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Winter Season


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#91 kfw

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 10:31 AM

 

Thanks for that video.  Hlinka is a name I haven't heard in a number of years.  She retired at a relatively young age.  I remember that Scotch Symphony was one of her signature ballets, and I think she did that at her farewell.


She was an excellent Swanilda--also, I think, early in her career she danced a wonderful Butterfly in Midsummer Night's Dream.

 

 

I loved her in Walpurgisnacht, and also in Donizetti Variations. 



#92 kfw

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 09:04 AM

I have a question about La Valse which I’ll post here, since NYCB danced the ballet during winter season, and since the question isn’t likely to generate much discussion. Does anyone remember when the women started wearing larger black bows? (For those who haven’t seen them, Ashley Bouder’s recently tweeted photo of Janie Taylor at the rosin box shows how big they are). Black or not, they strike me as almost girlish and festive, and therefore unsuited to the dark and mysterious mood of the ballet. I also found them distractingly large.  



#93 Eileen

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 01:43 PM

Thank you vipa for posting the Walpurgisnacht video from 1980. I do remember seeing Kyra Nichols and Ben Huys during that period, and I admired his presence and flair. And Nichol Hlinka was superb in the second variation. And who doesn't love and remember Kyra? Is it my imagination or did the company in Balanchine's era have more softness, less angularity, than it now has? I would have to compare a recent performance of the same piece. Any opinions?



#94 kfw

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 05:07 AM

Robert Gottlieb writes six paragraphs about the final performances of the season in his latest NY Observer article, which I’d been eagerly awaiting. (Thanks for the link, dirac). He calls Taylor and Marcovicci’s final performances "underpowered but valiant." He says that La Valse was “dead on arrival” due to "the company’s failure to grasp,” right from the opening waltz by the Fates, “what it’s about, what its highly specific perfume has been through most of its 63-year history.”

 

Whoever is responsible for this section of La Valse is either mood-deaf or ignorant. The wrists are all wrong, the ominous gestures are empty, the great costumes and hairpieces have been disastrously “freshened.”

 
He observes, as Arlene Croce did about the repertory in general in 1993, that dancers “who could explain Balanchine’s intent” aren’t welcome to come coach. He praises Bouder as Choleric in The Four Temperaments, Mearns in Walpurgisnacht Ballet, and all four principals – Kowroski, Ramasar, Hyltin and Fairchild – in Stravinsky Violin Concerto. He also writes that
 
Scarlett is beginning to look pretentious—the opposite of City Ballet’s own young star choreographer, Justin Peck, who, in the manner of Balanchine, takes everything seriously except himself.

 

I'm so grateful for critics with long ballet memories.




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