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Everything posted by Batsuchan

  1. How I have missed Marcelo Gomes so far this season!! He may not do the most turns, or have the highest jumps, or the longest lines, but all his dancing looks effortless and polished and fills every beat of the music! He makes even the most strenuous lifts (like those dead lifts in Act II) look easy, and his dramatic prowess is simply unparalleled. I so enjoyed seeing him dance tonight. Like you, nana, I hope he can dance for many more years!! (And I would love to see another Vishneva/Gomes "Giselle" sometime, but at least I can be happy that I had the privilege of seeing many of their incandescent performances!!) Marvelous Marcelo, bravo!!!
  2. Please delete this--I accidentally posted twice!
  3. Haha yes! I meant the lead in Don Q, of course. I hope Shevchenko/Lendorf weren't too tired to dance two days in a row!
  4. Haha yes! I meant the lead in Don Q, of course. Who ended up dancing instead of Gillian tonight (Thursday)?
  5. I went to the matinee with Shevchenko/Lendorf as the leads and Teuscher/Hoven as Mercedes/Espada. Shevchenko was fantastic!! Gorgeous extension, really nice balances and lovely adagio dancing in Act II, and fouettes to die for (complete with opening/closing the fan) in Act III. I was also very impressed with her characterization. In the past, she hasn't struck me as having the biggest personality, but she really sold the character of Kitri this afternoon and had some nice chemistry with Lendorf. There were a few bobbles in the performance--some small partnering difficulties, and at the beginning of the Act III variation, she dropped her fan--but it some ways, it was more impressive than a perfect performance, because Shevchenko didn't let these little mishaps faze her at all. If she was nervous, I couldn't tell. As my friend said, it looked like she'd danced the role several times. I will write more later, but I also want to mention that Teuscher made a killer Mercedes and Queen of the Dryads. I have never been so relaxed while watching Italian fouettes; it looked like Teuscher could've easily done another set of eight. Rachel Richardson was an extremely charming Amour, and Zhiyao Zhang was a spectacular lead gypsy. I hope to see him dance Don Q one day!
  6. Well, Stella Abrera had a gorgeous and glorious Met debut as Aurora tonight! While she may not have had Trenary's rock-solid confidence and girlishness in Act 1, she got more and more confident as the night went on and looked absolutely regal by the end. In my opinion, she has the most graceful and beautiful port de bras of all the homegrown dancers. And of course, it helped that she was dancing with the most charming prince--Marcelo Gomes. While yesterday's matinee was all about Trenary's superstar performance, tonight's show was more of a love story. What a beautiful couple Stella & Marcelo make! I thoroughly enjoyed tonight's show. Afterwards, many of the principals (and former ABT stars) came onstage to give Stella flowers, and she looked so happy. Congrats to Stella on her 20th anniversary, and here's to many more happy returns!
  7. Here are some more detailed thoughts from me on the Wednesday matinee performance of "Sleeping Beauty" starring Cassandra (Cassie) Trenary. Cassie first caught my eye a few years ago in-believe it or not-Agnes de Milles' "Rodeo." She played the girl at the party who is surprised by a kiss, and her shocked and upset reaction seemed so genuine that it left quite an impression on me. Fast forward a few years, and I had the pleasure of watching Cassie put that expressive face to good use as Aurora. She seems to be a natural-born performer: she engages the audience and interacts with other dancers onstage effortlessly, and her expressions are easy to read and seem heartfelt. I was especially impressed by the way she seemed to genuinely love James Whiteside's Prince, even though I felt like he was very emotionally remote. I think I would have enjoyed this performance even more if Cassie had been paired with a partner who could reciprocate her displays of affection. Cassie's dancing was tremendous. Like others, I usually "lower my standards" for debut performances, and I knew that in the past, Trenary has been affected by nerves on occasion (such as in her debut Princess Florine last year). But from the moment she stepped onstage, there was not a single sign of nervousness or trepidation. Just 100% confidence. And I should know-I was sitting in the front row! She looked more confident in the role than some senior ballerinas look in roles they've danced a dozen times. And what a pleasure it was to watch a dancer and not have to worry about her falling out of a turn or losing her balance. Not only did Cassie meet the considerable technical challenges of the role, but she performed the steps beautifully and effortlessly. There are other ballerinas in the company whom I consider to be "reliable" technicians, such as Boylston and Murphy, but I have some qualms about their artistry. I dislike Boylston's tendency to droop her wrists, and although Murphy can pull off whiz-bang pirouettes, something about her carriage and port-de-bras strikes me as more athletic than graceful. But I have no such complaints about Cassie. If I had to name one very-minor nitpick, it was that she was a little too crisp and sharp in her solos in Act II and Act III for my tastes. Her fleetness of foot is marvelous, but for me personally, I would like to see a little more languid softness in the more-mature Aurora in the wedding p.d.d., and especially in the dream Aurora in Act II. But this is a very minor quibble. Overall, Cassie was a joy to watch from start to finish. I hope that yesterday's matinee won her a legion of new fans and impressed the-powers-that-be at ABT. I definitely hope we see her in more leading roles soon. ** I have to say a few things about the rest of the cast members, who definitely brought their A-game yesterday. Whiteside was definitely more impressive than I was expecting in his Act III solos, though I do wish he would point his feet a bit more. Maybe that is asking for too much, as that solo is fiendishly difficult. Devon Teuscher also gave a spectacular performance as the Lilac Fairy. She is another technically-reliable dancer I can watch without complaints, and she nailed the very difficult fouette-to-arabesque moves and the pirouettes. I would love to see her tackle Odette/Odile someday. As others have mentioned, Sarah Lane/Zhiyao Zhang gave a gorgeous performance of the Bluebird p.d.d. Sarah looked as confident and charismatic as I've ever seen her, and Zhang's ballon was quite impressive. It looked like he had enough time to do entrechat dix! Craig Salstein was amusing as always as the Prince's Tutor, and Nancy Raffa was appropriately menacing as Carabosse. "Sleeping Beauty" isn't even close to being one of my favorite ballets, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself yesterday!
  8. I agree with all of the accolades for this afternoon's performance!! I'm so glad I was able to witness Cassie Trenary's resounding triumph! I so hope we will be seeing her as Giselle and Juliet soon!
  9. I totally agree with you and abatt!! Absolutely wonderful performance tonight thanks to Vishneva & Gomes! I think "Sleeping Beauty"--any version--is never going to be a favorite of mine given the lack of drama and looong prologue, but I totally loved tonight's show. Usually, whenever Vishneva & Gomes do the same ballet twice in the same week, the first performance is wonderful, and the second is a knockout! So it was tonight! Gomes supported Vishneva in the pirouettes with one hand today, and I think she did more revolutions in the pirouettes going into the fish dives so they looked even more spectacular. And as others have mentioned, the hidden-support backbend was truly gorgeous! Vishneva is a radiant Aurora--but what really elevated the performance for me was the palpable connection between Vishneva/Gomes. There's not a lot of romance in this ballet--they don't get to flirt like they do in "Giselle," for example--and yet they looked so genuinely, deeply in love. Can't wait to see them in Romeo & Juliet! I have to also mention that Cassandra Trenary was another standout as Princess Florine--such great control, beautiful port de bras and fantastic stage presence! I hope to see her as Aurora someday soon!
  10. Unfortunately, I did not see either of them...
  11. Here is Xiomara's farewell: https://youtu.be/tiskuoLoI6k And more curtain calls: https://youtu.be/BV5_avP1K2k https://youtu.be/TK6-Wo7uPrA
  12. I agree! She definitely looked like she could dance for several more seasons. I certainly will miss her. I just wanted to add that Xiomara made a point of giving a flower to all the people who came onstage to give her a bouquet, which I thought was a really, really sweet touch. She made Julie Kent take back the entire bouquet, and tried to do the same to Nina Ananiashvili, but Nina wouldn't have it and insisted that Xiomara take it. Just lovely to see. You could tell she was very well loved by the current and former dancers in the company.
  13. Well, I was at both performances today, and I'm so emotionally overwhelmed/exhausted that I don't know what to say. Farewell to two wonderful ballerinas!! A heartfelt "bravo!" and "thank you!!" Here are videos from Paloma's farewell--but note that there is some *very* loud cheering, so you might want to lower the volume when you watch them. Farewell: Curtain calls:
  14. Vishneva and Gomes were wonderful as always, tonight. True, age is beginning to show for both of them, but the emotional connection remains as strong and moving as ever. At the end, in the curtain calls, both were quite emotional--I wonder if this might be the last "Giselle" for them together at ABT, considering that ABT probably won't run it again until 2017... Devon Teuscher subbed for Stella Abrera as Myrta--I'm not sure why. I will write more about all the shows I've seen after tomorrow's performances!
  15. Well, Julie Kent was the first Giselle I ever saw, and so I had to be there for her last performance of this ballet. She definitely struggled a bit with the technique in Act I (some messy attitude turns, and she had to restart the hops on pointe twice)--but she never let it show in her face, and never dropped out of character. Even though she's closer to fifty than fifteen, she still has this "aw shucks" ingenuous sweetness that makes her believable as a young girl, and it makes you want to root for her when she struggles. Act II was great--Kent looked believably ghost-like and ethereal, thanks in no small part to Bolle's assured, effortless partnering. Bolle was fantastic throughout--great standstill lifts at the beginning of Act II and 32+ entrechat sixes--but it didn't have the OMG, amazing!! factor that Shklyarov had on Saturday. Gillian Murphy was a rock-solid, imperious Myrta as always. Luciana Paris and Blaine Hoven performed the peasant p.d.d. Although both had a few iffy moments, Paris is really great at "selling" her variations and emphasizing the stuff she is really good at. All in all, it was a very satisfying performance, if not the most exciting one I've seen. And perhaps it wasn't her best Giselle ever, but it was an admirable final show. Kent looked quite emotional in her bows and curtain calls.
  16. I heartily echo all the accolades for Stella and Shklyarov!! I will write more later, but one thing that really touched me was how excited/happy Skhlyarov seemed to be for Stella! Someone threw bouquets during the first curtain call, which Shklyarov picked up and presented to Stella with great affection. And then, during the second curtain call, he escorted Stella out, and then left the stage so she could soak up all the applause by herself. Lovely to see!
  17. Well, I'm not sure "Othello" can boast of first-rate choreography, but as a drama, it is a masterpiece! At least when Othello is played by the magnificent Marcelo Gomes, who was utterly riveting. Such power, such passion! Bravissimo!! If there were Oscars for ballet performances, he would certainly deserve one! Kent made a predictably sweet (and thus tragic) Desdemona, and the partnering-heavy choreography played to her strengths. Whiteside was a despicable devious Iago. Much of the real dancing was given to Cassio, and it was an utter pleasure to see Gorak. He has nobility flowing through to the very tips of his toes. Stella Abrera and Misty Copeland were fine as Emilia and Bianca, respectively, but they didn't have much to do. Same for the corps. It's all about the key players. I thought tonight's performance was fantastic, but still, I'm not sure I'd like to see this ballet again and again. The music fits the action perfectly, but it has an unrelenting sense of unease and foreboding, and very few breaks in the tension. I do like the melodramatic, heart-wrenching ballets, but usually I feel exhilarated and emotionally exhausted by the end. However, now I just feel like I need to run around for awhile to work off the psychological stress!
  18. It seems Vishneva won't be dancing in the gala tomorrow...? It's no longer listed on her personal calendar: http://www.vishneva.ru/en/playbill And it looks like Julie Kent will be dancing Manon with Marcelo instead: https://instagram.com/p/2yo6ruo350/?taken-by=juliekentofficial Hmm...don't tell me there's another injury!
  19. Review with pics: http://www.ocregister.com/articles/beauty=productionratmansky.html Thanks to everyone for the reviews!
  20. WOW! Very interesting! So many new productions! I guess it is the 75th anniversary... When you say Othello, do you mean the full-length? Or the "Moor's Pavane" as part of a mixed bill?
  21. I thought perhaps Diana just disdained the current ABT productions of these works as much as I do. ;) But what you say makes sense, sadly! I think it is a bit of both. Those ballets are probably technically challenging for her now (or rather, it is challenging for her to perform the classics up to her standard, as I can't imagine her ever omitting the hard stuff or marking the steps a la Kent/Cojocaru), but also that she doesn't like the ABT productions, so it's not worth the effort. I think there's a possibility she might do Ratmansky's SB, since they seem to have a good relationship, and she seems to like to do his ballets (she's dancing his "Psyche" this weekend at POB, then his "Cinderella" in London, and she did "Lost Illusions" at Bolshoi earlier this year). I guess it will depend how much he changes the traditional choreography. Also, I think she'd only do it if she can dance with Gomes. Ratmanksy has used Gomes as the male lead in the premiere of all his ballets for ABT ("On the Dnieper," "The Bright Stream," "Firebird," "Tempest," and arguably "Nutcracker" too). Would Ratmansky cast Vishneva & Gomes as the opening cast? My feeling is that Ratmansky might go for a "home-team" ballerina or an up-and-comer instead... Why retire when you can go on dancing a handful of nights each season and making $187k per year? Yeah, I don't think Kent will retire next year. I have a feeling she'll wait for her 30th anniversary in 2016. What do we think Herrera will do for her farewell performance next year? As for my wish list--I would absolutely love to see Vishneva/Gomes do "Manon" again, but I'm pretty sure it won't be back, sadly. In that case, I'm going to wish for "Lady of the Camellias" again, though I have a feeling that may never be back in the repertory. I'd gladly take that over "Onegin." (Or if not, I know it's in the Bolshoi rep now, so maybe Vishneva/Gomes will get to dance it there, as they did with "Onegin." And hopefully we'll get some videos.) I second the calls for Abrera in "Giselle" or "Swan Lake"! This might be kind of odd, but I'm kind of curious to see Bolle & Cojocaru in "Romeo & Juliet" (I know they've danced it together at La Scala). She always seems like the perfect Juliet, and he the perfect Romeo, so I'd love to see them together!
  22. Well, usually I totally agree with you, abatt, but this time, I will have to respectfully disagree...for me, Gomes WAS spectacular, and even better than on Monday, but Semionova was a disappointment, again. Not even close to the euphoria I felt when I saw them in 2011. Yes, she is absolutely beautiful; yes, she pulled off all the steps perfectly, but somehow, even with Marcelo, she was boring. At intermission, the lady next to me commented, "it's beautiful but I'm falling asleep," and I had to agree. Act III was better--Semionova seemed more engaged as Odile--and here she could display her technical chops--like a very impressive balance, and amazing fouettes. However, I actually really disliked how she only did triple pirouettes and made absolutely no effort to connect the turns to the music. It's not 32-counts to do whatever you feel like, in my opinion! As impressive as they were, I much prefer how Murphy does the fouettes: single, single, single, super pirouette--totally in keeping with the melody. But that's just me. The house went crazy, with a bunch of people in the orchestra giving a spontaneous standing ovation in the middle of the Act. In the Giselle thread, someone mentioned that Semionova seems to have "no inner beat" or something like that, and I really noticed that tonight. At the end of Act II, she totally missed the point in the music where she poses in attitude and holds Siegfried's bow, and she was late again when she transformed into a swan. On Monday, Murphy hit the beat exactly and made both of these moments stunning--you could tell exactly when she fell under Von Rothbart's control, and when she transformed. I also have the same criticism for Semionova that I had for Cojocaru in "Giselle," which was that she occasionally milked balances in ways that interrupted the musical phrase, in my opinion. I still think Semionova is a gorgeous dancer, and I really appreciate her technical chops, but having now seen her in Swan Lake 3 or 4 times at ABT, I'm looking for her to be more interesting in the role. As my friend commented, it seems like she does the exact same thing every time. As much as I love Gomes, a Semionova/Bolle "Swan Lake" would be on my wish list for next year. The last time I saw Semionova look really excited on stage is when she danced with Bolle in "Sylvia"--and maybe a new partner (she's danced with Gomes in 2011) might help her bring something new to the role. And if not, at least they would be oh-so-gorgeous onstage together! Edit--Oh, I almost forgot to mention--in the bows, Semionova had trouble removing a single flower from the bouquet to give to Gomes, so she just gave him both bouquets. (She did the same three years ago.) It was really sweet, and Gomes seemed really touched. Several people also threw flowers on the stage, so Gomes was able to pick a bouquet up and present it to her in return.
  23. Wow, all sorts of casting drama! Compared to seasons past, this year has been relatively injury-free (at least on the principal level), until this week! I am hoping Semionova can bring some more personality now that she'll be paired with Gomes, but I do really love Hallberg as the Prince. Gomes just seems WAYY too warm and charming to be the shy, lonely Prince. Personally, though, I really would have liked to see Semionova with Bolle instead. They looked so good together and performed so well together last year in "Sylvia," at least to me! As for last night's show--I pretty much agree with everything said here. It was an unexpectedly exciting show! In Act II, Murphy was a little too powerful and intense for my tastes. As others have mentioned, she doesn't seem to know how to really luxuriate in the adagio. And her arms/back are not as graceful/refined as other (mostly Russian) ballerinas I've seen. But perhaps this was because she was having an off night, which ultimately led to the unfortunate injury. Hopefully she makes a speedy recovery! As for Hee Seo--wow! I have to admit, up until last night, I thought of her as beautiful and lyrical, but technically unreliable (like when she fell out of the Italian fouettes in Don Q), and often boring, boring, boring. Given these low expectations, she really impressed me! The adagio of the Black Swan p.d.d. was absolutely thrilling. Never had I ever imagined that Seo could hold a balance like that (I even saw the corps members murmuring amongst each other like they couldn't believe it either)! And moreover, I never thought she would be able to able to pull off the flirty vixen character, but she did it! Yes, her solo was pretty weak, and she was huffing and puffing to get through those fouettes, but she totally engaged me character-wise as both Odile and Odette. After seeing her last night, I am tempted to see her dance on Sat night with Bolle. As for Gomes, all season I have been feeling like he is at a point at his career (he is almost 35 now, after all) where he is trying to play it smart, as in conserve energy when he can and hold back a little bit here so that he can go full-out later. Of course, he is always a most-attentive partner and a great actor, but instead of, say, throwing in an extra turn or an extra jump, he'll hold the arabesques; instead of a triple turn, he might do a double, but open his arms beautifully at the finish. However, when he's feeling inspired and in the moment (like when he's dancing with Vishneva), then he can't help but dance with 110% all the time! With Murphy, I felt like he was playing it smart, but when Seo came on and they had such an exciting start to the p.d.d., you could totally tell that he was super excited and was inspired to give extra. So bravo, bravo, bravo to Marcelo the MVP!! As for the other characters--I liked Matthews as Von Rothbart, and as usual, I absolutely loved Gorak. Yes, he flubbed part of the mini pas de trois at the beginning of Act III, but I think everyone was a little nervous/agitated because of the cast change. Also, Lane seems to be dancing better than ever! I really feel like she and Gorak have formed a lovely stage partnership. In seasons past, I've liked her, but not enough to want to go out and buy a ticket to see her as the lead. However, now I would happily pay to see her and Gorak cast in anything! (Hello, Kevin, did you hear that??) Finally--kudos to the solo violinist. The playing wasn't effortless, but at least it was in tune, unlike seasons past where I involuntarily cringed with every off note!
  24. I am also with the crowd that really enjoyed last night's performance. Hallberg and Cojocaru had SO MUCH more believable chemistry than Semionova/Hallberg. I think that it is in part because Hallberg needs someone with a compelling stage presence for him to be really engaged, and perhaps also that it was his second shot at "Giselle," and because there was the excitement of the last-minute substitution. It's easy to keep the interactions fresh and real when you haven't had time to practice them! In fact, in his talk on Wednesday, Hallberg said something along those lines--he had performed "Giselle" so many times with Zakharova over the past year and was so used to "their version" of it that Tuesday was a bit of a wake-up call. Maybe he got a little too used to just being there to lift the ballerina and forgot that there was supposed to be chemistry (judging by the reviews they didn't have much chemistry). At any rate, I totally loved him on Saturday (aside from the brises and the omitted Act 2 press lifts). On Tuesday, he lay down on Giselle's grave twice, and while it did not look silly, it certainly didn't move me. Last night he merely knelt down by her grave, but it felt so much more genuine and heartfelt. As others have mentioned, Cojocaru's hops on pointe were almost painful to watch, and before that there were a few pirouettes that end with her curtseying that seemed a bit wonky, but otherwise I thought she was a lovely, winsome Giselle. She's totally believable (and totally endearing) as the peasant girl, and her mad scene was touching. She has incredible extension, which she used to great effect in Act II with the slow developpes to the side and the deep penche arabesque. She still has great balances, but sometimes I feel like she shows them off in a way that distorts the musical phrasing. I agree with what others have said about Cojocaru's Act II Giselle being not drastically different from her Act I Giselle in terms of characterization. On one hand, I think this helps maintain the viewer's sympathy for this very sweet ghost, but I guess I personally prefer a greater differentiation between the sunny peasant girl and wili. Comparing Vishneva and Cojocaru's wilis, what I thought was very interesting was that Cojocaru's wili can still see--she made eye contact with Albrecht, she gave pleading looks to Myrta and the other wilis--whereas Vishneva's wili is basically blind--she never looks directly at Albrecht or Myrta. Cojocaru's wili can still communicate with Albrecht in a human-like way (as if she is looking at him and speaking to him), but Vishneva's wili cannot. She can only give him flowers, and lean her head against his chest. She never looked at him, and yet you could overwhelmingly feel her deep love for Albrecht. As for Stella Abrera's Myrta, "BRAVO!" is all I can say. As good as I thought she was on Wednesday, she was even better last night. There were a few jumps that she landed a bit heavily on Wednesday (ALL the Myrtas I saw uniformly struggled with them), but last night they were soft and easy. Her manner was so powerful and imperious and yet so beautiful. When she summoned the other wilis, she did it with such a deep spirituality and authority that it reminded me of Nikiya around the sacred fire, and I wondered (again), why she doesn't get these roles...sigh... Yuriko Kajiya and Craig Salstein were fine in the peasant p.d.d., but not as well-matched as Lane/Gorak, who definitely were the gold standard for the week, if not for every Giselle performance I've ever seen. Overall, however, I thought it was a lovely end to "Giselle" week. On to "Swan Lake"! I so hope Semionova/Hallberg's SL will be more enjoyable!
  25. Ok, four down, one to go! Believe it or not, I actually really enjoyed tonight's show with Reyes & Matthews! Reyes may be almost as old as Kent, but it doesn't really show in her dancing. At least not to me. Although she may no longer have some of the flexibility of the younger dancers (or even Vishneva), there were no omissions! She did the penche arabesques, she did the split leaps (and she got to a full 180 degrees), and she milked the "tricks" she can still do well for all they are worth. In her Act I variation, she whizzed through the pique turns around the stage thrillingly, and in the Act II p.d.d., she did the entrechats quatre at breakneck speed. Unlike with Semionova and Kent, I felt like she was really going for it, and there were moments when I was truly impressed and excited. Being petite, she doesn't have the longer lines of Vishneva/Kent/Semionova, and she doesn't have Cojocaru's ridiculous stretch that makes her look longer than she is. However, I appreciated the quality/tone of her movement. Vishneva has a way of flowing through the movements like she's moving through milk that gives her dancing a very luscious, sensuous quality, and I feel like Reyes has some of that same fluidity. Kent may still be able to create some very beautiful shapes, but it felt less flowy to me. Also, I have always found Reyes to be a very musical dancer (Vishneva as well)--or perhaps that means they phrase steps the way I would do them if I could--and like Vishneva, she really luxuriated in the adagio in Act II. The tempi were not as slow as Monday night, but Reyes took her time and really felt the music. I liked both of Reyes' characterizations very much--she was easily believable as a young girl falling in love, and her petite size made it easy to believe that she was frail. Her mad scene was well done, and she even looked angry (not crazy) in the last frenzied part. In Act II, she was properly ghostly. As for Matthews--overall I enjoyed seeing him as Albrecht and felt like he should've been given a chance to dance it sooner. I thought he and Reyes and believable chemistry in Act I, though I didn't quite buy his grief in Act II. Aside from one wonky jump, his dancing was beautiful and his partnering assured. He did the press lifts in Act II very well, and he even managed to bring Reyes down slowly. My one big disappointment, though, was that he too chose to do the brises down the diagonal. In my opinion, if you cannot get your legs practically parallel to the ground in the brises like Corella could, it just looks like you're kind of galloping/hopping, and it is not impressive at all. To me, that point in the music is the lead-up to the climax, and if Albrecht's solo is not impressive-looking, it just kills the dramatic momentum altogether. It will be interesting to see what Cornejo chooses to do! Amy Watson as Myrta was okay. She is an imposing figure, and her jumps were quite expansive, but that initial promenade in arabesque looked a little shaky. Based on this performance, I wouldn't run out and rehire her as a guest. Misty Copeland and Blaine Hoven danced a very nice peasant p.d.d. I was especially impressed with Hoven. Gorak is a lovely dancer, but he didn't cover much of the stage last night. Hoven was more explosive and covered more ground, and his legwork was very crisp. He also partnered Copeland well. Overall, thanks to Reyes excellent efforts, I enjoyed tonight's show much more than Tuesday or Wednesday night's! ** A couple of other notes: I had thought a couple of other steps had been changed last night, but it wasn't until tonight's show that I figured out what they were: 1) When Giselle first emerges from the grave, after she does the big hopping spin, she does these side-to-side steps punctuated by jumps. On Monday and Tuesday, Vishneva and Semionova did several connecting steps punctuated by big assembles with beats, as you can see at around 1:50 here: http://youtu.be/eec-WXFn1a4?t=1m50s Kent and Reyes seemed to do sissone-assemble, sissone-assemble (a series of jumps) instead. I think that might be why I thought Semionova seemed so land-bound in her variation as compared to Kent and Reyes. 2) In his Act I solo last night (see around 1:20 in the video to know what I'm talking about), Bolle changed the steps so that he had a developpe with his right leg, which he held extended for a bit. He also did this in Act II. It was impressive, but it also didn't seem to fit the music too well. 3) At the very end last night, after Albrecht is saved, Bolle seemed to pick Kent up too late, based on the music. He started rocking her side to side when the flute was doing its two-note call (which I associate with Giselle being pulled toward the grave)--but then that music repeated, so they ended at the right time. Tonight Matthews picked up Reyes right away, and that music sequence was only played once (as she was bourree-ing away), so I wonder if Kent/Bolle arranged to have the music repeated beforehand... Till Saturday!
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