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XVII Mariinsky International Ballet Festival 2017

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On 23 Apr 2017 at 0:38 PM, MadameP said:

Incidentally, Sofya and Renata are the really small ballerinas, both much shorter than the ballerinas you mentioned earlier!   I like them both, too, but Kondaurova can put both of them in her pockets!  


It's quite remarkable, MadameP, how all these 'not tall' ballerinas, become performing giants on the stage. I would have thought of most of them as being taller if I hadn't seen them off the stage.


I have a generalised theory that smaller (or smaller looking) ballerinas have to project more. I've even found many of them to be extremely sunshiny. When I see bundles of energy, expression and radiance, such as Renata Shakirova or, away from the Mariinsky, Natalia Osipova and Alina Cojocaru, I get this feeling.


Yekaterina Osmolkina is very interesting to me because she doesn't particularly project. She has a rather contained, not expansive, presence and yet her performing beauty is so lovely that I'm riveted to her.    

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So what’s it all about  ?


Probably it’s about




A Man's for A Woman for All Her Beauty

All Human Love


“the sweet love between the moon and the deep blue sea”

the tides, the flow


The Dancer

The Beauty

The Enchantment

The Dream


"Oh, that's so sweet!"

said Five-Year-Old Aimie to her Five-Year-Old Twin Brother, Ami  :)

Edited by Buddy

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2 hours ago, Natalia said:

Did Kristina Shapran appear at this last Festival? I haven't read much about her recently.


She is scheduled to dance Titania and a mixed bill in the coming month or so...I think those performances mark her return to the company after a time away. (I thought she had been on maternity leave, but in any case she has been away.) 

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On 28 Apr 2017 at 0:04 PM, Natalia said:

Did Kristina Shapran appear at this last Festival? I haven't read much about her recently.


She didn't appear that I know of, Natalia, and I saw all the performances. Drew is correct about A Midsummer Night's Dream.


(look under her photo for this information)


Added: Some other dancers who’ve been prominent at recent Festivals, who did not appear this year would be Ulyana Lopatkina, Diana Vishneva, Oxana Skorik, Alina Somova, Olesya Novikova. Kimin Kim and Vladimir Shklyarov.

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Thanks, Drew & Buddy. Drew, so it may have been maternity leave. (If so, congrats to her and her family!) I knew about Somova's own maternity leave - 2nd for her -  and Skorik's injury. 

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Olga Smirnova


Her performance becomes more and more perhaps the highlight of the Festival in my memory. This is somewhat a summary of my feelings.


To describe my


Walking Home, Floating in The Heavens


I think of of her as


“Angel Wings”


Angel — “An Indefinably Authority” “That Touches The Spirit”  *

Wings — To Elevate, Flow Through Our Senses, Carry Us Along


Act I

Above all she creates — A Presence 


She’s part of this world

“an indefinable authority” “that touches the spirit”

and a woman in love


the artistic beauty of her Dance echoes her Presence



The Palace Scene

moves her from here to to a transcendent place



Last Act

She’s now an elevated being

in a place of ‘spiritual transcendence’

still tied to this world by love


Her Dance becomes primary

its flow and artistic magnificence

create the dream and the aura

that perhaps remain the strongest memory

and linger on as the deepest feeling 




* (two quotes from Clement Crisp)

Edited by Buddy

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A perception that I would like to elaborate on for a moment about Olga Smirnova’s performance is her Presence and her Dance. Her Presence, her persona, is probably always the dominant element. At the beginning of  this work it’s used to define her character in terms of the story. Character development is perhaps the main purpose of Act I. Then the dancing becomes more and more important ending in almost pure dancing in the last Act. But even in this it’s her Presence that dominates. As beautiful and interesting as her Dance is, it’s her Presence, her persona, that defines it and gives it its identity and its aura. And the key element here is her remarkable Facial Expression.

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Today at 8:55am EST  TVKultura (in russian) will take a look at this year's Festival.



[thanks once again to Sophia at Dansomanie for this info]




For the time being the replay can be seen here. It's about 40 minutes long.



[Thanks as usual to Sophia at Dansomanie]

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On 5/19/2017 at 12:17 PM, Buddy said:

Today at 8:55am EST  TVKultura (in russian) will take a look at this year's Festival


How can you tune in to TV Kultura ??  We cannot get it on satellite in Istanbul, and I have

never been able to get the webcast either direct or via VPN. Any suggestions will be greatly

appreciated !

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Kutura (Rossiya K) is one of the channels offered by TVTeka, a paid internet service, although if Google translate is working properly, it may also work on devices like Roku, which I don't have:



It's $12 for one month or $30 for three months.


I've used them for several years to watch figure skating, and, in general, I've found the service quite reliable if you have a strong internet connection.   I don't know if they archive Kultura to watch on demand like they do sports channels, because if the site is pounded, you do end up with buffering.



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