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Dale

World Premiere of Whipped Cream by Ratmansky

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atm711   

Too much whipped cream for me---the clip I saw on PBS made me "mildly nauseous"........

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nanushka   
1 hour ago, Dale said:

...characters from the ballet will board a 24-foot open-air festive float for a ride along the Upper West Side and through midtown, ending back “home” at Lincoln Center’s Metropolitan Opera House on Saturday, May 20, 2017. Cupcake Children, Swirl Girls, Layer Cake Girl, Pink Yak and Chef, all characters from ABT’s new production of Whipped Cream, will set out from the loading dock of the Metropolitan Opera House at 9:30am for their journey up Central Park West to West 96th Street, down Columbus Avenue and back to Lincoln Center, waving to fans and offering photo opportunities prior to the 11:30am performance of ABTKids.

 

For the dancers' sakes I sure hope they're hiring stand-ins!

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ABT Fan   
1 hour ago, nanushka said:

 

For the dancers' sakes I sure hope they're hiring stand-ins!

 

I imagine they'd use students from their JKO school and maybe some apprentices as opposed to full-fledged company members.

Edited by ABT Fan

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Dreamer   

It is worth seeing this ballet once, even if just for Mark Ryden's sets and costumes.  For me this ballet doesn't merit a repeat viewing though I saw it twice in Costa Mesa. On both nights, the corps looked out of sync and some of the costumes were too cumbersome for dancing. I tried to find a deeper meaning to the story but apparently there was none.  I wanted to believe that "Whipped Cream" contained a veiled criticism of consumerism, overindulgence and escapism but none of the reviews I read said anything along these lines.  It really disappoints me that it might be simply an inconsequential and glitzy eye candy. I am not even sure if kids would necessarily love it.  Looking forward to the reports on its New York premier. 

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lmspear   
5 hours ago, Dale said:

A release (something fun!):

 

AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE “WHIPPED CREAM FLOAT” TO TRAVEL THE STREETS OF UPPER WEST SIDE AND TIMES SQUARE ON SATURDAY, MAY 20, 2017, 10AM-3PM

UNIQUE CARAVAN OF CHARACTERS TO CELEBRATE ABTKIDS DAY AND NEW YORK PREMIERE OF WHIPPED CREAM

In celebration of American Ballet Theatre’s New York Premiere of Whipped Cream and the family-friendly performance of ABTKids, characters from the ballet will board a 24-foot open-air festive float for a ride along the Upper West Side and through midtown, ending back “home” at Lincoln Center’s Metropolitan Opera House on Saturday, May 20, 2017.

Cupcake Children, Swirl Girls, Layer Cake Girl, Pink Yak and Chef, all characters from ABT’s new production of Whipped Cream, will set out from the loading dock of the Metropolitan Opera House at 9:30am for their journey up Central Park West to West 96th Street, down Columbus Avenue and back to Lincoln Center, waving to fans and offering photo opportunities prior to the 11:30am performance of ABTKids.

At the conclusion of ABTKids, the Whipped Cream float will ride again, traveling down Broadway past Columbus Circle and on to Times Square.

Sounds like an audition for the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade!:toot:

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Drew   
3 hours ago, Dreamer said:

It is worth seeing this ballet once, even if just for Mark Ryden's sets and costumes.  For me this ballet doesn't merit a repeat viewing though I saw it twice in Costa Mesa. On both nights, the corps looked out of sync and some of the costumes were too cumbersome for dancing. I tried to find a deeper meaning to the story but apparently there was none.  I wanted to believe that "Whipped Cream" contained a veiled criticism of consumerism, overindulgence and escapism but none of the reviews I read said anything along these lines.  It really disappoints me that it might be simply an inconsequential and glitzy eye candy. I am not even sure if kids would necessarily love it.  Looking forward to the reports on its New York premier. 

 

The original ballet was, as I understand, criticized for being glitzy and inconsequential, but I also have been wondering about hints or layers of other meaning. For one thing, a story about a boy who gets sick and then, not only has a delirious fantasy, but in the end goes off with Princess Praline seemingly never to wake up, sounds more Erlking than Nutcracker to me...as if he really died in the hospital. But like Dreamer, I find everything I read about the ballet implies that it is meant to be a sheer indulgence fantasy "you can have your cake AND eat it too." I have tickets to see it next week and am very curious as to how it will seem to me.  And I can imagine that a sheer absurdist fantasy can have its own pleasures. That is, I'm not opposed to art that's just a display of extraordinary fantasy. For me a lot will depend on the quality of the choreography and the dancing.  (Of course, I hope any corps messiness along the lines Dreamer reports will be cleaned up).

 

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Natalia   
9 hours ago, Dreamer said:

It is worth seeing this ballet once, even if just for Mark Ryden's sets and costumes.  For me this ballet doesn't merit a repeat viewing though I saw it twice in Costa Mesa. On both nights, the corps looked out of sync and some of the costumes were too cumbersome for dancing. I tried to find a deeper meaning to the story but apparently there was none.  I wanted to believe that "Whipped Cream" contained a veiled criticism of consumerism, overindulgence and escapism but none of the reviews I read said anything along these lines.  It really disappoints me that it might be simply an inconsequential and glitzy eye candy. I am not even sure if kids would necessarily love it.  Looking forward to the reports on its New York premier. 

 

I saw three performances on Costa Mesa and, boy, did I LOVE it!!! Perhaps because I saw shows on the weekend, after the troupe had ironed out the kinks from the premiere, I saw a very tidy & lively corps. Watch out for the amazing March of the Sweets early in A1 by 12 male corps...not to forget the Waltz of the Whipped Cream Ladies that ends A1...oh, and that beguiling Parade of Princess Praline around the start of A2! Heck, too many corps highlights to name.

 

If I end up going to NY for NYCB's last viewing of a Program 8 of the Here/Now (incl. DECALOGUE) on Saturday, I'll make a point of looking out for that float in the morning. Bring out the Yaks, baby!!! It'll be a mini-Macy's Parade in spring *, as someone else pointed out...and with all the "stuff" going on in DC nowadays...boy, do we need a little "Yipee" in our lives about now! :)

 

* = Between the Whipped Cream Float and last week's "motorized Sean Spicer podium" driven by comedienne Melissa McCarthy through the streets of Midtown Manhattan, Macy's should be all set for a springtime parade.

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Dale   

Whipped Cream The Exhibition:

 

MARK RYDEN: THE ART OF WHIPPED CREAM

EXHIBITION TO OPEN MAY 19
AT THE METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE

American Ballet Theatre presents Mark Ryden: The Art of Whipped Cream, an exhibition of work by pop-surrealist Mark Ryden, on view in the Arnold and Marie Schwartz Gallery Met at the Metropolitan Opera House, May 19-July 8, 2017. The exhibition, organized by the Paul Kasmin Gallery, features drawings, sketches and paintings created for American Ballet Theatre’s new production of Whipped Cream.

Choreographed by ABT Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky, Whipped
Cream
features Ryden’s fantastical set and costume designs, including a Viennese pastry shop and confectionary-themed characters. Whipped Cream is based on the two-act ballet with libretto and score by Richard Strauss, originally created as Schlagobers and performed at the Vienna State Opera in 1924.

American Ballet Theatre’s production of Whipped Cream will receive its New York Premiere at the Metropolitan Opera House on Monday, May 22. The ballet will be given 12 performances, May 22-24 and June 26-July 1. Whipped Cream has been generously underwritten with leadership support from Hamilton E. James and the Blavatnik Family Foundation.

The Arnold and Marie Schwartz Gallery Met is located in the south lobby of the Metropolitan Opera House, 30 Lincoln Center Plaza. It is open Monday-Friday,10:00am- 2:00pm and 6:00pm through the last intermission; Saturday, noon through the last intermission; and Sunday, 11:00am-4:00pm. Admission to the gallery is free.

American Ballet Theatre’s 2017 Metropolitan Opera House season continues through July 8, 2017. Tickets, beginning at $22, are available online, at the Met box office or by phone at 212-362-6000. For more information, visit ABT’s website at www.abt.org.

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rg   

from ABT's press office:

 

Please note that there is a cast change for Whipped Cream tomorrow evening, Tuesday, May 23:

Herman Cornejo is injured and unable to perform. JEFFREY CIRIO will dance in his place.

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Natalia   

Dumb question: Did anybody actually see the Whipped Cream "float" this past Saturday? I saw a lot of cute characters from the ballet & got to hug the Pink Yak...but no float!!! Maybe it got lost at Times Square?

 

The exhibit had ready opened and is lovely!

 

Merde to ABT tonight. I'm looking forward to reports on the ballet's NY opening ...and the cupcakes!

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nanushka   

Yes, the float drove south on Columbus right past Lincoln Center at around 1:15 before Saturday's matinee. A bunch of kids from the morning event were about and excited to see it.

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laurel   

What a great, great time I had this evening at the Whipped Cream gala performance.  If you're as intensely curious about this ballet as I was, I would recommend that you try to see it at some point just to make up your own mind about it, if not this season, then next year or sometime after that, because this ballet will be performed by ABT for a long time to come.  It's like no other ballet I've ever seen.  It's wonderful, weird, creepy, and absolutely hilarious.  No one seems to mention that this ballet is filled with crazy, bizarre humor.  It is most definitely NOT the Nutcracker!  The Strauss score is gorgeous, and if haven't yet heard it, it's readily accessible on Youtube.  The choreography moves quickly and smoothly, but is dense and complex, and I wanted a rewind button so I could replay it and catch the things I'd missed.  The entire company was absolutely ON tonight, as if they were powered by an electric vibe.  No one tripped, fell, appeared to be daydreaming, or suffered any mishaps.  The corps looked well rehearsed and filled with energy.  David Hallberg just looked great.  You would never know that both he and Stella Abrera had suffered such severe physical injuries, that not only their careers were threatened but their ability to walk and move normally as well.  And Daniil Simkin and Sarah Lane were phenomenal together.  I've never seen them in such tandem before, moving and working as one, and at the speed of light!  They were ablaze.  I still get nervous just thinking about him dropping her again, but after this I think perhaps those worries may be over, and is a good sign for their upcoming Giselle this weekend.  I plan to see another two performances this week, so that finally, I can judge for myself how some of the company's dancers compare to one another in the same roles.  PS - I can't add it here, but David Hallberg posted some backstage footage on Instagram of he and Stella taking the first of their curtain calls, and it may give you a sense of the upbeat vibe that suffused the company tonight.

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Kaysta   

Saw the gala performance.  While I loved the settings and costumes and I thought the dancers danced phenomenally, the one thing that kept me up thinking all night was Strauss' score.

 

I had never heard it before and that was a mistake because it's very different from most ballet scores and at times I was questioning its danceability.

 

I'm not criticizing Ratmansky's choreography, I am a huge fan and think he's brilliant.  And I greatly enjoyed the evening, but I think I'll like this work better after listening to the music a few times to familiarize myself with it.  That way my brain is thinking less about Strauss and concentrating more on what's happening onstage.

 

But it was danced beautifully.  So nice to finally see Hallberg dance!   And Sarah Lane and the Princess Praline solo with that footwork!  That alone was worth the trip to see it!  And there were times that the action on stage made me full out belly laugh (which isn't a reaction I'd expect from a ballet).   So I enjoyed it and am looking forward to seeing it again.  But after I educate myself about the Strauss score.

Edited by Kaysta

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ABT Fan   
8 hours ago, laurel said:

What a great, great time I had this evening at the Whipped Cream gala performance.  If you're as intensely curious about this ballet as I was, I would recommend that you try to see it at some point just to make up your own mind about it, if not this season, then next year or sometime after that, because this ballet will be performed by ABT for a long time to come.  It's like no other ballet I've ever seen.  It's wonderful, weird, creepy, and absolutely hilarious.  No one seems to mention that this ballet is filled with crazy, bizarre humor.  It is most definitely NOT the Nutcracker!  The Strauss score is gorgeous, and if haven't yet heard it, it's readily accessible on Youtube.  The choreography moves quickly and smoothly, but is dense and complex, and I wanted a rewind button so I could replay it and catch the things I'd missed.  The entire company was absolutely ON tonight, as if they were powered by an electric vibe.  No one tripped, fell, appeared to be daydreaming, or suffered any mishaps.  The corps looked well rehearsed and filled with energy.  David Hallberg just looked great.  You would never know that both he and Stella Abrera had suffered such severe physical injuries, that not only their careers were threatened but their ability to walk and move normally as well.  And Daniil Simkin and Sarah Lane were phenomenal together.  I've never seen them in such tandem before, moving and working as one, and at the speed of light!  They were ablaze.  I still get nervous just thinking about him dropping her again, but after this I think perhaps those worries may be over, and is a good sign for their upcoming Giselle this weekend.  I plan to see another two performances this week, so that finally, I can judge for myself how some of the company's dancers compare to one another in the same roles.  PS - I can't add it here, but David Hallberg posted some backstage footage on Instagram of he and Stella taking the first of their curtain calls, and it may give you a sense of the upbeat vibe that suffused the company tonight.

 

Here it is:

 

 

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ABT Fan   

Who played Champagne last night? I loved the way she rode in on the shoulders of one of the other liquors during bows, but I can't tell if it's Shevchenko or Hurlin?

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rg   

Catherine Hurlin danced "Mademoiselle Marianne Chartreuse" at the NYC opening of WHIPPED CREAM

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tutu   

I attended last night, and have mixed feelings. The production value is certainly over the top, and the whole thing may be worth seeing for the opulence of the sets and costumes alone -- there was clearly a lot of money to burn for this one. There are strokes of brilliance in the choreography, with standout performances from Sarah Lane, Joseph Gorak, and Catherine Hurlin, a devilish second-act solo for Daniil Simkin, and mostly excellent corps work from the whipped cream ladies. It was wonderful to see David Hallberg back onstage.

 

But there were some problems: a few bobbles in the corps (e.g., one member's accidental but quickly smoothed-over early start to a sequence; an individual's missing jump that appeared to result from "traffic" issues).

 

More broadly, the orchestra needed a few more rehearsals — the Strauss wasn't quite "tight," especially if you know the score — and it felt as if the work would have benefited from dancers performing with a City Ballet–style musicality, which lands on the front end of the beat, instead of in the middle. The latter works for certain composers, but the complexity of the Strauss score seems to require a crispness to the musicality in order to fully see the strains of the music highlighted by the choreography — this approach was part of the strength of Ms. Lane, Ms. Hurlin, and Mr. Gorak's performances, and the lack thereof was part of what made the always-excellent Stella Abrera's feel relatively underwhelming.

 

Overall, the production is worth the ticket price, but I'd advise going to a later performance, when some of the kinks may be worked out.

 

 

 

 

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ABT Fan   

I just noticed that Teuscher has replaced Murphy as Princess Tea Flower in tomorrow's matinee performance, as per ABT's site. That's huge. Murphy must still be injured (or this is a precautionary move so she'll be fully healed for her Giselle debut on Saturday), and this will be Teucher's debut in the role as she did not perform this on tour. The soloists are really stepping up and it's only the 2nd week in. I'm sure Teuscher will be wonderful. Hope Murphy is A-ok by Saturday.

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Dreamer   

I find some comments unfavorable to Strauss's  score very interesting because for me the music was the most enjoyable part of this ballet.  Maybe I should give the shoutout to the wonderful musicians of the Pacific Symphony who played it in Costa Mesa.

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Helene   

Please discuss professional reviews in the "Writings on Ballet" forum -- the company forums are for discussing what you see.

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tutu   

The Today Show had a brief segment on the new production, with talking heads from Ratmansky, Jeffrey Cirio, and Stella Abrera. Watch it here

 

(Is it just me, or has ABT's PR machine gotten a lot stronger within the past year or two?)

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I saw the matinee today. I wanted to love it and did but... I felt it was too busy--couldn't see the choreography cleanly because the costumes and sets were often the same color--at least in Act 1 and the end of Act 2.
I wanted to see the dancing! but was distracted by the frills! I may go again and sit closer. loved the music, and the wit of the staging, and the energy.

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8 hours ago, tutu said:

The Today Show had a brief segment on the new production, with talking heads from Ratmansky, Jeffrey Cirio, and Stella Abrera. Watch it here

 

(Is it just me, or has ABT's PR machine gotten a lot stronger within the past year or two?)

When Kara Barnett came in as Exec Director, she got a new Press and Marketing team, and you're starting to see the results.

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