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Alexandra

Eifman or Forsythe? Pick one!

  

  1. 1. Eifman or Forsythe? Pick one!

    • William Forsythe
      18
    • Boris Eifman
      6

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19 posts in this topic

Bored with baking, shopping, relatives? Here's a divertissement for you.

Forsythe is moving to New York [edting to add: or your Home Town]. Eifman is already here, at least once a year, and there are those persistent, delicious rumors that he's about to unleash a tribute to Mr. B in the form of a danced biography for 2004.

Are we on the verge of another paradigm shift?

It is five years in the future. There are two great companies in New York, one with Forsythe as resident choreographer, the other with Eifman. Ballet is so popular that subscriptions must be rationed and the new Mayor has issued an emergency executive order that each balletomane may only subscribe to One Company.

Which would you choose?

Do feel free to elaborate in the space below.

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You think this is funny, don't you?

Excuse me while I go overdose on whatever I can find in the medicine cabinet. It may end up being skin lotion. Anything.

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No, actually, I'm quite serious. Many people would proffer either Mr. Forsythe or Mr. Eifman as THE great choreographer of the age. Whether or not one agrees with this, they are certainly popular and forces to be reckoned with. The thought that Forsythe would end up being resident choreographer at ABT and Eifman, if his reported two new ballets are hits, would become a force at NYCB is not beyond the realm of possibility. Oops. I should have made a third choice: Diamond Project. Next year. :)

Living in the provinces, as I do, of course, such delights do not tempt me, but I can dream.

And there are people on this board who admire either Forsythe or Eifman, too!

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And this is a Christmas present? Yikes.

Considering that I originally floated the idea of Eifman doing a ballet on Balanchine as a joke, and now it appears to be in the works, I may have to respectfully decline from answering, as I clearly have the power to bring about great evil with just a thought.

Now where is that ring I had lying around the house?

At least Eifman is passionate in that somewhat entertainingly florid Russian manner. And Forsythe, well, Vertiginous had its moments. But from what I've seen of his later stuff... Of course, the first Forsythe thing I ever saw was a rather amazing full-length Orpheus for the, was it Hamburg already or some other place?

I am going to have to resort to eeny meeny miney moe.

Ok, it's Eifman. Just because I think he can be awful in a more entertaining way than Forsythe. But I am afraid to click that button. Very afraid....

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Sleep easy, Manhattnik. I absolve thee of all guilt :) It's been so long now that I think the genesis of the Eifman Balanchine bio has gotten lost.

The story that Eifman was going to do a ballet for NYCB first appeared in Dancing Times in autumn 2001.

http://www.balletalert.com/forum/showthrea...fman+Balanchine

This was later confirmed by Andrei after a trip to Russia. That was when you wrote your very funny suggestion for a libretto.

http://www.balletalert.com/forum/showthrea...fman+Balanchine

Joan Acocella wrote a piece in the New Yorker that mentioned Eifman had been commissioned to do two ballets for NYCB. I don't think she got into specifics.

http://www.balletalert.com/forum/showthrea...fman+Balanchine

http://www.balletalert.com/forum/showthrea...fman+Balanchine

Were it not for this, I would have placed Forsythe with NYCB and Eifman with ABT in my Ballet Utopia of the Future, but paradigm shifts call for drastic rethinking :)

(BTW, Manhattnik, I saw that Orpheus. It was for Stuttgart Ballet in the late 1970s. It was an early work, but not so early that you could excuse it as a learning piece. I thought it was absolutely awful, and was surprised when I saw later Forsythe which is, I think, structurally competent -- he can move bodies and he has a command of form. The Orpheus -- reinvented as an Elvis-like rock star, oh, how clever -- was just crass. Part of the audience booed (at the Ken Cen), part cheered, and Forsythe came out for a curtain call doing that cute little thing with his hands that boxers do when they've knocked someone's head off.)

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If this actually occurs, does it mean DC will become the new Dance Capital (pun intended) of the US? We already have the Kirov for the next nine or so years, Suzanne Farrell, a revamped Washington Ballet & School, the Universal Ballet Academy and a really big project in the works for the Kennedy Center.

Anyway, I voted for Eifman because of his entertainment value--the same reason I still have my tape of NYCB's Swan Lake.

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I seem to recall his Orpheus ending with Orpheus running back down into the Underworld, presumably to fetch back Eurydice for a second (or was it third?) time, and after he's left she appears again for some reason onstage, and I thought, "He's going to be awfully disappointed when he gets there and finds she's back up here!" It was very much in the spirit of the overblown theatricality which swept over Europe after the arrival of Robert Wilson.

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Liebs, the Mayor won't allow that :)

Manhattnik, I thought the movement for "Orpheus" looked like simplified, coarsened Bausch (whom I actually like). But it was definitely before Forsythe's abstract, "cerebral" period.

Editing to add an afterthought: wonder how Eifman would redo Orpheus?

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Forsythe, because I'd rather have pretentious-pretentious than populist-pretentious.

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Given the proposed scenario as originally stated, I would immediately move to Chicago.

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Opera Alert anybody?! Ugh... I'd probably go to Forsythe when he does his throw back night to see ballets I do like such as Behind the China Dogs and In the Middle... I'd go to Edios Telos when I wanted to blow my ear drums out and have a good laugh.

I'd go to Eifman to practice my Russian out against people in the lobby (I do that when the Kirov comes to town, asking people what the time is and do you know where the bathroom is in my bad Russian) and for those all-bare buttucks nights.

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From the land where folks eat ice cream on the street, even during blizzards...

The winner is Boris Eifman, the true genius of 21st-century ballet. Sorry, I really love his work for its theatricality, musicality, and emotionality (all the '-ties'). :)

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Ahhhh yes...the Forsythe Ballet indeed! He is a genious! My son has been honored to perform his works!! How amazing would his company be!!:)

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Welcome to BalletTalk soloist mom!

It may not be the "Forsythe Ballet" but Forsythe does have a company at present, Ballett Frankfurt, where he will stay until 2004.

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I have edited this several times, and decided all I can commit to is that I hope Mel will write.

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I think I've made my proposed solution to this dilemma above - move to Chicago, or San Francisco, or maybe Cicely, Alaska. Given this choice is a lot like being executed in Utah: Do you want to be hanged or shot? They both know better than to be doing what they're doing, and are foisting non-ballet on the world. As with much of my writing, my comment is plagiarized - "A plague o' both your houses!"

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I meant that I hope Mel (hello, Mel!) will write when he gets to Chicago....or wherever he thinks he will be safe from all this. But it's a small world. Is there a new International Style in the making in ballet? I'm all for World Federalism, and the Balkanization of Ballet at the same time....

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