Yes, I agree cobweb. In fact, there was not a weak link in the the entire performance by anyone. An excellent program, with everyone doing wonderful work. I especially loved Maria K's sublime and serene performance of the Symphony in C second movement w. Tyler Angle.
Spring Season 2014
Posted 07 May 2014 - 10:12 AM
Posted 07 May 2014 - 10:25 AM
Yes, I agree cobweb. In fact, there was not a weak link in the the entire performance by anyone. An excellent program, with everyone doing wonderful work.
I still can't believe they wasted an entire week by not doing a single Balanchine ballet last week, so couldn't wait for last night's program. Loved Maria in the Adagio of Symphony in C, she's magical and the best the company has now that Wendy no longer does it (although Wendy was the only one able to do a breathtaking six o'clock penchee, head right to the knee). But I feel Lauren King is miscast in the 4th movement. Maybe she's not a natural turner? Every time I've seen her do it there are some waaay off balance turns, and there were 2 scary ones last night, both front stage center, one where she was completely saved (in the nick of time) from falling on her face by Adrian Danchig-Waring (brilliant and graceful, as usual). Not sure why no-one else seems to have gotten a shot at that role, who might be more secure in the fast turns. I have to say the male cast for Sym in C was outstanding last night overall. Veyette was wonderful (much better than Chase Finlay, who can't do a proper double tour at all), and Tyler Angle floated Maria through so many beautiful lifts I lost count. Garcia also had a great night. I missed Ana-Sophia in the first movement (Abbi was ok, not great), and that's another movement that maybe more should be allowed to attempt. At least Bouder should be doing it more.
Posted 07 May 2014 - 10:39 AM
I thought Lauren King was much improved in the 4th movement compared to last season. However, she is not a great spinner. If I could have cast the ballet, I might have given the fourth movement to Isaacs, who is a really strong spinner. Tiler Peck used to be incredible in the 4th movement, but she has finally been promoted into the first movement (debuting either this week or next, I think).
Posted 07 May 2014 - 12:11 PM
Agreeing with balanchinette for pointing out how stellar the male principals were in Symphony in C were last night. Andrew Veyette was completely sharp and a devoted partner. Tyler Angle, another fantastic partner, is a joy to the eyes with his form and elegance. Gonzalo Garcia seemed revitalized by dancing with the debutant. And Adrian Danchig-Waring, wow! Sometimes I just can't believe my eyes, he is so powerful and precise and committed. All in all, so different from another nearby company...
Posted 07 May 2014 - 04:10 PM
I am curious & intrigued at how dancers get cast for parts/roles. Do they ask, audition, or hand picked by Martins??? Sorry. Am a ballet novice here.
In a video, Peter Martins said the dancers cast themselves. By which he meant they demonstrated the qualities needed for the role. So the answer is hand-picked by Martins.
Posted 09 May 2014 - 09:35 AM
I attended the gala last night. It was a celebration of the 50 year anniversary of NYCB at the State Theater. The most exciting part of the evening for me was when they introduced on stage some of the dancers who participated in that opening night performance 50 years ago. Among the dancers who came on stage were Kay Mazzo, Arthur Mitchell, Mimi Paul, Jacques D'Amboise, Eddie Villella, and many more. Various film clips from the opening night festivities 50 years ago were shown, including one with Jacques D'Amboise being interviewed on his thoughts on the opening of the new theater. Such a downer that this wonderful hall now has the name Koch forever attached to it. (Koch was there. Saw him on the promenade during intermission.)
As for the dancing, Mearns and Jared Angle danced Allegro Brilliant. They were fine, but I don't think this kind of allegro dancing is what Mearns excels at. Bouder or Tiler Peck would have been a better choice, but Tiler Peck was busy with a lead role in the new Justin Peck ballet.
The new Peck ballet was very busy - too busy I would say. A very large cast, including numerous principal dancers. I liked parts of it, but for me it just didn't gel. It started to become monotonous, repetitive and somewhat pretentious. There was a repeated motif of people falling to the floor and then raised up off the ground by a partner. Was there some grand point to all this that I missed? The best parts were allegro solo passages for Reichlin, and intimate pdds for Robbie Fairchild and Maria K. The worst parts were when Justin tried to fill beats of music by having the dancers wave their arms around. The women's costumes were very unflattering body suits. I'm sure there will be photos in the paper. Anyone else attend?
Posted 09 May 2014 - 10:30 AM
Such a downer that this wonderful hall now has the name Koch forever attached to it.
Well, we thought it would be forever be named "the New York State Theater," so this may only last till the next renovation.
Thanks for the review of the Peck ballet.That may be the first negative review he's ever received. I can't wait to read what others thought.
Posted 09 May 2014 - 10:32 AM
I would say it's a mixed review, not a negative one. If you want negative, you should ask me about La Stravaganza.
Posted 10 May 2014 - 08:51 PM
More tomorrow, but what a wonderful performance of symphony in c tonight! Sara Mearns, just so so beautiful.
Posted 11 May 2014 - 05:32 AM
I appreciate this site because of its serious discussion of ballet that tends to eschew gossip and politics. Not all dance lovers despise the Kochs. I'm grateful for all the private citizens who donate to the arts.
Posted 11 May 2014 - 04:38 PM
I just got back from Sun. Mat. and want to give my impressions.
Raymonda - Ashley Bouder was glorious. Her super assured technique (beyond assured) was on full display with amazing speed, balances, sustained turns etc. She was also musical, radiant and the total ballerina. Her pas with Veyette was perfection. Vayette was not as successful in his variations. Nothing terrible, but he didn't seen comfortable with the choreography and his upper body got stiff. The soloists were Sarah Adams, Emilie Gerrity (nice musical phrasing), Megan LeCrone, Faye Arthurs & Ashly Isaacs (strong dancing) were mostly good with a few flubs here or there.
Steadfast Tin Shouldier - Megan Fairchild & Anthony Huxley. Nicely done. Fairchild does a lot more acting than Patricia McBride did. I don't know if this is a result of Balanchine's coaching of McBride. Either way it's an enjoyable, pleasant piece.
Tombeau de Couperin - I always enjoy this piece. I love that's it's all corps, mostly about formations but is very human. Everyone on stage is a person.
Symphony in C - 1st Movement - Catazaro replaced Finlay (I hope Finlay isn't out for long). Tiler Peck stunning in her musicality and technique.
2nd Movement - Sara Mearns amplitude, the fullness of her arabesques and freedom with which she danced was heart stopping. Jared Angle was the wonderful partner that allowed her to be herself and give so much. He is a great partner. One of the things I love about NYCB is how great the partnering is - Angle is one of the best.
3rd Movement - Antonio Carmena looked sharp and fantastic - ready to move to the principal ranks. Erica Pereira is a dancer I don't get. She has a good double pirouette but still seems under powered and dances very metrically (hardly ever phrases or plays with music.}
4th Movement - Lauren King was improved from last year. I get the feeling that the turns make her nervous, but she got through them better than she did last year, and she is a radiant dancer. I've always loved the way she relates to her partner, the others on stage and the audience. If she gets those turns sorted out, she'll be wonderful in this. Sean Suozzi was OK with some shaky moments.
All in all a great program. What a terrific company. BTW the audience seemed pretty full. They opened up part of the 4th ring.
Posted 12 May 2014 - 03:42 AM
Vipa, I second everything you posted. And just want to emphasize how much I enjoyed Ashley's performance. She played with the music; your description of her performance as "glorious" is perfect. I would add that I too found Steadfast more "acted" than in McBride days; yet it was a very affecting performance. I would add the Mearns in second movement Bizet was heavenly. Has she changed her lipstick color? Something in her makeup seemed a bit different to me (but it was a lovely change). I am looking forward to Tuesday's Raymonda to see how Lovette and Huxley do in Raymonda (one of my most favorite ballets). One day I'd like to see a program of all "first" ballets: Scotch, LaSource, Raymonda......
Posted 13 May 2014 - 05:19 AM
I was also at the Sunday matinee - what a wonderful way to spend Mother's Day! The performances were delightful with magnificence thrown in by Ashley Bouder and Sarah Mearns. I'm becoming reacquainted with NYCB after following ABT almost exclusively and am finding the experience well worth it to say the least. One question since I'm not familiar with the personalities of the dancers. I couldn't help notice that Megan LeCrone seemed to have a sour look on her face; especially noticeable in Symphony in C where all the rest of the dancers looked to be having best time in the world. To me she didn't look happy to be there.
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