As the temple dancer Nikiya’s clandestine lover, Muntagirov was all sunniness; once recruited to wed the Raja’s daughter Gamzatti, he was a blank. In rounds of leaping and turning, his limpidity and rhythmic grace brought to mind the natural ease of former City Ballet star Damian Woetzel. None of Solor the guilt-ridden betrayer’s desperation or hope inflected the Russian’s steps.
Thursday, May 24
Posted 24 May 2012 - 10:15 AM
Posted 24 May 2012 - 10:21 AM
Fonte's dance lineage includes Les Grands Ballets Canadiens in Montreal, where he danced works by Balanchine, Tudor, Kudelka and Spaniard Nacho Duato. Fonte then joined Duato's Compañia Nacional de Danza in Madrid, where he first started making dances. Duato gave him his first go in a baptism by fire way of earning his choreographic chops.
"He was a mentor to me, but it was like tough love," Fonte confesses. "He really jump started my career."
Posted 24 May 2012 - 10:25 AM
That gives you some idea of the long-standing history between two of the world's greatest ballet companies: Moscow's Bolshoi and St. Petersburg's Mariinsky, or Kirov. Tonight, the Bolshoi makes its first Ottawa appearance since 1974, performing the classic Don Quixote at the NAC. Last year, the Mariinsky was in town with La Bayadère, and performed Swan Lake here the season before that. Local dance lovers will be able to compare notes on the two companies themselves, but below is a handy primer:
Gauthier's review of the Bolshoi.
As the couple Kitri and Basilio, Ekaterina Krysanova and Vyacheslav Lopatin could not be more adorable. Krysanova does not have the highest jump or the neatest footwork, but she attacks the role with irresistible charm, spirit and devil-may-care bravura. She is known for being an astonishing turner and her Act III fouettés were a blur of speed.
As for her partner Lopatin, you could not take your eyes off him. He is refined, effortless and natural, with exquisite lines and beautiful feet. It’s a shame he lost his grip on his Kitri in the famous, climactic lift and drop at the end of their Act III pas de deux. But he made up for it by holding her up seemingly forever in the Act I one-armed overhead lifts.
Posted 24 May 2012 - 10:29 AM
Item in Gay Life's Street Talk gossip column reads: "Ballet great Rudolf Nureyev spent much of his off-stage time while in Chicago last week at Paradise disco, where he enjoyed the company of the club's Mr. Deluxe.....
Posted 25 May 2012 - 11:55 AM
Ms. Semionova, who was born in Moscow and joined the Berlin State Ballet as a principal in 2002, first appeared with American Ballet Theater in 2011. She will perform with the company during its New York seasons, as well as on its national and international tours.
Posted 25 May 2012 - 11:57 AM
Prizes were given for, among others, best male dancer and best choreographer.
[Lar Lubovitch, Benois De La Danse Choreography Winner]:
"For some crazy reason, I make dances. And what's more crazy is that the world allows me to do that. And my grandparents left Russia in between the first and second world wars, and they would be extremely proud to see me standing on the stage of the Bolshoi with this award.”
Posted 25 May 2012 - 12:01 PM
All of these students — except for the perpetually grinning Jules, who soon realizes (rightly) that ballet isn't for him — demonstrate remarkable talent and dedication, and we watch as they gracefully handle injury (Michaela), homesickness (Joan), ambitious ballet moms (Miko) and juggling ballet with regular-kid life. (Aran loves skateboarding and BB guns.)
Posted 25 May 2012 - 12:09 PM
Muntagirov is tall, beautifully proportioned, a generous partner, and has a plush and exciting jump. His face, though, isn't very expressive, and Solor's various emotions didn't carry well in the huge auditorium. He was a bit understated in the first act, generically noble, without conveying the conflict that some Solor's show during the first sight of Gamzatti; Gomes, for example, takes slightly awed glances around the room, as if he is gradually realizing that all this gold could he his. Muntagirov just sat quietly during the chess scene, looking quite at home. He was distraught when he saw Nikiya die, but then seemed quite content to walk off with Gamzatti, so there was little sense of Solor's inner conflict. (Why is it that so many 19th century heroes seem to go limp at the sight of a well-turned fouette?)....
Posted 26 May 2012 - 11:39 AM
To ballet-goers used to performances influenced by George Balanchine's love of speedy footwork, off-balance movement and stretched limbs, the French can look a tad slow and square in their positioning. Such distinctions can be perceived in classical ballets like "Giselle," which the company will present in all three U.S. cities.
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