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Recommendations for ballet videos

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#1 sylvia


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Posted 09 May 2001 - 11:04 AM

I'm trying to add to my (presently very tiny) collection of ballet videos.

I was wondering if anyone here has seen the RB and Australian versions of Manon. I'm having a hard time deciding which to get.

Also, any feedback on RB's Mayerling video would be greatly appreciated.

And could someone recommend a reputable, but not overpriced US website where I could get RB's La Bayadere. For some strange reason, it hasn't been released in the UK, and isn't even available in the UK format.


#2 Siren



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Posted 09 May 2001 - 11:17 AM

I have the RB Manon and really like it. De Grieux was created on Anthony Dowell so you'd be seeing one of the originators in the role. I believe Manon was created on Antoinette Sibley? But she was injured and Jennifer Penny had to fill in? I may be wrong, but this is what my fuzzy brain remembers. I really recommend this version.

The RB Mayerling is one of my favorite ballet videos. PERIOD. I really liked the camera work and find it's particularly effective here. The camera closes up on the dancers and their acting is almost as remarkable as their dancing, down to the corp members. It's a fascinating drama. Of course, Irek Mukhamedov and Viviana Durante are in amazing form. And you'll see a young, brunette, Sarah Wildor. I have several friends that I showed this to who became interested in the RB as a result. Very few ballet men, IMO, can pull off the Crown Prince role, and Mukhamdov does it spendidly. Apparently, MacMillan had redone the ballet for him. It shows. It would be a great addition to your library.

Other videos that are good are some of the "Greatest Hits" from the RB that feature a young Alessandra Ferri in Romeo & Juliet as well as Nureyev/Fontaine pas de deux's. Also good are the Baryshnikov Don Q, any of the Balanchine Library videos, and the RB Bayadere (featuring a fabulous 19-year old Darcey Bussell as a Gamzatti that almost steals the show and a wonderful Asylmuratova who makes sure she doesn't).

[ 05-09-2001: Message edited by: Siren ]

#3 Giannina


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Posted 09 May 2001 - 12:17 PM

I purchased the Australian series of DVD's which were supposed to be formatted for my DVD player. Said so right on the thing-y (I'm so technical). It wasn't and I had to return them. Be careful. I was successful with the VCR tape of La Fille....


#4 Ed Waffle

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Posted 09 May 2001 - 12:49 PM

This is a "me, too" message, but I cannot agree more with Siren regarding the RB "Mayerling". Actually I could but only in a matter of emphasis. It is my absolute favorite performing arts video--the Partice Chereau "Gotterdamerung" is in second place, just to give an idea of the competition.

Viviana Durante is impossibly beautiful in this vidio. Siren mentions the close up camera work and the acting--Durante has the most expressive eyes imaginable.

It belongs in any video ballet library.

Oddly enough, I also recommend the RB "Manon", even though I detest the ballet itself. A backhanded compliment, but viewing this tape made me realize again just how much I disliked the work it represents.

One note--be careful of the Kultur edition of the RB "Manon". The sound quality was almost unlistenable on the one I purchased.

#5 Helena


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Posted 09 May 2001 - 02:40 PM

Siren, is Sarah Wildor really in that RB video? If so, she must have been very young indeed. What part does she dance? I don't own the video but I've seen it on television.

[ 05-09-2001: Message edited by: Helena ]

#6 BalletNut


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Posted 09 May 2001 - 04:17 PM

I believe the role Wildor dances on Mayerling is of Princess Louise, but it's been awhile since I've seen it.

BTW, this is my 100th post. Isn't that exciting! :D

[ 05-09-2001: Message edited by: BalletNut ]

#7 sylvia


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Posted 10 May 2001 - 07:06 AM

Thanks for the recommendations. I'm definitely getting RB's Manon and Mayerling (if they're still at the ROH shop - fingers crossed).

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