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Saturday, February 4


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#1 dirac

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 04:51 PM

A review of "Men in Motion" by Luke Jennings in The Observer.

Then there was Polunin in Narcisse, a Soviet version of another 1911 vehicle for Nijinsky. Entering with a huge gliding leap, Polunin showed us precisely what he was about to deprive us of. The effortless purity of line, the pouncing jump, the playful but absolute command of stage-space. Goleizovsky's piece gives us a being who is part human, part animal and wholly self-adoring. The casting seemed perfect, even if a tweet from Polunin last week suggested an ambivalent attitude to the role of the performer. "If you want to give pleasure to people become a hooker," he wrote.

Bravely, Putrov followed Polunin in Frederick Ashton's Dance of the Blessed Spirits, choreographed in 1978 for Anthony Dowell. This played to Putrov's strengths: to his steely balance, and high, clear line in adagio.

#2 dirac

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 04:53 PM

A preview of Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's new season by Sara in The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

The 43rd season will open in October at the Benedum Center, Downtown, with the company's first staging in almost a decade of "Giselle." Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot's choreography set to live orchestral music by 19th-century French composer Adolphe Adam portrays the tale of a peasant girl and a nobleman's romance -- and its aftermath of betrayal, revenge and reconciliation.

#3 dirac

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Posted 04 February 2012 - 04:58 PM

A review of the Israel Ballet by Ora Brafman in The Jersualem Post.

Over the years, Yampolsky has choreographed most of the company’s repertoire. Some of her renditions of the classics worked very well, but her original neo-classical attempts sometimes turned out to be more of an Achilles heel. The two excerpts are fine example of her artistic range. Lacrimosa, a short piece taken from Yampolsky’s Xta, is a beautiful duet that was danced to perfection by Shira Ezuz and Alexander Uitkin, and the only piece of the evening that was superbly dressed. The second was Take This Waltz, an excerpt from a piece dedicated to Leonard Cohen songs. What could have been an elegant, bittersweet waltz was treated with moves that went against its inherent grain and didn’t fare as well.

#4 dirac

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 06:45 AM

Two reviews of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.

The Dallas Morning News

Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet met most of its modest goals Friday night at the Eisemann Center, perfectly realizing the paint-by-numbers story of a young cabaret dancer in love. The choreography, by RWB veteran Jorden Morris, was precise, though largely uninspiring because it uses a limited vocabulary and in such a staid way.

The light entertainment of Moulin Rouge — The Ballet has been a hit for the company. Half pantomime, half steps, it's a museum piece in the story-ballet tradition lacking fresh ideas or imaginative movement strategies. By rote, the audience at the Eisemann knew exactly when it was time to clap.


TheaterJones

Yes, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet's Moulin Rouge: The Ballet performed Friday night at the Eisemann Center for the Performing Arts, was one interminable disaster.

It had only two things in its favor: handsome period costumes and exceptionally well-trained dancers who moved with a fluid grace. Pity they had nothing worthwhile to work with.



#5 dirac

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 06:48 AM

A story on older dancers at Ballet Arizona transitioning into character roles by Richard Nilsen in The Arizona Republic.

"It used to be the average retirement age for a dancer was between 38 and 42," says Ballet Arizona artistic director Ib Andersen, "but now it seems to be getting earlier and earlier, probably because ballets are more demanding now and ask more from the dancers than they used to."

Andersen, 58, joined the Royal Danish Ballet, one of the world's premier companies, at 16 and ended his performing career with George Balanchine's New York City Ballet when he was just 35.

#6 dirac

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 06:49 AM

Dayton Ballet presents its "Romance Series."

“Red Roses,” a kicky and popular ballet by Ballet Austin Artistic Director Stephen Mills, will also be presented.

Russo Burke, artistic director of the Dayton Ballet and the company’s most prolific dancemaker in recent years, has created “The Butterfly Suite,” a new one-act ballet telling of the heart-rending 1898 story by John Luther Long that has inspired operas, films and musicals as well.

#7 dirac

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 06:59 AM

Ashley Bouder talks to Stefanie Cohen of The New York Post about taking a fall onstage.

“I fell through my partner’s hands once,” she says. “I’ve been traveling backward in an arabesque and fallen on my knee and my face. I’ve fallen [turning] in a bourré.”


Bouder, who is known for her athleticism, says her stumbles often occur when her foot slips after she leaps into the air like LeBron James. But, she shrugs, “Ballet is a live art form. It’s not meant to be perfect.”



#8 dirac

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 07:00 AM

Ballet Austin preps for its fourth biennial New American Talent/Dance competition.

The event will feature three choreographers from New York City, each of whom will be responsible for choreographing a show for the audience to vote on.

On Sunday, after each show has premiered, audience members will be asked to use their cell phones as voting devices and the winner will be crowned based on those votes.



#9 dirac

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Posted 06 February 2012 - 12:08 PM

A review of New York City Ballet's all-Wheeldon program by Margaret Fuhrer for The Huffington Post.


But I was able to see Les Carillons (the premiere) and DGV: Danse à Grande Vitesse (the New York premiere) on separate bills during the week. Even on different nights -- and bracketed by Balanchine and Robbins ballets with big personalities -- the distinct fragrances of these two works were potent. With their large, well-deployed casts, they were clearly made by the same geometric mind; but what a range that mind has.

Carillons, set to Bizet's L'Arlesienne, will take a few viewings to settle in the brain. You leave it remembering a series of feelings, rather than steps. Its five lead couples, mirrored by five supporting pairs, live in an abstract take on the pastoral France of Bizet's score: The girls wear long skirts, the boys poet blouses (or at least, in a tacky twist, one billowy sleeve); there are bits of mazurka steps and lots of hands on hips. Miniature dramas abound.



#10 dirac

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 04:26 PM

A review of Pacific Northwest Ballet's 'Don Quixote' by Michael van Baker for The SunBreak.

This is of a piece with Ratmansky’s choreography, which adroitly balances, against the ballet’s traditional fetish with technique, a sense of place, inhabited by living people. His crowd scenes are a marvel of details, as little groups form and mingle–it’s perhaps a way of staking out a middle ground between his choreographic forebears in quixoticism, Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky. (The latter’s Don Quixote d’après Petipa, was not, sniffed Petipa, but full of “meaningless innovations and changes.”)

Here, the choreography is indicated as Petipa, Gorsky, and Ratmansky, though as Ratmansky admitted in a pre-rehearsal talk, “I’m mad at all the ballet historians” for not having documented much of the Don Quixote choreography at all. Ratmansky could only find notation for “one tiny scene” that “seems to have nothing to do with what’s known of the ballet.” Otherwise, he’s relied on the ballet form of the game of Telephone, where dancers and stagers transmit the work personally.



#11 dirac

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 10:42 AM

A review of Pacific Northwest Ballet in 'Don Quixote' by Kristen Legg for SeattleDances.

What the lead performers gave in presentation, the corps, sadly, took away. The cast was extremely large; having 15 women fanning themselves, 8 men with bright pink bullfighting capes, and a handful of Gypsies, prostitutes, and street children moving about became quite distracting. The corps also lacked the spirit and intensity needed to carry such a great work. It seems as though traditional character dancing is missing in current ballet training. The castanet work was lacking from the women, and dropped capes and sloppy fabric twirling from the men pulled focus from the choreography. If PNB plans to continue diversifying their full-length ballet repertoire, which one can only hope they do, they will need to add emphasis in their training to the traditional dance styles.




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