“I’ve always found the music cloying and the choreography trite,” Weiss said. “I wanted to show that the couple’s relationship works because they are of the same station, unlike Albrecht and Giselle, whose relationship can never work.” Weiss is using music from other Adam ballets for his version.
As with so many ballet companies now, the performances must use recorded music, but Weiss was determined not to skimp on the scenery, which has to depict a peasant village and a moonlit lake. “We were very lucky to acquire an elaborate set from Italy,” he said. “It was already in the country for another company’s production, so we arranged to use it.”
Saturday, May 11
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:26 PM
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:29 PM
Later [Flora Jennings] danced with the National Ballet in Washington, D.C., returning home to San Diego each summer with her dancer friends for vacations. In 1968, the dancers decided to put on a summer show (with guest artists Jillana and Frederic Franklin).
“We didn’t know it then,” Mahon said, “but we had started California Ballet.”
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:34 PM
I asked Key for a layman’s definition of summer ballet intensives. She said that, if accepted, dancers “take various dance classes all day from different instructors. Intensives range from two weeks to five weeks. Classes consist of ballet techniques, variations, pointe, partnering, modern, jazz, character and pilates.
“Our dancers attend auditions held in Dallas or Austin.”
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:36 PM
“Initially I was inspired by Greek and Roman art,” Andersen says, explaining the wispy white tunics worn by the women and the faux nudity of the men. Think frolicking nymphs and satyrs or the ancient Olympic Games. Or even Adam and Eve in the (botanical) garden.
“The human body is great, especially if you look like dancers. What’s not to like? ... I didn’t actually want them to wear anything, except I find that distracting. I don’t think nudity ever works because you don’t really see what’s going on. You’re distracted by all that extra movement.”
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:42 PM
But it doesn't quite cohere. The ability to shape dance is not the only skill required of the narrative ballet-maker. There are structural issues – story arc, thematic development, pace, light and shade, tension – which must be addressed too. And they are not addressed here, just as they are not addressed in Scarlett's Sweet Violets or in Christopher Wheeldon's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, the only other major narrative ballets created at Covent Garden in recent years. The problem is that in the wake of the stellar careers of Frederick Ashton and Kenneth MacMillan, Royal Ballet choreographers are regarded as geniuses to be left to their own devices, rather than – as would be the case in publishing, theatre, film or television – required to justify their artistic decisions in rigorous, minute-by-minute detail.
Posted 11 May 2013 - 10:54 PM
“I started ‘Innovations’ six years ago as a way for my dancers to test the waters and their own abilities long before they retire,” says artistic director Adam Sklute of the program, which this year will open May 17 at the Rose Wagner Theatre.
Featuring fresh-faced pieces by a handful of company dancers who show promise in choreography, it seems everybody wins. The company says audience response has been overwhelmingly positive.
Posted 12 May 2013 - 12:30 PM
Additional pas de deux showed two of Balanchine’s many sides. On this special night, “The Man I Love” from Who Cares received a new look. Andrews Sill led the orchestra through Hershy Kay’s orchestration of Gershwin’s song, with Cameron Grant as the solo pianist. But guest performer Queen Latifah strolled onstage to sing it for us. Shimmering in a silver-sequined gown, she delivered the words warmly and caressingly—avoiding personal tempo changes that might endanger the choreography, yet with some individual touches. Amar Ramasar partnered Sterling Hyltin, who seems more radiantly alive each time I see her dance.
Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:48 AM
Peasley retired from the Australian Ballet (AB) last August after fifty years and a record 6,406 shows. A founding dancer of the company, he is its longest serving member.
"It is an old ballet and one of the first big, classical professional ballets. It is a good story, and we chose it because of its history which goes back to 1942," the 79-year-old dancer said. "When people watch it, they will say, 'Oh, that's what ballet is all about!'"
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