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About sz

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    former NYCB dancer, B'way // currently teacher/coach/mentor, fan, balletgoer
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    New York
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  1. I loved canbelto's review! Thank you. So much detail and deep thought, experienced thought, went into this. I'll be seeing the Saturday matinee, and perhaps the evening too. Can't wait to see this great ballet with all the different tributes to its brilliance.
  2. Timofej Andrijashenko is fabulous! I don't count fouettes either, but I do focus on what they look like. Singles or with adding doubles, etc., they can be breathtaking if done beautifully. I would never want to see them replaced with something else. An exception.... I saw Natasha Markarova's first DonQ pas with ABT and she could barely get eight fouettes done.... but she then continued to the music with the most incredible stage leaps I had ever seen (pre Osipova....).
  3. Thank you canbelto for such a wonderful tribute to Veronika and her ABT farewell.
  4. ABT 2017 Swan Lake

    Back to casting, casting, casting! Directing, directing, directing! Without naming individuals....some ballerinas are stunning Giselles and Juliets, etc., and some are stunning Swans, White and Black, etc. I think it's a huge mistake to push any dancer into a role that doesn't suit their strengths, styles. One or two major performances should not be "the test." On the other hand, where are the many choices of qualified dancers understudying major roles? Many are dancing these major roles in smaller companies. And where are the ballets that might better show off dancers that are currently available? ABT needs much better direction.....
  5. ABT 2017 Giselle

    Sarah was not dancing small last night! Neither was anybody! For me it was, in sum: Wow! I thought it was Sarah at her best. Sarah was more relaxed with Herman and their chemistry was real! He is so sensual, sexy, intense and yet sweet. A perfect partner to pump up her natural lyrical, romantic, soulful, sweet beauty. Act 1: Sarah’s solo started with a divine arabesque balance only going to plie penchee at the very last second. No interruption to the music…. and stunningly big. Turns were slow and perfectly controlled (esp the back attitude ones….wow.) Hops were feminine and lovely. Then wild, fast circle of pique turns. Acting: Incredible throughout….. and the mad scene was fantastic…. Loved the huge grande jetes (losing her mind totally) ending in exhaustion to the floor. Peasant pas: Cassandra was better than on Saturday (too one note for me….) with Gabe (so strong, a bit flashy for this role). Act 2: Sarah will hate me for loving Orsmby (conductor)……I usually prefer David LaMarche. Orsmby’s tempos were too slow for all the adagio sections last night…. But I loved it because it forced Sarah to push beyond her comfort in places such as huge develope a la secondes (I didn’t know she could do that!). First table lift didn’t stay up long enough with Herman partnering…. But the second one was perfect. Rest of the partnering was wonderful….. full of real emotion and gorgeous lines. Herman did really well, as he’s still a little injured from his DonQ.... Sarah was a little more distant with Daniil, but I liked her with both guys. Future roles? Can't wait! Also loved Christine as Myrta! She improved so much since Saturday’s perf! She doesn’t jump, fly enough, often enough, yet… especially in most of her Myrta solos…. until the very last section…. But what stunning beauty and presence, lines, throughout. Then, at her last big jumping solo, she really flew! I predict she will dance a Swan Lake very soon….. if not this season…. and I will be there! Only real critique from me: corps and the two Willis demis needed some cleanup work.
  6. Sarah Lane will dance Giselle again on Wednesday night - with Herman Cornejo! She replaces Maria Kochetkova. Everyone, don't forget about the Rush Tickets ($30 with no fees) that are available for each performance.
  7. ABT 2017 Giselle

    BRAVA to Sarah for a most moving, beautiful Giselle. A performance I have not seen the likes of in years. Responding to the person who posted earlier here that Sarah must have had coaching for a long time and outside of ABT......That could not be further from the truth, speaking as a good friend to Sarah. Giselle is one of Sarah's most loved roles and she has learned so much from watching others perform it, not from working on the role outside of ABT. Life perhaps full of great love and loss has been her guide as well. Bravo to Daniil too for his brilliant dancing and improvement both in partnering and acting. I was very impressed with how much he has grown. I fell deeply in love, and in tears, heart aching, during this wonderful performance. So grateful to have experienced these amazing artists.
  8. ABT 2017 Don Quixote

    Christine was very good last night. To me, she’s more of a natural Russian princess type, but she certainly proved she can handle a Principal role that she isn’t naturally suited for. I was most surprised by her fouettes at the end of the wedding pas, Act III, which were stunning, strong, so confidently and elegantly done after such a long, hard night of endless jumps and turns. Every third fouette was a double with the fan above her head for the first 16 or 20….Then ended with a triple!!! Easy, breezy, beautiful. Christine was a real pro dancing Kitri in two back to back performances. Much respect goes to her for that.... Friends of mine who saw both of her performances said Christine was more "engaged" (acting it up tons, even hammy) in her second performance. I had not expected that from such an elegant dancer, but loved seeing her surprise me. At times, Christine seemed tired, and held back a little, but nevertheless she fought through to the end. The Kitri character and technique for me ought to be spicy, earthy, sensual at times, fireworks at other times. Christine was overall not that but she danced a very lovely, spirited debut in a very demanding role. p.s. Sarah Lane was perfection, absolutely gorgeous as Amour. There are so many layers to her acting, and she makes the most of every moment creating sweet beauty instead of being cute. Sarah's jumps and turns were also done with stunning accuracy.
  9. ABT 2017 Don Quixote

    I thought Hee Seo was excellent last night as Mercedes and QofD with gorgeous stag leaps and beautiful Italian fouettees. In fact, overall, I thought this DonQ performance was one of her best to date. Has she ever danced Kitri? That role might bring her to yet another level of best dancing....in time. Last night, she was having a blast with the tall, strong, much improved, hot tamale James Whiteside.
  10. On the other hand, Shevchenko is the only Kitri dancing back to back performances: yesterday's matinee and now tonight's. Copeland danced on Tuesday night (5/16) and she doesn't dance again until Saturday (5/20). Seems Copeland's Saturday (5/20) could have been switched with Shevchenko. I'll be watching tonight and sending lots of good energy to Shevchenko! Super merde!
  11. Schevchenko is going on again tonight as Kitri. You may confirm this with the box office. Gillian is out.
  12. Promotions at PAB

    Congratulations to Daysei Torriente! So well deserved! Daysei is an excellent Principal dancer.....very exciting technically and beautiful....and she is not as tall as Murawski. Arian and Sterling took turns partnering Daysei and also Mayara in the big pas de deuxs (Black Swan and Tchai Pas) closing the season last weekend. I'd like to see Mayara cast with her own excellent, regular partner....someone who isn't also partnering Daysei. Etienne is lately cast in the more character-ish roles.... not Principal, Prince types. I'll be very interested to see how this all plays out next season with full-length Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Jewels, Paquita, and Theme and Variations. Seems like a lot of difficult work for Arian and Sterling as the primary Principal men.
  13. 2016-17 season: Pennsylvania Ballet

    More mean spirited than usual.....My response to Alastair was that he not only doesn't realize how difficult it is for regional companies to sell tickets without razzle-dazzle programing, but that Alastair seems to write for audiences who think all ballets look the same in their steps, just wearing different costumes. No way did any of the pas de deuxs presented by PA Ballet resemble each other except for some of the technique exhibited by the men solos in Black Swan and Tchai pas. But neither were step for step the same. An arabesque in one ballet is never the same in another if you are watching a true artist. I considered this event (a gala of sorts) a fantastic treat, a feast of great small ballets with lots of different flavors and lots of very talented dancers. I was there for two performances, and considered them both better than some galas I've seen lately in NYC. Dancers not to be missed in the future: Arian, Daysei, Peter Weil, Sterling, Nayara, Lily, Etienne. Very sadly Mayara was not cast in the performances I attended but I'd run to see her in anything in the future. She is bright, charming, beautiful with killer technique. She does not have hyper extended legs or arms, but they are gorgeous with power and fullness in lines, along with heartfelt musicality. She is a lovely, passionate performer. I've seen several videos, as well as live performances in Corsaire.
  14. 2017 Spring Season

    I was at Sunday's matinee as well. Tiler Peck was at her very best with brilliant, sparkling musicality and artistry. Yes, she dances the steps too(!)..... with utmost, amazing confidence and joy. And what a great surprise to see Harrison Ball command the stage with such artistry and ease in the very exhausting, very demanding third movement of Sym in C of endless jumps, large and small, turns, tours in the air all with unforgiving tempi speed. Harrison struggled with nothing! He's a fine partner too. I'd love to see Tiler and Harrison perform Allegro Brilliante or any other allegro type Balanchine ballet very soon. Sigh....Maybe in Saratoga.....Maybe next season..... Not soon enough for me.
  15. I was at the Bocca Gala too. Hernandez danced with Tamara. She was incredible! A firecracker at 42 years old! Triple turns inserted in every third fast and furious fouetté! So many personal touches and style added. Loved her!