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Giselle Spring 2012


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#16 cobweb

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 08:50 AM

I have been suffering with a bad cold and had to leave at intermission last night. Very disappointed to miss Devon Teuscher's NY debut as Myrtha. Any reports from those who were there?
As for the first act, I think I"m just getting a little weary of Giselle. I love Herman Cornejo, and I love Reyes in the right roles, but I was just unmoved (again, probably not their fault but just that I've seen enough Giselles to last me quite awhile). In the peasant pdd, Blaine Hoven didn't strike me as principal material (referring back to the "Male Principal Problem" thread), executing his moves with competence, but coming down heavily from his jumps and no special flair. There's so much to love about Isabella Boylston's dancing, but she has a show-offy quality that I find a little offputting. I am eager to see her and Simkin in Swan Lake, though.

#17 angelica

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 04:35 PM

I saw Devon Teuscher in the dress rehearsal, and while it may have been a promising beginning, she didn't hold a candle to Veronika Part or Stella Abrera. But of course they are very much senior to her. Let's just say I didn't feel I was discovering an up-and-coming principal.

And I agree totally about Isabella Boylston--in addition to her lack of refinement.

#18 nanushka

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 04:53 PM

Devon Teuscher: gorgeous arms, good bourrees, nice turns, low and lazy (or just not yet strong enough) arabesques.

Xiomara had some wonderful acting: the first set of heart palpitations, the mad scene, etc.

And Kelley Boyd had some of the most crystal-clear and effective miming I've seen.

All in all, a night of fantastic expressive elements, though not perhaps the most technically proficient dancing.

#19 Roberto Dini

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 09:02 PM

I saw Giselle both Thursday and Friday. I agree Kelley Boyd's mime was very good. In fact, I preferred it to Raffa's the night before.

Alina's mad scene was quite impressive. I loved how she ran through the crowd, grabbing various townsmen as though she was looking desparately for Albrecht.

Corella danced beautifully.

I loved Reyes and Cornejo. Devon Teuscher was good, but I would rather have seen Abrera as Myrtha. I remember enjoying her performance in the role a few years ago and felt that she was more commanding in the role than Teuscher.

Radetsky played Hilarion both nights. I've always found him to be one of the best Hilarions of late. I'm not sure exactly why, but I thought his performance was better Friday night.

#20 abatt

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 05:34 AM

I attended both performances yesterday of Giselle on Super Saturday. Briefly stated, it is a day of performances that I will never forget. Two utterly brilliant and memorable performances. Thank you, ABT, for bringing these supreme artists to New York. I don't have much time right now, except to say that Vishneva was heartwrenching. The last great partnership at ABT was Ferri and Bocca. I think that Gomes and Vishneva can now be bestowed with that honor. They are electric together. The way she pleaded with Myrta and tried to protect Albrecht brought tears to my eyes. The only weak link here was Semionova's Myrta. She seemed stiff and unimposing.

The afternoon performance was also astounding. The thing I will remember first and foremost is Osipova's hops on pointe in Act I. She hopped on the diagonal of the stage, and then using the same working foot she did 360 degrees of hops, and then proceeded to resume the hops along the diagonal of the stage without ever coming off that pointe of her foot. Is this woman human or a superhero of the ballet world. Hallberg has never looked better.

Hopefully other will pick up this thread, as I need to go now.

#21 annamicro

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 06:16 AM

She hopped on the diagonal of the stage, and then using the same working foot she did 360 degrees of hops, and then proceeded to resume the hops along the diagonal of the stage without ever coming off that pointe of her foot.


With a ball on her nose?

#22 SimonA

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 07:03 AM

Ouch. I will say that Osipova's Giselle was alternatively delightful and touching, in addition to being a technical marvel. But Vishneva's was undoubtedly the richer, deeper interpretation. Heartwrenching, indeed. Just one observation from among many-- Vishneva's whole upper body was so eloquent in its ethereality in Act II.

David Hallberg was in great form in the matinee, embodying what I can only call something like a sensitive, almost tragic nobility. But I thought Saturday night had a stronger cast overall and was the more moving performance. Simkin and Lane were wonderful in the peasant pdd, even if Simkin was rather self-consciously showy. And what a great partnership is Vishneva/Gomes, as you said, abatt.

#23 canbelto

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 07:28 AM

I saw all three Giselle casts -- Alina Cojocaru, Diana Vishneva, and Natalia Osipova. Cojocaru's performance was a disappointment. She was simply unable to dance many of the steps in Giselle. Even her characterization didn't have the affecting details that it did last year. Natalia Osipova's Giselle was a technical marvel. If her feet ever touched the ground in Act Two, I never saw it. Vishneva's Giselle was technically still extremely solid, but it was the deepest interpretation of the three, I thought. The way she became completely unhinged in the Mad Scene was unforgettable. When she started swinging around Albrecht's sword she really looked like she wanted to kill someone. In Act Two, she is so haunting -- ghostly and spooky, really no longer of this world. When Albrecht carried her back to her grave I loved how she dropped her arms and closed her eyes, and actually looked like a corpse. It's an unorthodox but totally gut-wrenching characterization.

#24 cobweb

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:01 AM

I thought Hallberg & Osipova were amazing. After previously being blah about seeing yet another Giselle, I was way more engaged than I thought I'd be! Osipova is so good it's almost too much... almost, but not quite. I don't find her circus-y, although she could easily become that. I don't think anyone's yet commented on this, so I'll add that in Act I she didn't wear the usual ABT Giselle costume -- she wore a royal blue dress in what looked like a velvety fabric. It was lovely, and way more pretty than the usual costume, although it totally clashed with the other peasant outfits in color, style, and texture. And I'm surprised they let a peasant wear royal blue! I guess Osipova didn't like the usual Giselle outfit, and probably her contract lets her wear whatever she wants. I'm not sure if the Act II outfit was the usual ABT or not.
Thanks to those who reported on Devon Teuscher's Myrtha.

#25 canbelto

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:04 AM

Yes Osipova's dress was rather glam for a peasant girl -- it was sleevelss, very shiny, as if made of fine satin. Like Giselle had recently made a trip to Bloomingdale's. I too thought it clashed with the other peasant girls' outfits, but her Giselle was so amazing that this Diva Moment was okay. She has very short hair too, so she must have been wearing a wig, since it stayed in place during the Mad Scene.

#26 Ilya

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:09 AM


She hopped on the diagonal of the stage, and then using the same working foot she did 360 degrees of hops, and then proceeded to resume the hops along the diagonal of the stage without ever coming off that pointe of her foot.


With a ball on her nose?



I did not see one iota of showiness in Osipova's performance. It is true that she is able to perform technical feats that no other ballerina can perform. However, it would be absurd to pre-suppose that this ability automatically must turn her performances into a circus act. She simply has a wider variety of ingredients with which to bake a cake, so to speak.

On Saturday, both Osipova and Hallberg gave a complete performance where all the technical details were subjugated to the storytelling and character development (as they should be).

I found two aspects of the performance particularly fascinating. The first one is Osipova's very interesting treatment of tempi---akin to a romantic-style performance of a Chopin piece, with lots of rubato---except that here it clearly must have required meticulous rehearsals with the conductor.

The second surprising element was the treatment of Albrecht's relationship with Giselle. For example, when Hilarion reveals that Albrecht is a nobleman, Giselle asks Albrecht whether this is true. All Albrechts that I can recall (including Angel Corella on Thursday) placidly respond: "No, this is not true." Hallberg's Albrecht was mortified and mimed something like: "Yes, it is, but let me explain…"---at which point Giselle, crushed, ran to her mother.

#27 nysusan

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:19 AM


She hopped on the diagonal of the stage, and then using the same working foot she did 360 degrees of hops, and then proceeded to resume the hops along the diagonal of the stage without ever coming off that pointe of her foot.


With a ball on her nose?



It may sound like a circus trick but in fact it was completely in character and musical as well as utterly astounding, especially coming (for me) after Cojocaru's failure to execute the traditional version of the steps.

Like the last few posters I also saw the Cojocaru/Corella/Murphy, Osipova/Hallberg/Abrera and Vishneva/Gomes/Semionova Giselles.

Cojocaru is one of my favorite ballerinas and while her Giselle was certainly well worth seeing IMO what I saw this time around is no longer on the same level as Osipova and Vishneva. I HOPE this can be attributed to a current injury and not just a decline in her technique due to the cumulative effect of her many injuries and well known foot problems. She still has a wonderful, floaty quality to her dancing, beautiful, easy extensions, gorgeous phrasing and line and is a very great interpretive artist but her technique has definitely declined. Last season when she flubbed a bit in DQ I put it down to a bad night. Now I don't know.

Osipova & Hallberg have great chemistry together. Even with Hallberg's newfound dramatic presence, they have very different personalities and I think they complement each other well. Like a variation on the "she gives him sex, he gives her class" theme. Their Giselle was very intense and very moving as well as a technical marvel. I also thought this was the strongest overall cast. I loved Abrera"s Myrtha - she was commanding, but with a deep sense of sorrow. Also Copeland and Salstein were both spot on in the peasant pas and Boylston & Hee Seo were lovely as Moyna and Zulma.

Vishneva/Gomes were wonderful, as usual. It amazes me how she keeps refining her interpretation. I found Semionova's approach to Myrtha strange. Her dancing was very wild. While her jetes and menage were beautiful it really wasn't in character for Myrtha as I know it from ABT and the Mariinsky.

#28 abatt

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 09:05 AM

Re Osipova's hair, a friend who goes to Salon Ishi (a very high end salon) tells me that Osipova gets extensions in her hair in prep for Giselle and also Juliet. Dvorovenko and Beletserkovsky also go to that salon.

In addition to the marvelous little detail mentioned above re Hallberg trying to explain (rather than deny) Hilarion's accusation, I also noticed that in the He Loves Me He Loves Me Not sequence, after Hallberg points out that she counted incorrectly, he held on to that flower instead of flinging it aside like most of the other Albrechts. So many great moments in both performances. I still have images of Osipova and Vishneva floating through the air like butterflies.

#29 nanushka

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 09:53 AM

The last great partnership at ABT was Ferri and Bocca. I think that Gomes and Vishneva can now be bestowed with that honor. They are electric together.


I completely agree. I can't wait for their R&J, which was so emotionally intense last time around. Gomes seems to have a great capacity for forging these partnerships. For this reason, I'm sad that he's not dancing with Part as much any more, now that they seem to be pairing her mostly with Stearns. (The upcoming Bayadere is a notable and not-to-be-missed exception.)

#30 Ray

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 12:13 PM

I can only echo the praise for Osiopova and Hallberg; I feel lucky to have been able to see that. Still, I envy those who were able to see the Triple Crown of Giselles (soon to be a quartet when POB comes in July).

I have a more mundane couple of questions, probably born out of my ignorance or forgetting: (1) The woman's first variation music in the Peasant PDD was completely unfamiliar to me--am I just forgetting? And, (2) doesn't Albrecht usually do a series of brises in Act 2? And do they come during the music where Hallberg did his amazing entrechats sixes (that seemed to get stronger and higher as he did them)? Again, maybe I'm just forgetting...


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