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Romeo & Juliet--Spring 2013 MET season

65 posts in this topic

It's quite late so I'll be very brief! I've seen Vishneva/Gomes perform R&J 4 times now, and I think tonight was their best performance yet! They were so passionate, so full of abandon, and so heart-wrenching!!

And, as usual, the curtain calls were worth the price of admission--they looked so ecstatic after the performance and were so affectionate towards each other. smile.png

I'm seeing 4 more R&J's, so more detailed thoughts from me later...

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quick note from me. The most touching gesture was in the last act when Diana Vishneva is crawling toward Marcelo Gomes on the tomb, pulls him by the collar to be closer to her, then kissed her hand and touched his lips. Heart-wrenching... This is one of those times that I don't want a performance to be ephemeral. It was a gift to be able to watch those two tonight.

2nd note: I noticed the crowd wasn't very rowdy/cheery. But honestly, I think it is because everyone was so entranced. It was hard for me to snap back into reality even once curtain calls began.

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I noticed the crowd wasn't very rowdy/cheery. But honestly, I think it is because everyone was so entranced. It was hard for me to snap back into reality even once curtain calls began.

I'm sure you're right. I was completely enthralled. There were several times I couldn't bring myself to clap at all. Applause would have dispelled the moment - many moments. Vishneva's grief, her huge silent scream at the height of her anguish, had tears rolling down my cheeks. What an evening!

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This is the second time I've seen Vishneva and Gomes dance R&J. Am I the only one who saw that something was wrong with Marcelo? His dancing was elegant as always, but his technique didn't wow me the way it has in the past. I got the impression he might be injured. In the pas de deux at the tomb that final lift where he throws Diana into his arms there was a clear bobble. Marcelo recovered, but I thought for a split second that he might drop her. I feel bad for Marcelo -- he had an off night.

Diana was exquisite last night. Powerful, poignant acting and seamless technique. She was riveting and showed in every moment what a complete artist she is. Their first curtain call was so moving. Diana, still in character, hugging Marcelo with her head on his shoulder. A magical moment! I hope someone captured that on their camera.

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Their first curtain call was so moving. Diana, still in character, hugging Marcelo with her head on his shoulder. A magical moment! I hope someone captured that on their camera.

LaKarsavina just posted three YouTubes of the curtain calls:

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This is the second time I've seen Vishneva and Gomes dance R&J. Am I the only one who saw that something was wrong with Marcelo? His dancing was elegant as always, but his technique didn't wow me the way it has in the past. I got the impression he might be injured.

I got that impression too. During the balcony scene he danced very small and cautiously in his own solos. His partnering and acting were excellent, but I felt that his technique was significantly diminished compared to his prior performances of Romeo.

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This is the second time I've seen Vishneva and Gomes dance R&J. Am I the only one who saw that something was wrong with Marcelo? His dancing was elegant as always, but his technique didn't wow me the way it has in the past. I got the impression he might be injured.

I got that impression too. During the balcony scene he danced very small and cautiously in his own solos. His partnering and acting were excellent, but I felt that his technique was significantly diminished compared to his prior performances of Romeo.

Oh no...I wish he should have not dance Ali in Le Corsaire.

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This is the second time I've seen Vishneva and Gomes dance R&J. Am I the only one who saw that something was wrong with Marcelo? His dancing was elegant as always, but his technique didn't wow me the way it has in the past. I got the impression he might be injured.

I got that impression too. During the balcony scene he danced very small and cautiously in his own solos. His partnering and acting were excellent, but I felt that his technique was significantly diminished compared to his prior performances of Romeo.

Oh no...I wish he should have not dance Ali in Le Corsaire.

I might be reading too much into those YouTubes of the curtain calls, but he did not seem as beaming and joyful as he usually does. We know he has had injuries in the past (he talks about them in some interviews). He has a lot of work ahead in the rest of this season -- three Swans (one with a new partner, Hee Seo, and one as purple Rothbart), two Sylvias, one Sleeping Beauty. Perhaps he's thinking ahead and trying not to exacerbate whatever the issue is now so he doesn't have to cancel.

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This is the second time I've seen Vishneva and Gomes dance R&J. Am I the only one who saw that something was wrong with Marcelo? His dancing was elegant as always, but his technique didn't wow me the way it has in the past. I got the impression he might be injured.

I got that impression too. During the balcony scene he danced very small and cautiously in his own solos. His partnering and acting were excellent, but I felt that his technique was significantly diminished compared to his prior performances of Romeo.

Oh no...I wish he should have not dance Ali in Le Corsaire.

I might be reading too much into those YouTubes of the curtain calls, but he did not seem as beaming and joyful as he usually does. We know he has had injuries in the past (he talks about them in some interviews). He has a lot of work ahead in the rest of this season -- three Swans (one with a new partner, Hee Seo, and one as purple Rothbart), two Sylvias, one Sleeping Beauty. Perhaps he's thinking ahead and trying not to exacerbate whatever the issue is now so he doesn't have to cancel.

I was there last night.

I think people are reading too much into it. He wasn't explosive, but its romeo, it isn't about WOW factor. Everything was danced beautifully, cleanly and elegantly with grace, emotion and confidence. I didn't see any evidence of greatly diminished technique.

And it is pretty rare for people to seem joyful after R&J--he seemed emotionally spent and adorably concerned with his partner.

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I was referring to the balcony scene. Anyway, it was nevertheless a spectacular performance from the two leads. The house was very full, but not sold out. Special kudos to Radetsky, who plays Tybalt to the hilt.

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California, I was at the Monday rehearsal and the dancers were Herrera/Whiteside, Reyes/Cornejo, and Semionova/Hallberg.

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California, I was at the Monday rehearsal and the dancers were Herrera/Whiteside, Reyes/Cornejo, and Semionova/Hallberg.

I wonder when those clips were filmed...I haven't noticed filming during a performance, but perhaps they were on that occasion. Or perhaps it was an earlier rehearsal for the opening night cast. I was struck by the "dead body" hoist that's shown in the clip where Gomes lifts her off the floor in the tomb. Someone here thought that it was awkward during performance. It did seem different from the way others do it, but okay.

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I saw them filming at Monday night's performance from the side parterre (house right.)

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I saw them filming at Monday night's performance from the side parterre (house right.)

Interesting! The "dead body hoist" from the floor occurs at the 0:47 mark. Is this the lift that others thought was off that night? I think they ordinarily do that move twice, and I don't know if this was the first or the second.

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I attended last night's R&J w. Hallberg & Semionova. You don't often see such tall ballerinas as Juliet. Last night, I was reminded of the reasons. Hallberg needed every ounce of energy he could muster to do these difficult lifts of Semionova. His effort was visible and this interrupted the drama of the ballet. I'm not faulting Hallberg. Anyone would have had a tough time lifting such a tall woman. Semionova's long limbs and pliant back made her extensions look particularly beautiful. Hallberg's jumps were buoyant and his turns were quick and covered a lot of space. I was not particularly convinced by Semionova's acting in this. Was this her debut of the role of Juliet? All of the elements that make Semionova great in certain roles (regal demeanor, great height) make her less appropriate for a role like the innocent waiflike Juliet. Of the supporting roles, Gorak stood out. He is a future Romeo, I hope.

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It might be the first time for Polina Seminova to perform Juliet in MacMillan's version but she has performed Juliet in the Cranko version many times in Berlin. You can find many clips of her Juliet on YouTube.

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No, it was the second lift just before Marcelo put Diana back on the slab that he bobbled.

California, this is my reply to your post.

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I attended last night's R&J w. Hallberg & Semionova. You don't often see such tall ballerinas as Juliet. Last night, I was reminded of the reasons. Hallberg needed every ounce of energy he could muster to do these difficult lifts of Semionova. His effort was visible and this interrupted the drama of the ballet. I'm not faulting Hallberg. Anyone would have had a tough time lifting such a tall woman. Semionova's long limbs and pliant back made her extensions look particularly beautiful. Hallberg's jumps were buoyant and his turns were quick and covered a lot of space. I was not particularly convinced by Semionova's acting in this. Was this her debut of the role of Juliet? All of the elements that make Semionova great in certain roles (regal demeanor, great height) make her less appropriate for a role like the innocent waiflike Juliet. Of the supporting roles, Gorak stood out. He is a future Romeo, I hope.

Abatt, I'm glad it wasn't just me. I agree with everything you say about last night's performance. I would add that Hallberg's "line" is the most exquisite I've ever seen in a male dancer over the course of many decades of attending the ballet. His acting, too, was exceptionally nuanced, and much more intense than Semionova's. It was a privilege to see Hallberg, the embodiment of perfection, in this role. Semionova ran quickly, flailed her arms when she was distraught, bourreed backwards with tiny steps, did gorgeous arabesques, but did not convey the same degree of drama that was displayed by Hallberg.

I also thought that Jared Matthews was wonderful as Mercutio. What a threesome: Hallberg, Matthews, and Gorak! Could one ask for anything more? Well, yes, a ballerina who could match Hallberg's drama. Perhaps it's a question of maturity. Hallberg is at the top of his game. Let's say that Semionova is still in "adolescence" when it comes to drama, and needs to grow more, so that her acting shows, as someone else on this forum (or somewhere else) mentioned, more of an "inner life."

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I thought Aaron Scott was really well-matched with Herman Cornejo (and the ballet in general) as Mercutio tonight. He was spot on.

It was a good night. Nothing out of this world but no disappoinments either. First time seeing Herman Cornejo as Romeo and I really, really liked him in the role. His height works for me in this ballet; when he and Reyes were standing side by side at the center of the stage in Act I, I could see them fully as their characters. Reyes was good, but didn't fully scratch my itch for Juliet.

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What a threesome: Hallberg, Matthews, and Gorak! Could one ask for anything more?
And they're all American. Maybe it's time to close the other thread on ABT's men's crisis?

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What a threesome: Hallberg, Matthews, and Gorak! Could one ask for anything more?
And they're all American. Maybe it's time to close the other thread on ABT's men's crisis?

You make a good point, Jayne, however I have grave reservations about the hiring of James Whiteside. We need one more tall guy, but someone who is more classical, has more elegance, and is more nuanced as an actor than Whiteside. Is there anyone in the corps who could grow into that person? Eric Tamm, perhaps? Then I'd be happy to stop using the phrase "ABT's male principal problem."

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What a threesome: Hallberg, Matthews, and Gorak! Could one ask for anything more?
And they're all American. Maybe it's time to close the other thread on ABT's men's crisis?

You make a good point, Jayne, however I have grave reservations about the hiring of James Whiteside. We need one more tall guy, but someone who is more classical, has more elegance, and is more nuanced as an actor than Whiteside. Is there anyone in the corps who could grow into that person? Eric Tamm, perhaps? Then I'd be happy to stop using the phrase "ABT's male principal problem."

I share your opinion about Whiteside. Eric Tamm is a front runner. I think with exceptional coaching, Joey Gorak would be able to develop into that position as well - he already has the grace and gorgeous lines.

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I saw both performances yesterday. Hee Seo and Roberto Bolle at the matinee were absolutely wonderful. Bolle is a perfect Romeo. He was a flawless partner to Hee Seo. He made her seem weightless in the lifts. In addition, there are so many small but telling details in his portrayal that I have not seen in any of the other performances. His jumps are not as high as some of the other men, but I didn't care about that because his overall portrayal was so perfect. When you give Hee Seo the wrong role (like a Petipa ballet), all the weaknesses become apparent very quickly. But when you give her a suitable role like Juliet, she shines. This was my first viewing of her Juliet, and she was magnificent. There were no false notes in her performance. It all looked like it was unfolding for the first time before our very eyes. Gorgeous fluidity.

Cornejo and Reyes were very good in the evening. Cornejo is an especially brilliant technician, and so he blazed brightly during the balcony scene, and dazzled with his brilliant dancing. Reyes made for a very sympathetic Juliet. Neither is an especially convincing actor, but they were more than solid. Special mention to Aaron Scott, who is my favorite Mercutio of the week.

The matinee was very well sold. The evening performance was very poorly sold (about 40 percent full in my section.)

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