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Roland Petitís La Chauve Souris Opens in Beijing Next Month


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#1 yudi

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 03:01 PM

The National Ballet of China is planning to bring Roland Petit’s La Chauve Souris to Beijing for the first time to Chinese audiences in September, 2014.

Petit`s long-time assistant Luigi Bonino and costume designer Luisa Spinatelli, as well as Bonino's assistant Gillian Whittingham, are working with NB of China to stage this production. The rehearsals started last month. In the rehearing room we can find all principles with the troupe, Zhu Yan, Zhang Jian, Wang Qimin, Li Jun, Cao Shuci, Ma Xiaodong, Yu Bo, plus the excellent young actor Sun Ruichen and etc.
 
We are also told that the internationally renowned dancer and Ballet Master Manual Legris has been invited to join this event to dance in the Premiere on September 11th, 2014.
 
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References: http://blog.sina.com...a00102uxey.html



#2 sandik

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 03:59 PM

This should be quite something!

#3 yudi

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 04:54 PM

The premiere performances of famous French choreographer Roland Petit's ballet La Chauve Souries will take place in a month at the Tianqiao Theatre in Beijing from September 11th till September 14th. The ballet is re-staged for The National Ballet of China by Petit`s long-time assistant Luigi Bonino and his assistant Gillian Whittingham.
 
As the premiere day is coming closer, then production has entered long period of intense rehearsals. The count-down begins for the first performance.
 
July 27, Ms. Gillian Whittingham arrived in NBC. She is supervising the re-staging of this ballet. According to the plan, she would complete dance rehearsals in scenes "Maxim restaurant", "twelve pairs masquerade", "waiter" and "cancan girls" and other works, in a week. 
 
In addition, the lighting design and stage production supervisor Jean-Michel Désiré, from Ballet National de Marseille, would guide the setting up the stage and lighting, and complete the stage setting in Tianqiao theater from August 1st to 4th. 
 
Luigi Bonino and other staff involved in this production have arrived later and started working together with NBC to assure the success of the premiere of this world’s well-known and charming ballet. 
 
 
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#4 yudi

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 11:06 PM

Talk to Luisa Spinatelli, the costume designer of  La Chauve Souris 

 
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Q: Would you to like to tell us some interesting stories? How did you start to work with Roland Petit for costumes in La Chauve Souris?
A: We had worked together for many dancing productions. I started my costume design career for La Scala theater, involved in the design works for many opera, ballet and modern dances over many years. Ballet costumes require the best, the most appealing and refined design. By chance, Mr. Petit saw my design work at La Scala, and very interested in it, so we began our cooperation on several his ballets. When Mr. Petit came to me to ask me to design the costumes for La Chauve Souris, I was not hesitant for a second, that was an instant agreement in principle.
 
Ballet La Chauve Souris is adapted from an outstanding opera in the same name. The story itself is very attractive. Moreover, the leading role in the premiere performance is danced by Mr. Petit's wife, Zizi Jeanmaire, which made the choreographer pay extra attention to this ballet. I worked for Mr. Petit for a long time, out of the trust, he ultimately selected me to design the costumes for his ballet.
 
Of course, working with Roland Petit together is not easy. He's very demanding, and you have to follow his ideas and intentions to get the things done. We often had different opinions, but our goal is the same. We are for the arts. We always tried our best, gave our 100% effort into the creative work. So in the end everything is straightforward, no one would be upset. I could understand the director's idea. Some people might feel not easy to work with Mr. Petit, but I would not, even arguing with him was happy. Although he was demanding, and had bad temper, but I was able to learn a lot from him, got creative inspiration.
 
Mr. Petit was very fond of Chinese culture, and was hopping to work with Chinese artists together. 10 years ago, we worked on Proust (ou Les intermittences du coeur) in Paris. The ballerinas, dressed in white, needed to have umbrellas in hands. The umbrella I had designed was in the style for 19th-century French noble lady. In the rehearsal, our designed umbrellas were not ready, so we bought some Chinese sun-umbrellas instead for the rehearsals to meet the contingency.
 
Before the show the umbrellas I designed were made well, but when Mr. Petit saw the umbrellas, he lost his temper and said: "What umbrella you have made? That is bizarre comparing with the  Chinese umbrella, far too worse, simply nothing, take it away." Then, Mrs. Jeanmaire came to comfort me, stroking my shoulder, she said: "Don't take it personal. One day when we went to China to perform, the umbrella you designed would be in use." Finally, we used the Chinese umbrella in the ballet performance. From this incident we could see his love of Chinese culture symbols.
 
Q: What was the most difficult thing to deal with in designing the costumes for ballet La Chauve Souris?
A: Designing and tailoring ballet costume have its specific traditions and styles. To talk about the difficulties, for the evening gowns, we had to take the costume in opera as the design reference, also we needed to make the dancers feel comfortable, not to trouble their dancing, which, therefore required special arrangements to take care of the length, cutting and folding. 
 
Q: What can the audience expect and see the sparkles in your costume design for La Chauve Souris
A: It is very hard to say which one is the most beautiful and sparkling costume in this ballet. The costumes are directly related to the dance and drama. When audiences watch the ballet, their appreciation reflects their own feelings. If a scene impressed and moved him/her most, then he/she might think the costume in that part is the most dazzling. So in my opinion the costumes are all very beautiful, and everyone can get what he/she likes. Of course, the "cancan" and "Hungarian Dance", some corp dance pieces are very exciting. The family life scene at the beginning of this ballet is very warm. The screenwriter did amazing job to combine and blend the story, dance and costume together perfectly. 
 
Interviewer and Writer: Shi Wei(施伟)
Editor: Sun Yuanna(孙元娜)
 
References:
 
(Notes: The interviews might have been done in French. I did the translation from Chinese to English according to the articles published on the blog of the National Ballet of China. If I had the original French edition, the translation could be done with artificial intelligence and machine translation, which might be able to do better job. 
If anyone found mistakes in the posts, please let me know as soon as possible. thanks.GIF )


#5 yudi

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Posted 09 August 2014 - 10:31 PM

Talk to Luigi Bonino, the Production Supervisor and Stage Manager of La Chauve Souris 

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Q: Hello Luiqi, could you tell us some stories about you and Mr. Petit? How did you start your career under his directing, and finally become his lifetime assistant after many years?
A: This is a long story certainly. Let me make it shorter. Mr. Petit and I met in 1975 for the first time. Just for the first collaboration we already had a tacit understanding. I really liked his choreography style and his selection of music, so our cooperation was very successful. After two years, I had a chance to be a partner of his wife Zizi in a very important show. Soon after that, subsequently I danced all of his ballets and gradually became familiar with all of his productions. 
 
Then, Mr. Petit began to let me help him in some of the rehearsals, which started my career as his rehearsing assistant for long term, although at that time I still spent lots of time to dance in his troupe. I really like this job, and also enjoy the rehearsing process very much. Especially, now he has left us, then I would strive harder to spread and develop his ballet and style. As Roland Petit was a very special choreographer and director, his style came from classical ballet, but unique, very different. 
 
Q: We all know that the ballet La Chauve Souris has its origin from an opera in the same title, i.e., Johan Strauss' Die Fledermaus. Could you tell us how Mr. Petit did get the idea to create this ballet? How was this project started?
A: The initial goal for Mr. Petit to create this ballet is for his wife Zizi Jeanmaire. This is a very humorous opera, music is also popular. This production would be the first ballet for his wife Zizi to perform after she resumed training, recovered from her Achilles tendon surgery due to an injury about two or three years ago. I was very honored to be her partner, the cooperation was very happy. This work was created in 1979. Since its inception Roland had diversified the stage and costume design for further development, and made it a new look. Now it became a ballet more close to the modern time. We have already performed this ballet in New York, London, Paris and other cities around the world.
 
Q: The National Ballet of China has decided to re-stage the ballet La Chauve Souris, and all of our dancers feel very excited. What is your expectation for the premiere of ballet La Chauve Souris in China. 
A: Of cause, a Big Success! I am sure they would do very well, and enjoy the rehearsing process. I think the Chinese people and we Italian are, about the same, very good at body languages and limb movements to express emotions and feelings. This ballet is full of strong and complex human emotions, fit audiences in all ages.  The music is so beautiful. Anyway, I wish the show successful, I hope the audiences would like this ballet. For me, I am very happy to come here again, working with dancers of NB of China.
 
Interviewer & WriterShi Wei(施伟)
EditorSun Yuanna(孙元娜)
 
References: 


#6 yudi

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 05:25 PM

Talk to Jean-Michel Désiré, the Lighting Supervisor and Designer, Stage Production Supervisor of La Chauve Souris

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Q: We found that as a lighting designer, you only do lighting design for dance productions, and almost all your designs are for Master Roland Petit. Can you tell us why, what is the reason?
A: Yes. When I first met Mr. Roland Petit, I was about 17-18 years old. Although I was young and inexperienced, he trusted me very much and let me do lighting design for La Chauve Souris. He taught me a lot. You can say that my career was started by him. All of the technique and skills that I have learned and mastered, including all aspects of stage works, all come from his gift. So I have decided to work for Roland Petit only in my life. Because if I designed for other people, I would think that's a betrayal of him. Anyway, we worked together for so many years, experiencing so many beautiful moments together. I do not know how to thank him. I remember one time I asked him: "Many years have passed. Now we can claim to be friends, right?" He replied ...... (talking about this, Mr. Désiré moved to tears, silent for a long time), he said: "Of course! we are brothers! "

I have cooperated with the National Ballet of China for nearly 10 years, which is also for Mr. Roland Petit, because he liked China, loved Chinese culture. One thing I want to tell you, the last work in his life, The Last Paradise, was choreographed for the National Ballet.

Q: These days, during the stage setup (assembly / synthesis), I noticed that your requirements are very rigorous on all details. So our staging staffs wrote down your comments for almost 30 required corrections and revisions. In general, do you normally make so many modifications?
A: Oh, of course, there would always be some changes in stage settings, one way or another, because we want to present the best effects to the audience. Since the venues of performances are always different, some details must be adjusted on locations accordingly. Especially, for such important and large show, we even need to make some changes between the shows on the first day and the fourth day. It is similar to that ballet dancers do rehearsing, every time they will identify deficiencies, in the pursuit of perfection. This process will never have an end. I think the staging staffs here are very careful, very patient. The quality of stage works they have done early on is excellent.

Q: Can you talk about the stage setting and lighting design, as well as other related aspects in ballet La Chauve Souris to outline the artistic achievements for the majority of our audiences.
A: Ha, lots to say, to talk about. Regarding its choreography, drama, music, costumes, stage sets, lighting, there are sparkles everywhere in La Chauve Souris. For me, personally, I think Johann Strauss' music was fabulous. You know, every time after I watched La Chauve Souris, those melodies would be echoed in my mind for a long time, could not be forgotten. I believe the audiences would be naturally singing and humming the melodies also, after watching this ballet. (Laughing)

This ballet's storyline is very interesting, very attractive. Plus, Master Roland Petit's brilliant choreography, solo, Pas de Deux, corp dances, all distinctive, but integral, very exciting. In fact, all dances from Master Petit's choreography are story-telling arts. In addition, the costumes from Luisa's design are very, very good, splendid. Wilmotte's stage sets design has such modern flavor that the lighting would make everything on the stage, dancers, costumes, stage sets, ..., become even more beautiful! Anyway, this is a perfect visual feast!

--------------------------------

At the end of this interview, Mr. Désiré asked us to include a complete copy of his writing in our interview notes so as to pay tribute to Master Roland Petit.

[The following is written by Mr. Désiré.]

There is such a group of people, they are very fortunate to be able to work around Master Roland Petit and accompany him to finish the final journey of his life. As one of them, I feel proud.
I love every piece of his works. He taught me all aspects of stage work. All of his rehearsing, checking, correcting, proofing, any one of them, made me learn a lot, be benefited a great deal. The contribution that I made for his gorgeous and great repertoire should also be owing to him. When I started working for him for the first time, I was still an ignorant child. Working with him through all these years, thinking of every conversation between us, that led my infinite admiration for him, let me be what I am today.
On stage, Zizi is dreamily beautiful ...
He is gone, leaving us alone in this world ...
He was so generous to us,  trusted us.
Just a few months before his death, I once asked: "After so many years of cooperation, I think we should be regarded as good friends." he replied: "Of course, we are brothers!" I was overjoyed.
These precious memories will forever stay in my heart. I want to say again, and repeat forever, "Thank you, Master."

- Jean-Michel Désiré
 
Interviewer & Writer: Zhou Chaoran(周超然)
Editor: Sun Yuanna(孙元娜)
 
References:
http://blog.sina.com...a00102uyzq.html
http://www.ballet.or...newsId=805.html



#7 yudi

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 08:02 PM

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On August 13, 2014 The National Ballet of China held a News Conference to make official announcement that the Premiere of ballet La Chauve Souris, by the famous French choreographer Roland Petit, would be on September 11th to 14th, 2014, in Beijing.

This ballet is also a program in the annual "National Artistic Troupe Performing Season" of 2014. Feng Ying, the Artistic Director of the National Ballet of China, Wang Quanxing and Zhang Yi, the Deputy Heads of NB of China, Mr. Luigi Bonino, the  Executive Producer of La Chauve Souris, attended the conference.

In November, 2005 Master Roland Petit, when he was  81 years old, was invited by the NB of China to stage his three most representative ballets,  Carmen, Le Jeune Homme et La Mort (Youth and Death) and L'Arlésienne. The show of these distinctive ballets had been enthusiastically welcomed by Chinese audiences and caused a huge shock in Chinese ballet world.

In June, 2006 Roland Petit came back and worked with NB of China again to stage the masterpiece Pink Floyd Ballet, to introduce his classical rock ballet to Chinese audiences.

In 2006 the Chinese government issued the "Friendship Award", the highest award for foreigners in China, to Master Petit, for his outstanding contribution to Sino-French cultural exchange.

Roland Petit passed away in July, 2011. He was affectionately known as "Grandfather Luo" by Chinese dancers (for the pronunciation of Roland is "Luo Lan" in Chinese). Chinese ballet world lost a mentor. To commemorate the Master, the NB of China decided to re-stage his another favorite ballet in 2014.

Writer: Li Yinghui
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Zhang Yi

 

References:
http://blog.sina.com...a00102uzfx.html
http://www.ballet.or...newsId=809.html

Note:This is a summary of the news release published on the website of National Ballet of China. Most of contents in the news article were already covered in our previous stories under this topic title.]



#8 yudi

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 08:17 PM

In the afternoon of August 13th, 2014 the National Ballet of China held an audition for young dancers who would join the performance of ballet La Chauve Souris. Many ballet students in the amateur ballet school of NB of China took part in the audition. Feng Ying, the Artistic Director of the National Ballet, Mr. Luigi Bonino, the Production Supervisor and Stage Manager of La Chauve Souris, as well as Ms. Gillian Whittingham and Xu Gang, a ballet Master of the NBC, were the members of the juries.

Only one month away from the premiere days, September 11th to 14th, five young dancers would be needed in this ballet, and 11 preparatory dancers also for replacements. So, 16 young dancers would be selected in the recruitment audition. All of them would join the rehearsals on 14th to 16th of August and early September. Finally they would show up with Chinese and foreign ballet stars together on stage of La Chauve Souris.

The audition was not only serious, but also lively. 80 ballet students participated in the audition. All young performers were in high spirits and full of enthusiasm, they radiated their endless energy to every one at the audition site. Several ballet teachers helped to organize and manage the audition so that the entire process was orderly going. Young participants had shown excellent imitation and impromptu dances.

Feng Ying and Mr. Bonino are very satisfied for the recruited young dancers. They highly appraised the organizing of audition activities by the ballet school teachers.

Writer: Zhu Lin
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Zhang Yi
 

References :

http://www.ballet.or...newsId=810.html
http://blog.sina.com...a00102uzih.html

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#9 yudi

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Posted 24 August 2014 - 09:28 AM

The National Ballet of China has published the credit list for Premiere of La Chauve-Souris in Beijing, China on their website: 
http://en.ballet.org.../newsId=16.html
 
Cast Member of La Chauve-Souris
 

La Chauve-Souris, Ballet in two acts

 

Choreographer and screenplay: Roland Petit (adaptation based on the operetta Die Fledermaus)

ComposerJohann Strauss II

Arrangement and orchestrationDouglas Gamley

Stage designerJean-Michel Wilmotte

Costume designerLuisa Spinatelli

Light designer and stage supervisorJean-Michel Désiré

Implementation and supervisionLuigi Bonino

Repetiteurs: Luigi Bonino, Gillian Whittingham

Music copyright: Josef Weinberger Limited Company

World premiereNational Ballet of Marseille, Monte Carlo, 1979

Chinese premiere: National Ballet of China, Tianqiao Theater, September 11, 2014

Chinese premiere producer: Feng Ying

Chinese general repetiteurXu Gang

 

Performed by: National Ballet of China

Played byNational Ballet of China Symphony Orchestra

Artistic Director: Feng Ying

ConductorsZhang Yi, Liu Ju

Guest cast: Manuel Legris

 

Date/time: 19:30 September 11-14, 2014

Venue: Beijing Tianqiao Theater

Price: VIP/600/500/400/300/200/100/50

Ticket booking: 83553737-3304/3310/5506



#10 yudi

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Posted 24 August 2014 - 09:48 AM

Talk to Gillian Whittingham, Répétiteur of La Chauve Souris

 

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Q: You came to work with the National Ballet of China as a repetiteur of ballet La Chauve Souris and assistant of Roland Petit. Could you tell us when did you start to collaborate with Master Petit?
A: Probably around 1998, I was invited to take part in the staging of Notre Dame de Paris (by Roland Petit) at La Scala. Mr. Luigi Bonino was in charge of this project, they let me be Mr. Bonino's assistant. That was the first time I have ever met Roland Petit and Bonino. After finishing the project, I stayed at La Scala theater and took a position as a ballet master. Later on Roland Petit came to La Scala to re-stage Chéri, a ballet he created specifically for La Scala dancers Carla Fracci and Massimo Murru. Because Mr. Petit and Mr. Bonino would go to Japan for some time, I was very honored to undertake the task to stage his ballet. That was my first time rehearsing Master Petit's ballet at La Scala. Since then, we have rehearsed many ballets at La Scala , one after another.
 
Q: What kind of impact has your experience of working with Master Roland Petit brought on you?
A: We have to admit that Mr. Petit is one of the most famous choreographers of last century. Although I am very lucky to have opportunities to work with many other choreographers, Mr. Petit's ballet style is very diverse, dealing with great variety of subjects. He was very good at finding the best of each dancer, exploring potential of every artist. Particularly, I appreciate those poetic elements and musicality in Mr. Petit's ballets, which is too special for me. We often see very exciting dances, but not very often poetic creations. However, we could learn all of these from the Master, and utilize them to my own work.
 
Q: We have also interviewed several other primary staffs working for La Chauve Souris. We can see that all of you are like a team. Even though the Master has passed away, but you are still working together to make every endeavor to carry on his repertoires. Whether this is due to the Master's personal charisma?
A: In fact, I feel he is still with us. Especially for Luigi and Jean-Michel, they have spent the most time in their life with Mr. Petit together. And now I was Luigi's assistant, from him I could see the reflection of Mr. Petit. When you really love an artist like Mr. Petit, you would be the same as us, Louisa, Jean-Michel, Luigi and me, we will strive towards the same goal.
 
Q: Let us talk about La Chauve Souris. When did you start working on this ballet?
A: After Notre Dame de Paris and Chéri this was the third ballet we worked on and accomplished together. This ballet was to be made ​​into a movie. I was the Master's assistant. Luigi played as Ulrich in the movie, Massimo Murru and Alessandra Ferri were the actor and actress for leading roles. During the rehearsals I could learn something from every one, whomever, Mr. Petit or other stars. This is very helpful for my rehearsal works in the future.
 
Q: How is the rehearsal going here in the NB of China now? Are you satisfied with the performance of our dancers?
A: First, the National Ballet of China has given me a very positive and favorable impression. This is a very good troupe. The dancers are very modest, which is very important. Arguably, among principles and corp dancers, there are always some differences. From my experience, the great dancers are always open-minded. The dancers of  NB of China are endowed with this quality. Another thing, that has surprised me, when I speak, they always keep quiet and listen, which is rare in Europe. Sometimes, when I did rehearsing for some famous European theaters, I had to tell them: "Please be quiet." There is no need here. So they learn quickly. 
 
The only thing to surmount, Mr. Petit's choreography contains some humorous irony. To show this emotion, it is a challenge for them. But they do not have any technical problems. There is a Hungarian dance, I almost didn't need to correct them. Their techniques are very strong, their status is getting better and better, which makes the whole process a lot easier for me, as a Repetiteur. 
 
Q: Has anything interesting happened during rehearsals? La Chauve Souris is a family comedy. We have heard from the dancers that you are also a quite humorous person.
A: That wasn't me, but the dancers, they are very funny! We often laugh out when we go through musical rehearsals. I think, that shows the dancers’ joy and participation in rehearsal. If you do not laugh, the rehearsal may not take effect. And I let them know why they do this jump in such a way. Every dancing step is meaningful. Because, in general, the audiences cannot really know the dancing steps, they want to see the ballet, the dancers leading them into the whole story, communicating with them, moving them.
 
Q: What is your expectation for La Chauve Souris' premiere in China? Maybe, you have some thing more to say?
A: I want to say "Thank You" to leaders of this troupe. Actually,  here all of you are great, all adorable, very warm to me, always helping me. At the same time the efficiency is surprisingly high. I believe this will be a fantastic show!
 
Interviewer & Writer: Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren
 
References:


#11 yudi

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 04:46 PM

Talk to Prima Ballerina Zhang Jian

 

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Zhang Jian (Bella): To perform the ballet La Chauve Souris, the biggest challenge is acting, because in this drama ballet there are some particular gestures, expressions and body language, which the foreigners are very good at, they just behave like that in ordinary life, but Chinese people would only use speech language to express. Probably, foreigners are relatively extroversive and have strong desire to show off, while the Chinese people are more introverted. We did not really have chance to play this kind of humorous light comedy before. But at this moment, it is a kind of nice swap in our busy working schedule, to dance a ballet that is very witty and imbued with fun of everyday life.
 
Currently the rehearsal has gone very smoothly. We had danced Grandfather Luo (Roland Petit)'s ballets, such as Carmen, Le Jeune Homme et La Mort (Youth and Death), L'Arlésienne and Pink Floyd Ballet, as well as ballet The Last Paradise he designed and choreographed specially for National Ballet of China. So we have danced ballets in his style for many times. Plus, the communication between us and the foreign experts of this ballet, e.g., the staging supervisor Mr. Luigi Bonino, is unhindered.
 
Speaking for myself, everything in La Chauve Souris is fresh to me. I will play as Bella in this drama. At the beginning, she was a very decent wife, doing laundry, cooking, taking care of children daily. Later on she changed completely, instead, going glamorous Maxim restaurant, and so on. Just because there are such changes, it would have different styles of performances. To show the changes of personality, the development of a character between different scenes in this ballet, for me, is very interesting.
 
Interviewer & Writer:Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren 
 
References:


#12 yudi

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 06:48 PM

Talk to Principle Dancer Sheng Shidong

 

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Sheng Shidong (John): Hello everyone! I am a Principle dancer with the National Ballet of China. I am going to dance as John, a leading character, in our new ballet La Chauve Souris.

La Chauve Souris is a comedy ballet, very humorous, with a lot of sparkling. For example, the actor would be hanging wire to fly (with bat wings). So, there are many challenges. This ballet is also a life-based drama, it is about what happens in daily life of civilians. A couple with their children, life is very warm and happy. Then, some disagreements and contradictions have arisen. The choreographer adapted some trivial nothings in life to transform them on the stage, with artistic and sublimated interpretation. As we say, art comes from live, but is a higher form of live.

In addition, in this ballet there are some very beautiful dancing sequences, humorous episodes, as well as the scene in a luxury restaurant Maxim. The ballet music is from John Strauss jr, his waltzes we are all familiar with. The rendering of music and ballet would make the audience feel relaxed and joyful. So, our audience can easily accept this ballet and understand it.

La Chauve Souris is different from those elegant classical repertoire we danced before. Its story is closer to our everyday life. This ballet is choreographed by the world renowned choreographer Roland Petit, he blended  different art forms together into a ballet drama. For example, in La Chauve Souris there are some ballroom dancing, Hungarian dance, as well as some dance vocabularies from Broadway shows, which Mr. Petit had cleverly worked into La Chauve Souris. IMO, the reason why Master Petit is great, that is because he has made the ballet easier, simpler and more beautiful.

In the rehearsal, I would co-play with few kids who play the roles as John's children in the ballet to present some trivia in ever day's life, to share some interesting story with everyone. Often, the more real the drama is, the more moving the play. Our audience would not feel that the actors were contrived, simulating and pretending on stage. Also, for the audience,  you don't need to discriminate between classical ballet and modern ballet, just enjoy the ballet, immerse yourselves in the drama.

Over these years our troupe has been doing meaningful and significant works, such as introducing foreign classics to Chinese audience, at the same time presenting the Chinese original ballet productions and our outstanding artists to the world. China's ballet is as good as foreign ballets, our dancers are also very admirable. I hope the audience could come to the theater to watch our annual drama, La Chauve Souris. I also hope all of you could support Chinese ballet, support the development of Chinese culture and art. As a matter of fact, ballet is not far away from us.

 

Interviewer & Writer:Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren 
 
References:


#13 yudi

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 06:54 PM

Talk to Principle Dancer Yu Bo
 
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Yu Bo (Ulrich): The new ballet La Chauve Souris, being premiered in September, is also choreographed by Master Roland Petit, but in somehow different style from the ballets we danced before. For Carmen and L'Arlésienne, we started with feeling the music, the plot-line and the characters are all around love, life and death, pretty serious and heavy, and Pink Floyd Ballet, rather more modern. In this ballet, drama and dance come together, and in some scene the dramatic performances are even more than dancing.

This is the first time I have attempted to play a role like Ulrich, I quite like that. We usually make joke of this ballet as a "family ethic drama". It is about the emotion between men and women, there is some tanglement. Then, Ulrich is supposed to be a role in underplot of manipulating. His action is exaggerated. Now I am "deep into the drama." Every day I am thinking about this role, not how to dance, but wondering how to express the dramatic tensions in the character.

We watched the video, in which Mr. Bonino played as Ulrich, he is especially wonderful. So I have a lot of pressure, because it is impossible to surpass him. I just wanted to try to interpret the Master's choreography as he desired, not leave out the wit and humor, spread the witty & humorous in the ballet to the audiences. Let the wit be wit, the humor be humor.

Finally, hope our ballet fans would come to the show to cheer, give us much attention, a lot of support.
 
Interviewer & Writer:Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren 
 
References:


#14 yudi

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Posted 02 September 2014 - 09:41 PM

Talk to Prima Ballerina Zhu Yan, The Captain of Dancer Team
 
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Zhu Yan (Bella): I had danced Roland Petit's ballets, the Carmen, Le Jeune Homme et La Mort (Youth and Death), Pink Floyd Ballet. Those ballets are relatively similar in style. But, this time dancing as Bella in the La Chauve Souris is quite a challenging for me. From the beginning of rehearsals till now, I have got more and more interesting and absorbing. No matter how much experience an actress has gained on stage, how vast repertoire she has, the new work would bring new excitements and new experiences. It makes me feel great that I have found I can still learn a lot. Just because it was very difficult for me to get inside of the role at the beginning, I have spent all the more time on pondering it. The whole process is very joyful.

It is worth to mention the rehearsing supervisor Mr. Bonino.  I have noticed a very obvious differentiation. He had issued many requirements on the quality of our dancing movements during his rehearsing in previous years. But this time it was not too much on correcting our action, but mainly to give guidance in terms of performance. IMO, after all these years of training, we have made ​​great progress through more and more rehearsals, our technique has been improved a lot. I  have lots of new thoughts and my "perception and concept" have been changed through his rehearsals.

From my point of view, the most important for a ballet dancer is how to use her/his body to tell the story, to say something to the audience clearly. Because we are not simply moving the arms, the legs, but dancing with heart in the motion to externalize story. Thus the ballet has its soul, the audience could be moved and inspired. Otherwise, the audience does not know what you're performing.

As my understanding, this ballet, as a matter of fact, is very close to the current social reality, reflecting today's social problems, that is, what is the correct family ethic. I think we rehearse and put on this ballet, not just for actors to have a special help in acting perception, let us get new insight of ballet art. From the perspective of the audience's view, it is also a very good drama. The audiences will get a lot of inspiration from the ballet story, thinking about the family responsibility, or something meaningful, rather than just watching a show. So this is every good ballet to bring people to a special perceiving.
 
Interviewer & Writer: Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren
 
References:

http://www.ballet.or...newsId=825.html
http://blog.sina.com...a00102v0rz.html



#15 yudi

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Posted 02 September 2014 - 09:48 PM

Talk to Principle Dancer Li Jun

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Li Jun (Ulrich): We have been rehearsing our new ballet La Chauve Souris for few weeks. Overall, we follow the experts' arrangements to  go step by step in accordance. As we carry out the rehearsing more and more, the actors will slowly approaching their roles. We definitely are getting better.

My role in the La Chauve Souris is Ulrich, he is pretty witty, humorous, a character in more dramatic style.

How should I describe? La Chauve Souris is very different from repertoires the NB of China introduced before. Those are very serious, of massiness styles, and philosophical to a certain degree. But this ballet is very witty, humorous, makes people feel very relaxed. For the audience, then, after a day of work, watching this show, they would not feel particularly tired.

First, from the perspective of music, Johann Strauss's music, the very beautiful waltz, will make people feel relaxed. Considering the ballet story, you may have more or less knew the plotline, what is this ballet about, i.e., the  importance of family. IMO, our people now have the same concern about family values. The theme of La Chauve Souris matched our current propaganda to family-based, enhance the family affinity, this kind of basic values.

Probably, the main problem for dancers to concern is our performance. Because we had no experience to play this kind of specific characters in a humorous drama previously, it is difficult to interpret the characters. We are good at tragedy and comedy, but not witty dramas. Wit is hard to present, that is an intermediate state between the comedy and serious drama. If I went too far, if mishandled, it would outsmart myself to make a fool of myself, that is not witty humor. So at this point, there must be a good distinction, actors must be very accurately grasp the degree of performance.
 
Interviewer & Writer:Zhou Chaoran
Editor: Sun Yuanna
Photographer: Shi Ren 
 
References:
http://blog.sina.com...a00102v0qa.html
http://www.ballet.or...newsId=824.html




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