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Colleen Boresta

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Everything posted by Colleen Boresta

  1. I'm sorry Abatt for not giving you credit for the Carreno remark in my earlier post. I also wanted to bring up another point. When Misty Copeland (at Wednesday's matinee) does her solo in Act I, isn't she supposed to do fouettes on a diaganol? She just did regular turns. I'm going to check my copy of the 1999 ABT Le Corsaire on tape and see what Herrera does. l also want to see what Isabella does at Saturday's matinee. Besides the lack of fouettes, Misty was very good as Gulnare. Marcelo was perfection as Conrad, Gillian was sensational as Medora, Whiteside was good as Ali but not up to the level of Vasiliev or Corella. I was really impressed with Steven McRae as Lankadem. I've never seen him before. He was a very exciting dancer and a wonderful actor. I would love to see him again.
  2. I attended the Wednesday matinee of Le Corsaire and will also be seeing the Saturday matinee. I will post about them together, probably early next week. I also read Macauley's review of the Tuesday night performance. The one thing I'm in total agreement with him about is the fact that the "new" production just means new scenery and costumes. I'm glad about that because I loved the old production. It may be a guilty pleasure, but if danced right ABT's Le Corsaire is just so much fun!!!!! Some of the costume changes seem to be changes made just for the sake of changing (if that makes sense). For example, instead of wearing blue pants, Ali wears purple pants. Besides that, the pants are exactly the same. (I just watched my copy of the ballet taped live in 1999, so these things are pretty clear in my head.) Birbanto now wears a black bandana instead of a red bandana. The red bandana made more sense in the scene where Medora stabs Birbano when he tries to put the moves on her. The black bandana blends in with the black mask or whatever the facial covering the pirates are wearing is. He has to take off the whole covering so that she'll be able to identify him as her attacker later. In the old version, his face was covered but his red bandana was showing. And since Birbanto was the only pirate wearing a red bandana, it was easily for Medora to identify him later. I certainly agree with whoever talked about the joy of seeing Carreno as Ali. I remember once attending a performance at City Center where Carreno danced both the pas de deux from Diana and Aceton (is this the word) and Robbins' Afternon of a Faun. (Both are shirtless roles.) Both myself and all the ladies around me thought we had died and gone to heaven.
  3. I just read Mary Cargill's review of Chase Finlay's debut in "Stars and Stripes". It confirmed my belief that tall, princelike dancers like Finlay - the ones who excel in roles like Apollo, are not the best dancers for the lead role in Stars and Stripes. Although he danced it many times, I never liked Charles Akegard in the ballet. Damian Woetzl, Ethan Stiefel, now Andrew Veyette and Tyler Angle - these are the best dancers for the El Capitan role (in my opinion anyway). I am going to New York City Ballet's final performance of the season on Sunday and can't wait to see Bouder and Veyette in Stars and Stripes. I'll definitely post about their performances as well as about the performances in Serenade and Stravinksy Violin Concerto early next week.
  4. All I can tell you is I got 4 $26 dollar tickets (which I think are $29, maybe a litle more if you don't have a subscription) at the box office. I think it was last August. I got them quite soon after I got my tickets for the 2012-2013 seasons. Maybe they don't have too many tickets at that price and they sold out quickly. I'm not sure.
  5. ord7916, there are orchestra seats that are closer and cheaper at the David Koch Theatre. I've gotten seats in row H for $26. I have a subscription so the tickets are slightly cheaper. You can probably get a seat in row H for like $29 or $30 a ticket. And you don't have to worry about being too far to the side. You can be all the way on the end and still have a great view. (Don't ever try this at the Met, however. If you're too far to the side your view is badlty obstructed.) There are also good seats in rows J and K for $51. Again, I have a subscription so I pay less. But you could probably get a seat in row J or K for $60 opr a little less. Look online. nycballet.com.
  6. Did anyone see Simkin/Boylston's Don Q? If so, please post. I saw him dance Basilio in 2011 and thought he was very good. Yuriko Kajiya was Kitri. She was actually prettu gpod, but she's much better in lyrical/romantic roles. I'd love to know how Boylston did as Kitri.
  7. So what actually can we do? Is there a way to reach Kevin McKenzie by e-mail that anyone knows? If somehow a number of us could get word to him by e-mail, social media, whatever, that we all spend a lot of money on ABT tickets and we're huge Stella Abrera fans and we would buy even more tickets if she were a principal and dancing principal roles? I'm just thinking off the top of my head here. It might not do any good, but it certainly wouldn't hurt and at least we would have tried. What do you Ballet Talkers think? Any good suggestons?
  8. I saw Gemma Bond dance Amour in 2011. I thought she was miscast then. I just checked to see what exactly I said about her performance as Amour then and it was her dancing "lacks lightness and buoyancy." Every dancer in the dream sequence needs to have great ballon or the whole scene falls flat (sorry for the bad pun at the end).
  9. Thank you ddsbiggestfan for the review of Herrera and Stearns Don Quixote. The two times I saw Paloma do the part - once in 2004 and once in the late 90s she was a real spitfire. Her jumps were great, she did a lot of very secure double fouettes and her balances were rock steady and went on for a long time (not as long as Osipova, but quite long). I've never seen her dance with Stearns so I can't say, but her Basilio in 2004 was Julio Bocca and in the late 90s performance it was Angel Corella. Both Bocca and Corella were very good partners for Paloma. She had wonderful chemistry with both of them.
  10. I saw Julie Kent perform "Manon" with Jose Manuel Carreno. I think it was 2007 at the Met. I'll have to check about the year. She was wonderful throughout the entire ballet. I had seen Xiomara Reyes and Angel Corella dance it the year before. Corella was very good, but Reyes was so miscast. She was good in Act III, but not the other acts. I really did not buy her as a seductress at all, Kent I did;. I wish I had seen Alessandra Ferri in the role but I never got the chance.
  11. I will definitely join the band wagon re:making Matvienko an ABT principal who will return every year at least to the Met. Angelica, I wish I knew Kevin McKenzie or someone on the board of ABT so I could bring up the question of why Stella is not a principal. Unfortunately I'm just a ballet lover like all of us and I don't know anyone at ABT. I am not very knowledgeable about all the social media out there, but could we conduct a facebook campaign or something? Doesn't ABT have a facebook page? I'm sure they do. It's just a thought. Maybe some facebook savy Ballet Talk posters out there could tell us the best way to conduct a make Stella Abrera a principal at ABT campaign.
  12. Thank you California. I was just about to post and ask if anyone had seen the Murply/Matvienko Don Q. I saw them last year in La Bayadere. He was wonderful and she of course was as fantastic as always. I did find, however, that they lacked chemistry. That performance on May 26, 2012 could have been their first time to dance together. I'm not sure what else they have performed together. I would definitely definitely see him dance again. He's listed as a guest artist and I'm pretty sure he and his wife are principals with the Maryinsky. If ayone knows about this for sure, please post. As I mentioned earlier in the week I saw Stella dance Mercedes/Queen of the Dryads in 2011 and she was as wonderful as she sounds to have been last night. I will never ever understand why she is not a principal at ABT.
  13. Tiler Peck was sitting two rows ahead of me on Saturday night. Maybe we were in the same role, Batusan, or you were in the row behind me. I'm sorry I didn't get to meet you. I always enjoy reading your posts.
  14. i'm sorry. I looked at the NYCB casting for the Saturday evening performance. As someone already has mentioned, the matinee will be danced by Bouder and Garcia, who are also sensational. It would be very hard to pick who is better in Theme and Variations Peck and De Luz or Bouder and Garcia. I think it's a draw.
  15. I think I'm in the minority, but I love Le Corsaire depending on who is dancing it. I have a ticket for June 8th matinee, but I'm a bit concerned about who is dancing what. Osipova is Medora and Boylston is her best friend Gulnare - so that's fine. But according to the abt peformance calendar it looks like Vasiliev is dancing Conrad. Last year I saw him dance Ali and he was sensational. I wonder if Vasiliev can restrain himself enough for Conrad. I'm used to seeing dancers like Gomes, Hallberg and Ethan Stiefel dance Conrad. And then the last two names are Cornejo and Simkin. At first I thought I'd be seeing Cornejo as Ali and I said "Yeah!" (to myself of course because my husband does not care about ballet). Now I'm not sure if Simkin will be Ali and Cornejo the slave trader or vice versa. I wish they'd list the parts with the names when it comes to three act ballets. I think I'm going to this ballet in part to see who will be dancing what part and hoping it won't be a train wreck. If you're new to ballet I don't think I can recommend this performance. I forget who, but someone mentioned going to NYCB and I just looked at their casting list for the June 8th matinee. Tiler Peck and Joaquin De Luz will be dancing Theme and Variations in Tsch. Suite #3. I don't think ballet gets much better than that. Now I wish I could see that performance. Anyway, I hate being long winded about it, but I would look into the NYCB matinee - at least the last ballet. And it is true that the seats are much cheaper. Also much better. But that's another matter.
  16. I know Jayne already asked this question, but did anyone see Paloma Herrera's Kitri at the May 25th matinee. I had a subscription ticket for that performance but switched to the evening Don Q. I always thought that Kitri was Herrera's best role, but I haven't seen her dance it since 2004. I haven't seen her dance at all for at least three years. I've heard and read that her technique has really declined.
  17. Doesn't anyone go to NYCB once ABT arrives at the Met? I went to the May 26th matinee which was called A Tribute To Broadway. The afternoon begins with ‘Fancy Free’. ‘Fancy Free’ was the first collaboration between choreographer Jerome Robbins and composer Leonard Bernstein. It is the story of three sailors on leave in New York City during World War II. They are, of course, looking for fun and women. ‘Fancy Free’ is as fresh today as when it was first performed in 1944. The jazzy score by Bernstein fits Robbins’ choreography perfectly. As the three sailors Joaquin De Luz, Robert Fairchild and Andrew Veyette have great chemistry. They are very believable as close friends. De Luz is all high-flying energy as the first sailor. As the dreamy second sailor Robert Fairchild is just perfect. Veyette’s rumba dancing third sailor does not have the Latin flair of American Ballet Theatre dancers like Jose Manuel Carreno and Marcelo Gomes but he nails all the moves producing a sexy comic dance. Gretchen Smith and Tiler Peck are very good as the two girls the sailors fight over. The second work on the program is ‘Who Cares?’ It contains choreography by George Balanchine and is set to sixteen George and Ira Gershwin tunes. The first segment of this ballet is danced by ten female corps dancers and ten soloists – five girls and five boys. ‘Who Cares?’ really comes to life when the soloists perform duets to songs like “Somebody Loves Me” and “That Certain Feeling”. All the young dancers are equally good. Then the lights dim and the second part of ‘Who Cares?’ starts. This section of the piece has often been compared to Balanchine’s ‘Apollo’. There is one man and three women. Each of the women dances once with the man and once by herself. Then the man gets to do his solo. ‘Who Cares?’ concludes with the entire company dancing to “I’ve Got Rhythm”. Amar Ramasar’s pas de deux with a luminous Steling Hyltin to “The Man I Love” is just exquisite. He also dances with the briskly witty Ashley Bouder to “Who Cares?” and the sweetly demure Teresa Reichlen to “Embraceable You.” Reichlen seems a little tall for Ramasar, especially when she goes on pointe. As already mentioned, the principals each dance a solo. Ashley Bouder stands out for her musicality and spot on phrasing as she skips to “I’ll Build a Stairway to Paradise”. Teresa Reichlen is really more an adagio dancer and her solo to “My One and Only” lacks the needed sharpness. Sterling Hyltin shows off her incredible speed in her “Fascinatin’ Rhythm” number. Her steps are definitely more precise than when I saw her dance this solo on May 11th. I don’t think Hyltin is quite up to the level of Patricia McBride or Tiler Peck but she’s getting there. Amar Ramasar reminds me of a young Gene Kelly as he dances to “Liza”. I still can’t stand the new costumes for the female corps dancers and soloists. Fortunately they don’t detract from the glorious joy that is George Balanchine’s love letter to New York City. The program ends with 'West Side Story Suite'. ‘West Side Story Suite’ is a vigorous ballet which highlights male bravura dancing. Chase Finlay is a very young, idealistic Tony. The way he bounds toward the sky in his “Something’s Coming” solo is both touching and exuberant. Andrew Veyette leads the Jets with his virtuoso dancing. His voice, however, is merely okay. He does not sing “Cool” nearly as well as Nikolaj Hubbe or Damian Woetzel did, but they are both retired from NYCB. The ladies also help make ‘West Side Story Suite’ memorable. Georgina Pazcoguin is a triple threat – great dancing, great singing, great acting. All flashing limbs and glorious attack, Pazcoguin belts out a droll and cynical “America”. The ladies accompanying her are very good. Lauren Lovette’s Maria is artlessly pure. As always, I find my eyes welling with tears during the “Something” finale. The blend of Leonard Bernstein’s music and Jerome Robbins’ choreography conveys me to that special “place for us.” I hope New York City Ballet continues to dance ‘Fancy Free’ ‘Who Cares?’ and ‘West Side Story Suite’ for many years to come.
  18. I like the comedy of Don Q. More improtantly I love the dancing, especially if it is done well. It's the same with Le Corsaire. You don't see it for the stories, which are both rather silly. You seen it for the dancing. You have to accept that about Don Q going in. Again, if the dancing is good and there is chemistry between the leads and the smaller parts are well acted and danced, well - you leave the theater on such a high. I do anyway and I have seen Don Q around 20 times.
  19. I think Hee Seo is absolutely wonderful in dramatic roles like A Month in the Country (I didn't see her Onegin) and romantic roles like La Sylphide and Giselle. I am going to see her Swan Lake and I'm a bit worried about how she'll handle the role of Odile. My Saturday subscription ticket was for Julie Kent. I shouldn't say this but at least with Hee Seo I'm relatively sure she'll be a very good Odette. Hopefully she'll surprise me with regard to Odile.
  20. Here are my thoughts on the May 25th evening performance of 'Don Quixote'. I saw my first ‘Don Q’ in June of 1981. It starred ABT’s Gelsey Kirkland and Mikhail Barysnikov. It was a thrilling ballet, forever etched upon my mind’s eye. That performance set a very high standard for ‘Don Qs’. Since that time I have seen several incredible presentations of ABT’s ‘Don Quixote’. The Kitris I’ve seen have included Nina Aniashvilli, Paloma Herrera, Gillian Murphy, Xiomara Reyes and Polina Semionova. I’ve also seen fantastic Basilios including Julio Bocca, Angel Corella, Carlos Acosta, Jose Manuel Carreno and Herman Cornejo. As wonderful as all those Kitris and Basilios were, they pale in comparison to the performances of Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev on Saturday night. New York Times’ chief dance critic, Alastair Macaulay, put it best when he wrote in his review of the May 25th evening performance of ‘Don Quixote’ that “Jumps, turns, balances, splits – these two take them higher, faster, longer.” Osipova has mind-boggling jumps where she seems to hang in the air longer than is humanly possible. Her turns are performed at whatever is faster than the speed of light. During the coda of the Act III pas de deux her fouettes are mainly doubles, whipped off at an incredibly fast pace. During the same pas de deux she holds her balances for the longest period of tme I have ever seen. As Basilio, Ivan Vasiliev is technically the most accomplished male dancer I have ever experienced. I don’t even know what to call most of the movements he performs. His jumps are incredibly high, his air tours all seem to be multiples and he often executes 540 degree turns. He is also an extremely secure partner. In Act I as he lifts Osipova over his head with one hand he raises his left leg a bit. Watching Osipova and Vasiliev perform the roles of Kitri and Basilio in ‘Don Quixote’ is like watching a high wire act without a net. The audience knows, however, that they can not possibly fall. ‘Don Q’ is a ballet where such virtuoso technique is essential to the success of the production. Osipova and Vasiliev are also masters of comic timing. Their chemistry is absolutely combustible. They are both so adorable that you want to take them home with you. Other performers in the May 25th evening performance of ‘Don Q’ stand out as well. Alexandre Hammoudi is very impressive as the matador Espada. Misty Copeland’s Queen of the Dryads has some unfortunate problems with her Italian fouettes. Her jumps at the end of the dream sequence are very strong, but pale when compared to Osipova’s jumps. Yuriko Kajiya is a perfect Amour. The lyrical delicacy of her movements, her quicksilver footwork and lovely light leaps – all are quite wonderful. Roman Zhurbin as Don Quixote and Roddy Dobble as Kitri’s father, Lorenzo, again show what superb actors they are. Alexei Agoudine is very funny as the foppish Gamache. He certainly knows how to take a pratfall. The May 25th evening performance of ‘Don Quixote’ is the best ballet I have ever seen in my 30 plus years of attending shows at Lincoln Center. I only hope I am fortunate enough to see Osipova and Vasiliev perform in many more ballets.
  21. Since I live in Staten Island I mostly go to matinees. The David Koch Theatre is usually quite full on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. Speaking of Tiler Peck, she was at the Osipova/Vasiliev 'Don Q'. I was able to tell her what a big fan of hers I am. She was just lovely. I've seen her dance Aurora twice, but both times were on Sundays. It would have been just horrible if she hadn't gotten the acclaim she deserved.
  22. I didn't think the lack of before the curtains bows was a sign of bad manners. I was disappointed because I loved the ballet so much and I wanted Hallberg and Hee Seo to get more applause. This was only my second performance of A Month in the Country. I saw the Royal Ballet perform it at the Met in June of 1981 and I never forgot it. I have wanted to see a live performance of it again for over 30 years. I don't want to wait another 32 years to see it again (especially considering the fact that I'd be 91 if I were still around.)
  23. One more point I meant to make about the ABT audience. At the end of A Month in the Country the audience reaction was very subdued. And there was no in front of the curtain bows. How about those who saw the other performances of A Month in the Country. (I went on Wednesday afternoon) Was it the same. I found that quite upsetting. I love pyrotechics in ballet but it has to fit the ballet, the moment, etc, etc. At least the audience at Onegin was quite appreciaitive. (I attended the May 18th matinee performance. ) That's one good thing anyway.
  24. I totally agree with you mimsyb. When I used the turn "popcorn ballet" I was referring to fact that they are light comedies, where all out bravura dancing is really needed. It is unfortunate how rude too many audience members are. It's one thing to clap and even say bravo or bravi or whatever but limit the "hooping and hollering", I have always felt that the ballet audience should wait until the music has stopped and the performer is taking his/her bow to clap. Please don't clap and yell in the middle of the solo or pas de deux. I find it very distracting. I think the audiences at NYCB are better at this. They're very appreciative, but they wait for the right time to clap and they don't "hoop and holler". I wish someone would give much of the ABT audiences a lesson in ballet etiquette (not like that will ever happen).
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