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Poll: Ballet Time Traveler


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Poll: Poll: Ballet Time Traveler (0 member(s) have cast votes)

Poll: Ballet Time Traveler

  1. [b]Versailles/Fontainbleu, 1670s[/b]: court ballet of Louis XIV—Lully, Moliere's comédie-ballet Le Bourgois Gentilhomme, Psyche by Moliere, Lully, Corneille, and Quinault; Beauchamps as maître de ballet (2 votes [2.86%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.86%

  2. [b]Paris, 1840s[/b]: Coralli's Giselle and La Peri; Perrot's Esmeralda; Mazillier's Paquita and Le Diable à Quatre; Taglioni, Grisi, Petipa as dancer (9 votes [12.86%])

    Percentage of vote: 12.86%

  3. [b]Copenhagen, 1860s[/b]: Bournonville in full flower—all his works being danced except Life Guards on Amager (7 votes [10.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 10.00%

  4. [b]St. Petersburg, 1890s[/b]: Petipa in excelsis—Sleeping Beauty, Raymonda, Halte de Cavalrie, and (with others) Cinderella; Ivanov's Swan Lake and Nutcracker (24 votes [34.29%])

    Percentage of vote: 34.29%

  5. [b]Paris, 1910s[/b]: Diaghilev's Ballets Russes—Firebird, Petrushka, Carnaval, Scheherezade, Spectre de la Rose, Faune, Parade, etc. (28 votes [40.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 40.00%

  6. [b]Other[/b] (before 1930) (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

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#16 Tancos

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Posted 24 April 2002 - 06:52 PM

I ended up choosing Paris because of the music, but I would want to visit all the times and places. Second choice would be Moliere's France. (I think that if we can assume time travel, we can also assume Babel fish.)

An idea for another poll would be which single historic performance would you attend if you were handed the keys to a time machine but only allowed one trip. (I have a hunch which performance would win; in fact, I wouldn't be surprised if half the audience at the premiere of "Le Sacre du Printemps" *were* time travelers.)

#17 Tancos

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Posted 25 April 2002 - 05:32 AM

The 1910's.

#18 felursus

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Posted 28 April 2002 - 07:55 PM

Hard choice. But when push comes to shove (ahem!) I guess I'd choose Paris in the 1910s because of the vast array of the banquet that would be spread before me. Plus the food would be good (to continue the banquet metaphor) and the amenities somewhat better than earlier times. I'm afraid that the Versaille choice would be difficult because I'd have to go back as a courtier in order to get in to see the ballets in the first place.

#19 LaFilleMalGardee

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Posted 25 April 2002 - 03:30 PM

I picked Paris.:(

#20 Sonora

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Posted 22 May 2002 - 09:05 PM

"An idea for another poll would be which single historic performance would you attend if you were handed the keys to a time machine but only allowed one trip. (I have a hunch which performance would win; in fact, I wouldn't be surprised if half the audience at the premiere of "Le Sacre du Printemps" *were* time travelers.)"


I also chose Paris and the Ballets Russes. I"m still thinking about which single historic performance I would attend. To see that fateful opening night of "Sacre", or for that matter, of "Faune"! It would be fascinating to be able to experience the impact of ballets such as these within the climate of their own time. I think they must have been so startling, so evocative, tumultuous in a way that is difficult for us to imagine nearly 100 years later.

I guess I should stop, as someone may want to turn this suggestion into a thread.

#21 Helena

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Posted 24 April 2002 - 07:22 AM

Oh, difficult! I want all of them, but I think I'll go for St Petersburg, because I've read more about that time than any of the others, and I want to see how much of what I've read is true.

#22 Brendan McCarthy

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Posted 02 May 2002 - 01:06 PM

I chose Paris and the Ballets Russes, because the period has been so imperfectly remembered. Reconstructing the ballets of the time seems to be much more problematic than is the case that with those first performed at St Petersburg. At least the Maryinsky has had a continuity of curatorship of the Petipa tradition. It also kept in memory such works as Giselle. For Paris and the Diaghilev period we are seriously lacking enough evidence.

#23 Brendan McCarthy

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Posted 22 May 2002 - 10:57 PM

Absolutely Sacre - and in the company of Millicent Hodson, and Kenneth Archer, who so impressively reconstructed it for Joffrey Ballet.

#24 linsusanr

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Posted 24 April 2002 - 09:57 AM

It was between Diaghilev and Bournonville, but I picked Bournonville ... never get to see enough of his work! Given the chance I would definitely see both, just to see Spectre de la Rose as well. At this point my favorite version of that is Nureyev's.

#25 casloan

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Posted 26 April 2002 - 05:54 PM

I chose Paris, too -- for the reasons of incredible artistic collaboration that Paquita cited. But, I would love to have a time machine to enable me to visit them all (especially the time of Bournonville and of Petipa).

#26 BW

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Posted 24 April 2002 - 04:35 PM

,Very difficult indeed. I think I'll take Paris:) - and hope it won't be my only chance!

#27 BW

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Posted 25 April 2002 - 05:04 PM

I think I would pick Paris in 1910 - only because I think I'd prefer the modern conveniences.;) This is really a hard one, because I would love to go to St. Petersburg as well... maybe I can use my frequent flyer miles?

#28 pumukau

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Posted 24 May 2002 - 08:10 PM

I chose Ballets Russes too. But this got me thinking. Yes, dance is ephemeral and many ballets have disappeared. But how exciting it is to live in 2002 and have ***some*** information about ***all*** these eras to call upon when we're making our dances! What better time machine exists than the music steps and costumes of a 200-year-old ballet?

#29 Morris Neighbor

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Posted 26 April 2002 - 10:09 PM

As I mentioned elsewhere, no less an artist than Alexandra Danilova once offered this advice on comparing modern and historic performances:

"If we do not PROgress, we RETROgress."

Brava Choura! One of the unique beauties of dance is that it is ephemeral. A brilliant performance is gone forever after the curtain call. And the great dancers and choreographers understand this simple fact, even if legal eagles miss the point.

Like dedicated birding enthusiasts, we fans flock to the place where a rare species was seen, hoping that history will appear again. Sometimes it does. Unsually it doesn't. Chasing a ghost offers precious few chances for joy. But chances no dedicated enthusiast can afford to miss.

Is it any wonder that Balanchine once considered a ballet called "Birds of America"?

#30 Morris Neighbor

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Posted 07 May 2002 - 04:10 PM

The more I read this thread, the more I appreciate the historical interests of its participants. We have, perhaps, become too comfortable with the institutionalization of ballet -- home theatres, home studios, video records, illuminating books -- to appreciate the amazingly evanescent nature of dance in the '30s and '40s.

My own mother, who studied ballet with Edvard Caton, was offered an apprenticeship with the Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo -- the only possible route to a professional career in that pre-war era. But neither she nor her parents could accept the idea of a 15-year-old girl joining the gypsy life of what was then the world's leading classical dance company. So she would later become a housewife, and much of the company's history would be lost.

Thank heaven for The Red Shoes, which at least preserves cameos of the great dancers of the '40s.


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