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Esmeralda live from the Bolshoi

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#1 Pamela Moberg

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 04:11 PM

DD kindly treated her parents to the movies on Easter Sunday. We saw Esmeralda and it was marvelous. What a production! Maria Alexandrova, Denis Savin, Ruslan Skortsov and Ekaterina Krysanova in the main parts. This was my very first experience of ballet in cinema and I must say I was impressed - up to now I had been a bit doubtful, but DD who has seen Coppelia, also from the Bolshoi has convinced me. I had feared that the movie technicians would demonstrate their camera skill by doing close ups of feet and faces. Nothing of the sort, actually after five minutes you stopped thinking that you were watching a screen, it felt more like a real live performance. I think this is really great, for us unlucky ones who hardly ever get to see any ballet at all, apart from the very boring stuff shown on Swedish TV and the Gothenburg Opera which is totally modern, now this is the chance to see classical ballet. Already looking forward to 12 May, Romeo and Juliet, also from the Bolshoi. As this distribution is world wide, did anybody else see it? I would like to hear your views.

#2 volcanohunter


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Posted 20 April 2013 - 09:01 AM

I also went to see it, because it had been one of my favorite Bolshoi broadcasts, and enjoyed it more the second time around. I have to admit to having something of a love-hate relationship with the dancing of Maria Alexandrova, something I can never quite shake. But on second viewing I was prepared for what had bothered me initially (the lack of delicacy and lyricism) and could focus exclusively on her strengths (the speed and amplitude). I had no such reservations about the other dancers. I thought my companion's observations after the Grand Pas de Corbeilles was quite apt: that Ekaterina Krysanova was like a ballistic missile, while Ruslan Skvortsov was like a stealth airplane. As always, Denis Savin was adorable, though Alexei Loparevich was strangely monochromatic. Act 2 in particular is a wall-to-wall dancing feast. That Vyacheslav Lopatin's Acteon was fabulous was a given, but I also enjoyed Anastasia Stashkevich, whose dancing I sometimes find a little brittle.

The music is not especially memorable, though I think it's better than what Pugni composed for The Pharaoh's Daughter, for example. The production itself is fabulous looking, and I agree that this performance was shot well. We need more of these reconstructions. The Bolshoi needs them, too. For one thing, it's already run out of 19th-century repertoire to broadcast to its international movie audiences.

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