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About mnacenani

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  1. Mariinsky in London 2017

    On second thought - this will be at the Balshoy New Stage where tix are normally one-third the price of ballets at the historic stage so I might still go see it ...... and post my half-baked amateur appraisal as usual ! I'm certain to approach it negatively as I am dead against the great classics being "updated" or "re-interpreted" ........ especially with Western-born dancers who are usually light years away from the spirituality and emotionality of Russian dancers.
  2. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Thank you volcanohunter for pointing this out, hadn't thought of looking it up. Must say it was lucky for me to bring this subject up - I was waiting for Balshoy booking to open on Aug. 26th to get tix for this production, thought it would be new choreography specific to Balshoy. I'm not going to spend money on this, would rather go and see the original at Mariinka sometime. For Balshoy it could make sense to stage the Ratmansky R&J as opposed to Strapless or something !
  3. Mariinsky in London 2017

    There is no credits info yet on Ratmansky R&J under Balshoy repertory tab. This R&J will be cinecast next January 21st : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/dance/what-to-see/watch-bolshoi-ballet-preview-ballet-cinema-season-world-premiere/ May very well be the NBC staging but I doubt whether Balshoy would mention that. Will enquire from friends in Moscow.
  4. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Balshoy has scheduled Romeo&Juliet for 22-26 November which my friend in Moscow says will be the new staging by Ratmansky ....... awaiting that one with trepidation ! Current Grigarovich version of R&J is imho a non-starter, has made a hash of the beautiful Lavrovsky original. I definitely belong in the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" school !
  5. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Dear Drew : I saw Kondaurova for the first time at Mariinsky in July in Preljokaj's Le Parc ..... only reason why I grit my teeth and didn't join those who walked out. Was very impressed by her performance, must see her in the great Petipa classics sometime next season (the hall would have emptied quite significantly had there been an interval )
  6. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Paxita (Paquita) Mariinsky Theater Thu 15 June Teryoshkina-Askerov Please let me explain before reporting my post for deletion : I did not see the Paquita Grand Pas which was part of Contrasts at the ROH this week, but I saw the Grand Pas twice in Piter in June. It was presented as the second part of the Vaganova Academy Graduation Performance on June 14 and the full ballet (?) was performed by Mariinsky the next evening. I would like to post my take on Paquita in the hope of provoking our learned members' comments which will gain me more knowledge and insight. Prior to the said trip I had never seen Paquita live or recorded, and to do my homework watched the DVD of the 2003 Lacotte POB staging with Letestu-Martinez. However once in Piter my tutor told me that there is no definitive version of Paquita since everything except the 3rd act Grand Pas was lost, and usually this only was performed as what were performed as the full ballet anywhere were crude "reconstructions" of the lost first and second acts. So on the first night I saw the classic Petipa Grand Pas (tweaked a little by Tsiskaridze, cannot tell you where) performed by the Vaganova Academy graduation class and lower classes, supplemented by a few former graduates if I understood correctly, starring Eleonora Sevenard. This was great ..... wonderful classic ballet as I would like to see time and again. (however, I did not fall in love at first sight with Sevenard, like I did with the star of the previous graduation class Alyona Kovalyova. Alyona is supposed to dance Odette/Odile at one of the two Swan Lake matinees next month and I am checking the casting every day, not posted yet, with the full inten- tion of making a day trip to see her live) The next evening it was the "full" three-act Paquita, this one "reconstructed" by Mariinsky dancer-cum-choreographer Yuriy Smekalov. As you could expect, the first two acts had nothing to do with the Lacotte version. If I remember correctly Smekalov staged "The Bronze Horseman" last year and not everyone was well pleased with that one. In any case : imho the first act music and choreography was nothing to write home about, boring. In the second act the music and dancing got better and I would say it was watchable. On the plus side my beloved Renata Shakirova appeared as Carducha, the bad scheming girl - I think she is just a great dancer and "personality", my big discovery of 2015. Now the third act : I would say one detects immediately that this is the real thing, and the first two acts were obviously faked by "pretenders". I could also see this five nights in a row, wonderful classic ballet, music and choreo an all. No wonder so many companies dance only this part and don't bother with trying to stage a "full" version, that there can be no such thing is crystal clear. Teryoshkina was wonderful, I didn't quite click with Askerov but he made up for it as Basil in Don Kixot last week. But between you and me : I somehow liked more the Vaganova presentation of the third act I saw the night before, cannot give any concrete reason, could it have the edge slightly in terms of sync, symmetry and separation, could this be possible vs the Mighty Mariinsky ?? Would love to hear from seasoned membership, credits and synopsis for Paquita version I saw : https://www.mariinsky.ru/en/playbill/playbill/2017/6/15/1_1900
  7. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Letter from London ... Don Kixot / ROH London / Saturday 5 August eve Mariinsky Ballet / Matvienko - Askerov Would like to start by listing my credentials relating to Don Kixot, since my views will surely be contested by all of my tutors and some of my friends. Since January 2015 I have seen Don Kixot live 9 times danced by 8 different Kitris : Tsygankova, Shakirova, Alexandrova, Krysanova, Soboleva, Zaharova, Germizeeva, and Matvienko ..... in addition to probably same number of stagings with different principals on DVD, from Royal Ballet, Mariinsky, Dutch National Ballet , Cuban National Ballet, La Scala, Paris Opera Ballet etc etc. I could conduct the whole thing from memory if I knew baton technique ...... any questions ?? This evenings performance was extremely enjoyable, as I discovered another "natural" Kitri : Nastya Matvienko and an excellent Basilio in Timur Askerov, who I did not rate very highly on the basis of what I had seen of him before. My amateur eye could see no lapses in Nastya's excellent technique, and she brought the house down with a very fast perfectly executed 32 single fouettées in the grand pas. Askerov's tech may not yet be on par with the best of the Balshoy's male leads but he was extremely good both technically and re characterisation. Kitri's friends were good if not outstanding, Olga Belik as Mercedes was excellent as usual, but Gimadiyeva who I am told is a new- comer was outstanding as Cupid - one wonders where do the Russian ballet companies find so many excellent Cupids, one after the other - are they cloning them or what ?? Shakirova did the act 3 grand pas variation but the brief solo was enough to show her class to anyone not acquainted. The evening's only performance which I will say was below par was the street dancer of Chebykina. Dryads' Queen Ivannikova was sort of OK but imho did not shine, thought I had seen better ones. I really needed this, to detox any remaining traces of Le Parc I absorbed last month in Piter. Anna Karenina could not have done it, Don Kixot is so wonderfully uplifting when danced and acted to perfection - I really could see it five nights in a row with different principals. Gorgeous tuneful music, wonderful choreography, universal and timeless story even a kid can make out first time ..... no "gardeners" or "mothers-in-law" present or required ..... what more can a true ballet lover ask for ???
  8. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Letter from London ... Anna Karenina / ROH London / Thu 3 August Mariinsky Ballet : Vishnyova - Zverev I had previously seen the Eifman Ballet version a couple of times on Mezzo, music a potpourri of sequences from Chikofsky, am not sure where the "train approaching" finale was taken from. Thought this had excellent pdd but rather meaningless, movement for move- ment's sake ensembles. London is awful in the summer (as is Moscow and Peterburg and so many others) and every time I make a resolution not to travel to Lon- don ever in the summer, but again broke it and booked to see Diana as AK thinking this may be one of the last few occasions one could see her on stage. It was after seeing Diana as Juliet with Shklyarov 4 years ago that I fell head over heels for Russian classical ballet. She is so engrained in my mind as Juliet that I had difficulty accepting her as Giselle or Nikiya or in any role other than Juliet I saw her dance ....... a case of obsessive compulsive personality disorder ? Anyway it's against this background that I arrived at the ROH last evening for my first sampling of the Schedrin-Ratmansky AK, just to be able to see Diana. Ratmansky's AK is short, barely 90 minutes, and when you take into account Schedrin's music it's a relief that it is not any longer. I do have a good ear for music but the "circus music" for the "Gipodrom" scene aside cannot remember any melodic sequence whatsoever. I did know the story of AK and "a story" is discernible from what is presented on the stage - something I attach great importance to. The choreo of the first scene I thought had too great a similarity to Mayerling to be coincidental. Then on full use is made of modern stage mechanics and special fx - one cannot help thinking how great works like R&J, Bayaderka and Giselle are which have no need for such things to prop them up. What drove the performance last night was Diana : take Diana away and I probably would have walked out at the interval along with quite a few other people who did. Diana is a one-off : the grand mistress of mime, her eyes only would be sufficient even if she did not move any of her facial muscles. But Ratmansky is not Lavrovsky, and Schedrin is no Prokofiev to be able to make full use of Diana's God-given, once- in-a-millennium talent. Diana and Shklyarov as Romeo and Juliet, with that music which makes one suspect the hand of God at play, and that choreography, could make a grown man cry ..... how do I know ?? Takes one to know one I suppose ..... Back to Anna Karenina : this needs a great talent like Diana to be effective, Vronsky and Karenin cannot save the performance. Last night Zverev made an aloof portrayal, maybe as should be, but did not capture me in any way and I could not help thinking how Ovcharenko would have acted this role. For me, Anna Karenina was the second best role I saw Diana act, after Juliet. This story has, had, the potential to become a great work like Romeo and Juliet ....... had Prokofiev and Lavrovsky set themselves to the task. My wife is more receptive and tolerant of con- temporary works than me, and has famously said that I watch contemporary ballet "like a cow watches a passing train" ! But when a friend asked me last night what her reaction to Anna Karenina was, she said "could see it again sometime if I am invited and have nothing better to do on that night" .....
  9. http://www.balletinsider.com/en/archive/solo/7693 As I had posted recently, would really like to see her live as Odette/Odile in September, will be looking up casting info.
  10. Is Alyona Kovalyova "Zvezda" material ??

    Saw Sevenard live on June 14th as Paquita when Vaganova staged the 3rd act as part of their graduation show. I thought she was very good but I did not fall in love with her at first sight, if you know what I mean. Now back to Alyona Kovalyova - it is being said that Alyona will appear as Odette/Odile at one mat or eve when Balshoy stages "Lebedinoye Ozero" on September 15>17. Dear God - I must go see this one but when firm casting is posted ticket prices will have gone through the roof on the "open market". If this rumour turns out to be true Alyona will be my second bullseye in two seasons, the other one was Shakirova. Seems even 65+ newcomers to classical ballet can spot talent !
  11. Starting at 7 pm Moscow time = 4 pm GMT

    An article by Vita Khlopova, my Moscow ballet tutor and friend. Vita is a graduate of the Moscow Ballet Academy and former dancer herself. Currently a quite well known ballet historian, writer and lecturer. http://nofixedpoints.com/martha

    MACMILLAN ON THE MAKING OF "MAYERLING" : for the benefit of any members who have not seen this docu but may want to : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IntawIGac4 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6AWGGpckwo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m41t5OKA9Y0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWCsL9Q5TrE
  14. Is Alyona Kovalyova "Zvezda" material ??

    Have still to see Alyona live. Will be at Balshoy next week for Legend of Love but she has not been cast for any performance. Next season hopefully.