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  1. Today
  2. cassieallison

    Nutcracker 2018

    very interested other about Ulbricht, he waited a long time for this
  3. Helene

    2018 Nutcracker

    Casting is up through Christmas Eve (scroll): https://www.pnb.org/nutcracker/ Link to the downloadable spreadsheet: Nutcracker 2018_12_15.xlsx
  4. I went to the 12/15 performance. For the first 20 minutes or so I thought Sleeping Beauty Nightmares would have been a better title - typical contemporary dance angst choreography. Though since this was a Vishnea project it was danced at a very high level. It improved - the projections were interesting and while the electronica music bore no resemblance to anything I can imagine accompanying Petipa's Aurora's 100 year's worth of dreams, if you took it on its own terms it was interesting. Gomes did not appear in tonight's performance - the prince was danced by a thin blond dancer. There were no programs or cast lists so if anyone knows who it was please post his name.
  5. cobweb

    Nutcracker 2018

    Thanks for the report on last night, canbelto. After a very taxing week at work I was thinking about treating myself to a last minute ticket to Nut, but after checking the casting I decided I didn’t need to see Ask La Cour, and what you say doesn’t surprise me at all. Also very interested in reports on Kowroski and other casting. New Cavaliers - Chamblee, Applebaum, Ulbricht - did anyone see??
  6. canbelto

    Nutcracker 2018

    Did anyone see Maria Kowroski as SPF? I'm curious as to how she did.
  7. Yesterday
  8. dirac

    Job posting for artistic director

    If Clifford entertained any hopes for the appointment, they're gone by now. Very nice picture of Barbee (he does look like Rudi in that shot) and Johnna Kirkland. I find Clifford's oversharing amusing at times, and this is one of them. Nobody else is likely to tell us that Barbee never had to close his eyes and think of England. I somehow don't think that Barbee will be clutching his pearls at the release of this information or the bit about his "magnetic" quality.
  9. canbelto

    Nutcracker 2018

    I attended last night's Nutcracker. The good: Athan Sporek's Nutcracker Prince continues to delight. Devin Alberda's Soldier remains a very strong interpretation. Georgina Pazcoguin brought the sex and sultry back to Coffee! She also brought back the bent leg pirouettes in the finale. Anthony Huxley's Candy Cane. Sara Adam's Marzipan was well danced and she actually did have the gargouillades. The two principal women Tess Reichlen as SPF and Sterling Hyltin as Dewdrop were both wonderful although one could argue that neither was a "natural" in the role. Reichlen had gorgeous extension and a magisterial presence as the SPF, Hyltin's jumps as Dewdrop really flew and hung in the air. Although normally I would have loved to see Hyltin as SPF and Tess as Dewdrop I'm glad I saw these two interpretations last night. The bad: Ask La Cour at this time is not dancing an acceptable Cavalier. His partnering was awkward -- there were many moments when things should have looked more seamless. The shoulder jumps are one such moment. His solo was quite frankly awful -- he tried to do the cabrioles and that didn't work, then he tried the menage and gave up maybe halfway through, then in the pirouettes a la seconde he also tried and ended up stumbling out of them.
  10. balletforme

    Job posting for artistic director

    Yes, the timing has likely been very well-calculated. My bet is on Wendy Whelan? We shall see. OR maybe they will go with a "team?"
  11. CTballetfan

    Gillian Murphy is Pregnant

    Wonderful news for this special couple who have given so much joy to their ballet fans. They have always been my favorites and now their lives will be even more enriched.
  12. Dreamer

    ABT 2019 Met Season

    Lendorf also got replaced by Gonzalez in Harlequinade in the January 18 performance at SCFTA in Costa Mesa.
  13. Jayne

    Job posting for artistic director

    He lacks the diplomacy filter that most of us have (or learn to have with more time). Sometimes that filter fades as people age. Still no announcement from NYCB for the new AD? Maybe in the new year.
  14. nanushka

    Job posting for artistic director

    Exactly my thought! Talk about professional courtesy.
  15. canbelto

    Job posting for artistic director

    He followed up with this. Besides the ick factor that he doesn't seem to think is a problem at all (Nureyev being "all over" a teen SAB student), would Victor Barbee appreciate having his personal business spread over social media in this way?
  16. Amy Reusch

    Nutcracker Quiz

    But my understanding is that the original ballet followed not the Hoffman story but the Dumas adaption of the story..... https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Nutcracker_and_the_Mouse_King So I,m not sure I understand the wording of the first two questions... Christensen Nutcracker ran from 1944 to 2004.... Balanchine's premiered in 1954 and is still running, so hasn't it overtaken Christensen's "longest running" crown?
  17. Quinten

    What is "Musicality" in a Dancer?

    We've talked about how the composer indicates the desired tempo and how the conductor or instrumental soloist interprets the composer's instructions. It's well known that some composers play their own compositions at different tempos than indicated, and that there are wide variations in instrumentalist/conductor tempos. These men (for the most part) are not criticized for varying the tempo -- there will be arguments about whether we like X symphony or Y concerto played faster or slower but we will not require the conductor or soloist to observe the metronome markings. Heifitz played blisteringly fast because he could and while some complained about a perceived lack of artistry, none suggested he shouldn't be allowed to play fast. Yet when it comes to ballet we question whether a dancer is permitted to choose a different tempo from the metronome marking or traditional tempo. Does this mean that ballet is a lesser art, bound by rules that do not apply to instrumental or vocal music? Or does it mean that since it is arguably a woman's art form that dancers are incapable of making their own artistic choices and must be guided by mechanical tempos and be bound by tradition? Or both? That hardly seems right. If we instead take the position that ballet dancers are interpretive artists, then we must include them among those who are entitled to participate in making artistic decisions about tempo. Instrumentalist soloists and singers make tempo choices all the time, sometimes for purely artistic reasons and sometimes to highlight/accommodate their physical talents/limitations. Dancers should be allowed, indeed encouraged, to negotiate with the conductor and artistic director to find the best tempo for their artistic vision and yes, to accommodate their bodies. We can leave it to them not to abuse the privilege and can certainly criticize them for choices we don't like. But let's not treat them like puppets.
  18. Quiggin

    What is "Musicality" in a Dancer?

    Cyclingmartin: The Royal Ballet's version is fun – I always think of RB style as having a bit of music hall insolence, plus that perfect grace and a little quirkiness of Margot Fonteyn to it. Like an English version of a Watteau fete (by way of Hogarth?) in tone. But I prefer the Cornejo-led pas de trois cohesiveness and balance and brilliance. The Kirov Zelensky SL is another thing altogether, there's so much presence and spaciousness and everything done with the right pauses and accents, albeit "low contrast" ones. But – disclosure – 19th century ballet is not my thing, so I'm always missing many of the subtleties of the art of it. Regarding conducting/conducting for ballet/tempos, I came across this interview that George Balanchine did in Los Angeles in the 1940s comparing the two (Balanchine at one point wanted to be a conductor and took conducting classes in St Petersburg with Yevgeny Mravinsky): And in the spirit of the season, here are two recordings of Arabian from Nutcracker. The first is by Mravinsky recorded in the late forties. Mravinsky always plays the textures and inner details at a little expense of the forward drive. The second is by Sergiu Celibidache. In both you can hear the emphatic jcha-jcha-jcha of Russian version of maracas that you hardly hear in other recordings. Also note that Mravinky's time is 3:39 and Celibidache's is a full 5:25. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=trgXIgK99wQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbkD1TpWxCA And here at a mere 2:47 is Wendy Whelan in Arabian (Coffee when Arthur Mitchell did it) from Balanchine's Nutcracker – full of, if not musicality, wonderful cubo-futurist architecture. And thanks for selecting and posting all those definitive Swan Lakes – would never have come across them otherwise.
  19. Buddy

    Allegra Kent in Symphony in C 2nd Mvt.

    I'm stretching this topic to the limit, but about two years ago when Cristian started this discussion I suggested that he take a look at Eva Evdokimova. There are very few videos that I can find and the visual quality is not the greatest. I recently returned to viewing this amazing and lesser known ballerina and I find the comparisons to Allegra Kent to be fascinating. I've not really tried to analyze it. I would suggest her Giselles. Maybe someone else would like to comment on this. Added: I would like to say this. I've been glued to Allegra Kent and Jacques d'Amboise's "Midsummer NIght's Dream" duet video clip and I find one of Eva Evdokimova's Giselles to somehow be a continuation. The power and significance of expression of both these ballerinas is remarkable and I find the pure beauty of Eva Evdokimova's dancing to add another wonderful dimension.
  20. nanushka

    Job posting for artistic director

    None is needed, but apparently yet more proof that Clifford is unfit to lead. Seriously?
  21. cyclingmartin

    What is "Musicality" in a Dancer?

    All my instinct as a musician says "Amen" to that. However, bending tempo in this way is so widespread, even with such great ballet musicians as Victor Fedotov and many others, that I feel I should reconsider, taking into account issues such as those mentioned by Quiggin and Nanushka.
  22. cyclingmartin

    What is "Musicality" in a Dancer?

    Thanks for your input, Quiggin. I'm sure you're right. So I accept that there is a justification for that slowing. But the issue I'm grappling with -- not in the sense that it's wrong, but in that it's outside my experience as a musician -- is getting used to something being done with the music that comes from outside the music. A good instance of what I'm talking about can be heard by comparing recordings of the music alone with recordings of that music done by the same orchestra and conductor in the context of a ballet performance. For example, this recording made in 1992 by the Mariinsky Orchestra under the great Victor Fedotov has no slowing at all at that point: https://youtu.be/wG0fUnomgYw?t=721 (I presume it was a studio recording or done in the theatre with no dancing.) In this case Fedotov's decisions are shaped entirely by the music's internal structure. (Tchaikovsky marks this variation as Allegro Vivace, and no tempo changes are indicated, even though there are many other places in SL where he does mark in a change of tempo, or an accelerando, or a slowing.) However, in the following film of a ballet performance by the same orchestra and conductor just two years earlier, there is a marked slowing (more than in the ABT performance) for the male solo in the final variation. https://youtu.be/9rJoB7y6Ncs?t=1223 In this case it seems clear that Igor Zelensky's Apollonian dancing requires that. (What dancing!) Of course, you're right that But their senses of time were shaped by purely musical factors. (In that respect it's interesting that Furtwängler studied and worked for many years with the theorist and analyst, Heinrich Schenker, whose whole life was devoted to demonstrating the internal workings of music.) So, as a comparative newbie to ballet, and especially to how it works in its relationship between orchestra/conductor and the dancers, I'm struggling a bit to get used to the idea of choreography impinging on the musical flow. I daresay this is something I need to learn to get used to. One of the things I definitely appreciate about the ABT performance is that the accelerando towards the end is impeccably timed to compensate for the lost time of the male solo. Moreover, I do accept that one cannot be doctrinaire about this. For example, some ballet performances of the Pas de Trois that have no slowing leave me dissatisfied because I find the choreography unconvincing. This performance at La Scala is one such instance: https://youtu.be/UHbM58HMXZ4?t=1492 I'd be interested to know what you think of the Royal Ballet performance I've linked above, in which there's hardly any slowing and the choreography is pretty much the same as in ABT. As I say above, Michael Coleman's "go for it" jumps are a lot less tidy than Herman Corejo's at that point; but it seems to me that this performance has a lot going for it nonetheless. Thanks again. That's a nice story about Danilova and Barbirolli.
  23. LadyBubbles

    Gillian Murphy is Pregnant

    Congrats to Gillian and Ethan. Sad that I won't be able to watch Murphy perform next year, but I'm very glad that it's for that reason. I was concerned when she was replaced in Nutcracker and worried that injury was the issue. I'm so happy it's not the case. Also, so glad I made it to her Don Q performance this past MET season.
  24. Last week
  25. Quiggin

    What is "Musicality" in a Dancer?

    I don't know how Herman Cornejo would have been able to get in his brilliant leaps without the orchestra slowing down. (And of course this may not have been the original choreography the music was intended for, as we have seen from Ratmansky's reconstructions.) But don't orchestra conductors always make changes in tempos for different dancers? Danilova talks about John Barbirolli asking her what tempos she wanted that evening (and she not knowing who he was, thinking he was flirting with her, snubbed him). And what are the right tempos? Shostakovich's musicians would always ask him to slow down some of his impossible tempos and he would often agree, saying he that when he wrote the piece was afraid of boring the audience or that he had an old metronome at home that sometimes was off tempo. Furtwangler's sense of time was quite different from Toscanini's, so why not a dancer's?
  26. vendangeuse

    ABT 2019 Met Season

    Well, that's disappointing. I thought he was also supposed to dance SB on July 1, but now the ABT site is showing Whiteside dancing instead. I wonder what's going on with Lendorf. And this is all adding up to a lot of dancing for Whiteside, no? I enjoy his dancing (I realize that may be a minority opinion here) and I really hope all of this doesn't end with him injuring himself because the ranks of ABT men are stretched so thin. Then again, I've never been a dancer myself—maybe the load is manageable? It just looks like he's taking on a lot. I am looking forward to Gonzalez in Corsaire, though!
  27. ABT Fan

    ABT 2019 Met Season

    In addition to Murphy not dancing this Met season (though for a very happy reason!), Lendorf has been replaced in Harlequinade by corps dancer Carlos Gonzalez. Good for Gonzalez though. He’s also scheduled for a debut in Corsaire, so he’s a new one to watch. Lendorf isn’t scheduled for anything else during the Met, so is he leaving? Right now he’s still doing the winter tour. Also just noticed that Trenary and K Williams will be making their debuts as Gulnare (replacing Murphy and Teuscher, respectively) and Teuscher is now debuting Medora. I’m sure there are other changes (Manon, mentioned on another thread) but that’s all i see right his second. Happy for the additional debuts.
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