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Dutch National Ballet: La Sylphide

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#1 enterachilles



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Posted 28 March 2001 - 08:20 AM

Dutch National Ballet premired a new version of La Sylphide made under Dinna Bjorn on 18 March. Bjorn, a former dancer at Danish Royal Ballet/ a current director at Norwegian National Ballet, only made some minor changes in La Sylphide based on Bournonville version, which succeeded in making the idea of this ballet more clear.

The casts of performance I saw on 27 March included Anna Seidle as a titlerole, Jahn Magnus Johanse as James, Alexander Gouliaev as Madge, Roger Janse as Gurn, Enrichetta Cavallotti as Effy.

The performance itself followed a short documentary film about this ballet, in which words of Bournonville were quoted, telling us about historcal backgrounds, Danish identity and character of James.

Bjorn must have paid much attention to mime, as mime was used quite effectively to tell story and it was really a part of dance. Her changes in dance of sylphs surrounding James were also effective to show James' embarassment and frustration that he could not catch her.

In total Bjorn's La Syphide ended with convincing image that James' story hasn't completed yet, as the short documentary mentioned.

#2 Sonja



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Posted 28 March 2001 - 08:26 AM

Enterachilles, thanks for this review! How did you like Anna Seidl?? I am curious because she trained at Munich Heinz Bosl Stiftung, but I haven't seen her except in my very first Sleeping Beauty (at ENB in 1994 with very vague memories) and guesting as Myrtha in a school performance of Heinz Bosl Stiftung last summer. I never thought of her as the "typically etheral" ballerina - but this might have changed!?

#3 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 28 March 2001 - 10:59 AM

Thanks for reporting, enterachilles. Do you know if this version of La Sylphide is the same one that the Danes currently perform (which is also by Bjorn?)

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#4 Alexandra


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Posted 28 March 2001 - 11:13 AM

Yes, I was curious, too, as the changes Bjorn made in Copenhagen were to substitute a different solo for the one Hans Brenaa made for Effie in Act One and to do what the Danish dancers charitably called a few stylstic experiments in the Sylph's dance.

I don't know what preview interviews or other press material might have said there, but the story of La Sylphide has been very clear for over 150 years. I've never heard that Bjorn tampered with the libretto.

#5 enterachilles



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Posted 28 March 2001 - 11:43 AM

I think La Sylphide by Dutch National Ballet was almost the same as that of Danish Royal Ballet performed in Japan last time. Again, there was not really a big change. A slightly different impression was because of the different company, I guess.

Anyway, I am going to see it again soon, and
I have to check the programme tonight!

As far as Sylph concerned, I liked her dance although she was not really airly dancing.

#6 Andrei


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Posted 28 March 2001 - 12:28 PM

enterachillis, how was Mage? I believe Alexander Guliaev is former Kirov Ballet dancer, right?

#7 Terry


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Posted 28 March 2001 - 04:18 PM

Hi Enterachilles,
Is Yumiko Takeshima with the company?
I thought I'd heard that she got promoted to principal dancer...how is she? I'd like to know some of the comments being made about her.

Thanks in advance

#8 enterachilles



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Posted 29 March 2001 - 07:20 AM

Andrei, Alexander Gouliaev was with Kirov. He joined Dutch National Ballet as a first solist in 1994.

Yes, Terry. Yumiko Takeshima is with the company. According to the programme I got for La Sylphide, in 1993 she joined the company where she was promoted to second solist in 1998.

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