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      2018 Joint Fundraiser for Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers   02/03/2018

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ksk04

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About ksk04

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    Silver Circle

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    dancer
  • City**
    los angeles
  • State (US only)**, Country (Outside US only)**
    ca
  1. Foiled again for Lane!!! Darn. After yesterday's show I have two major comments: (1) Does ABT really only have one handkerchief that turns into a cane (unless I totally missed the "trick" part...)? They can't find another after it broke on Salstein????? Zhurbin walked around waving a cane in everyone's face as if this was a good substitution for the magic trick; and (2) Abrera needs a new partner for this role. They took the role away from Gorak already, and maybe it's time to let someone else have a swing at it. Lots of small partnering blunders especially at the end of the pas de deux and during the coda with pirouettes. Missed the music on the torch lift. Onto Murphy/Hoven tonight. Hoping Blaine impresses--I saw him when he suddenly debuted in the Bright Stream a few years ago (forget who he was replacing) and have hoped for more opportunities for him since then.
  2. Laurel, thank you for reminding me of how bizarre I thought Salstein's characterization was. This was made worse at the show I went to as (as AB'sMom mentioned) his magic trick didn't go off and so it made his characterization look even more hapless/jokey. I thought Zhurbin was menacing enough on opening night, but you are right--it can/should skew darker. I agree with you that Stella is the best interpreter of this role; she captures the choreography and the characterization so well--can't wait to see her again in a few hours!
  3. I've seen two performances so far--had to swap my Lane/Cornejo tickets due to an emergency, which was really annoying as they were the ONE CAST I really, really wanted to see this year. I will have to wait another year to finally see Lane. I saw the opening night with Copeland/Simkin and last night with Seo/Stearns. I have tickets to the Abrera and Murphy (+ Hoven) shows this weekend also. Opening night was much of the same cast-wise as many shows I saw last year and the year before and last night seemed to either have debuts or castings I've not seen before (not clear which). Luis Ribagorda and Gabe Stone Shayer seem to be on double duty each show I've seen and are both fantastic: Shayer has been the Cook, Harlequin, a Bee, and Russian. Ribagorda has been the Recruit, Russian, the Butler/Major Domo. It is so great to see him back onstage; he's lost none of the charm and presence from before he left. Courtney Lavine was the Nanny/Sugar Plum last night and I don't think I saw her as this before--I thought she was charming. She also seems to be cast in everything and doing a great job. I thought Skylar Brandt was disappointing as Chinese on opening night (no crazy pirouettes at the end) but lovely in Nutcracker's sisters. Patrick Frenette was the Recruit last night with Catherine Hurlin as canteen keeper; not sure if this is a debut but he had a lot of faces going on that suggested he wasn't super comfortable with some of the choreography, even behind the eye mask. I have a hard time with the costumes for Snow and Flower--they are SO unflattering for so many of the dancers, especially flowers. They make everyone look like they have a short stocky waists. The little kids opening night were excellent--they had all the cues right and the Fritz especially had that "little sh*t" vibe that really sells the role. I saw him onstage last night as part of the kids group and wanted him back in front causing trouble! As far as the leads go, Copeland/Simkin were fine, passable. She lacks a lot of twisting and bending that makes the choreography, especially in her solo. Simkin had to save her quickly from falling out of the ending of the a la seconde unsupported pirouette at the end of the pas--though at least they tried it unsupported; Stearns, fairly expertly, made it look as if he let Seo go but kept her in his fingertips. I don't have the same anti-Seo stance that a lot of people have, probably as I haven't seen her in every role whether suitable or not. I thought she was very lush and lovely last night. She and Stearns clearly have a great rapport; he obviously enjoys dancing with her and is so much better at making eye contact and looking like a real person who wants to interact with her. He did a great job at making some of partnering look beautiful especially one of the first lifts where she is gradually raised (dead weight) higher as they spin in a circle. Didn't get a lot of that personal rapport from Copeland/Simkin. Anyway I would rather see Seo again over Copeland or Boylston (probably in most roles, frankly). I feel our repeated discussions of the torch lift have made a difference. Neither cast is doing the "stop, leg up into the hand, hoist up" nonsense. There is now a clear running jump and even if it takes an extra push to get the woman in the air, the lift looks SO MUCH BETTER. Perhaps they all needed to see Abrera and Hammoudi pull it off last year to have the confidence.
  4. It's not part of the subscription this year, so I think it was cancelled before it was ever officially announced by SCFTA. We are fresh out of luck!
  5. Yes, she did The Swan last night. But if it is a small injury issue, the Swan is much less demanding than Chopiniana, certainly. AB'sMom will have to let us know about Sunday evening. So far LOVED Osmolkina in Chopiniana with perfect Romantic style and lightness. Loved Tereshkina and Kim in Scheherazade--great chemistry. Kim is so ferocious with the way he cuts through air. Enjoyed Kondaurova in the Swan. Liked her less in Scheherazade though only in comparison to Tereshkina. Pretty neutral on Shklyarov in both Spectre and Scheherazade. Skorik's Swan--it's already a piece I can take only so much of that I really need to like the ballerina in order to enjoy it (layperson S.O. noted that he think it's the perfect vehicle for her though after seeing her in Raymonda and thinking her arms seem radically disconnected from her body). Glad some people are digging it though!
  6. I saw the opening night and don't have time to write more now (going again this evening) but Oxana Skorik was replaced by Osmolkina (hallelujah!) in Chopiniana. The cast sheet didn't specify any reason (it wasn't even noted that there was a replacement being made, though I knew from the online cast sheet that there was a change). Not sure if this is an injury or a replacement due to other reasons.
  7. Agree (though I am not a fan of Skorik). I ended up purchasing three shows to get a good variety of those three, which was especially difficult to account for Osmolkina yet avoid Skorik in something too major.
  8. I bought tickets to four nights under the assumption there would be a debut or two, so I'm pretty disappointed. I guess it's not painful to see Gillian Murphy or Stella again, but... Somehow I ended up with two Misty nights based on my pre-casting booking (I guess I should have known she would get opening night). I already swapped one to see Sarah Lane, but I'm trying to decide if I should swap the other to a Seo/Stearns show??
  9. Here is the casting for the run of Ratmanksy's Nutcracker at SCFTA this year. Thanks to AB'sMom who made me aware that the casting has been posted. Really disappointed they aren't any debuts in the leading roles considering the two new principals--Teuscher and Schevchenko--and the frequency with which some of these dancers have appeared in these roles in this theater for the last two years. On a plus note, I will finally get to see Sarah Lane in it. No Hallberg.
  10. We have casting! https://www.scfta.org/events/detail.aspx?id=16825
  11. Site Issues, Wednesday, July 26

    Ok thanks for the info. Hope the upgrade fixes it. If it helps at all, I am now getting a "connection has timed out / problem loading page" display on Firefox instead of the suspended page that I was getting before.
  12. Site Issues, Wednesday, July 26

    Has there been any resolution? I still can't reach the site from Firefox even though I've cleared my cache, cookies, everything. Am I missing something? I've been fine on Chrome but I don't use Chrome regularly.
  13. La Scala in Orange County in July 2017

    I saw the first show last night with Misty Copeland, Roberto Bolle, and Nicoletta Manni as Myrtha. Overall it was a nice production and La Scala dancers were nice to watch in the second Act, especially. The two dancers (Alessandra Vassallo and Emanuela Montanari) who were Moyna and Zulme were very light and wispy. The corps of 24 Wilis was well unified and created nice shapes/movement together. However, the whole evening was emotionally empty from the three principals. Misty Copeland was pleasant enough as Giselle in the first act, but once the smiley-peasant Giselle was over she was mostly an empty vessel. The biggest issue were her shoes. They are way too hard and because of that she clomped around the stage for both acts--super noisy pointes which is especially egregious in Giselle, imo. I'm guessing she is wearing such a hard shank to help her get through the hops on pointe, etc, but it is really distracting (she slipped off pointe twice during the hops in Act 1, though she got through more than I was expecting). What I took away from her dancing overall is that she mostly seems to be about moving through steps as quickly as possible to get to a "comfortable" pose for her, whatever that is at the moment. Because of that there is not a lot of musicality or drama and the dancing can look tense. I would rate her first Act higher than the second, but I wasn't emotionally involved with her character especially not in the mad scene. Bolle is in great shape but a bit of an empty vessel if he isn't doing the poncey prince bit--hopefully with Nunez he will have a better outing tonight. He sailed through the 32 entrechat sixes but looked like he could have kept going which defeats the whole "dance until death" aspect of the second act. Very solid partnering throughout, though that is to be expected. I thought Nicolette Manni (who will be Giselle today and Myrtha again tomorrow--heavy schedule) had some lovely lightness to her jumps. But she conveyed no authority and there was no real development of Myrtha's character. I can see how she could be a nice Giselle (though I hope she turns on the Romantic style a little...) because she is very petite and light. Hopefully Josette will be able to tell us how she fairs.
  14. La Scala in Orange County in July 2017

    "Interesting" article about why Misty Copeland is appearing with La Scala: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/la-ca-cm-la-scala-ballet-misty-copeland-20170714-story.html
  15. For those who follow the Mariinsky casting ups and downs more closely than I do, does this casting shed any light on the SCFTA casting for Chopiniana, Scheherezade, Spectre, or Dying Swan the week before?
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