Mashinka

Osipova named Principal at Royal B while staying with Mikhailovsky

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The articles are pretty clear that Vasiliev isn't joining the Royal Ballet, and there's been no word of him leaving the Mikhailovsky.

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Well, it could mean that the Royal might give her "La Fille Mal Gardee", and then perhaps it might be able to transfer to the Met for a Summer run here. One can hope. ABT has a few others who could also do the role on Osipova's "night off"

Lincoln Center Festival has hosted major international companies in previous summers (alas, not this year) and could plausibly sponsor a visit by Royal in future years. The issue will be the fine print in Osipova's non-compete clause with ABT. The Mikhailovsky wanted to play the State Theater during the final weeks of the ABT season in 2012. If Royal came in late July, would ABT permit her to perform with them? Stay tuned...

As long as it wasn't overlapping, I don't see why not.

As the Royal isn't scheduled to come at the moment, and who knows what the future will bring, this is what I would consider borrowing trouble.

But I would note, that one of the past visitors to Lincoln Center was the Bolshoi when Ananiashvili was still dancing with them, and was with ABT.

She performed with the Bolshoi on that tour.

That was 2005 and the Bolshoi tour as part Lincoln Center festival occurred after ABT Met season ended. Consider Bolshoi was Nina's home theater back then and there's no overlap with ABT Met season, that wasn't a non-compete covenant issue.

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A few people on the thread have indicated that there would not be any conflict in timing betweent the ABTspring season and the Royal Ballet season going forward (2014 Spring Season and beyond). Doesn't the Royal normally perform during April- early July at the ROH? (ABT rehearsals for the spring season for the leading dancers often occur in April, I believe.) Isn't that why, as the article notes, McKenzie is angry and frustrated about these developments?

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A few people on the thread have indicated that there would not be any conflict in timing betweent the ABTspring season and the Royal Ballet season going forward (2014 Spring Season and beyond). Doesn't the Royal normally perform during April- early July at the ROH? (ABT rehearsals for the spring season for the leading dancers often occur in April, I believe.) Isn't that why, as the article notes, McKenzie is angry and frustrated about these developments?

The schedule for 2013-14 has been announced. http://www.roh.org.uk/productions

The only casting for Osipova so far is R&J and Nutcracker. She has done Giselle, but that's in Jan-Feb. (Tickets for Giselle go on sale in September, so presumably we'll know some casting by then.) Their Beauty is Feb-March. The season in April-June includes a new full-length by Wheeldon and lots of mixed bills. What is she likely to dance?

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That was 2005 and the Bolshoi tour as part Lincoln Center festival occurred after ABT Met season ended. Consider Bolshoi was Nina's home theater back then and there's no overlap with ABT Met season, that wasn't a non-compete covenant issue.

Do we know when the 3-month before & after clause was first used? Is it possible that this 2005 visit triggered it?

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That was 2005 and the Bolshoi tour as part Lincoln Center festival occurred after ABT Met season ended. Consider Bolshoi was Nina's home theater back then and there's no overlap with ABT Met season, that wasn't a non-compete covenant issue.

Do we know when the 3-month before & after clause was first used? Is it possible that this 2005 visit triggered it?

I doubt the existence of the 3-month before/after clause, it's just too restrictive & draconian. Do we have confirmation it exists? If it does, it certainly didn't apply to Vishneva as she toured with Mariinsky during its 3-week season at City Center in April 2008. I remember she got injured towards the end of the tour and was out of the entire ABT Met season, and Nina had to sub most of her slots and filled the house in every of her performances. Nina was such good sport, no wonder New York absolutely loved and loves her. I assume NYCB has no 3-month clause with its dancer as Wendy will be guesting with NDT at the State Theater next week. Before the departure of NYCO from Lincoln Center, NYCB and ABT were totally overlapping their spring seasons, and visiting companies conflicting with ABT Met was never an issue. The first season after NYCO left Lincoln Center, came Mikhailovsky and the non-compete covenant became an unwanted publicity. That same season Kobborg danced with RDB at the State Theater and ABT the same time, I assume the Kobborg's gig with ABT was last minute arrangement and the non-compete covenant didn't apply.

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Kobborg was a guest artist at ABT. Didn't he do one performance that season at ABT, and it was on an emergency basis? (Was that the season he replaced Max at the last minute as Irina's partner in Giselle?) I'm sure he was not required to sign any such agreement. From what I've seen, NYCB dancers are not restricted in any way during the off season.

Here is the link to the article I was referring to:

http://timeoutchicag...ector-interview

The portion I alluded to in this interview w. Kevin McKenzie is as follows:

You recently exercised a non-competition clause with regard to Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev, dancers who perform both with ABT and with the Mikhailovsky Ballet in Russia. Are there times when that clause has been waived in the past and, if so, what factors into whether or not you enforce the terms of agreements concerning international stars?

[ABT] has excercised that clause a lot and it’s waived it a lot, on a case-by-case basis. I view it on this level: There’s a professional courtesy that performers and managers within the same organization give each other. If you’re scheduled to perform with your home company, you don’t perform three months before or after [with another company] within a 100-mile radius without giving notice. [if you would like to do that], bring it up and we’ll talk it out. With any of ABT’s principals, the expectation is set that I won’t release them while we’re in the Met because, number one, [the Met season] is so dense: 64 straight performances. For [principal dancers] to be getting on planes, going somewhere [to guest] and coming back, is wear and tear that—they can do that later in the year, unless it’s an extraordinary opportunity. We do make adjustments for what they want to do but, you know, a dancer wants to do everything all the time. They don’t need to do everything all at once, all the time. That’s my role, to keep the needs and wants lists clear.

The “star system” and international guesting comes and goes in the ballet world. It’s certainly common right now but hasn’t always been in the past. Is engaging principals from other countries always a win? Do you prefer the current system any more or less than a paradigm where dancers are firmly associated with single companies?

It is the paradigm right now [to engage guest artists]. But I’d like to be really clear: Yes, I engage guest principals, but my own principals are guests everywhere else. I’m not only juggling bringing people in; we’re juggling our own people’s schedules, too. [ABT dancers] have the right to go out and be guests. It’s a good thing for people to cross-pollinate.

So if someone wants to be catty and say that ABT stands for “Ardani Ballet Theatre”…

[Laughs] Yes, I would say that’s what that sounds like.

I agree that the number of weeks a dancer is prohibited from dancing in NYC seems to be so overbroad as to be unenforceable in a court of law. So a dancer who signs on for an 8 weeks stint with ABT is forbidden from working in NYC for a total of 8 months! Outrageous. I guess Roberto Bolle got a waiver, since his Roberto and Friends gig is mid September.

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So a dancer who signs on for an 8 weeks stint with ABT is forbidden from working in NYC for a total of 8 months! Outrageous. I guess Roberto Bolle got a waiver, since his Roberto and Friends gig is mid September.

I can't find that restriction in the earlier message or the article in Time Out. I'm only seeing 3-months before and after. Where does it say that?

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Right, so if you sign up for a two month ABT season at the Met, in addition to being unable to work elsewhere in NYC during that two month time period, you are also prohibited from working in NYC 3 months before your engagment and 3 months after your engagment.

3 months pre-Met restriction , plus 2 month Met engagment restriction, plus an additional 3 months post-Met engagement restriction equals a total restriction of 8 months that you are forbidden from working in NYC with anyone other than ABT (absent the grant of a waiver from ABT). This is how I interpret McKenzie's words. If you recall, the Mik briefly attempted to reschedule their NYC engagement for the time period in July AFTER the ABT Met Season was over. However, that didn't work out either. Apparently, the restriction on O/V continued even after they had completed their work with ABT on the Met Stage as of early July.

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Maybe Bolle's 'Friends' gig is considered a set of 'concerts' (bunch of solos and pdds) and, thus, not a full traditional company with a rep of complete ballets? Same deal as the annual YAGP galas that take place a couple of weeks before ABT's Met season; ABT dancers usually appear at the YAGP gala, just days before the Met season opens. Cornejo & Gomes will be dancing in this year's YAGP gala on April 18.

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Yes, I'm guessing that waivers are granted for certain shows, like Kings of Dance, YAGP, Vishneva Dialogues and the like. However, it seems like ABT is afraid of the competiition from full length productions of story ballets. By the way, in my opinion OV had no responsiblity for sorting any of this out in connection with the failed Mik tour to NYC. That's what their manager Ardani was supposed to do. Hopefully Danilian will not be so sloppy in the future handling of their affairs.

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Osipova / Vasiliev have plenty of offers, and don't need ABT to make their careers successful. They need a better lawyer to rework their contracts. I'm very certain their names sell tickets in NYC. Far more so than other principals - domestic and foreign.

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A preference for London is easily explained - it's a mere four hour flight to Moscow.

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I'm sure the fact that she got mugged in NY didn't improve her opinion of our city. Also, I'm sure the debacle involving the Mik tour to NY did not improve her view of working for ABT. (It should have also alerted her to the fact that Ardani Management is incompetent.) And yes, I believe Osipova and Vishneva are the only two ABT ballerinas who can sell out the Met. However, based on these developments, I'm guessing McKenzie may be on the hunt for another international star ballerina to guest in future seasons. On my personal wish list would be Big Red Kondaurova, Tereshkina, or Smirnova.

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From the above Kommersant quote:

Osipova in Kommersant: http://bit.ly/Y9LxhP Royal Ballet principal her main job from now on, likes London better than NY

I'm sure she likes our money, though. That's reason enough to book tix to see anybody but Osipova, even if she jetes her way up to the moon. Hee Seo and Isabella Boylston are my choices! I don't think that they complained publicly about Moscow during ABT's own tour to Russia last year, did they?

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There are plenty of reasons to like London better than NYC: it depends on the person. If she's be happier there, then it's up to McKenzie to decide after her current contract is over whether it's worth it to him and the company for her to go back to a guest arrangement and be scheduled for what she can give him, like Cojocaru, Vishneva, Bolle, etc.

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I believe when Makarova defected to the West, London was her first choice but RB didn't sign her over the strong objection from the reigning primas. I am sure RB will clear Osipova's schedule during the Met season as part of her contract. She has toured with ABT extensively for the past 2 years, to Japan, Spain, So. Cal., DC, Chicago...etc., I think she'll cut her tour with ABT to minimal to none, while her commitment to the Met season will remain intact, so it's the cities on ABT touring schedule that will lose out not seeing her.

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The Royal Ballet would have been limited in its ability to hire Makarova because at the time membership in the company was restricted to British nationals and citizens of the Commonwealth. Nureyev was never especially happy that he was always a "guest artist" with the company, but it was the only possible solution at the time. In 1980 EEC rules forced the company to open up its hiring practices, and the first foreigner hired under the new scheme was Alessandra Ferri. Many others followed, of course, but whether this was a good thing for the Royal Ballet and its style is another matter. Now, as is well known, most of the RB's principals are not British, and following the retirement of Leanne Benjamin, Steven McRae will be alone in carrying the banner for the "colonials."

Opening the audition process to foreigners does not necessarily mean that a company will be overrun by outsiders, obviously. The Paris Opera Ballet is also required to open its auditions to EU citizens (and makes them open to others as well), but it continues to hire primarily French dancers.

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From the above Kommersant quote:

Osipova in Kommersant: http://bit.ly/Y9LxhP Royal Ballet principal her main job from now on, likes London better than NY

I'm sure she likes our money, though. That's reason enough to book tix to see anybody but Osipova, even if she jetes her way up to the moon. Hee Seo and Isabella Boylston are my choices! I don't think that they complained publicly about Moscow during ABT's own tour to Russia last year, did they?

Agreed. Also, Semionova is another reason to not book tickets for Osipova. She's lovely. And versatile.

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The rate at which Osipova acquires and "unacquires" principal contracts seems wildly unsustainable. Hopefully she is not burning bridges, and retains her commitments to all of these masters without stepping on too many toes--though I guess all she needs to do is point to Polunin and say "at least I'm not him."

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From the above Kommersant quote:

Osipova in Kommersant: http://bit.ly/Y9LxhP Royal Ballet principal her main job from now on, likes London better than NY

I'm sure she likes our money, though. That's reason enough to book tix to see anybody but Osipova, even if she jetes her way up to the moon. Hee Seo and Isabella Boylston are my choices! I don't think that they complained publicly about Moscow during ABT's own tour to Russia last year, did they?

Agreed. Also, Semionova is another reason to not book tickets for Osipova. She's lovely. And versatile.

Seriously, I don't think any dancer's desire for money or what one assumes about that desire (which I personally assume includes Seo's and Boylston's and Semionova's desire for money too) is a reason not to see them dance: nor do I assume that vulgar materialism explains any genuine ballerina's career and capabilities. And I firmly consider Osipova a genuine ballerina. Some prefer others to Osipova and that's one thing, but it doesn't make her any less an artist that she wants to get the best possible contracts for herself.

There is certainly something appealing about dancers who are deeply embedded in their companies--which of course is not Semionova either--but I personally don't remotely hold it against Osipova that she has had a less stable career because I consider the performances I have seen her dance to be of historic quality, comparable to the best I have ever seen going back at least to the 70's.

I note, too, that she has always said in interviews how much she loves London -- I remember that from at least a couple of years back. (I like it myself.) She also said--way back, when she was first dancing with ABT--that Fonteyn (with whom she shares a birthday) is one of her idols. I don't think going to the Royal is some artistically incomprehensible decision, actually rather less incomprehensible than going to the Mikhailovsky from a certain point of view. (Nor is it as if the Mikhailovsky OR the Bolshoi -- her two other home companies -- have been paragons of stability in recent years.)

I'm sad she will be dancing less with ABT, but by no means puzzled by her decision.

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It seems like a wise enough choice on Osipova's part -- having seen her once, I'd love to see her again no matter what company's banner she's under.

As for homegrown talent at the Royal Ballet, Melissa Hamilton is one to watch. By all rights she should be a principal in the next decade. Far better than Lauren Cuthbertson in my eyes, and of much wider employ to boot.

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Seriously, I don't think any dancer's desire for money or what one assumes about that desire (which I personally assume includes Seo's and Boylston's and Semionova's desire for money too) is a reason not to see them dance: nor do I assume that vulgar materialism explains any genuine ballerina's career and capabilities. And I firmly consider Osipova a genuine ballerina. Some prefer others to Osipova and that's one thing, but it doesn't make her any less an artist that she wants to get the best possible contracts for herself.

Yes.

Who boycotted Nureyev because he could drive a hard bargain and never picked up a dinner tab?

Like other young people who come into money without much experience with it, I hope she socks some away and has good advisers she can trust. The Royal Ballet, despite it's attempt to toss its heritage, seems like a better fit for her, anyway. Maybe her love of Fonteyn can help her find and re-establish the virtues that Fonteyn embodied within the company. If we're lucky, the Royal Ballet will mount some of the Fonteyn/Ashton rep that's endangered.

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Like other young people who come into money without much experience with it, I hope she socks some away and has good advisers she can trust. The Royal Ballet, despite it's attempt to toss its heritage, seems like a better fit for her, anyway. Maybe her love of Fonteyn can help her find and re-establish the virtues that Fonteyn embodied within the company. If we're lucky, the Royal Ballet will mount some of the Fonteyn/Ashton rep that's endangered.

Sock some away? Not likely in one of the most expensive cities in the world, but she has always had a fondness for Britain and I remember an interview where she was gushing over the city of Nottingham where she did indeed receive an exceptionally warm welcome.

The RB needs her badly and there is a hole at the top to fill with three principal ladies leaving in the past year. I agree with Helene concerning the Ashton rep and the company's heritage. Two Pigeons hasn't been danced by the main company for an age now, I'd revive it specially for her.

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