced with great sensitivity last night.  Antonio Carmena was impressive, making quick, clean jumps and showing particularly good chemistry with his two solo women, Erica Pereira and Ana Sophia Scheller.  But the standout in this section for me was Jenifer Ringer's strong, yet delicate and unhurried solo.  She's obviously worked off the sugar plums, because she seemed to float through it.  In particular, I was captivated by a series of dreamy arabesque turns.  She is a mature and thoughtful dancer with that wealth of experience to bring something special to a role and who still has the physical capability to execute it—a golden spot in her career.

A fun aspect of Rubies was the contrast between the styles/body types of the two principal women, Ashley Bouder and Teresa Reichlen.  Both were fantastic, with their intricate footwork, tremendous speed and spectacular jumps.  A slight disappointment was Gonzalo Garcia, who struck me as a bit stiff (not bad, but not of the same caliber as the principal women).  To be frank, I haven't been happy with the Rubies leading men I've seen since Nikolaj Hübbe (Joaquin De Luz, whose dancing is normally jaw-droppingly good, Garcia, Mr. Portman).  I'd like to see others in the company get a crack at the principal male role.

All in all, a fantastic night in a fantastic season.

#75 abatt

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Posted 06 June 2011 - 06:52 AM

I saw two different casts in Jewels over the weekend. Tiler Peck had a spectacular debut in the Verdy role in Emeralds. Her musicality and phrasing were exceptional. This role has been badly miscast in recent seasons. It was a pleasure to finally see someone in the role who could perform it well. Mearns did the walking duet. As always, she was breathtaking. The alternatate cast, with Abi Stafford and Ringer, was not as satisfying.

In Rubies, I've never been a fan of Megan Fairchild in the lead. She plays it cute, but lacks sophistication. I thought DeLuz, as her partner, did very well. He is technical wizard, and has the bravado style for the role. Lowery did the tall girl role. I much preferred the Bouder/Garcia/Reichlin cast. Reichlin owns the tall girl role at the moment. It is one of her signature roles. Rubies is perfectly suited to Bouder's extroverted style, and she performed with incredible speed and precision.

Whelan was partnered with Tyler Angle in Diamonds. This is becoming a frequent partnership at NYCB, but I could not believe for a second that he was her cavalier. Wendy did a lovely job in the pdd, but in her solos she tended to clip her movements short in order to keep up with the music. I preferred the pairing of Askegard and Kowrowski. She is a lush, grand dancer with sky high extensions. She is wonderful in Diamonds, and Askegard was a perfect partner. (By the way, Maria did not fall on Sat., and appeared to be fine after her fall on Thursday.)

Sadly I will miss Mearns' Diamonds performances this season, but I'm looking forward to seeing her in the Tall Girl role in Rubies at Dancers' Choice.


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