Mariinsky JEWELS being released on DVD
Posted 18 August 2011 - 12:29 PM
Not only Lopatkina/Zelensky's Diamonds and Golub/Fadeev's Rubies but (gulp) Ayupova's Emeralds! This appears to be the first ballet release on the new Mariinsky label. Hopefully there will be more to come, including items filmed more recently.
Posted 18 August 2011 - 01:21 PM
This is great news. I, too, hope they start releasing videos on a regular basis.
Posted 18 August 2011 - 01:31 PM
Sofia Gumerova is the "tall girl" in Rubies.
Posted 28 August 2011 - 09:03 PM
amazon.com is accepting pre-orders for expected release date of 11 October 11. They're offering the guarantee that if they drop the price between time of order and time of release, they'll charge the lower price.
It's available in regular and Blu Ray.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 07:45 AM
Posted 29 September 2011 - 12:31 PM
Posted 11 October 2011 - 06:25 PM
Posted 13 October 2011 - 09:03 AM
Posted 13 October 2011 - 09:39 AM
I got the new Mariinsky (Kirov) Ballet BD of Jewels yesterday from Amazon US. The picture quality is fine for what it is --- mostly a taped live performance, with the usual uneven exposure problems like blown-out highlights in some sections when the lights were too bright. But it's pretty sharp and relatively noise-free, and interestingly, also shot in 24P! So the motion looks like sped-up stop-frame animation (if you've seen the Balanchine Nutcracker in that film with Macaulay Culkin, you'll know what I mean), but there is very little, if any, motion blur.
There is a double-red line glitch around 13:13 right in the middle of Emeralds, and the menu system is kind of dumb (you can't easily return out of submenus without pressing the menu button). All of the technically very sound Opus Arte releases have spoiled me!
Sound is also quite good, and uses the surrounds in a pleasing way. It's 5.1 DTS-HD MA, 48kHz. If you have a sub, you will hear every landing on the stage!
Also unusual is the variety of camera angles beyond the usual live broadcast angles. They have a flying camera on some of the solos, which were probably shot not with a live audience, as well as some neat overhead shots so you can see Balanchine's geometric patterns in the corps work. I really liked it, but a friend who is also a rabid balletomane really hated it. YMMV, but the film direction is done well --- with whole body shots when appropriate and closeups only during the bows.
Now, the artistic quality is another story altogether. Except for the last piece, Diamonds, I think this is one of the most wrongheaded performances of Jewels I've ever seen. I've seen this company live with almost this exact cast many years ago, and liked it, so either my tastes have changed, or something else was going on.
Emeralds had no subtlety or perfume: it was just kind of put out there. Rubies tried to sell itself way, way too hard, and instead of either being innocent (the way the Americans do it) or sophisticated (the Parisians), it was just crass. Diamonds was ultra-Russian, and worked well. It was also the only pas de deux where the girl looked at her partner. Whoa, those two people are supposed to relate to each other? Who would have thunk?
Anyway, it's not worth it unless you are a rabid Mariinsky fan (and I admit to being one), or you want to see what ballet in 1080p/24 looks like (pretty good) and you like the interesting camera angles. If you can stand the motion blur artifacts in the Opus Arte version with the Paris Opera Ballet, you will have a significantly better artistic experience on that one.
Posted 13 October 2011 - 09:47 AM
BTW, you can also spot Kondaurova in the Diamonds corps.
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