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Swan Lake- Spring 2011


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#31 mimsyb

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 10:40 AM

Carreno's performance last night was better than most of the performances he has given over the last 2 years. It was as if he turned back time. Last night he really did look like he could have danced several more years. He gave it his all, and it was a performance to remember. His chemistry w. Kent was riveting. His partnering was magnificent, and his technique was wonderful. Kent certainly has issues these days with holding her positions and balances. However, I thought that the depth of emotion she brought to the role more than made up for her technical lapses. When she and Carreno parted at the end of Act II, it almost brought tears to my eyes it was so moving. Her deportment is so beautifully elegant. Even though Dvorovenko and Herrera were superior Odettes in terms of technique earlier this week, those performances didn't have much emotional impact for me. Therefore, I felt Kent's performance was superior despite the obvious flaws in her technique. Murphy was so impressive as Odile, with amazing technical prowess (triple spins). Difficult choreography looks like child's play when she does it. How wonderful to see Susan Jaffe as the Queen Mother, reminding of all of the great performances that she and Jose performed on that stage. DeLuz has lost some of his technique, but it was wonderful to see him back on the MET stage. Sarah and Yuriko were much better in the peasant pas than earlier in the week.
Hallberg was very good as Purple Rothbart, but I cannot buy him as an evil character. Gomes is my gold standard as Purple Rothbart.

I didn't notice Osipova come out. What was she wearing? I saw Irina, Xiomara, Ferri, Jaffe and Paloma. I did not see Part or Wiles. It was great to see Bocca back to honor Jose as well. Steifel and Max B. were there too, even though they are not performing this season. I didn't see Herman. I don't think he was there. Hamrick (the future Mrs. Carreno) gave Jose a big hug and kiss (and flowers, I think) and then went to the back of the stage. Jose's daughters did not appear to interact with her at all on stage. I think the gray haired man who came out right before McKenzie was Barbee. Does anyone know?


Carreno gave many great, memorable performances on that stage which I will cherish in my memory. The first time I ever saw ABT was in the mid 90s. It was a Don Q. w. Susan Jaffe and Jose.


I would tend to be on the side of a spectacular farewell performance last night. Unlike some, I found Julie to be the most passionate and moving of all the Odettes I saw so far this season. (all but Michelle Wiles). Her vulnerability and softness in Seigfrieds' arms was heart wrenching. Her mime was wonderful and authentic. She told her story. "Here's how I got here". Unlike others, I find her arabesques to be absolutely right. Long before it became obligatory to hold those balances (especially in her entrance), it was correct to pique on "one" and recover to faille for the lovely arms and head movements. The music absolutely tells it to be so. She is so musical as to be an extension of the score, so I never know where the dancing begins and the music overlap. Few can master this. Ulanova was one. Not much more can be said of Jose and his extraordinary partnering skills. They were in absolute synch the entire time. I didn't let go of my breath until the final bourree off. I might add that Julie's soft , whispering battu into her slow final fouette before the final pose was breathtaking. And when she repeated that move in Act IV, now with the leg barely circling the fouette in a much lower mode, it spoke to her complete dejection and shattering of her love and hope for salvation. She has so many details in her interpretation that no one else manages. Brava!

Gillian, as others have reported, was beyond belief. Nothing technical stands in her way. But unlike some, I find her "gruffness" entirely appropriate. She's a villain, controlled and in cahoots with Rothbart. The fact that she comes across as so different from Odette and is still able to fool Seigfried speaks to his character also. It makes the change up all that more tragic. She doesn't need to have a relationship with Siegried. Her real relationship is with Rothbart, and here she succeeds, utterly. And I think the fact that Rothbart and Odile go in separate directions at the end is fine too. Surely they will meet up later to "divide the spoils", so to speak. Perhaps her other image is an owl, or a bat. Whatever, Rothbart has probably conjured her also and given her human form at his whim.

Jose was just so wonderful throughout, pulling out all the stops. His turns and even most of his jumps were age defying. But his partnering and stage manner stood out in every way. What a presence! He will be surely missed.

Most of the rest of the performance was of a higher caliber than on other nights. (IMO). The corps got it together, cynets and big swans looked great. And even the Act III dances had a higher energy than previously. Kudos to Susan Jaffe, looking very regal and sexy at the same time, so you could believe her momentary attraction to Rothbart. Like the other princesses, even she seems taken in by him. Given Hallberg's wonderful sinister manner and gorgeous lines and jumps, who wouldn't be taken in by him?

A big shout out to Joaquin! Nice to see you out of leotards for a change!

Altogether a great send off for Jose! The after glow continued into all the bows as others have mentioned. Great fun. Especially seeing Bocca do his little "rhumba" step on stage! The lady who I think others have identified as Ferri, I think was Vishneva, but I could be wrong . When she first came on stage with her back to us, I too thought Ferri, but when she turned around, I thought Vishneva. I friend who was at the party afterwards did not mention Ferri being there. Does anyone know for sure? Part came on all in black with VERY high heels! I didn't see Osipova either. I didn't see either Cornejo or Corella. But just seeing Jose's beautiful smile and honest gratitude at the bows was so worth the night.

#32 Roberto Dini

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 10:53 AM

I didn't see Osipova either.

I admit I just saw dyed black hair and heard someone say that was Osipova, so I could very well be mistaken.

#33 ksk04

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 11:08 AM

Did anyone see Wed. matinee? That was Wiles farewell performance with ABT.


???? Wow, was that acknowledged anywhere by ABT? I can understand not making an announcement about a soloist's departure, but you'd think they'd release a statement, at least, for a principal.



Thanks for all the reports from Jose's farewell! Keep em coming.

#34 Batsuchan

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 11:25 AM


I didn't see Osipova either.

I admit I just saw dyed black hair and heard someone say that was Osipova, so I could very well be mistaken.


Yes, it was definitely Ferri--with her long black hair down and wearing this wine red shirt/dress. I saw her walk into the Grand Tier at intermission and recognized the outfit when she came out on stage later--otherwise I wouldn't have been able to tell. :sweatingbullets:

And I also think it was Victor Barbee who came out with Carreno's daughters (before McKenzie)--he went to stand by Julie, so that would be my guess.

I was kind of surprised not to see Corella there--but I guess since Cornejo was not there either, they are touring somewhere?

#35 Batsuchan

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 11:26 AM

Drew—thank you very much for your explanations! I think I would like to see Odette turn to her sister swans for comfort, and see Siegfried search for her. Having an intermission between Act III and Act IV would definitely provide enough time for costume and scene changes, but I’m not sure ABT would want to add another intermission (and I’m not sure *I* want another intermission). Hmm..

**

As for Thursday night’s performance, I agree with abatt and Roberto Dini. Julie Kent certainly had her technical flaws, but she had this suffering, tragic aura that roused my sympathy, and then she looked so in love with Carreno’s Siegfried that I was moved by her performance and could overlook the lapses in technique. In the NY Times interview with Polina Semionova that came out yesterday, Polina sayid that Julie Kent is her favorite dancer because when she performs, “it’s not overplaying, it’s not too little, and you will see it from the last row.” I think this description perfectly describes what I saw last night.

Carreno was in great form, as others have already described. I will sorely miss those multiple-revolution pirouettes with the leg fully extended. Wow.
I noticed that he wears a different costume from the other Siegfrieds in Act III. He wears all black, whereas Hallberg wore white tights and a blue velvet top. I guess it was up to him to choose? (Not that I mind either way.)

Hallberg was great as von Rothbart in Act III, though Gomes owns the role. I’m just happy I got to see my new favorite in the corps, Renata Pavam, repeat her tiny bourrees again as the Italian princess.

I enjoyed Murphy as Odile much more than on Tuesday—or perhaps I was mentally prepared for her bitchy Odile. This time she seemed energized by the occasion, however. She did some multiple-revolution pirouettes during the fouette section with her arms up in fifth position, garnering gasps from the crowd. She stopped ahead of the music again, and may have come off pointe once in the middle, but I appreciated that she took risks and went for it. It was thrilling.

At the end, it was great to see everyone come out and applaud Carreno. It was raining flowers throughout all the bows and curtain calls.

Bravo and thank you, Jose!

#36 rg

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 12:31 PM

re: Wiles, in what turned out to be last perf. w/ ABT, all the audience knew, if it stayed for curtain calls, was that McKenzie himself presented her w/the last of 3 bouquets she was given during the bows.
all that could be learned for the meaning of the bouquets, in asking around after the fact, was that indeed it was Wiles last perf. with ABT and that it was her wish that no special 'deal' be made of her final appearance, wishes that ABT chose to honor.
Stearns gave her what seemed a very heartfelt kiss in front of the curtain, even tho', apparently, he hadn't known, until, one presumes the bouquet presentations and the appearance by McKenzie, that it was her final perf.

#37 bingham

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 01:05 PM

That's a shocker!! But then, she had very few performances scheduled this season and she has not been cast in any of the new big productions(except Dumbarton). Good luck with whatever her future plans would be. :clapping: :bow:

#38 anne12573

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 02:12 PM

Sad news: David Hallberg just tweeted that he sprained his ankle last night, and won't be performing with Semionova tomorrow night. I'm crushed! I wonder who will replace him.

Full tweet (@DavidHallberg): "Sprained ankle from Von Rothbart in Carreno's farewell performance. Siegfried Sat. night canceled with Semionova. Bummed and in a boot."

Obviously, best wishes to him for a speedy recovery.

#39 christine174

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 02:38 PM

Full tweet (@DavidHallberg): "Sprained ankle from Von Rothbart in Carreno's farewell performance. Siegfried Sat. night canceled with Semionova. Bummed and in a boot."

Frankly, I'd rather see Hallberg, but you won't hear me complaining about the substitute: the website now lists Marcelo Gomes.

#40 RUKen

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 02:43 PM


Full tweet (@DavidHallberg): "Sprained ankle from Von Rothbart in Carreno's farewell performance. Siegfried Sat. night canceled with Semionova. Bummed and in a boot."

Frankly, I'd rather see Hallberg, but you won't hear me complaining about the substitute: the website now lists Marcelo Gomes.


Yes, and it lists Carreno as Gomes' replacement in the matinee!

#41 anne12573

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 02:48 PM

Hallberg is still listed for the 7/6 Beauty with Osipova. I really hope he's able to do it. It's his last scheduled performance of the Met season!

#42 Marga

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 03:36 PM

re: Wiles, in what turned out to be last perf. w/ ABT, all the audience knew, if it stayed for curtain calls, was that McKenzie himself presented her w/the last of 3 bouquets she was given during the bows.
all that could be learned for the meaning of the bouquets, in asking around after the fact, was that indeed it was Wiles last perf. with ABT and that it was her wish that no special 'deal' be made of her final appearance, wishes that ABT chose to honor.
Stearns gave her what seemed a very heartfelt kiss in front of the curtain, even tho', apparently, he hadn't known, until, one presumes the bouquet presentations and the appearance by McKenzie, that it was her final perf.

Did anyone see the advertisement in last Sunday's NYT Magazine for First Republic Bank? It pictures Michele Wiles with her husband and the quote, seemingly attributed to both of them, reads "When my business was growing, I received an Eagle Loan from First Republic. Their quick turnaround was critical to my success." Under the quote both names are printed, James McCullough and Michele Wiles, along with their occupations. I was perplexed by this and reread it a few times last Sunday. I began to wonder if they're in business together now.

Here is a quote from the section about Michele Wiles in the Feb-March Pointe Online magazine, from an aricle about dancers married to non-dancers:

McCullough believes that their all-or-nothing vocations bring them closer. He says, “I’ve learned to love ballet almost as much as my own job.” Though it’s hard to put a finger on how, Wiles feels that her experiences with McCullough “translate to more expansive dancing.” She says that being a married to a non-dancer makes her world a bigger place. “James has exposed me to things I’d never experienced,” she says. “I come home and there are scientists in our living room! He’s opened my eyes.”


For the full article:

Married to Normal Folk

#43 Tapfan

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 04:28 PM

Get well soon Mr. Hallberg. I've got tickets to The Bright Stream in Los Angeles on July 14th.

Btw, Might Ms. Wells be in the family way?

#44 ksk04

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 04:48 PM



Full tweet (@DavidHallberg): "Sprained ankle from Von Rothbart in Carreno's farewell performance. Siegfried Sat. night canceled with Semionova. Bummed and in a boot."

Frankly, I'd rather see Hallberg, but you won't hear me complaining about the substitute: the website now lists Marcelo Gomes.


Yes, and it lists Carreno as Gomes' replacement in the matinee!


Looks like Carreno is pulling a Ferri on the way out!



Seriously though, this highlights the pressing need to Kevin to get it together with his male dancers. Gomes has been unbreakable so far, but I don't think that's always going to be the case.

#45 abatt

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 07:37 PM

Did anyone see the advertisement in last Sunday's NYT Magazine for First Republic Bank? It pictures Michele Wiles with her husband and the quote, seemingly attributed to both of them, reads "When my business was growing, I received an Eagle Loan from First Republic. Their quick turnaround was critical to my success." Under the quote both names are printed, James McCullough and Michele Wiles, along with their occupations. I was perplexed by this and reread it a few times last Sunday. I began to wonder if they're in business together now.


Married to Normal Folk

I saw the ad you're referring to. Wiles looks really strange in the photo. She is wearing a black cape that totally hides her figure.


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