Jump to content
This Site Uses Cookies. If You Want to Disable Cookies, Please See Your Browser Documentation. ×

Colleen Boresta

Senior Member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Colleen Boresta

  1. Since I responded to the most handsome male dancers, I can't not add my thoughts about the most beautiful female dancers. As I said with regard to the men, just because someone is a great dancer doesn't mean they're necessarily beautiful or even very attractive. And there are many ballerinas who appear beautiful on stage, but when you see them in person they're pretty ordinary looking. I saw both Wendy Whelan and Julie Kent doing errands in Manhattan, and was surprised at how ordinary they looked. I think Paloma Herrera is beautiful, and with regard to current dancers at ABT Irina Dvorovenko and especially Veronika Part are gorgeous. I always thought Susan Jaffe was beautiful as well. Nina Anashivilli is a another fantastic dancer I would characterize as ordinary looking. With regard to NYCB, I think Tiler Peck is very pretty and Jennifer Ringer is gorgeous. One of the most beautiful dancers I ever saw was Nicole Hlinka, who was a principal dancer with NYCB in the 1990s. And she was a wonderful dancer as well.
  2. Im my opinion, just because someone is a great dancer doesn't mean they're handsome or even good-looking. I loved Julio Bocca as a dancer, but in the looks department I'd classify him as ordinary. I'd say the same of Damien Woetzl. I'd call Angel Corella cute, not handsome. (I know he's been referred to as the "Spanish leprachaun".) I also wouldn't call David Hallberg handsome - nice-looking would be about as far as I'd go. And I saw him up close entering City Center during the Kings of Dance run this February. I think both Jose Manuel Carreno and Marcelo Gomes are gorgeous. I also think Phillip Neal is handsome in a very classical way. And as for hot, I only saw him live once, but Jorge Dunn was the hottest dancer I've ever seen. I had the good fortune of seeing him dance Bolero many years ago, and it was the most excited I've ever been (before or since) at a live performance of any kind.
  3. As has already been said, I think it depends on whether or not the ballerina is in proportion to her partner. I think a short dancer can dance Odette/Odile or Aurora just as well as a tall dancer. Gillian Murphy is just perfect in Swan Lake, and she's only about 5'5 or so. And the last two Auroras I saw - Alina Cojacaru and Tiler Peck are both on the small size, and they gave the two best performances of the title role in Sleeping Beauty I have ever seen. And Natalia Osipova is tiny - but she eats up the stage with her incredible technque and artistry. With regard to Giselle, I think Giselle should be on the short side (or at least very frail looking).
  4. Unfortunately, I saw Nureyev dance live at the end of his career. But with regard to the taped performances I've seen I would definitely include him on this list. Luckily I got to see Barysnikov in Giselle and Don Q (live in 1981) and he definitely belongs on the list. I love Fred Astaire movies and include him too. Whenever I think of Balanchine dancers I think of Patricia McBride. To me, she's the gold standard for NYCB ballerinas (just my opinion). I never saw Edward Villella live, but from the film I've seen of him Villella (did I spell his last name right?) belongs on the list as well. And I would also include Nina Anashvilli whom I fortunately got to see live several times. There are dancers whose performances I've loved - Bocca, Corella, Cornjeo, but I don't think they're quite in the top ten. I can't think of anyone else at the moment.
  5. Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet is not only the version of this ballet I have seen most often, it is also the Romeo and Juliet which has the power to touch my soul. This is especially true when the title characters are lovers I can believe in. This is certainly the case with the July 10th matinee. Bolshoi guest artist, Natalia Osipova, and ABT principal, David Hallberg, are the most natural and realistic young lovers I have ever seen. Amazingly, this was Osipova’s debut in the role of Juliet. I’ve read much about Osipova’s incredible technique, (July 10th was the first time I saw her dance), but she is also a gifted actress. Osipova has an incredibly mobile face, which shows Juliet’s every emotion – from joy to love to fear to sorrow. She also knows how to use her body to show Juliet’s progression from a fourteen year old child to a young wife who cannot live without her husband. Osipova’s dancing brims with a delicate buoyancy. Her gorgeous port de bras and nimble footwork is a joy to behold. Osipova’s body is the perfect vessel for Prokofiev’s gorgeously rhapsodic music. Osipova’s Juliet touched me so deeply that I can’t imagine ever seeing another ballerina in the part. As Romeo, David Hallberg is clearly Osipova’s equal. Hallberg, usually the most princely of performers, dances the part with full physical abandon. (Being David Hallberg, however, his line is always perfect.) Romeo’s explosive multiple air turns during the balcony scene clearly show his overwhelming love for Juliet. Hallberg’s acting is as free of restraint as his dancing. After Tybalt kills Mercutio, Hallberg rushes at him with such ferocity that he almost slips. As well as Osipova and Hallberg dance separately, the real wonder is how perfectly complete they are together. During their pas de deux, both move as if they are one. The sweetness of their passion during the balcony scene is very real and natural. For me, Osipova and Hallberg are not just performing Romeo and Juliet. They actually became Romeo and Juliet for that brief three hours at the Metropolitan Opera House. Jared Matthews has a good handle on the character of the happy go lucky Mercutio, but his dancing is disappointing. His leaps lack elevation and his turns are devoid of power. As Benvolio, Blaine Hoven is a revelation. His technique is dazzling, with commanding jumps and vigorous turns. Patrick Ogle’s Tybalt seems more like a thug who delights in slaying Mercutio, than the protector of the Capulet family. As always, Susan Jones is very warm and funny as Juliet’s nurse. The June 10th matinee of Romeo and Juliet will stay in my mind’s eye for a long time to come. I hope ABT will continue to perform this Kenneth MacMillan classic for many years to come. I hope the company also invites Natalia Osipova to perform with ABT for their 2011 season at the Met.
  6. I also agree with Amour. De Luz was a wonderful Mercutio, though not quite as good as Cornejo in my opinion. I don't understand why Cornejo is the only principal dancing Mercutio. Mercutio is a very important role in Romeo and Juliet. If Gomes and Hallberg (and Malakhov when he was a principal with ABT) can dance the ridiculous and very unimportant role of von Rothbart in Swan Lake (and it's also a much smaller role than Mercutio) why can't they dance Mercutio? And what about someone in the corps like Joseph Phillips? From what I've seen of his dancing, I think he could do justice to Mercutio. I also agree with the many Ballet Talk posters who said many positive things about Blaine Hoven as Benovlio. I think Hoven would make a very good Mercutio. And I know I've posted about it before, but I still think Simkin would be a fantastic Mercutio.
  7. I also attended the Saturday matinee and really can't add any more superlatives than what other posters have described so well. I'm still on such a high from the Osipova/Hallberg Romeo and Juliet, and I'm sure that high will last quite a while. If I can get my thoughts together and add anything new, I'll post later. I just wanted to say that when I saw Romeo and Juliet last year (with Hallberg and Murphy) Hallberg, Matthews and Simkin danced very well together. The 2009 Montague trio (Ballet Talk posters always come up with the best phrases) also acted very well together as did the three (Hallberg, Matthews, Hoven) yesterday. However, I do agree with Ambonnay about Matthew's individual dancing. I was disappointed in his performance(as I was last year). Herman Cornejo is still the gold standard for me with regard to the role of Mercutio. Back in the early 2000's - it was probably 2003 - I remember seeing a Romeo and Juliet with Corella, Cornejo and Lopez. That trio both danced and acted very well together.
  8. I, too, am very glad that Hee Seo has finally been promoted. I especially loved her as Gamzatti in "La Bayadere" this season, and as the Slyph in "La Sylphide" last season. I really hope she'll be promoted to principal in a few years. I also hope that Stella Abrera will be promoted to principal soon.
  9. I attended the July 26th matinee of Swan Lake, which no one has posted about, so here goes. As Odette/Odile Gillian Murphy is perfect. Her Swan Queen’s liquid bourres and arm movements are rich with deep emotion. Her beautifully flexible upper body shows clearly the despair she feels after Siegfried has betrayed her at the ball. Murphy’s Odile glitters like the most glorious diamond. Her hard edges are occasionally softened so that Siegfried will believe she is the “real” Odette. During the coda of the black swan pas de deux, sparks flew as Murphy whipped off very fast fouettes, throwing in a few quadruples along with the single turns. At this point in his career, Jose Manuel Carreno is not the dancer he once was, but his Siegfried is a very ardent and attentive partner. During the white swan pas de deux, Carreno is a young man desperately in love with Odette. At the ball, he is so seduced by Odile that desire just pours out of him. During the too brief final act, his despair is heartfelt. The chemistry between Murphy and Carreno smolders with a fiery passion. This is a Swan Queen and her Prince who belong together forever. Other dancers stand out as well. The Act I pas de trois is performed with enthusiastic vivacity by Sarah Lane, Yuriko Kajiya and Jared Matthews. Lane dances with such delight and artlessness that it makes me smile to see her. Kajiya has light, lovely leaps and wonderful use of her hands. Matthews is an excellent partner, with good elevation and nice turns. The female corps in the white acts (Act II and the sadly truncated Act IV) dance in magnificent sync with the music and each other. As the two big swans, Simone Messmer and Nicola Curry’s lyrical phrasing is exquisite. Sascha Radetsky as the handsome von Rothbart is very disappointing. I usually enjoy Radetsky’s dancing, but during von Rothbart’s solo in Act III, his landings are unusually sloppy. Radetsky’s overall performance lacks sharpness and precision. Hopefully ABT will go back to performing David Blair’s staging of Swan Lake, which they danced before 2000. Swan Lake is a beautifully powerful ballet, and it deserves the best production possible.
  10. I agree with what everyone has said so far. I would like to see as much Ashton as possible (unfortunately I've seen so little), especially La Fille, A Month in the Country and Les Patineurs. And though ABT will probably never bring back the David Blair Swan Lake, I wish Act IV could be lengthened, the handsome von Rothbart done away with, and that ridiculous prologue also gotten rid of. And I think ABT has a tendency to do the Balanchine works that are wrong for the company. I would love to see them do Stars and Stripes, maybe even Union Jack.
  11. Danil Simkin was supposed to dance Benno at Saturday's matinee of Swan Lake, but he did not. He was replaced by Jared Matthews.
  12. I went to yesterday's SL matinee, and Gillian Murphy was fantastic. I'll try to post more later. I just wanted to say that Cory Stearns did not perform at yesterday's matinee. Jose Manuel Carreno was Prince Siegfried. According to the ABT calendar, Cory danced the Prince on Friday night with Michele Wiles.
  13. I saw Radetsky as the Bluebird two years ago, and I was very disappointed by his performance. Usually I love him, but the Bluebird is probably not the role for him. I am going to see Sleeping Beauty on Saturday (the matinee) and I am really excited about it. I saw Alina C. back in 2003 when she danced La Bayadere with Angel Corella and she was just perfect. I recently bought a dvd of her dancing Aurora with the Royal Ballet, and she's just wonderful in that performance. I will post more after I see Saturday's performance.
  14. I have one main question about the casting. Why is Daniil Simkin not dancing Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet? I wondered the same thing last year. I'm going to the Saturday matinee, and I would much prefer to see Simkin as Mercutio than Jared Matthews.
  15. The evening begins with Birthday Offering, a work Ashton choreographed in 1956 to celebrate the Royal Ballet’s 25th anniversary. Though the glorious music was composed by Glazunov, not Minkus or Tchaikovsky, it reminds me both of Petipa’s Paquita and Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty. All the ballerinas dance their solos beautifully, but the real standout is Stella Abrera. Her every movement has such a lyrical flow and her balances are secure. I would love to see Abrera as Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty. Eric Tamm, as always, is a joy to watch. He is an attentive partner to Abrera, with a beautiful line and very clean turns. The Thais Pas de Deux is a wonderfully trancelike piece featuring Diana Vishneva and Jared Matthews. As a solo dancer, Matthews often disappoints me, but in Thais he is a supportive partner who makes Vishneva look like she is floating in the mist. The Awakening is a pas de deux from a discarded Ashton Sleeping Beauty. Even though it was beautifully danced by Veronika Part and David Hallberg, I found it forgettable and a waste of Part and Hallberg’s enormous talents. Maybe it’s the music that throws me off. The Awakening is danced to music George Balanchine used for his Nutcracker. I kept waiting for the Christmas tree to start growing, and was disappointed when it didn’t happen. Ashton’s The Dream is a perfect little jewel of a ballet. All the dancers are magical, but the two outstanding performances are given by Daniil Simkin as Puck and Cory Stearns as Oberon. As the sprite, Simkin seems to live in the air. The way he can make his body float higher and higher in space is just extraordinary. As well, Simkin’s acting has a wonderfully enchanted quality about it. Simkin’s chemistry with Cory Stearns’ Oberon is palpable. The main partnership in The Dream is not between Oberon and Titania, but Oberon and Puck. As Oberon, Stearns is the best I’ve ever seen him. His incredible line and his gorgeous placement all serve to make the character of Oberon both noble and magical. Xiomara Reyes is a sweet and silly Titania with footwork that is both precise and sparkling. Alexi Agoudine is a very funny Bottom, whether he is dancing on pointe as a donkey or reliving his incredible “dream” of falling in love with a fairy queen.
  16. I just want to say that it was great meeting Ballet Talkers Abatt, NY Susan and Volcanohunter at the Philip Neal Farwell yesterday. I always look forward to reading their posts, so talking to them was just wonderful. And the performance was fabulous - all three ballets were memorable. (I will try to post more about them later in the week.) What a class act Philip Neal is. I do agree with the posters who've already said he's retiring too soon. But I think that's better than thinking "When is he (or she) ever going to retire?" (I won't name names with regard to that last question.)
  17. I agree with mimsyb that Maria Ricccetto would be wonderful as Lise in La Fille Mal Gardee. Never having seen Sarah Lane as the lead in a full length ballet, I'm not sure she's up to the task. (I could very well be wrong.) The two times I saw ABT's La Fille I saw Xiomara Reyes and Gillian Murphy as Lise. Both were just perfect for the part. As Colas, I really don't see Carlos Lopez or Sascha Radetsky. Not unless they step up their dancing game a good deal before that time. I definitely see Simkin in the part. I saw Ethan Steifel in the part in 2003. He was very good, but I sincerely doubt he could do the part now. And in 2002 I saw Corella in the role. My god, he was so wonderful. Why is he dancing so little at ABT this season? I know he has his own company, but other dancers (such as Julio Bocca and Nina Aniashvilli) have had their own companies and still danced more than two performances during ABT's Spring Season. I think Herman Cornejo would be the best Colas imagineable (except maybe for Simkin). He has the incredible technique and the happy-go-lucky nature needed for the part. I may be wrong, but I don't think La Fille did as well at the box office as ABT management had hoped it would. I think if it had, ABT would have revived it by now. But it's such a wonderfully joyous ballet, and ABT danced it so perfectly. I wish there was something we audience members could do about getting it revived. Could we start an e-mail campaign or something? I don't tweet, but I'd be willing to learn how to do so if a twitter campaign could convince ABT to revive La Fille Mal Gardee soon.
  18. I also attended the All Ashton program last evening. (I will be seeing the All American Program at the July 3rd matinee.) I will write more later, but for now all I do is to echo other Ballet Talkers and say "Danil Simkin!!!! Danil Simkin!!!!. My god, as Puck he seems to live in the air. How can any dancer have so much hang time? And he's also a wonderful actor who has great chemistry with Cory Stearns' Oberon. That's the real partnership in Ashton's "The Dream", not Oberon and Titania, but Oberon and Puck. As Oberon, Cory Stearns is the best I've ever seen him. I don't have time to go into detail now, but I will post again later in the week. The other Ashton ballets were good too, but The Dream was my favorite. I thought The Awakening was kind of forgettable and a waste of Part and Hallberg's talents. Mediation from Thais was just gorgeous. I really enjoyed Birthday Offering as well. But I was disappointed to see all the empty seats. It was a Saturday night after all, not a week night. Is it that mixed programs don't sell or Ashton doesn't sell or what. I think Americans ballet goers have to be educated about the wonders of Ashton's choreography. And ABT dances Ashton so well - much better than the company dances Balanchine (IMO anyway). I really hope ABT revives La Fille Mal Gardee very well (the 2011 Met season would suit me fine).
  19. Sorry I meant that most dancers are not Alistair MacAuley's favorites. I just wanted to make that clear.
  20. I wasn't agreeing with the NY Times reviewers in general. I was just saying that a reviewer has a right to be honest in light of what he/she feels they saw at a performance. The main NY Times reviewer I've criticized is Alistair MacAuley. He doesn't seem to look at the dancer at that particular performance. He has his favorites and if you're not his favorite (which most dancers are) he's going to be very critical. He also goes on way too long about his history in seeing a certain ballet. And in a review of a final performance, isn't a reviewer going to sum up a performer's career? Is that somehow not allowed because this is a final performance. Can you only say good things about a person because their career is over? Yvonne Borree was an inconsistent dancer as I said before. Sometimes she was wonderful, sometimes she was really off. If I were writing a final review of a ballerina or danseur I'd certainly sum their career in a few lines. In my opinion there are dancers whose performance will be remembered by audience members for years after they saw them. And then there will be the other dancers. I think Yvonne Borree belongs in the second category. I am sure Yvonne danced very well on June 6th. I saw her on May 30th in Stravinsky Violin Concerto and I was surprised how wonderful she was in that ballet (having seen her dance the part rather tentatively before.) I also wish her the best for her future, whatever it happens to hold.
  21. I didn't go to Yvonne Borree's Farewell, but I've seen her dance many many times. Sometimes she was wonderful, but sometimes she was tentative to say the least. But she's not the only NYCB dancer like that. Charles Askegard (imo anyway) is another case in point. Sometimes he's great, sometimes he's really off. You never know what you're going to get with him. It's hard for an audience member to know where such inconsistencies come off. There were times (as have been mentioned on Ballet Talk many times, when Borree was noticeably trembling during a performance. But I saw her dance Coppelia several times, and every time she was great. And Swanilda is such a killer role!!!!! I don't know if I'd use the term A and B listers for principal dancers, but there are definitely principal dancers who are better than others. And not just in NYCB, also at ABT. Maxim B. (I can never remember how to spell his name) is a good partner, but you just can't compare him to Hallberg or Gomes. I could go on and on about this subject, but I won't. And I agree with the Ballet Talkers who said the NY Times reviewer had the right to be negative about Yvonne Borree's dancing. It is a review, after all, not a testimonial. As long as what is criticized is the dancing (never the appearance) and it's done in a professional way I think it's fine. I have never liked when a reviewer whitewashed a favorite's performance.
  22. I just looked at the online casting for Sunday's performance. I think I was somewhat wrong about who will be dancing what. The only difference is that I think Jennie will be dancing "Embraceable You" with Philip, and Ana Sophia will dance "My One and Only." Maria K. will dance "Who Cares" with Philip, and Sterling will dance "Stairway to Paradise." I think that's what it is, but with so many ballerinas in one performance it's a bit confusing. Again, I'm really looking forward to Sunday.
  23. My thoughts about who'll be dancing what in Who Cares are the same as yours, Helene. Who Cares was on the program the first time I attended a NYCB performance. It was February of 1980. Patricia McBride danced an unforgettable "Fascinatin' Rhythm" that has stayed in my mind's eye all these years. I can't wait to see Tiler Peck do that solo. I will really miss Philip Neal as a dancer with NYCB, but his farewell is shaping up to be one of the best ever (right up there with Jock Soto's farewell).
  24. Sorry I just got around to answering this. The best balancer (if that's a word) I've ever seen is Paloma Herrera, both in Sleeping Beauty and Don Q. And as good as Paloma's balancing was in the grand pas from Don Q (which was taped in 1997 I think) when I saw her dance Don Q in 2004 and Sleeping Beauty in 2007 her balances were rock solid. You never have to worry that Paloma's going to wobble.
  25. I really enjoyed reading about all the Ballet Talkers getting to meet each other at the Alicia Alonso Birthday Gala. It made me wonder if any of you will be at the Philip Neal Farewell. It would be great to meet other Ballet Talkers before the ballet or during the intermissions or whatever. If it's before, a good meeting place would be the new public space in back of the Met, by the reflecting pool. I've hung out there a few times already this season, and it's so comfortable and cool. I'm usually pretty easy to spot. I'll be the middle aged woman with short red hair wearing a baseball cap. Anyway, I'm really excited about the program (though I hate to see Neal retire). I'm not excited about Call Me Ben (I've seen one Melissa Barack ballet and the best thing I can say about it was that it was forgettable). But the rest of the program looks just sensational. Let me know if any of you will be attending the Neal Farewell.
  • Create New...