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Ballerinas You've Never Seen


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44 replies to this topic

Poll: Ballerinas You've Never Seen (0 member(s) have cast votes)

Ballerinas You've Never Seen

  1. Suzanne Farrell (14 votes [14.58%])

    Percentage of vote: 14.58%

  2. Margot Fonteyn (21 votes [21.88%])

    Percentage of vote: 21.88%

  3. Tamara Karsavina (14 votes [14.58%])

    Percentage of vote: 14.58%

  4. Gelsey Kirkland (15 votes [15.62%])

    Percentage of vote: 15.62%

  5. Anna Pavlova (18 votes [18.75%])

    Percentage of vote: 18.75%

  6. Galina Ulanova (14 votes [14.58%])

    Percentage of vote: 14.58%

Vote

#31 Morris Neighbor

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Posted 15 August 2002 - 12:33 AM

Originally posted by Helena
Morris Neighbor - all good points, of course. I am curious - are you saying you saw Karsavina dance? When?


Profuse (and significantly delayed!) apologies. I never saw Karsavina, and wrote a careless message that left this fact regrettably ambiguous.

I have seen Kent, in mind-boggling experiences. Her Sonnambula is the performance by which all others must be judged: ethereal yet concrete, spiritual yet real. There's a Canadian kinescope of her performing the "Adagio" from Symphony in C in less than ideal circumstances (a mini-stage in front of an orchestra) that shows the same gifts: she takes us to a different place, one that floats a few crucial inches above the stage.

Her post-retirement interviews make her seem simply spacey. The judgement is not unfair, merely inadequate for such a long and rich career. She deserves a lilly. She deserves a bouquet.

#32 Farrell Fan

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Posted 15 August 2002 - 07:58 AM

I'm sure my friend Morris Neighbor knows that in the Anne Belle film "Dancing for Mr.B: Six Balanchine Ballerinas," Allegra Kent does have a lily -- she holds it in her lap throughout her interview. She appears a bit spacey in that, but then she's silent for several seconds at the end, appparently recalling the dwindling of her career at NYCB, when she was no longer Mr. B's favorite, and finally says, "I liked the way I danced." It's a very touching moment. I agree about the bouquet. As a matter of fact, she deserves every flower there is. Let's not forget that her original given name was Iris.

#33 Allegro

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Posted 15 August 2002 - 08:28 AM

Definately off topic, so delete if necessary.
Anybody read her autobio? I found it fascinating, not just for the NYCB history, and her own history there, but because of her introspective narrative. I think it would be almost as interesting to anyone interested in psychology, or just a good biography, as anyone interested in her as a dancer.

#34 Farrell Fan

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Posted 15 August 2002 - 10:50 AM

Yes, I found her autobiography quite fascinating, and agree that it would be of interest to general readers, not just ballet fans. It's a lovely, introspective book and a complete surprise coming after her first two books -- "Allegra Kent's Water Beauty Book," and "The Dancer's Body Book."

#35 Farrell Fan

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Posted 16 August 2002 - 03:42 AM

For the record, the title of Allegra Kent's autobiography is "Once a Dancer..." It was published in 1997.

#36 Guest_easystuff_*

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 03:49 PM

Has anyone seen the movie center stage? If you have It said that margot fonteyn had bad feet, what was so bad? I really want to know!:confused:

#37 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 04:53 PM

Easystuff, I suggest that you rent some videos of The Royal Ballet and see for yourself that she did not have bad feet at all. There are also lots of books with photos of her. Go to your local library and look through the ballet section. She was very beautiful, and had very good feet. They are not the "super extreme" feet of Sylvie Guillem or Paloma Herrera, but they are still quite fine.

#38 grace

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 05:25 PM

interesting discussion. i haven't responded to a poll before: this is quite fun!

i have seen fonteyn and kirkland live. i have seen ulanova up close, and watched her coach - but have not seen her dance, except on film.

i have seen farrell on video - lots.

that leaves just karsavina and pavlova as complete unknowns - although i have seen quite a few snippets of pavlova on film.

so i voted for pavlova - to experience what made her so great.

however, i do find this an odd list. i guess any of us, reduced to 6 choices, would make up an 'odd' list!

in response to other names so far suggested, i would certainly feel makarova should be on anyone's list. since she HAS been dancing in my lifetime (unlike some of these names), i DO regret not seeing her live: very much so. (but of course i have seen lots of video).

i too would like to have seen markova and beriosova. and chauvire and jeanmaire. and sibley. i am glad i have seen guillem and bussell - and most especially glad i have seen alessandra ferri - who i feel the most 'affection' for, out of all of these.

at this point in time, i would most like to see cojocaru, and oaks (& edur).

#39 Roma

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 06:59 PM

Beriosova is dancing the Black Swan pdd and "Diana and Acteon" pdd with Nureyev on the new "Bruhn/Nureyev" DVD. It was my first look at her, ever, and I thought she was just astonishing--witty and intelligent, and so beautiful. Kind of reminded me of Diana Adams. Actually, all of the women on this particular collection are exceptional, and made me wish I could have seen all of them dance. Fracci's Sylphide was especially fine--she somehow created the illusion of complete weightlessness and flight. I don't think, I've ever seen it danced quite that way before (sigh).

P.S. Farrell Fan:) The flower that Kent was holding throughout Belle's film was an iris, not a lily:)--a sly reference to her real name, I think.

#40 Farrell Fan

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 07:32 PM

Thanks, Roma. You're correct, of course, and I think Iris Cohen is a lovely name. As is Roberta Sue Ficker. :D

#41 Morris Neighbor

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 08:56 PM

[QUOTE]Originally posted by grace
interesting discussion. i haven't responded to a poll before: this is quite fun!

i have seen fonteyn and kirkland live. i have seen ulanova up close, and watched her coach - but have not seen her dance, except on film.

i have seen farrell on video - lots.

that leaves just karsavina and pavlova as complete unknowns - although i have seen quite a few snippets of pavlova on film.

so i voted for pavlova - to experience what made her so great.

however, i do find this an odd list....
[QUOTE]

Hi Grace --

I would like to second your nomination of Makarova, whom I had the pleasure of seeing in person on more than one occasion. Her technique was gorgeous and her stage presence utterly commanding.

To be sure, she was notorious for her demands on her colleagues -- partners could grasp her at only designated spots, conductors could use only her preferred tempi (the slower the better, to show off her creamy style), and her appearance was often delayed by physical problems. Later in her career, for instance, she would delay her appearance in the Black Swan pdd for several measures, so that she needed to complete only 12 or 14 fouettes, rather than the traditional 36.

At the same time, I give her much honor for being the first internationally renowned star to become a mother. At an age when doctors usually advise women to avoid pregnancy, she successfully bore a son and returned to the stage.

For many years, dancers were advised to avoid marriage and children: to cite a melodramatic example, The Red Shoes. When I was born my mother -- a youthful dancer -- was told she was "too muscular" to avoid complications. But Natasha carried it off. There are, I know, many ballerina mothers today, but Makarova deserves credit for leading the charge.

#42 Hans

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Posted 17 December 2002 - 12:59 PM

Ulanova was the only one I have not at least seen a short video clip of, so I voted for her. I've seen the clip of Spessivtseva, too, and agree that nobody dances that way anymore. It reminded me of what Asylmuratova said in an interview--to paraphrase, it was something like 'the technique is all there, but something else too...one might almost call it "singing with the body." And I agree on Beriosova--I have the tape of her dancing Black Swan and D&A, and wow! Why don't they do it like that anymore? It's true that dance must progress, but can't we keep what's good in the process?

#43 Estelle

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Posted 17 December 2002 - 01:50 PM

Well, quite a long time ago there also was Marie Taglioni's "mal de genou"... ;)
Also, it depends on what you call "internationally renowned", but for example Maria Tallchief had a daughter before retiring, Lynn Seymour had three sons, Zizi Jeanmaire had a daughter...

#44 grace

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Posted 18 December 2002 - 11:49 AM

posted by estelle:

...quite a long time ago there also was Marie Taglioni's "mal de genou"...

LOL!

#45 carbro

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Posted 03 January 2003 - 05:05 AM

I voted for Karsavina, the only one I've never seen at least on film (and until I read this board, believed that none existed of). Her still photos suggest intelligence and warmth, and a sense of humor comes through even in her technique book!

Ari, I hope you were able to see the footage of LeClerc included in the "NYCB: 50 Years" (or whatever the title was) at the New-York Historical Society. For those who expected to be enlightened, it was a revelation. She has no comparison. I saw the exhibit twice, but viewed the "Barocco" segment about six times. Had to be chased out of the museum at closing times.

Second choice would probably be Kirkland, whom I've seen dozens of times, but she owes me for all those cancellations.


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