Jump to content
cubanmiamiboy

MCB Program II. All Robbins.

Recommended Posts

Here I am, and once again faced with the unknown. The program includes stuff I am familiar with- ( In the Night, Other Dances, West Side Story)-, and some new to me material-(The Cage, Circus Polka). I am intrigued by The Cage, and have always loved Nora Kaye's iconic pic in her character. 

What am I in for....?

Edited by cubanmiamiboy

Share this post


Link to post
28 minutes ago, cubanmiamiboy said:

Here I am, and once again faced with the unknown. The program includes stuff I am familiar with- ( In the Night, Other Dances, West Side Story)-, and some new to me material-(The Cage, Circus Polka). I am intrigued by The Cage, and have always loved Nora Kaye's iconic pic in her character. 

What am I in for....?

Well, The Cage is very controversial.  ;)  (Just read the very first comment in the thread Are there ballets that should no longer be staged? )
But it is admired, by still other people. SFB is also going to be performing The Cage as part of their Robbins program in 2018.

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks for the response

1 hour ago, pherank said:

Well, The Cage is very controversial.  ;)  (Just read the very first comment in the thread Are there ballets that should no longer be staged? )
But it is admired, by still other people. SFB is also going to be performing The Cage as part of their Robbins program in 2018.

Thanks for the response. I hear you...all the predatory,sexual innuendo on it, right...? Well...let's see. 

On the other side, I got bored by Circus Polka. It was mostly parents cheering at their little ones onstage. Lourdes Lopez performed the Ringleader.

Edited by cubanmiamiboy

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, cubanmiamiboy said:

Thanks for the response

Thanks for the response. I hear you...all the predatory,sexual innuendo on it, right...? Well...let's see. 

On the other side, I got bored by Circus Polka. It was mostly parents cheering at their little ones onstage. Lourdes Lopez performed the Ringleader.

I couldn't stop laughing after reading your last comment.  ;)

Is that really considered to be one of his masterworks?

Share this post


Link to post
2 minutes ago, pherank said:

I couldn't stop laughing after reading your last comment.  ;)

Is that really considered to be one of his masterworks?

I doubt it. I would think it is not even appropriate for a formal "all Robbins" night, but more for a ballet school performance 

Share this post


Link to post
5 minutes ago, cubanmiamiboy said:

I doubt it. I would think it is not even appropriate for a formal "all Robbins" night, but more for a ballet school performance 

That must be it then: an opportunity to use the students from the school in a real MCB performance.

Share this post


Link to post

Circus Polka is only four minutes long, and that is exactly what it is: an opportunity to include the school kids.

Share this post


Link to post

CIRCUS POLKA was created as a piece d'occasion for NYCB's 1972 Stravinsky Festival - the final tableau had the S.A.B. students grouped as a capital I with a period and captial S with a period. Robbins played the ring master.

over the years it was given for festive occasions, for ex. for Kirstein's 80th birthday, to finish with the initials L. K.

etc.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Running Circus Polka on the heels of Nut. . .is a marketing move to increase ticket sales.  Those little kids are in the program to drive ticket sales. 

Share this post


Link to post
19 hours ago, rg said:

CIRCUS POLKA was created as a piece d'occasion for NYCB's 1972 Stravinsky Festival - the final tableau had the S.A.B. students grouped as a capital I with a period and captial S with a period. Robbins played the ring master.

over the years it was given for festive occasions, for ex. for Kirstein's 80th birthday, to finish with the initials L. K.

etc.

 

Here they finished the act with the initials J. R, for Robbins.

I went back yesterday mainly for "The Cage". Very interesting, and very reminiscent of Giselle's second act. I enjoyed it a lot, mainly for its mid century perfume. The jerking movements of The Novice when she is first brought to the world reminded me of those of Apollo's. Setting this work apart from some other  leotard pieces is, undoubtedly, it's quick design and sharpness...so different from modern  bores of endless armpits draggings. The Cage builds momentum at its right peak and finishes high. It is a short ballet, but one I could watch with pleasure more than once, and one where you can think of ideal casts. Osipova I'm sure would be wonderful on it. 

Simone Messmer and Renan Cerdeiro danced "Other Dances". He was SUPERB, particularly in those Mazurca-spiced moments during his first variations. Lourdes Lopez was sitting bext to me-( I exchanged so thoughts on the new projections of the Nutcracker with her)- and she cheered some "bravos" at him. Messmer was subtle, but very pleasant to watch in this lyrical piece. I think she's more this type of dancer than that of a bravura moments.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks for the review. I'm looking forward to seeing a San Francisco Ballet performance in March of The Cage and Other Dances along with Fancy Free and Opus 19/The Dreamer.

Share this post


Link to post

I have only seen The Cage in the taped version shown on TV some time ago with Heather Watts and Bart Cook, and found it compelling and brilliantly executed.  Loved the music. I also am looking forward to seeing it on stage as danced by SFB in March. 

Share this post


Link to post
57 minutes ago, Josette said:

I have only seen The Cage in the taped version shown on TV some time ago with Heather Watts and Bart Cook, and found it compelling and brilliantly executed.  Loved the music. I also am looking forward to seeing it on stage as danced by SFB in March. 

It is indeed quite compelling.  I have never been too much of a fan of Stravinsky-(including Petrushka or Firebird, which are, in my book, more visually attractive than, let's say, Symphony in 3 Movements or Stravisnky Violin Concerto.)- but this ballet really caught my attention enough to come back to see it again. 

Here are some stills from the original cast, including Nora Kaye and Nicolas Magallanes.

Image result for nora kaye the cageRelated imageRelated imageRelated image

Edited by cubanmiamiboy

Share this post


Link to post

Great photos! Thank you, cubanmiamiboy!  (I love Stravinsky, by the way.)

 

Share this post


Link to post

I was planning to skip this MCB program b/c Robbins (for me) does not inspire a trip, but, as fate would have it, a good friend from Chicago, who I haven't seen in years, was flying to South Florida to visit his mother. He guilted me into meeting him in South Florida to catch up. So I also bought a ticket to the West Palm opening night last night.

For me Robbins ballets are always nice and fun to see, but somehow I don't crave them the way I crave Petipa or Balanchine.

However, I enjoyed last night very much.

Circus Polka is lovely with various levels/ages of girls dancing, and Lourdes Lopez as the Ringmaster. At the point where all the levels in different colors danced in circles the audience applauded. It is always fun to see young dancers showing the same style as the adults but at a different level, and it was a good way to kick off this celebration of Jerome Robbins. it was also nice to see a woman playing the Ringmaster in our current climate. MCB is one of the few ballet companies run by a woman and so it is fitting for her to be the Ringmaster on stage. Lopez joked that now we know how it is done except without the whip (she spoke between Circus Polka and In the Night about why she decided to program an all Robbins night.

In the Night started with a very elegant Emily Bromberg partnered by Jovani Furlan. They made a great young love couple. I especially loved Bromberg's elegant turns that reminded me of the type of turns I saw at the Mariinsky many times. Tricia Albertson and Rainer Krenstetter were the mature, elegant couple, and they were really good, but it didn't erase my memories of Kronenberg and her husband who somehow exuded a couple who had matured into elegance. Since they were actually husband and wife it helped create that feel. Katia Carranza and Reyeris Reyes were the "fighting" couple, and they were spicy but the "fighting" was less apparent than in previous versions I have seen. They seemed to play it more like spicy throughout. This was different from my previous experiences of this ballet, but it worked actually. Normally I find the women flailing more comical. It was not comical last night.

The Cage seems really old fashioned to me, but it has its fun moments. Jordan-Elizabeth Long is becoming a favorite. Her long limbs and tall frame with the wild hair made someone who could bring any man to his knees. She was appropriately wild and predatory as the Queen with amazing extensions. Nathalia Arja as the Novice was just as fabulous, but next to Long on stage she looked like a baby predator. That is not a criticism. Her dancing was fabulous. Those two made this ballet work, because they put their heart and soul into it.

Simone Messmer and Renan Cerdeiro were great together in Other Dances, but Cerdeiro outclassed her a bit. His dancing is always full of excitement. I thought Messmer needed to play up the elegance, although she was not bad. I am gradually liking her more and more. Her stage presence is looking more and more natural.

West Side Story Suite was fun as usual but I was disappointed in the phrasing by the soprano in "Somewhere".....her vowels were mannered. That is a song that needs emotion more than exact notes. Overall, a fun night, and Robbins probably deserves "All Robbins" programs but I will never run out to go to another. I don't quite know why. All the ballets I have seen of his I have liked, but somehow I like them better as one of the pieces better.

Share this post


Link to post
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×