To deal with Natalia's
last question first, the credits for Prodigal Son
include this line: "Repetiteur
Paul Boos and Suzanne Farrell" (Note, on this point, my long third parenthesis, below.)
As for the V-F costumes, I recall pale blue. I think that's what they are on the 1973 video. I don't remember lilac. I'll try to check next week and post, if no one else reports on this.
Further thoughtsProgram A
Thursday evening November 8th
The main difference here was Ogden and Gurevich rotating into "Intermezzo" and Angelova and Cook coming into Valse-Fantaisie
; I can't say Ogden's performance was "better" or "worse" than Magnicaballi's, but different in the way it was sustained, compared to the rise and fall, ebb and flow of loveliness with Magnicaballi. Maybe I preferred Magnicaballi a little, so far, but I look forward to seeing each of them in this again. As for Angelova, as with Holowchuk, she continues to dance on a smaller scale than the two top-rank women. (The company roster is organized into five unnamed categories.)Program B
Friday evening November 9th
(Amy Brandt remained out, replaced by Jordyn Richter)Divertimento No. 15
was really fine; not only did it have the lightness it should have, the "Theme and Variations" movement, in unusually "easy" tempo - but not by any means dragging - was used to good advantage by everyone, on stage and in the pit. Magnicaballi gave amplitude to the Third Variation (which may have made Angelova's Fourth look a little more scaled-down for that), and Ogden did herself very proud in the Sixth Variation and throughout the ballet; plenty to smile about, although I'm not convinced that detail should actually have been provided. (I'd rather the costumes for this Classical ballet were a less "Romantic" color than lavender and that the principals and corps costumes were more differentiated, too.) Prodigal Son
needs more weight in the principal roles, I'd say at this early stage: Michael Cook's movement was rather snappy, especially in the first scene, so that it didn't convey all the intense fury I've gotten other times from some other dancers, but this is a huge role and we may see some development as the run continues, not unusual with this troupe. Early in the second scene ("In a Far Country", in The Complete Stories of the Great Ballets
) he already brings a light, innocent joy to playing around with the Drinking Companions which serves to contrast with his later fright as events overwhelm him and, still later, his shame.
(Also in this scene, Boos and Farrell have restored some extensive antics by the Servants, here called Confidants of the Prodigal Son, while the Siren and the Prodigal … make small talk? … seated on the back of the long table, upstage, cut from the "Dance in America" version of the ballet, which was reissued on the "Choreography by Balanchine" videos. The restored material runs about two minutes, and it comes in at about 33:50 on the DVD.)
And Magnicaballi's generous warmth doesn't serve her so well in another big role that should chill your blood more. Some ballerinas have not only the ability to do that, they can possess the whole space while remaining at the side of it; they don't seem to stop performing when they're standing still. Magnicaballi looks like working into it. So far, it's casting against type, though.
The powerful figure in this ballet for me was Pavel Gurevich, in the smaller role of the Father, especially in the first scene: Here was someone who could produce an effect without obviously doing much but rather by apt phrasing of what he did.
Kirk Henning continues to fill out his role as the Hoofer in Slaughter on Tenth Avenue
; in particular his tap-dancing is more clearly articulated each time. And from a closer seat than I had opening night, Wednesday, it was clear how Holowchuk was completing her portrayal of the Strip Tease Girl; for example, her first dance with the Hoofer begins as an obligation he has purchased, but later she shows some real interest, which sets up some of the following action.
Edited by Jack Reed, 11 November 2012 - 08:37 PM.