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SFB 2014 Giselle

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#16 Quiggin


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Posted 04 February 2014 - 03:20 PM

I didn't see Lorena Feijoo's Giselle this year – though I did hear she was good – but I did see that of Mathilde Froustey and of Maria Kochetkova on succeeding nights (even though I wasn't going to go at all; I'm not really one of he faithful I keep telling myself). Maybe you could say one Giselle was French and the other was Russian – or the difference is like that between Braque's and Picasso's cubism – one painterly (Foustey) and the other sculptural. Kochetkova seemed always to be directly advancing her part, whereas Froustey was very light and open (I want to say like a lieder singer who happens to be in an opera) . For instance in the first act variation, the part on the diagonal on pointe, Kochetkova did it in one piece very nicely, while with Froustey it was taken in leisurely increments, a series of pauses and advances with all the time in the world to finish up.


Tiit Helimets’s Albrecht was big and calm and subtle, Taras Domitro’s was delicate and nervous, continuous reinflected, as if he were meticulously adjusting the angle of a kite. Simone Messmer’s Myrtha was dramatic, her profile like Athena’s on an archaic vase. But I thought Sofiane Sylve’s was more effective where she for a moment seems to be considering leniency for Albrecht, then quickly turns her head the other direction in a final “No!”... Lola de Avila is supposed to have had a hand in the excellence of this year’s production.

#17 cranedragon



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Posted 25 March 2014 - 02:34 AM

I was fortunate to see Giselle on two consecutive days.  The cast for Saturday evening was Yuan Yuan Tan as Giselle, Davit Karapetyan as Albrecht, and Ruben Martin Cintas as Hilarion.  The next afternoon had Mathilde Froustey, Tiit Helimets as Albrecht, and Pascal Molat as Hilarion.  It was an amazing experience.  Both Tan and Froustey were marvelous, but the different approach of the gentlemen made it two entirely different ballets, for me.


Karapetyan seemed more like a "player" -- he knew from the outset that he was just dallying with Giselle and his future was with Bathilde, daughter to the Duke of Courland [oh, lovely borzois for the hunting party!]  Martin Cintas seemed genuinely attached to Giselle and heartbroken over her fate.  The next day, by comparison, Helimets seemed genuinely attached to Giselle and "hoping against hope" that somehow, somehow he could have a future with Giselle, while Molat left me feeling that he was just a spoiler with his nose out of joint because Giselle, whom he'd taken for granted, had shown a preference for a younger, more ardent swain.


It was a good thing for me that I had such a great experience in the first act of both performances, because the second act, calling for the supremely matched dancing of the corps, just fell short both times.  For a company that prides itself on its high standing in the US, if not the world, to be unable to put 24 ballerinas on stage who could move in unison was embarrassing.

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