mussel

2014 Met Season

362 posts in this topic

Wow, not one mixed rep program? No Ratmansky triology? I'm getting kind of tired of Don Q. As always, thanks mussel.

Share this post


Link to post

My prediction for 2014 Met season complete (almost) list:

La Bayadere

Giselle

Manon

All Shakespearean program with The Dream

Ashton Cinderella

Swan Lake

Coppelia

Don Q

What about the tempest?

Abatt: wouldn't shakespeare program count as mixed?

Share this post


Link to post

The fall season is two weeks of mixed rep in a smaller house. I don't know what the attendance figures were for the Met's mixed bills, but it sounded as if those were harder tickets to sell. Splitting things up this way seems to make sense.

Share this post


Link to post

Nice to note the upsurge in interest in a revival of Manon. I want to see it return, too.

As someone who's been going to ABT regularly for about six years, I'm wondering if one of you veterans can fill in some blanks. Which full-lengths are still in the repertory but which haven't been revived lately--say, in a decade or more? (Thank goodness for this year's Sylvia.) I can think of Raymonda, Fille Mal Gardee, but what others? It does get a bit tiresome to see the same things in rotation season after season, though I acknowledge that Swan Lake is inevitable (like the Met's Boheme, it's a cash cow) and I too want to see it every summer. (Would that Bayadere were an annual, rather than a biennial; I never get tired of it, not ever.)

Share this post


Link to post

There have been a number of clunkers that never returned. Parson's The Pied Piper, the Snow Maiden, HereAfter (or AfterHere, depending on which night you saw it), Anastasia. I hated Taming and would not see it again if they brought it back.

Share this post


Link to post

ABT's website has a listing of all the ballets in its repertory over the years:

http://www.abt.org/education/archive/index.html

The Birgit Cullberg "Miss Julie" was very highly regarded back in the day. It is still in the repertory of some European houses.

"La Fille Mal Gardée" would be a wonderful ballet to revive because with the abundance of short male principals, the role of Colas would be easy to cast. That part can work with a smaller more demi-caractère danseur. Simkin, Cornejo (moving up from Alain), Vasiliev (with some coaching) and hopefully Gorak would all be excellent in the part. Lise would still fit Murphy, Reyes and Herrera and Sarah Lane, Osipova and Boylston would all excel in it. But since ABT is adding the Ashton "Cinderella" and is likely reviving the Ashton "The Dream" as half of the Shakespeare double bill with Ratmansky's "The Tempest" that would create a glut of Ashton.

Many of the works that have not been revived in ages are the shorter works by ABT's founding choreographers: Tudor and DeMille. I am talking "Pillar of Fire", "Fall River Legend", "Billy the Kid", "Undertow", "Dim Lustre", "Les Patineurs" "Dark Elegies" - ballets that ABT established its artistic identity with. The big kahuna here is the Tudor "Romeo and Juliet" which is trembling on the brink of extinction - the last generation of dancers and coaches who know the work are quite old now. According to an interview by Kevin McKenzie the essential missing element is the scenery by Eugene Berman. The sets would cost millions today to reproduce despite the fact that they were probably painted flats. This is something the Doris Duke or Nureyev foundations or National Endowment for the Humanities should pounce on.

ABT did do the "Anastasia" by MacMillan for one season - in the full-length version. I didn't see it (traveling that month) but it was not well received. The shorter version is superior. Vishneva might be an interesting choice for the title role but it isn't a great ballet from what I have heard. ABT has never done MacMillan's "Mayerling" and I am not sure that is a loss. (We won't mention "Winter Dreams", "The Prince of the Pagodas" or *shudder* "The Judas Tree" - my only positive takeaway from that monstrosity was Irek Mukhamedov in a torn wifebeater and tight jeans).

I saw the Cranko "Taming of the Shrew" with Ferri and Bocca (and Gomes as Lucentio) and loved it with them. Didn't see it again. Supposedly it wasn't revived because the dancers hated doing it.

Share this post


Link to post

I would like to see Raymonda again but not in the Holmes-Mckenzie staging.It would be great if Ratmansky would do it in collaboration with Burlaka( Just like what they did in Bolshoi's Le Corsaire).

Share this post


Link to post

Many of the works that have not been revived in ages are the shorter works by ABT's founding choreographers: Tudor and DeMille. I am talking "Pillar of Fire", "Fall River Legend", "Billy the Kid", "Undertow", "Dim Lustre", "Les Patineurs" "Dark Elegies" - ballets that ABT established its artistic identity with.

"Pillar of Fire" was done not so very long ago in a City Center fall season -- the year they did the all-Tudor program(s).

Share this post


Link to post

ABT did do the "Anastasia" by MacMillan for one season - in the full-length version. I didn't see it (traveling that month) but it was not well received. The shorter version is superior. Vishneva might be an interesting choice for the title role but it isn't a great ballet from what I have heard. ABT has never done MacMillan's "Mayerling" and I am not sure that is a loss. (We won't mention "Winter Dreams", "The Prince of the Pagodas" or *shudder* "The Judas Tree" - my only positive takeaway from that monstrosity was Irek Mukhamedov in a torn wifebeater and tight jeans).

I would argue that ABT not dancing Mayerling IS a loss, even for the sole reason that Marcelo Gomes would be fascinating in the Crown Prince Rudolf role. And even though the ballet is dominated by Rudolf, it does have several interesting parts for ballerinas--namely Mary Vetsera, Marie Larisch, Empress Elisabeth, and Princess Stephanie, which I feel could be danced well by several of ABT's dancers (Vishneva for Vetsera and Part for Larisch immediately come to mind).

Share this post


Link to post

A lot of the critics felt that the Holmes/McKenzie "Raymonda" looked too "My Little Pony" or "Barbie goes Medieval". McKenzie also went the Disney route with his "Sleeping Beauty" which I will see tonight. Frankly, I say acquire the La Scala staging by Sergei Vikharev. BTW: in a conversation with Diana Vishneva at the stage door I mentioned the fact that she hadn't danced Raymonda in New York. Vishneva replied that it was in her repertory at the Mariinsky but that the ABT production was not up to their standard. It deterred her from requesting the role with ABT.

Share this post


Link to post

ABT did do the "Anastasia" by MacMillan for one season - in the full-length version. I didn't see it (traveling that month) but it was not well received. The shorter version is superior. Vishneva might be an interesting choice for the title role but it isn't a great ballet from what I have heard. ABT has never done MacMillan's "Mayerling" and I am not sure that is a loss.

I would argue that ABT not dancing Mayerling IS a loss, even for the sole reason that Marcelo Gomes would be fascinating in the Crown Prince Rudolf role. And even though the ballet is dominated by Rudolf, it does have several interesting parts for ballerinas--namely Mary Vetsera, Marie Larisch, Empress Elisabeth, and Princess Stephanie, which I feel could be danced well by several of ABT's dancers (Vishneva for Vetsera and Part for Larisch immediately come to mind).

David Hallberg's strong acting as the anti-hero title character of "Onegin" and as the tormented outcast in Ratmansky's "Chamber Symphony" in the Shostakovich Trilogy also suggests to me that he would be a wonderful Prince Rudolf. However, I saw the ballet danced by the Royal on tour in the 1990's with Mukhamedov and Durante in the leads and found it an overstuffed, choreographically impoverished bore.

Marcelo Gomes with his excellent partnering skills and physical strength and natural flamboyance and swagger is more than ready to take on Petruchio in the Cranko "Taming of the Shrew".

Share this post


Link to post

I find Manon dreary (a ballet that even first-rate ballerinas cannot save) but, like Onegin, have come to accept it as inevitable. I have been avoiding it but fear that to see the dancers I want to see, however inadequately, I may end up going to see it after all.

As far as revivals go, I remember Taming of the Shrew as unbearable except for the extraordinary charisma of Haydee and Cragun. I never went to see it at ABT.

I would love to see Raymonda again -- even in the Holmes-Mckenzie staging -- though a Ratmanksy/Burlaka effort would be very appealing. (They may feel that would be superfluous given the reconstruction done by at La Scala mentioned by Faux Pas. I don't know that ABT could get hold of the La Scala production, but if they could that would be fabulous...)

I have been sorry and a bit surprised that they have not revived Fille lately since they have many dancers they could cast in it. But I agree, too, that if they are acquiring Ashton's Cinderella (a wonderful version) that they are unlikely to revive Fille the same season.

I think if ABT wants to revive a less-done 19th-century ballet it might be interesting for them to try to do a staging of Napoli, though certainly it would be a huge challenge to the dancers and need a lot of preparation.

For 20th-century ballets I would be very interested to see them dance the Ratmansky Lost Illusions and I think, from the bits of video I have seen, it might suit them. It is not only set in the 19th century but sort of riffs on 19th-century styles of ballet. It also has four lead roles--more opportunities for more dancers--and one pair of leads was originally created on Osipova and Vasiliev.

I am also eager to see them dance the entire Shostakovitch trilogy again, as I would love the opportunity to see it entire. And I would not mind if they would try to do at least a few more mixed-bill programs at the Met--I genuinely think these could be marketed more aggressively so the company could afford to do them there. But who knows?

Share this post


Link to post

I also find Manon to be dreary with generally uninteresting choreography. However, I would see Vishneva in it is revived at ABT.

Share this post


Link to post

"La Fille Mal Gardée" would be a wonderful ballet to revive because with the abundance of short male principals, the role of Colas would be easy to cast. That part can work with a smaller more demi-caractère danseur. Simkin, Cornejo (moving up from Alain), Vasiliev (with some coaching) and hopefully Gorak would all be excellent in the part. Lise would still fit Murphy, Reyes and Herrera and Sarah Lane, Osipova and Boylston would all excel in it. But since ABT is adding the Ashton "Cinderella" and is likely reviving the Ashton "The Dream" as half of the Shakespeare double bill with Ratmansky's "The Tempest" that would create a glut of Ashton.

I would gladly trade Cinderella to have La Fille Mal Gardee back again. I think the last time I saw it I was a child. Is the Ashton Cinderella different from the Cinderella that was done a couple of years ago? I couldn't quite get used to the ballerina with one bare foot and the other foot in a pointe shoe.

Share this post


Link to post

"La Fille Mal Gardée" would be a wonderful ballet to revive because with the abundance of short male principals, the role of Colas would be easy to cast. That part can work with a smaller more demi-caractère danseur. Simkin, Cornejo (moving up from Alain), Vasiliev (with some coaching) and hopefully Gorak would all be excellent in the part. Lise would still fit Murphy, Reyes and Herrera and Sarah Lane, Osipova and Boylston would all excel in it. But since ABT is adding the Ashton "Cinderella" and is likely reviving the Ashton "The Dream" as half of the Shakespeare double bill with Ratmansky's "The Tempest" that would create a glut of Ashton.

I would gladly trade Cinderella to have La Fille Mal Gardee back again. I think the last time I saw it I was a child. Is the Ashton Cinderella different from the Cinderella that was done a couple of years ago? I couldn't quite get used to the ballerina with one bare foot and the other foot in a pointe shoe.

That Cinderella was James Kudelka's. The Royal Ballet did Ashton's in NY for the Ashton festival in 2004. It's available on DVD. with Anthony Dowell and Antoinette Sibley.

Share this post


Link to post

"La Fille Mal Gardée" would be a wonderful ballet to revive because with the abundance of short male principals, the role of Colas would be easy to cast. That part can work with a smaller more demi-caractère danseur. Simkin, Cornejo (moving up from Alain), Vasiliev (with some coaching) and hopefully Gorak would all be excellent in the part. Lise would still fit Murphy, Reyes and Herrera and Sarah Lane, Osipova and Boylston would all excel in it. But since ABT is adding the Ashton "Cinderella" and is likely reviving the Ashton "The Dream" as half of the Shakespeare double bill with Ratmansky's "The Tempest" that would create a glut of Ashton.

I would gladly trade Cinderella to have La Fille Mal Gardee back again. I think the last time I saw it I was a child. Is the Ashton Cinderella different from the Cinderella that was done a couple of years ago? I couldn't quite get used to the ballerina with one bare foot and the other foot in a pointe shoe.

I believe the Cinderella ABT did a couple of seasons ago was by James Kudelka.

Share this post


Link to post

Thank you, kbarber and Drew. Is the Ashton Cinderella better than the Kudelka version? Does Ashton do the same thing in the first act of having Cinderella in one bare foot and the other in a pointe shoe? If so, I will have to prepare myself.

Share this post


Link to post

Ashton's Cinderella is about as different from Kudelka's as you can imagine. very much a fairytale ballet.

I would just like to say I find Manon anything but dreary, and Mayerling a fantastic, if harrowing ballet.

I suspect the reason Fille has been absent for a while is that ABT uses the National Ballet of Canada's production, and the costumes all had to be rebuilt before the NBOC could perform it again last year.

Share this post


Link to post

The Ashton has some exquisite parts to it and is beautifully constructed. My only reservation is that when Robert Helpmann and Frederick Ashton played the stepsisters, they overshadowed the rest of the ballet, in my opinion.

This is a review of the Joffrey in the Ashton "Cinderella" by Cygnet which has a lot of description detail:

http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/31157-the-joffrey-in-los-angeles-ashtons-cinderella/?hl=%2B%2Bcinderella+%2B%2Bashton

This is a thread about comparing an older video of the Ashton "Cinderella" to other choreographers' versions, but Kudelka's wasn't mentioned:

http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/17360-7-compare-other-cinderellas-to-ashtons/?hl=%2B%2Bcinderella+%2B%2Bashton#entry240456

Share this post


Link to post

My bias is always going to be towards rep. In the playbill interview with Cheryl Yeager she mentioned how many ballets the company did. I don't remember the number, but a lot fewer than now.

I remember going to see programs with so many ballets. Feld's best ballets - Intermezzo & At Midnight. Tudor - Romeo & Juliet, Lilac Garden. Ailey - The River. Lot's of others.

From the past they've chosen Les Sylphides for the Koch season. That doesn't give me hope. I don't mean to offend anyone, but this is a ballet, it seems to me, mostly of interest to ballet historians. Maybe, since Susan Jones is staging it, it comes cheap. For the Met season I hope they come up with something better.

Share this post


Link to post

A Burlaka-staged Paquita would be a wonderful addition to the 2014 Met season or 2014Koch season.

Share this post


Link to post

My bias is always going to be towards rep. In the playbill interview with Cheryl Yeager she mentioned how many ballets the company did. I don't remember the number, but a lot fewer than now.

I remember going to see programs with so many ballets. Feld's best ballets - Intermezzo & At Midnight. Tudor - Romeo & Juliet, Lilac Garden. Ailey - The River. Lot's of others.

From the past they've chosen Les Sylphides for the Koch season. That doesn't give me hope. I don't mean to offend anyone, but this is a ballet, it seems to me, mostly of interest to ballet historians. Maybe, since Susan Jones is staging it, it comes cheap. For the Met season I hope they come up with something better.

One problem with Les Sylphides is that it's often danced as if it's mostly of interest to ballet historians, but it can be brought to life and ABT has the dancers to do so if properly coached (a big 'if' I know). "Theme and Variations" is also from ABT's "past," though it's Balanchine and danced, now, as part of Tchaikovsky Suite no. 3 at NYCB. I appreciate having it live on in its original (or more or less original) form as an independent work.

I have sometimes wondered why ABT doesn't revive Intermezzo or At Midnight--and even thought that perhaps Feld doesn't want ABT to dance them now. But that's speculation.

I do share your bias towards rep--though I also think they should give some attention to having better productions of some of the full length classics. Still, not all the rep they used to do was that great qua rep; from the 70's I remember a lot of Tetley and excerpted pas de deux (Don Q and Corsaire), and though I remember liking Ailey's The River, I'm not persuaded it would hold up as a masterwork. They also tried to bring in some Neumeier without much success. Baryshnikov worked with a number of modern dance choreographers and brought in a lot of Balanchine. I'm happy to see some Balanchine at ABT (modern dance less so), but New York doesn't need two Balanchine companies.

Some of the excitement of the repertory programs, too, especially as one goes further back into the company's history, was the opportunity to see premiers: with Ratmansky ABT now has a steady stream of premiers by a major choreographer. The most sought after in classical ballet. How will those ballets look in a few decades? Not sure. But I am sure the company today would be immeasurably more boring without them.

I think bringing Ashton into the mix has been a huge plus too. Tudor's living repertory is a small one and I have never entirely accepted the view that Tudor-De Mille can be a realistic, ongoing basis for ABT seasons in the 21st century. I realize for many Tudor is the peer of Balanchine--I myself don't think so, though I consider him a great choreographer. I do think Ashton is and since ABT has proven success dancing Ashton, I'm delighted they are making him an important part of their repertory. I do not think it has to be at the expense of Tudor, though, and would definitely like to see Tudor revived more frequently. Insofar as Ratmansky cares about story-telling traditions in ballet, his work does also stand in some kind of relation to the Tudor heritage, though not a direct or close one.

As I was typing Bingham posted -- what a great idea! I would love to see a Burlaka or Burlaka-Ratmansky staged Paquita. Either a full length (if it could be done) or just the final act.

Share this post


Link to post

It is interesting that that Paris Opera Ballet will be performing Fall River Legend and Miss Julie next season. ABT has brought Fall River Legend for their Japan tour in 1994 but has it been performed recently?

Share this post


Link to post

I'd like to see one program for the adults (Mayerling) and one for the kids (Les Patineurs and Beatrix Potter). Now that would be 2 weeks of English choreographers!

I saw the Cranko "Taming of the Shrew" with Ferri and Bocca (and Gomes as Lucentio) and loved it with them. Didn't see it again. Supposedly it wasn't revived because the dancers hated doing it.

Have any ABT dancers confirmed that sentiment in the media? Ms Ferri has always been pretty honest in her interviews, I wonder if she said anything negative about it? I know Houston Ballet put it on not too long ago.

Edited: Houston Ballet performed "Shrew" in 2010, and Tulsa Ballet in 2011as seen in the youtube link :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dy19c6Nqe1s

Also, in defense of Glen Tetley, PNB used to perform a lot of his works under Francia Russell / Kent Stowell, and Voluntaries was my favorite. ABT has some dancers who would look pretty wonderful in it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAd7inarSmc

Share this post


Link to post