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31\12\04 POB Sleeping Beauty

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I bought tickets for the 31st with performers listed as Letestu\Martinez.

Because of Letestu's stepping in for Gillot on the 29th, the 31st cast was Dupont\Legris.

I'll start with the climax; the 3rd act pdd of Dupont and Legris encapsulated in virtuosity, elegance and classic manner what almost anyone could have wished for from the enterprise known as The Sleeping Beauty. It was crystalline in its purity and serenity. Each pose, every reverence toward each other, each virtuosic flourish, like the 'fish dives' -which practically invert the person of Aurora- flowed smoothly and effortlessly.

In Ms Dupont's variation, the sequence of pirouettes a la seconde and repeated , followed by attitude turns ending in pointe tendu en avant, then repeated thrice, was a phenomenal display of unmannered, great dancing.

Mr Legris ended his variation after a series of turns in a double manege with a simple pose en face in fifth position; the audience responded enthusiastically. In the Prologue and the second act, the Lilac Fairy (Natacha Quernet, both nights) carries out important pantomimic duties dressed ina long, formal dress. The Lilac Fairy variation music (and choreography?) is given to the dancer of the 6th variation (dressed in a blue and green tutu).

On the 31st Emilie Cozette danced the 6th variation and Fanny Fiat danced the 5th, as well as the Silver Fairy in the third act.

The Bluebird pdd was danced by the excellent Eleonora Abbagnato and the buoyant Karl Paquette. They were enjoyable, but I'm not sure this pdd brought out their inidividual assets and talents. It may be wrongheaded but I tend to see the Bluebird tableau on a miniature scale.

The 'precious stones' was again led by Julien Meyzindi as Gold, with Fiat as Silver. Their pdd was spectacular as well as was the trio of jewels of Muriel Halle, Marie-Solone Boulet and Laura Hecquet. I was again impressed with the clean execution and cool authority of Meyzindi's variation.

Sandrine Marache as the White Cat added (for the new year festvities) vocal effects to her dance. She meowed musically and in perfect time to Fabien Roque's Puss in Boots during their deliciously rendered pdd.

In closing I need to mention those sections that make the heart of any classic ballet: the ensemble numbers of the corps de ballet.

In Nureyev's SB there are glorious ensembles: in the Proloque, the entry of the seven fairies each accompanied by three quadrilles and one cavalier; at the birthday party, the waltz of 16 ladies and 8 men; in the third act the Polonaise of nine couples, the ladies in point shoes. The POB corps de ballet is a treasure to ballet fans everywhere.

A healthy and peaceful new year to all!

Edited by chiapuris

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Thanks for your review, chiapuris !

It seems to have been a very enjoyable evening. I wish I could have seen such a performance... During a very short trip to Paris, I had tried to get some tickets for the Dec 22 performance, also with Dupont and Legris, but unfortunately after one hour of queuing, we were told that it was sold out (and even the people who had some tickets were not very lucky, as the performance had to be stopped at the end of Act II because of a problem of fire backstage...) I'm sad that I probably will never get an opportunity to see Legris as Désiré on stage (I just saw him on video, as Dupont and him were filmed in that ballet a few seasons ago).

One advantage of such ballets it that it enables one to see a large number of corps de ballet dancers, so you got an opportunity to see some of the recently promoted dancers, like Julien Meyzindi, Emilie Cozette and Laura Hecquet, as well as more senior "sujets" like Fabien Roques, Natacha Quernet and Sandrine Marache (also I'm glad to read that Fanny Fiat is back on stage and in good shape: she was absent for about one year, because of maternity leave). Actually December must have been very busy for the company, as they performed in two different programs ("Sleeping Beauty" in Bastille and the Lancelot-Brown-Forsythe mixed bill in Garnier) and also had to prepare for the annual competition, which was on December 23rd.

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