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Two dancers; Two approaches to a role...


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#1 Birdsall

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 06:03 PM




To me this illustrates two different approaches to Kitri: a traditional Mariinsky (or maybe Kirov) style and the new Mariinsky style.....

What do others think?

#2 Amy Reusch

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:06 PM

Two different body types as well... Can't say I was crazy about either.

#3 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 08:59 PM

Skorik was clearly tired right away.

#4 Jayne

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 09:17 PM

Martinyuk is clearly the better actress as well, although her arm positions on the final pass were somewhat sloppy.

Skorik, wow I don't quite know what to say. I wonder if the drive to be so supremely thin robs her of energy, and the muscle needed to hold positions, give the choreography some panache, etc. She doesn't hold any of her positions with any authority. It's pretty easy to find a youtube video of this done properly.

#5 Tiara

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 02:26 AM

Martynyuk is a great Kitri - full of panache, brilliant speed and footwork, and having so much fun - whereas Skorik just makes the viewer feel tired along with her. Her variation is so slow, and walking to start her pirouette diagonale??? Had she forgotten she was Kitri? She should not be doing this role at all - she is completely unsuited for it, but then she should not be doing so many roles. Mariinsky management is greatly at fault for promoting this inferior ballerina at the expense of so many more worthy ones.

#6 Natalia

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:44 AM

I've always preferred the more petite, zippier and 'cuter' ballerinas as Kitri so, naturally, my preferrence is for Martinyuk, who totally captured the gusto of the heroine. (Osipova, Obraztsova, Cojocaru and Vishneva are other faves of mine in the role.) Skorik is totally miscast in this. Absurd...just as it would be absurd to cast other tall, utra-thin adagio specialists as Kitri. Could anyone imagine Lopatkina in this? Of course not.

Birdsall, it's not a matter of 'Mariinsky Style' vs any other style. It's a matter of moronic casting.

#7 Tiara

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:17 AM

I It's a matter of moronic casting.


Couldn't agree more. Why pick Skorik at all? What about Stepanova, Batoeva, Nikitina, Marchuk, Krasnokutskaya, Petushkova, Adzhamova ... there are so many wonderful ballerinas who had the necessary speed, jump, brilliance, personality for Kitri. Skorik has none of these qualities. Nikitina has a far more brilliant technique and all the requisite qualities for a Kitri yet she has had no principal role debuts at all, or even secondary role debuts, despite being a coryphee. Why is Mariinsky management giving this one ballerina every principal role in its repertoire and then allowing her to dance it so many times? How many Odette/Odiles did she dance last season? How many other debuts in the role were there? What about the opportunities for other dancers? They must all be totally demoralized by their lack of opportunity and be wondering what on earth they must do to get roles. Why Skorik?

#8 Birdsall

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:38 AM

I guess my point was that Skorik is being treated as a versatile dancer who can do anything, and I have a feeling we are going to see more debuts. I don't think this is going to be the last Kitri. From what I have heard previous Artistic Directors knew the emploi of each dancer. I read under another topic on emploi that this is even part of Vaganova training....emploi is an important part of training dancers, and somehow that concept has been thrown out of the window for some dancers. When you watch videos of the old Kirov you see so much excellence sort of like what Martynyuk shows nowadays (in my opinion). This is not Skorik's fault in the end. It is administration. What is going on is so depressing.

#9 Birdsall

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 08:16 AM

I went back and found the topic "emploi" under aesthetic issues and read posts I only skimmed a while back. Quite a fascinating discussion there. I guess there was always some casting against type but that usually happens when the person is extraordinary and the audience is basically demanding it.

You have this phenomenon (doing away with the Fach system) in opera also where Cecilia Bartoli will soon have a recording of Norma out. She has already sung it in concert and will sing it also in Salzburg (I believe staged this time). This is really a jaw dropping and mindboggling case of total miscasting, but the PR claims she is going back to what Bellini intended. Well, no one can really know what he intended. As far as tradition goes, this is a potential Party Record.

And I actually like many things Bartoli has done in the past, especially her forays into obscure baroque arias.

Anyway, the topic on emploi has pros and cons of emploi. Sometimes it actually works when someone is cast against type. But other times it does not. I don't think Kondaurova would be right for Kitri, but she would at least have the spitfire personality and might actually pull it off.

#10 volcanohunter

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 10:42 AM

...although her arm positions on the final pass were somewhat sloppy.


I didn't like either one, but Martinyuk's elbows were the most egregious violation of classical style.

#11 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 12:01 PM

Another two approaches...Posted Image

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I5amayS5O5s

Edited to add: Re watching Skorik, I realize that during the final diagonal she was as in on the verge to stop altogether, or fall....the last pirouettes were painful to watch.

#12 Birdsall

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 12:42 PM

Thanks for posting those two dancers also! It is fascinating to compare and contrast.

#13 trieste

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 03:09 PM

Yes, those pirouettes hurt. Boring to watch and seemingly miserable for Skorik to dance. I would maybe take her as Odette, but Fateyev seems to forget that Odette is not the whole art form -- particularly seeing as the same dancer is then required to dance a dramatically different role. Odette is fairly inconsequential to me, and I'd argue for varying degrees of this sentiment in anyone who loves ballet. Who would want nothing but lovely Odettes? I'd be bored to tears.

As for Martinyuk, I love the way she dances Kitri. To hell with 100% perfect classical form in variations like this. I prefer an energetic, almost character approach. If the dancer is very proper, very fussy, I almost certainly won't enjoy their Kitri. The thing about Skorik is that she isn't energetic, and she isn't proper either. I can't imagine anything I'd like her in...except maybe Odette.

#14 volcanohunter

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 05:06 PM

During the "Big Ballet" show on Russian TV I remember Azari Plisetsky scolding Kristina Andreeva from Kazan for allowing her elbows to droop slightly during a sequence of turns. I am, frankly, astonished that at the Mariinsky it's now considered okay to press the elbows into the sides of the torso while turning. If dancers like Tatyana Terekhova and Nina Ananiashvili could support their arms while turning super quickly, I don't see why we can't expect the same of the current generation.

But I'll admit that ungainly elbows during pirouettes are a pet peeve of mine. It drives me insane in Tamara Rojo, Paloma Herrera and Gillian Murphy, too. I don't care if they do quadruple pirouettes in the process, if a dancer's arms are an afterthought, the art is diminished.

#15 Birdsall

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 05:26 PM

Martynyuk usually has terrific arms. I think it is because she is playing castanets and getting into character.


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