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Giselle May 30-31; June 5-8Plus Events


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#46 sandik

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 10:43 AM

Lots of scope for fun here!

 

We could do the tribute programming route, and take La Valse and Afternoon of a Faun to City Center, along with Emergence and the Cerrudo.  Then swap out Emeralds for the Ravel (I love Emeralds best, and don't think it's the least bit gloomy) and Concerto DSCH for Faun for a run at the Koch/State Theater.  (keep the Pite and the Cerrudo, or maybe substitute Variations Serieuse for one of them)

 

Or the Seattle Showcase -- Wever's new Poulenc work, State of Darkness, something from Spectrum's recent American Music festival, and perhaps Amy O'Neal's recent hip hop solo -- highly kinetic and exquisitely crafted.  This is probably too long, but if we've got an infinite budget, don't we get lots of time as well?



#47 SandyMcKean

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Posted 12 July 2014 - 02:35 PM

I've been thinking about this for quite awhile, and it seems to me that we're in the middle of a repertory transition -- the Balanchine work is shifting from being the active core of many reps to being a historical specialty.


Very provocative thought! Please post more once you get a handle on this. (Now, you got me thinking.....smile.png )



#48 Helene

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Posted 12 July 2014 - 02:55 PM

What are the numbers to suggest that Balanchine is moving out of the core rep?  At PNB, in the last 20 years it hasn't:  there wasn't a huge amount of Balanchine in the last decade of Russell and Stowell's leadership.  There are more companies doing Balanchine rep now than there were in Balanchine's time, but now with a formal process of "You must prove you can do a "starter" ballet, and if you can, this is the progressive menu," and, of course, there are the requirements for using the original sets and costumes unless there is a pre-approved new production (Mariinsky and POB "Jewels", PNB "Midsummer Night's Dream," PNB/SFO "Coppelia") that effectively prohibit companies from doing some ballets, like "Liebslieder Walzer," "Vienna Waltzes," and "Union Jack," even if they could field the right number of dancers.

 

My concern, voiced several times here, is that PNB has been more focused on the two full-lengths -- "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Coppelia" -- and will be focused next season (2015-16) on the newly designed "Nutcracker."  I consider the upcoming "Jewels" a mixed-rep all-Balanchine bill despite the overarching theme, and at this point, I consider it a luxury because it's three short ballets, not because there was more Balanchine in 1995, and I fear that as a yearly production, "Nutcracker" will too often begin to "tick" the season's Balanchine box.

 

I just don't know what companies had a substantial amount of Balanchine ballets but are no longer doing them.  NYCB is doing more non-Balanchine a little over 30 years after Balanchine's death, but it's not like they are doing a small number of his works.  (They had been mixed the great works that most wanted to see with other things that many didn't want to bother to see more than once, and for the last few seasons have reversed.)

 

Did San Francisco Ballet used to do more Balanchine?  Did Pennsylvania Ballet or Boston Ballet, companies that Balanchine himself gave rep to? Are we talking about Miami City Ballet?



#49 sandik

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Posted 12 July 2014 - 11:19 PM

I have to do some homework -- right now I think it's less an issue of straight numbers than it is about the trajectory of company reps (not just PNB).  As time passes more and more of the dance world knows Balanchine through his work rather than through a direct connection, so that it's like that joke about waterfront property -- God isn't making any more of it.  At some point, we'll look at Balanchine like we look at Petipa -- it's an important part of our history, but not necessarily an indicator of where we're going.



#50 Helene

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Posted 12 July 2014 - 11:59 PM

By definition the direct connections are getting older and the stagers are getting to be people who weren't coached by Balanchine.  Peter Boal, fo example, who joined the company when Balanchine died.

 

I also think that Forsythe was considered the last choreographer to extend Balanchine's trajectory, but he jumped off that path a number of years ago. 



#51 sandik

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 10:35 AM

But there are lashings of choreographers who claim Forsythe as an influence.  Some, like David Dawson, are still working in a genre we'd all call ballet, while others, like Crystal Pite, are combining from all kinds of sources, depending on the work and the moment.  I think her Emergence reveals her ballet roots and her work with Forsythe, other works (like the recent Tempest Replica) have a more complicated heritage.



#52 Helene

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 10:53 AM

I agree, but I don't think that Dawson is extending ballet beyond Forsythe any more than Martins, Tomasson, or Stowell have extended ballet directly from Balanchine.

 

Pite, though, did something different with "Emergence":  the women on pointe come out of the Forsythe ballet gene pool, while the men come out of the more dominant European strains -- from her experience with Nederlands Dans Theatre. Instead of trying to create a hybrid of the two, she gives them equally masterful choreography and respect, and rather than appearing as a cross-over character, who escapes from the non-so-fun/non-pizza-eating people on the other side, the woman in pants and point shoes in the quartet with three men co-exists peacefully within the hive, with both the men and the women. It's only when the men try to infiltrate the female corps that they''re slapped around.  I think that's a pretty radical approach.



#53 sandik

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 11:18 AM

Oh this is fun to think about.  I'm not totally sold on the male v female thing here (though you could absolutely win me over with the characterization "non-so-fun/non-pizza-eating people") -- I think part of the differentiation between genders here is rooted in the same distinctions we see in ballet generally -- women have a different relationship to the ground through their shoes.  But yes, the woman in pants does have a certain labile quality, which is really clear when it's danced by one person (less so when it's split between two). 

 

When we saw it again in the Encore show I saw much more going on in the duet with Imler -- but of course, I need to see in again to really get some clarity!




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