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Natalia

Burlaka recon - Petipa's Harlequinade

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The Sergeyev Notes at Harvard University are not gathering dust. On the heels of Vikharev's glorious staging of the complete Raymonda at La Scala, Yuri Burlaka is staging Petipa/Drigo's Harlequinade for the Moscow Academy of Ballet (the Bolshoi's school), as we can see from the following playbill announcement of a 'suite' to be shown at the Mikhailovsky-Prix Gala in St. Petersburg on November 30:

http://www.mikhailov.../2011/programm/

Seventh item on the above link:

Московская государственная академия хореографии

Р. Дриго [R. Drigo]

Сюита из балета «Арлекинада» [suite from the ballet 'Harlequinade']

Хореография: М. Петипа, восстановление: Ю. Бурлака [chor. Petipa; staging: Y. Burlaka]

...later, Marina Leonova is listed as leading pedagogue, as she is the Academy's head.

It will be fascinating to compare this with late-20th-C versions, such as Balanchine's NYCB edition from the 1960s or the Gusev-after-Petipa version of the 'old' Mikhailovsky (when it was known as the Maly Theater).

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Related to the above, here's a link to 'thumbnail photos' of a hand-written English-language summary of the parts of Harlequinade that exist in the Sergeyev/Harvard notes:

http://pds.lib.harva...s/view/15525119

Glancing at the summary, it appears as if most (if not all) of the ballet's segments are covered. The gala on Wednesday will include only a suite.

EDITED TO ADD CITATION (RESOURCE) INFORMATION: Persistent Link: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:FHCL.HOUGH:3746597 Description: Sergeev, Nikolai, 1876-1951. Nikolai Sergeev dance notations and music scores for ballets, 1888-1944 (inclusive), 1902-1931 (bulk). MS Thr 245 (52). Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. Repository: Houghton Library Institution: Harvard University Accessed: 28 November 2011

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I watched a Harlequinade from the Mikhailovsky on YouTube, and I enjoyed it very much despite blurred picture and it was fairly short (read history online too and understand it is often cut to one act). What was wild is that at one point a group beats up Harlequin (I assume that is the character) and then throw him off a balcony and then tear him limb from limb. It is obviously a dummy at that point, but I never thought any ballet would be so violent! LOL

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The 'beating' of Harlequin can also be seen in the Balanchine version. That's what precipitates the appearance of the Bonne Fee (Good Fairy), who brings Harlequin back to life and presents him with a bag of gold coins (the "millions" in the original title), thus allowing him to eventually marry his beloved Colombine.

Italian Commedia dell'Arte often involved slapstick humor that verged on the violent, for the sake of moving a story forward.

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Voila! - The Mikhailovsky Prix performance of Harlequinade Suite (Burlaka-after-Petipa/Drigo), starring Ksenia Rychkova (Grand-Prix winner) and Mario Labrador (Artistic Council's Special Prize winner) + Moscow Ballet Academy corps. The first part includes Drigo's gorgeous Serenade -- with tenor vocalist! It's interesting that some of the variations are to music not heard in the Balanchine & Maly-Gusev versions, e.g., Colombine's variation near the end.

Part 1:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTBKWW-6NHU&feature=related

Part 2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wLuixh7PAg&feature=related

Total: about 16 minutes long.

Bravi, Burlaka/Petipa, Drigo & student-dancers! I hope that Burlaka can eventually stage the full ballet, with scenery.

(Thanks to the YouTube 'uploader' named baletvideo!)

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The 'beating' of Harlequin can also be seen in the Balanchine version. That's what precipitates the appearance of the Bonne Fee (Good Fairy), who brings Harlequin back to life and presents him with a bag of gold coins (the "millions" in the original title), thus allowing him to eventually marry his beloved Colombine.

Italian Commedia dell'Arte often involved slapstick humor that verged on the violent, for the sake of moving a story forward.

Gold coins for dowry...isn't that the story of St. Nick a/k/a Santa Claus?

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