cubanmiamiboy

Are there more birds...?

37 posts in this topic

We have the black swan Odile, the white swan Odette, the owl Von Rothbart, the yellow canary fairy of Beauty, the red Fokine's Firebird, the blue companion of Petipa's Florine, the generic one in Bolm's Peter and the Wolf and Ashton's funny chicken.

Are there more birds around that I forgot in this list...?

(Oh, just being silly...happy.png )

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Never knew Von Rothbart was an owl! I'll have to check out the ABT swamp creature more carefully for owlish aspects.

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Never knew Von Rothbart was an owl! I'll have to check out the ABT swamp creature more carefully for owlish aspects.

Oh, ABT's Swamp Thing is certainly far from its original conception, Barbara..! happy.png

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Mark Morris did Sandpiper Ballet in 1999 for SFB and Cunningham did a Beach Birds in 1991, which according to Alaistair M “evoke, a range of birdlife from penguins to gannets,” and many of his ballet have bird-like movements - in their own particular “state of controlled panic." Also Ashton did a version of Two Pigeons.

On predator side of things, Diaghiliev produced a ballet about a cat who has been transformed into a girlfriend for Serge Lifar. She betrays her true self by still wanting to dine on mice.

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On predator side of things, Diaghiliev produced a ballet about a cat who has been transformed into a girlfriend for Serge Lifar. She betrays her true self by still wanting to dine on mice.

happy.png

Barbara...

Benois design.

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I think if you go farther, you find more owlish Rothbarts, with frightening large eyes, IIRC. (How about a photo, Cristian?)

But the original question reminded me of something, so I looked it up: How many birds were there going to be in The Birds of America, the Kirstein-inspired project that he and Balanchine and many others thought about, on and off, for forty years? Taper's account names lots of people - Balanchine wanted Tallchief as Pocohontas, naturally enough, at one point, which shows you how long ago the project had begun - but no birds, no numbers. The title had made me think there'd have been flocks and flocks of them, if it'd ever made it onto the stage.

But cubanmiamiboy has soloists and principals in mind, and all the characters from Kirstein's scenario that Taper names are the featherless kind of biped.

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And then there is the delightfully silly Jemima Puddleduck in the Royal Ballet's Tales of Beatrix Potter, also by Ashton, who plays Mrs. Tiggy-winkle the hedgehog in the original film version.

By the way, as far as I remember, the only birds in the Two Pigeons are live ones, who fly round the auditorium and finally settle on the chair in the attic belonging to the lovers. It's the most beautiful ending to a gorgeous pas de deux............

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I think if you go farther, you find more owlish Rothbarts, with frightening large eyes, IIRC. (How about a photo, Cristian?)

Not to mention the owl on the top of the grandfather clock in Balanchine's Nutcracker.

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That owl on the clock is also in Vainonen's Nutcracker at the Mariinsky.. Is it a Russian thing?

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It's actually a Hoffman thing. It's in the original libretto.

And let's not forget the duck in the aforementioned "Peter and the Wolf"!

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If we count Icarus as a bird-boy there are several versions. The first one that I'm aware of is Lifar's.

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Please add to the list

(1) Flamingo in Wheeldon's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

(2) Peacock in PNB's The Nutcracker (my favorite!)

PS: @Cristian: I seem to recall from the "least favorite variation" thread that you dislike Coffee (Arabian Dance) from The Nutcracker. Warning! Peacock is the Arabian Dance!

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Please add to the list

(1) Flamingo in Wheeldon's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

(2) Peacock in PNB's The Nutcracker (my favorite!)

PS: @Cristian: I seem to recall from the "least favorite variation" thread that you dislike Coffee (Arabian Dance) from The Nutcracker. Warning! Peacock is the Arabian Dance!

Well, the music is certainly very long and slow, and none of the choreographies I've ever seen really conveys the mistery and glamour that I guess such Arabian fantasy crafted by Russian and French hands was supposed to have had back in the XIX Century. The peacock costume reminds me of that of the Coq d'Or...there's some cute vintage feeling to it-(reminding us about a time when dancers and designers were not afraid of over the top head pieces and lavish costumes...happy.png )

Thanks for the clip, Kerry!

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The ballet Shurale is also about a bird.

I still can't find how to embed a youtube video, so here's the link:

edit: apparently I found it! happy.png

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Mark Morris's Renard features a cat, fox, cock, goat and three hens. Unfortunately, I haven't seen it and can't offer a description or opinion.

renard400.jpg

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The peacock costume reminds me of that of the Coq d'Or...there's some cute vintage feeling to it-(reminding us about a time when dancers and designers were not afraid of over the top head pieces and lavish costumes...happy.png )

The Sendak designs for this Nutcracker have a great Middle Eastern element throughout the Kingdom of the Sweets (Drosselmeyer shows up as a "Pasha" with a turban the size of Gibralter) - I often think of Scheherezade when I see it.

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The Raven and raven corps in Bintley's Beauty and the Beast.

The birds in Chrisopher Gable's Cinderella.

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The Swan in Siobhan Davies Carnival of the Animals and of course, the Dying Swan

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MacMillan's House of Birds featured an evil Bird Woman who turned men into birds. I haven't seen that one for years, does anyone else remember it?

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