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About YouOverThere

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    (unsophisticated) fan
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  1. Shen Yun

    Curiosity has motivated me to resurrect this topic. Shen Yun seems to have become something of a phenomenon in the DC area. Three of their 8 performances at the Kennedy Center in mid-April have already sold out, at prices ranging from $85 to $250 and the other 5 performances are more than 80 percent sold. Their 5 performances this week at George Mason University are also largely sold, at prices ranging from $80 to $120 (and the students are on Spring break). I've seen them, and I agree with lmspear's take: somewhat entertaining but not a major artistic triumph, and definitely not the best Chinese dance performance that I've seen (I thought the performance by the Cloud Gate Dance Theater of Taiwan that I saw last week was far superior - and with no cheesy MCs). I was wondering if anyone else has seen this group since this thread was created.
  2. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    I found an email sent out a few days ago announcing that the Washington Ballet is going to do a 1 night only performance of Giselle to open the Wolf Trap's season on May 25.
  3. Romeo and Juliet at the KC

    Hmm, I wonder if Ratmansky could choreograph a ballet about breakfast.
  4. Romeo and Juliet at the KC

    Lee and Perez are both young, so both have the potential to improve. By all accounts. Lee is a very hard worker.
  5. Romeo and Juliet at the KC

    EunWon Lee became my favorite WB dancer the first time that I saw her dance. She is solid at the classical roles (was an excellent Giselle); she just needs to improve in the contemporary dances, and by all accounts she is a very hard worker so I'm sure that she will do it. Unless I mis-read your post, I'm not the only who thinks that the choreography for Romeo was lacking.
  6. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    I made a second trip yesterday, and still came away with the impression that it's just an OK ballet. There were some really strong sections (balcony scene, bedroom scene, various solos for Mercutio), but they were intermingled with not-so-good sections. In particular, I thought that the ballroom scene just wasn't good at all, with unconvincing encounters between Romeo and Juliet and between Romeo and Tybalt, and this dragged down the rest of the show. The "Dance of the Knights" was lackluster, with the women wearing such massive gowns that it just wouldn't have been possible to expect them to do much. The finale seemed rushed, especially when compared to the length of Juliet's visit to Friar Laurence in which he gave her the feigned death potion. The wigs that Lord Capulet and Lord Montague wore made them look like members of a German heavy metal band - and too young to be the fathers of teenagers. EunWon Lee made the best of it, giving a strong dramatic performance in the 3rd act that made it worthwhile to watch. Julie Kent has seemed to lean towards works that were important in her career (I don't know if anyone besides me didn't know before this week that Cranko's Romeo and Juliet was the first ballet she danced in with a major professional company [as a supernumerary with the Joffrey Ballet]) or works with some sort of ABT connection. Hopefully, she'll eventually move away from this and establish a Washington Ballet identity.
  7. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    I can understand that a dancer would feel that way. It has lots of opportunities for great solo work (which at the "preview", Oscar Sanchez as Mercutio took full advantage of) and the "Tarantella" section allows lots of others to let loose. I found it to be emotionally a bit flat (I didn't feel romance between Juliet and Romeo) and thought that it was a little deficient at telling the story (maybe it's fair for Cranko to have assumed that the audience knew the story). Wednesday was hardly the best day to enjoy a drama about people killing each other. I might give it another shot over the weekend.
  8. Potential Strike By ABT Dancers

    The ABT dancers apparently are not the only ones unhappy with their wages. According to the Washington Post, the Alvin Ailey dancers skipped a reception after their opening night at the Kennedy Center to protest their salaries.
  9. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    After encountering 3 non-working meters in 1 evening, I came to the conclusion that they have disabled the meters at least in the area south of the GWU campus in favor of pay-by-phone parking.
  10. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    I've almost always been able to find free parking, but in the past couple of weeks DC has made some of those formerly free spots into Pay By Phone areas. My budget doesn't allow for parking in parking garages, and definitely not the astronomical rate that the Kennedy Center Charges (there are cheaper garages near the shuttle stop).
  11. I loved the Thursday evening performance of Whipped Cream (other than that watching it made me REALLY hungry), but the Saturday matinee wasn't up to the same level. What seems to me to be missed in all the discussion is that Ratmansky is creating ballets that can appeal to people besides hard-core dance fans. Both Whipped Cream and The Little Humped-back Horse are entertaining as theater pieces as well as containing some serious parts for the dancers. How better to attract new fans than to present ballets that don't necessarily require a detailed knowledge of ballet to enjoy? IMHO, a piece of art doesn't have to be academic to be good. Is one of the things that's killing classical music that many contemporary composers are more interested in impressing music professors than in creating works that are meaningful to audiences?
  12. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    And surprising. I'm a little disappointed that I probably won't get to see EunWon Lee, as Thursday probably isn't available to me and recent changes to on-street parking near the Kennedy Center have made it more difficult (or expensive) to attend Saturday matinee performances.
  13. 2017-2018 season: Washington Ballet

    The WB now has R&J casting listed on their website: 2/14 Maki Onuki/Brooklyn Mack 2/15 EunWon Lee/Gian Carlo Perez 2/16 Venus Villa/Corey Landolt 2/17 EunWon Lee/Gian Carlo Perez (matinee) Maki Onuki/Brooklyn Mack (evening) 2/18 Ayano Kimura/Jonathan Jordan
  14. Millepied's choreography might not have seemed so bland had it been set to better music. But it was Philip Glass at his most monotonous. The wild applause for Misty Copeland must have come from Tier 1 because there was only a slight stir on Tier 2 (less than I expected) when she first appeared on stage.
  15. Serenade After Plato's Symposium is 100% pure genius. Thirteen Diversions was very enjoyable as well. Unfortunately, I only get to see them once :(.