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Neumeier's Anna Karenina

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Casting is now up and  there are two performances each for Zakharova/Rodkin, Smirnova/Ovcharenko and Kretova/Belyakov.

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The casting for March 23 has Zakharova and Chudin(!?) As Anna and Karenin with Rodkin as Vrosnky and Khokhlova and Savin(born to play Levin!) as Kitty and Levin.

For March 24 (matinee): Volchkov and Kretova as Karenin and Anna, Savarskaya and Gusev as Kitty and Levin and Belyakov as Vronsky. 

For the evening Merkuriev and Smirnova as Karenin and Anna with Ovcharenko as Vronsky, Belyakov and Fateeva as Levin and Kitty.

 

I'm not even going to talk about the casting in the leading roles, all I've got to say is that all the ballerinas casted as Dolly, should be dancing Anna (Kaptsova, Shipulina and Stashkevich)

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Posted (edited)

May I put forward a daring proposition that John Neumeier probably knows best who should be dancing what roles in his ballets?

Edited by Fleurdelis

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I often find Neumeier's casting decisions baffling. I mean, could someone please explain Edvin Revazov to me? The clumsy man-child persona was one thing when he was very young and creating roles like Tadzio and Parzival, but as a continuing source of inspiration for Neumeier, I must confess I am completely stumped.

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5 hours ago, Gnossie said:

The casting for March 23 has Zakharova and Chudin(!?) As Anna and Karenin with Rodkin as Vrosnky and Khokhlova and Savin(born to play Levin!) as Kitty and Levin.

For March 24 (matinee): Volchkov and Kretova as Karenin and Anna, Savarskaya and Gusev as Kitty and Levin and Belyakov as Vronsky. 

For the evening Merkuriev and Smirnova as Karenin and Anna with Ovcharenko as Vronsky, Belyakov and Fateeva as Levin and Kitty.

 

I'm not even going to talk about the casting in the leading roles, all I've got to say is that all the ballerinas casted as Dolly, should be dancing Anna (Kaptsova, Shipulina and Stashkevich)

Yes, I wrote the Anna/Vronsky pairings.  I think that Kaptsova, Shipulina and Stashkevich were never going to get leading role ahead of Zakharova and Smirnova -   Kretova maybe.  

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2 hours ago, volcanohunter said:

I often find Neumeier's casting decisions baffling. I mean, could someone please explain Edvin Revazov to me? The clumsy man-child persona was one thing when he was very young and creating roles like Tadzio and Parzival, but as a continuing source of inspiration for Neumeier, I must confess I am completely stumped.

The athletic man-child as the principal male character is very often found in Neumeier's works. Armand, Edvard, now Vronsky. Revazov fits this type to a tee. And if this is not your cup of "tee", then could it be that you do not really like Neumeier?

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Posted (edited)

No, actually. Unlike most Americans, I like Neumeier's work quite a bit. I've crossed oceans to see it. I admire the devotion with which his troupe dances his ballets--an intensity other companies cannot match when performing them. I have great admiration for a number of the Hamburg Ballet's dancers. I regard one of them as a genius, a distinction I am willing to grant to about three active dancers. But I really don't "get" Revazov, and I don't much care for the ballets Neumeier has built around him. I also think Revazov's rendering of Armand Duval is poor in comparison with other interpreters. The part was created on Egon Madsen, a small, slight and very fleet dancer of infinitely greater finesse and depth than Revazov.

Edited by volcanohunter

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[Admin hat on]

I don't know why I have to keep repeating this, but do not talk about each other or characterize each other through your own lens. Talk about the topic.

[Admin hat off]

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Posted (edited)

Interesting to see that Belyakov is cast as both Vronsky and Levin, the roles danced by Rodkin and Savin in the first cast. 

In A Hero of Our Time, he danced both Pechorin in 'Taman' and, again, Savin's role Grushnitsky. 

I remember volcanohunter mentioning on another thread that he was a better Pechorin that either Lantratov or Ovcharenko. And for me, at least in the video footage I've seen, he made parts of the choreography for Grushnitsky clearer and more expressive than Savin did in the cinema relay.

So I'm curious to see how he fares as Vronsky and Levin (I do agree with Gnossie that Savin seems a perfect fit), especially as I don't think he's danced with 
Ekaterina Fateeva (Kitty) before. 

Edited by rhys

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Posted (edited)

After seeing the first cast, I must admit that I now understand what Volancohunter was saying. Neumeier surely knows best, but I cannot understand his casting. Stashkevich's Dolly was so diminutive, it was hard to tell her apart from her kids. Khokhlova is very self confident and bubbly, I was not convinced by her becoming clinically insane over her broken love for Vronsky. Savin has too much of a dark side to be a convincing Levin. Only Mikhail Loubukhin was right in his element as Stiva Oblolnsky, definitely fits his character, as most roles often do.

I was disappointed with Svetlana Zakharova. There is SO MUCH material given to her by Neumeier to work with, and she did so little with it. She was completely empty. Rodkin just had to be himself to come across as a convincing Vronsky, but not as impactful as I hoped for, I felt he was not responding to his Anna, not that there was much to respond to.

I was ready to conclude that it is only Neumeier's own Hamburg artists who are able to transmit his ideas fully, until I saw the second cast tonight. Was so glad I did, after the grave disappointment  of the first cast. The second cast is a true marvel to behold, not only in terms of the excellence of established artists such as Smirnova, Ovcharenko, Shipulina, Belyakov or Merkruiev, but also Neumeier digging out such gems from among the recent Moscow ballet school graduates as Fateeva as Kitty, or Kallistratov as Seryozha.

Edited by Fleurdelis

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Extraordinary Savin being extraordinary 

 

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On 3/18/2018 at 8:39 AM, Fleurdelis said:

 I am more curious about Zakharova; there are several naturalistic moments in the work: will she be able or willing to suspend her customary gorgeousness during these moments for the sake of creating the character?

Spartacus, among others.  (Although I prefer her Swan to her Carmen).

 

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20 hours ago, Fleurdelis said:

 I was not convinced by her becoming clinically insane over her broken love for Vronsky.

 

I don't think Giselle is "clinically insane", even if she is hurt and shocked and betrayed and depressed.  Ditto all the other women sent to the "asylum" for "hysteria" or  heartbreak, loss, and grief.  (Was that T.S. Elliot who abandoned a woman to the lock up with the shrinks for bloody sheets?)

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On 3/22/2018 at 5:12 PM, volcanohunter said:

No, actually. Unlike most Americans, I like Neumeier's work quite a bit. 

Me too. But isn't some of it repetitive (internally and across ballets) and unnecessarily long?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Vs1 said:

 (Was that T.S. Elliot who abandoned a woman to the lock up with the shrinks for bloody sheets?)

:offtopic:Many may catch the allusion, but for anyone who doesn't:  Carol Seymour Jones, a biographer of Eliot's first wife (Vivienne Haight-Wood Eliot) -- and very sympathetic to Vivienne Eliot -- on her research: 

https://www.timeshighereducation.com/features/not-crazy-after-all-these-years/165448.article

And an article skeptical of some of Seymour-Jones' views--and giving more of the story of Eliot's relations with various women:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2002/09/30/the-women-come-and-go

Edited by Drew

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Just now, Drew said:

 

And an article skeptical of some of Seymour-Jones' views--and giving more of the story of Eliot's relations with various women:

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2002/09/30/the-women-come-and-go

Well, do you believe Nijinsky? Or was it Romola, Nijinska, Diaghialev, the money, convenience, good drama?  Beastiality, give me a break.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Vs1 said:

Well, do you believe Nijinsky? Or was it Romola, Nijinska, Diaghialev, the money, convenience, good drama?  Beastiality, give me a break.

I'm afraid the reference to "beastiality" goes right by me, but honestly I'm a little puzzled by this question anyway or what it is you think that I think -- or intended by posting the links to those articles. I presented two articles about T.S. and Vivienne Eliot and didn't express an opinion one way or another about either of them because I only have rather superficial knowledge about their lives.  Like many people I suspect it was absurd and unjust for Vivienne Eliot to have been locked up for life, but I've hardly made a study of the matter or to what degree it was her husband's doing and to what degree her brother's etc. I just thought your original question/remark about Eliot might have been a little obscure to some people--perhaps not many--so I offered some easy links to indicate the kind of discussion that the issue had generated. Since both of these articles seemed to me inadequate in different ways, I thought why not post both? (Of course a great deal more ink than this has been spilled on the matter, but two articles seemed plenty in this context.)

As a general matter, if you are under the impression I think women have gotten a fair shake from the mental health industry, then you are mistaken.

Edited by Drew

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10 hours ago, Drew said:

 

As a general matter, if you are under the impression I think women have gotten a fair shake from the mental health industry, then you are mistaken.

 I don't know how many elderly women you know who wore girdles to "hold them in" after their hysterectomies. Youtube has some scary documentaries about government experiments in institutions regarding ECT, lobotomies, and drugs.   The Canadian books disputing Freud are also interesting.  I don't know what a "fair shake" is.

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44 minutes ago, Vs1 said:

  I don't know what a "fair shake" is.

A "fair shake" means fair treatment.

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On 3/27/2018 at 2:05 AM, Vs1 said:

I don't think Giselle is "clinically insane", even if she is hurt and shocked and betrayed and depressed. 

Kitty wears a chair on her head. Giselle first counts imaginary flower petals then tries to stab herself with a sword. Perfectly normal everyday adolescent behavior, sure.

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On 3/26/2018 at 10:22 PM, Gnossie said:

 

 

 

I clicked on the links and the videos are not available.  Hope this does not mean that someone's account has been terminated, but probably it's a copyright issue.  I did already see them on YT and honestly, although I agree Savin is a fabulous actor, it does not make me like this ballet any more.  Just my personal taste.  

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4 hours ago, MadameP said:

I clicked on the links and the videos are not available.  Hope this does not mean that someone's account has been terminated, but probably it's a copyright issue.  I did already see them on YT and honestly, although I agree Savin is a fabulous actor, it does not make me like this ballet any more.  Just my personal taste.  

That account has been taken down 😩 it was beautiful while it lasted.......... 

Savin is a remarkable artist (one of the very few of our times) but not even him can save such a horrible production, I like Neumeier very much but with all due respect -juding by the videos- this is his worst work. (Given the leads to 3 of my least favourite dancers of all time does not help either)

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