Posted 05 February 2013 - 02:08 PM
Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:36 AM
Posted 18 February 2013 - 03:12 PM
Ms. Zakharova is so secure and lyrical in her movements - and yet she left me emotionally vacant. Honestly I was rooting for Gamzatti throughout the production. But I did love her in the 3rd act and understand why her Odette is so amazing. I think all credit goes to Ms. Alexandrova for her performance. Her acting draws you in, and she's so exciting to watch dance, that you can't help but be on her side. The "cat fight" scene surprised me because it involved so much dancing. I've seen a DVD of the Royal Ballet version, so I guess I expected something similar. I liked Mr. Lantratov more than I expected to. He didn't over-act or push hyper panache that other dancers choose. His dancing was very pure, without any fussiness and everything looked effortless. His partnering was secure and he made his divas shine.
The blackface is really bad form, and I've heard the excuses about this in Dutch culture - where Black Peter helps Sinter Klaus. In Latin America, making slit eyes with your hands is considered acceptable to imitate Asian eyes, but I still cringe at that too. Eventually this is going to become a big deal for the Bolshoi - they will put on La Bayadere when the Obamas visit, or Kofi Annan visits. But eventually it's going to blow up on them. I don't think the Russians have an equivalent stereotype to fight against - except maybe the Russian gangsters in many the Hollywood movies.
I was prepared for the Shades to make me cry, but it left me a bit cold. There was some wobbling, but mostly I think the detatchment from the 2nd act made me unemotional in the 3rd act. I did really enjoy Ms. Zakharova and the 3 soloists. Ms. Z is built in the Sophie Guillem mold. If you met in person you would probably think "human sized asparagus ectomorph". Alexandrova's musculature mesomorph is more pleasing to my eye, so I guess Cubanaboy and I agree on our aesthetic preferences (please, more meat on their bones!) But they are both strong, secure dancers.
I wish I could have seen all the interviews. My seatmate is an ethnic Russian with a Ukranian passport. She was very, very uncomfortable during the interview with Ms. Alexandrova. I enjoyed the interview (well the translation). After the performance I asked her why she was fidgeting so much. Ms. Alexandrova, she said, was very "fake" in her interview. It was too exaggerated, and her comments seemed cloying. My friend said she thought Alexandrova was trying too hard to pull heartstrings. I noted that I really like Katarina Novikova as the MC for these events. My friend felt Bolshoi should get a different MC, with a better English and French accent. I think my friend would prefer a professional broadcaster in the role, as she expects this person to "represent" Russia to the US.
I, on the other hand, don't mind Novikova's accented English, and find her broadcast manner is more authentic than someone with more polish. Plus she always wears wonderful clothes! The stage workers behind the scenes are fascinating, and some of the stage hands are great eye candy. Do they always wear English T-shirts with "STAGE" and other labels? Just for the broadcast nights?
Posted 19 February 2013 - 06:14 AM
Posted 19 February 2013 - 02:43 PM
You are hardier than I am -- I just can't do that round trip in a day.
I love those shirts. There are days when I wish that all performers wore shirts with their names on them, rather than trying to match them up with their photos in the program!
Posted 19 February 2013 - 03:38 PM
Posted 19 February 2013 - 04:09 PM
Me too. One good thing is that she provides the three tnraslations in a very fast manner, and she's definitely a great dressed woman! My French friend had no problem understanding her at all.
Posted 19 February 2013 - 07:41 PM
Posted 19 February 2013 - 09:45 PM
She's one of my cultural heroes.
Posted 20 February 2013 - 12:38 AM
Posted 23 February 2013 - 07:14 PM
Posted 12 March 2013 - 05:13 AM
Posted 23 May 2013 - 07:37 AM
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