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About hunterman0953

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  • Birthday 08/02/1944

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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  1. I hadn't actually considered contemporary ballet,but I take the point about modern costumes, and will pay more attention to this aspect of costuming, as I have recently made an effort to introduce contemporary ballet into my collection.I'm grateful for the pointer. It is however in classical ballet where the real problems are. It's such a crying shame when a superb performance is marred by the distraction of a skirt which refuses to rise and fall as it should. I've just gone off to compare three of the Giselles I have (RB,POB & La Scala among others) and I just can't get past the annoying
  2. Was it Nureyev who said something on the lines of 'the fall of a skirt can complete a phrase'? I'm fascinated by the behaviour of costumes in performance. Some seem to behave beautifully, while others draw attention to themselves by just 'doing their own thing', ie not being at all sympathetic to a dancer's movements. It can be quite irritating when this happens, and impossible to ignore at times. Act Two of Giselle seems to be particularly vulnerable to costume failure, in my view anyway. I'd love a stitch by stitch analysis of the world of costuming, but I'll settle for comments which might
  3. Golly gosh! I don't know what to say! Thank you so much for that amazingly rapid, and formidably comprehensive reply, Simon G. I know a virtuosic showpiece in classical music when I hear one, but I'm only guessing that this is the balletic equivalent, so to speak. Is it as horrendously difficult to perform as it appears to be, even for a dancer of Aurelie Dupont's stature?
  4. I'm continually drawn to Aurelie Dupont's Aurora's entrance in the POB DVD overall, but particularly as regards her steps on the return trip across the stage R to L. It fascinates me so much, that I'm wondering if some kind soul will take pity on this ballet ignoramus, and 'talk me through' her steps.It's that tricky leg work which propels her across the stage. It seems to me like incredible virtuosity, which gives me major 'goose-bumps' every time I see it. My tired old eyes just can't unpick what's happening, and the eye surgery I'll be having in six hours time will doubtless not help all th
  5. Thank you vipa for that valuable extension to the topic. I was only thinking this am, as I made my morning coffee, 'Can ballet help to make us better people?' Your observation about the Nazis and Bach is spot on.I believe that in one concentration camp, inmates were made to perform chamber music for the 'staff'. Chilling. I don't know about ballet, but I think ballet has been, in the past, performed somewhat coldly and clinically ( I won't name names, but there's enough, I feel,in my collection to validate the point), but I'll still hold out for my own much played copy of Alina's Giselle, and
  6. I regret using the word spirituality in my initial post, and only did so in the context of my former psychologist's Emailing me about her Varanasi 'quest'. In fact, our consulting room relationship had earlier been, on her side, marked by an absence of reference to the arts, even though she knew that to be my area of interest. She was so excellent, and so in earnest about her methodology that I never mentioned to her that the reason I was progressing so well was that I felt so good after talking with her that it enabled me to go home and enjoy anew my beloved, and very therapeutic, music! Had
  7. Thank you Bart and Innopac for your thoughtful responses. Dr Karl Paulnack's thoughts are right on the money, aren't they? Real 'I wish I'd said that' words. Lovely. And thank you Bart for your thoughtful summary of what I was clumsily driving at. I had actually forgotten at the time of writing what got a 'bee in my bonnet' in the first place, which was in fact an enthusiastically religious lady who asked me, rather intelligently I thought, what was in my mind when watching ballet. The robustly religious lady's question was a lovely provocation to deep thought. For me, at any rate, there is p
  8. I have a friend, formerly my psychologist, who Emailed me from Varanasi in India, the message containing veiled references to her 'work in progress' on a mysterious 'something' which she promises to tell me about soon.In what is becoming a frustratingly long interim as I await the 'good news', I've been wondering what I might share with her in terms of 'good news' - my 'something' which just might align with hers in some way. Against this psychologist (a very good one) searching for her 'something' in a great centre of culture and religion is myself, who has never even tried to discover any so
  9. Four hours ago, I came home with a copy of 'Essential Ballet', being the Kirov at Covent Garden/ Red Square. In the latter, Alexander Sotnikov has his back to the action! I haven't watched beyond the first excerpt, and decided to make a post now because even if I persisted with the whole thing, I probably still wouldn't be able to offer a personal comment on the success or otherwise of the performances. I am naturally keen to have others, infinitely more informed, share their views on this. Mr Sotnikov can be seen taking the odd look behind - to see if the dancers were still there? I had pre
  10. Thanks Alexandra.It's a good start, and I hope to learn more.I did post a hasty, rather emotional response, but on considered reflection, I think, given my very tenuous grasp of the subject, I'd be wiser to stand aside and just let the ball roll.
  11. Thanks to Ballet Talk, my appreciation of ballet has gone up by orders of magnitude. I only wish my confidence in making posts would similarly improve. With all that erudition around the place,I can't help but feel a right chump asking rather silly questions. Having said that, I'll still put my next pension cheque on the validity of asking about the relationship between dancers and the conductor and his orchestra on a given night. I always marvel at the final flick of a finger to coincide with the last beat of a career-defining piece of performance. Even in recorded performances that I've watc
  12. I'm a bit slow off the mark with this, but I must make a comment on the West Australian Ballet's magnificent performance on May 11. I'm new to ballet, but in my great enthusiasm for Don Quixote, I have collected five full DVD versions, with three substantial excerpts to boot. I went along to watch the WAB with trepidation, and even as I sat there waiting for them to begin, I had Nina Ananiashvili and the Perm Ballet firmly fixed in my mind's eye, albeit with no malicious intent. From the very start, Nina et al were most satisfyingly replaced by the WAB's wonderful set, and thereafter by almost
  13. My contribution probably doesn't belong in a discussion about the use of the eyes artistically in performance, but I just wondered why Svetlana Zakharova looks directly to camera in 'The Kirov Celebrates Nijinsky'. I dare say it's of little consequence with regard to the artistic merits of her performance, but I just wondered why she, or any other dancer, would do that.
  14. Thank you Bart for those valuable insights. It's exactly the sort of stuff I need. The other day, I had my four year old granddaughter on my lap watching all of the RB 'Still Life at the Penguin Cafe'. I didn't dare say a word, and honestly, I could have wept when I saw the determined attentiveness in her expression. The look of indignation on her face when I paused it to go to the bathroom was priceless. Why did I pause it? - good question. Although I felt that the leap into classical ballet might be a tad risky, I gave her Lyudmila Semenyaka's Don Quixote fouettes from 'Bolshoi in the Park'
  15. Thank you for your encouraging and informative reply Mel Johnson. Much appreciated. I have been doing a lot of thinking about what you and the others have said. It's the first time since I started thinking in earnest about arts education that I have been in any way challenged to actually do something about the present unsatisfactory situation. My first reaction was, to be honest, sheer panic, and it will take a few days for that to settle down. However, I have been giving myself 'Henry V before Agincourt' style talks all day, and it is having some effect! Before getting involved, I could rea
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