Cautiously entering the forums, where I have been lurking for a year!
I attended last night's performance, as I have enjoyed Sascha Radetsky's performances over the last few years. He truly seems to enjoy dance.
Last night was the first time I have ever seen Coppelia, and I was underwhelmed by the ballet itself. I think I expected a more dramatic role for Radetsky's final performance. So I was somewhat surprised that he spent the entire second act slumped over in a drunken stupor!
During the Act I, it was fun to be a part of an audience so warmly supporting him. His arrival was met by sustained applause, and he seemed to truly delight in it. He played Franz as quite a flirt, equally engaging the audience, Swanhilda, and all the young ladies around him. It was humorous when he appeared visibly frustrated by Coppelia's lack of interest.
I was in a box seat, and could tell that Radetsky was struggling a bit during the 3rd Act. During one lift, I felt some concern that he didn't seem very steady. That being said, his delight and joy in dancing made the evening fun. The audience roared its support and appreciation for this obviously beloved dancer!
It was a "who's who" in the dance world kind of night. Many ABT luminaries were there. During the 1st intermission, I noticed David Hallberg graciously posing for photo after photo with a group of young girls in the row behind him. (He made a quick departure after Act II to get a drink- I don't blame him!)
Below me sat Ethan Stiefel & Gillian Murphy- what a radiant couple! His hair was VERY closely cropped, like a crew cut. I hardly recognized him at first. Gillian stood out with her red hair. What was especially heartwarming was Stiefel's enthusiasm in leading the applause. Even as the audience filtered out, he and Gillian remained applauding vigorously and shouting encouragement.
The audience appeared to be full. Not Nutcracker full, but definitely full.
Looking forward to hearing from others!
I tried to post a couple of photos here, but clearly haven't figured that out yet. One is of Stella Abrera embracing Sascha at the curtain call. It was very sweet.