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bobbi

NYCB Trivia Question re Suzanne Farrell

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Does any Ballet Alertnik know -- definitively -- which of the below contentions is true:

Contention 1: (which is mine)

When Suzanne returned in 1975 she did not dance the role of Titania in Midsummer. It was my understanding that "the word" at the time was that she felt she had outgrown the role. [And New York audiences were subsequently treated to dozens of "To Die For" performances of the Act 2 divertissement with Peter Martins.]

Contention 2: (which is that of several balletomanes I know)

Of course, she danced Titania after she returned in 1975!! Bobbi, how could you possibly have forgotten them?

Rambling (and Too Long) Reason Why I Ask:

On a sultry Friday after the close of NYCB's spring season -- and suffering from withdrawal symptoms -- I went to the Performing Arts Library to watch the 1978 Live from Lincoln Center performance of Coppelia with Patti McBride and Helgi Tomasson. I was ballet in heaven because while I was happily watching this -- and peeking at the terminal to my left which was showing NYCB's 50th Anniversary Gala -- at another terminal was playing the 1996 interviews with Suzanne Farrell entitled The Elusive Muse. One of the segments was Suzanne as Titania. I was completely bowled over; to me, every other Titania I had ever seen just paled in comparison. Surely, I said to myself, I would have remembered Suzanne in this role after 1975.

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I'm with you, Bobbi -- to the best of my knowledge Suzanne did not dance Titania after her return to the company -- but did those to-die-for divertissements with Peter Martins. The scenes from Midsummer in Elusive Muse are from a movie made in 1966. It had a very brief run in 1967 at the Little Carnegie Cinema and disappeared. It's not available on video.

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Thanks, Farrell Fan. The issue came up at the Kirov intermissions recently when Suzanne's name came up (as it often does). My ballet friends were so insistent that I just had to ask the question. You are the one person who I am sure would know.

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I will have to check my program, but I am sure I saw her as Titania in Washington, and I was there in 1977. Mary

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Thanks, Mary. To tell the truth I've been having doubts about my failing memory ever since I posted the response. But thank you too, Bobbi, for your confidence.

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