First on the bill is Walpurgisnacht Ballet by George Balanchine, which was originally choreographed for a Paris Opera performance of Faust but now stands as an independent ballet. The 25-member cast, including guest artist Dallas Blagg, beautifully fills the large stage of the IAC’s Carpenter Performance Hall with sweeping floor patterns and pleasing symmetrical patterns. The best part about the work (completed in several movements) is the appropriate casting. Blagg and his partner Katie Cheng exhibit an elegant combination of sustained control and dynamic athleticism for their duets. Soloist Courtlyn Hanson and a sextet show off their quick, precise footwork in an intricate petit allegro.
Saturday, March 30
Posted 30 March 2013 - 08:49 PM
Posted 30 March 2013 - 08:53 PM
The Observer (with a note on 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland')
In Act 2, Osipova is less ethereal than some Giselles, but she and her supernatural sisters, led by the spectacular Ekaterina Borchenko, are much more threatening than most. Dolgushin's choreography favours linear geometry over swirling curves, and Albrecht is faced not with insubstantial ghosts but an advancing phalanx of the undead. Osipova, with poignant subtlety, allows us to see a residual flicker of the village girl in the baleful spectre, and her dancing is a wonder. The calm authority of her pointe work, the billowing leaps and soaring entrechats, the gorgeous sostenuto balances: by these means Osipova tells Giselle's story in a new way, and the result is unforgettable.
The pity is that this five-year-old production is following a more basic script. On Vyacheslav Okunev's Disneyfied set, tourist-board madchen in matching pinnies indulge in old-school rhubarb. When a hunting horn sounds, each puts a hand to her ear. When someone asks, where Giselle is, each shakes her head and shrugs. The hunting party are cardboard aristos, Giselle's mother a cliché of hand-wringing concern, the rejected suitor a cartoon wimp. Even the love-offering of game he hangs on Giselle's cottage door looks like flattened squirrel.
Posted 30 March 2013 - 08:57 PM
Li is now preparing to open his first full-length ballet at QB, a version of Cinderella by US-based British choreographer Ben Stevenson. The stakes are high: the company has invested 40 per cent of its annual production budget in Cinderella, complete with new costumes and set.
Since Li's arrival subscriptions have gone through the roof: the company has sold more season tickets than at any time in its 53-year history. Even so, the new artistic director is a bundle of nerves about his first big Brisbane premiere and jokes that he will probably spend opening night "in hiding".
Posted 30 March 2013 - 09:01 PM
But Tamara Rojo, Spanish star of Covent Garden and new head of English National Ballet, wants to bring down the curtain on such saccharine assumptions. Pink satin ribbons have restricted classical dance for too long, Rojo believes. It is time to reclaim her art form for the adult themes of sex and intense personal drama.
Posted 31 March 2013 - 03:45 PM
Adams said each part in "Jewels" is identified by the name of the dancer who originated the role. The original cast is filled with ballet legends such as Suzanne Farrell, Patricia McBride, Edward Villella and Conrad Ludlow — whose name may be familiar to Utahns. After retiring from an impressive 20-year career as a principal dancer with San Francisco Ballet and New York City Ballet, Ludlow taught in the department of ballet at the University of Utah from 1985-2010 and continues to coach here.
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