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glebb

L' Arlesienne

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I just finished watching a video, of L'Arlesienne by Roland Petit.

It is danced by The Paris Opera Ballet and in the leads are the sublime Isabelle Guerin and Manuel Legris. WOW!

Does anyone have any information to share about this wonderful ballet?

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Ah, I remember seeing it years ago with Jean-Charles Gil dancing the lead, and quite dramatically, too. I think this must've been with Petit's own company. Whatever happened to Gil, anyway?

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Glebb, I've seen the same video and admire those performances tremendously. I'd seen the ballet with Petit's own company (Dupont was phenomenal, as was Gil -- Manhattnik, I think he has a website. As they say in web pr speech, "Google him.") I hadn't, however, liked the ballet very much when Petit's company did it because I thought Khalfouni was so bland. Guerin is a different story! The corps choreography is barely filler, but the leading roles are wonderful.

I think -- working from memory here -- that this was done for London Festival Ballet???

(Dupont was a bit different from Legris. He had to GET OUT -- out of that marriage, out of that village. He was so tormented that the suicide was a relief.)

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I saw "l'Arlésienne" in Paris in 1997 with Legris and Guérin, when it entered the POB's repertory. I was not entirely convinced by the ballet itself, but the dancers are wonderful- well, in many works by Petit, I think the interpretation makes a great difference... rg was there too in 1997, so perhaps he can tell us his impressions too? :)

It will be performed again next season in Paris, in October, in a Petit- Robbins mixed bill. (Unfortunately, Guérin won't be performing it, except if she's invited as a guest).

"L'Arlésienne" was premiered in 1974. I don't have the program notes here. I'd be likely to think he created it for his own company, but am not sure.

Manhattnik, Jean-Charles Gil danced with various companies, including the Ballets de Monte-Carlo until 1997, now he's working as an independent dancer, teacher and choreographer. I saw a program by him about three years ago in Marseille: three solos choreographed by himself, Thierry Malandain and another choreographer I don't remember. He's past his prime, but I really liked that program, he had a great stage presence and a great placement. Also in the last few summers, every summer in Luberon (a part of Provence) he animated a summer school for young professional dancer.

I've found his web page at:

http://www.jeancharlesgil.com/index.htm

Let's say it's not exactly the most modest site I've ever seen... ;)

About that video: I'm *really* frustrated about that one. It was shown twice on TV (at hours like 2 AM), each time I asked my parents to record it (I have no TV), and each time there was a problem and I didn't get it. Now it's very unlikely to be shown again, and it's not available commercially... :(

(A note: Alexandra, I think you mean Dupond? I don't want to be petty, but it can be confusing, because it's Aurélie DuponT and Patrick DuponD,

so when people read Dupont they're more likely to think about Aurélie... By the way, your post made me regret that Patrick Dupond's POB career ended so sadly. He was not my favorite dancers, but the Petit repertory suited him well.)

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Not petty at al l-- thank you, Estelle. Yes, of course I meant Patrick Dupond!

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SFB did this ballet last year. I found it a bit melodramatic for no apparent reason, but it could also have been the performances of the leads. I'll probably see it again this year. Maybe my opinion will change.

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Thanks all, for your replies.

I found this work musical, dramatic and moving

I'm very much taken with the two principles and of course the choreographer.

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The original cast of L'Arlesienne was Rudy Bryans and the cuban ballerina Loipa Araujo. Petit made it for the Marseilles company which he was then running in 1974.

I wouldn't say it was a good ballet, but it's very effective and has two first-class roles - a good bad ballet perhaps.

I've seen a number of casts a lot of them very good. I'm sorry you didn't like Khalfouni, Alexandra. She's a dancer I very much liked and in roles as diverse as Petit's Carmen and the Opera's La Sylphide.

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