Kathleen O, on 29 March 2012 - 01:29 PM, said:
Example: Act II opens with Prince Florestan and his pals jumping around like jesters. It makes no dramatic sense -- Florestan is supposed to be a melancholy man apart searching for the ideal -- but Kirkland and her collaborators decided that the curtain must go up on some male pyrotechnics, and so it does.
When I saw the added male dancing I vaguely assumed it was Mckenzie's idea (based on some of his other productions where he adds male pyrotechnics inappropriately--and he is partly credited for the ABT Sleeping Beauty)--but there is no way of knowing...or, at any rate, I don't know. It was not a successful outing for Kirkland/Chernov or Mckenzie...but the elements that I remember being most criticized when the ballet premiered were the added layers of psychological/allegorical interpretation (plus the visuals), something Balanchine did not go in for...at least not in such explicit, literary fashion.
I think that in staging these ballets companies should take account of their own histories and traditions. A Bolshoi style reconstruction of Coppelia would probably not work at NYCB, which does not preclude NYCB having a successful, and still quite traditional, Coppelia that does work (I think) and that the company has often danced very successfully.
When Makarova did a Sleeping Beauty for the Royal that lasted one season, some reviews suggested that the real problem was not the production per se, though no-one liked her little "cupid" figure, but the imposition of a Russian/Soviet Sleeping Beauty tradition on a British company that had its own very distinguished British Sleeping Beauty traditions. I cannot claim to have a trained eye for these different qualities or to know how to describe them, but in a general way I get the idea. And I have always wondered if Makarova's SB would not have worked better, for example, at ABT ... which has never really "owned" the ballet the way the Royal has...