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


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by jerryb

  1. I agree. I refer to After the Rain as a "Pretzel" ballet or "How many ways can I twist Wendy Whalen?" I wish NYB would drop it.
  2. Actually, IMHO Watermill IS a work of genius. Particularly if one was luck enough to see Villella in it. But a fantastic theater/dance pieces no matter who dances the lead. It was booed at the premiere mostly because I think the NYCB audience was looking for another Dances at a Gathering. If IIRC New York Magazines review had an illustration of an audience with pig heads sitting on their hands.
  3. I'm I'm sorry Megan didn't ask Mr. Villella about Watermill. IMHO regardless of what one thinks of the ballet he was superb in it. And as I recall hearing him say he came back to NYCB to dance it because he didn't have a "proper farewell". Would have loved to hear about his feelings about the role.
  4. Watched it last night and I agree. Very enjoyable. I only wish, as I'm sure all of us do, that I could have attended a performance this year.
  5. I got as far as the ballroom scene and stopped. Maybe I'll pick it up again at some point but to me it was neither a good "film" nor good "filmed dance". Too many close ups. the background murmuring in some scenes, the repeated use of flower pots or planters to give an illusion of depth, the sound of Romeo knocking on the apothecary door yet no sound when crockery and wine bottles are swept from a table, Tybalt pushing a sword into Romeo's chest which surely would have drawn blood just a few examples of pretentious film making. Trying to twist something into something else and failing badly.
  6. I remember well the NYCB version with the caller. Saw it many times. I'll never forget "Come on Nick, Come on Pat. Make those feet go wickety wack." Quote it to my friends from time to time - they have no idea what I'm talking about.
  7. I agree Kathleen. I've been telling friends and family for years that this Sleeping Beauty doesn't breathe. I call it Sleeping Beauty on "speed" and I don't mean metronome markings. The first Sleeping Beauty I saw was the Royal Ballet's at the Met many years ago. It was a prologue and plus three or four acts (I've forgotten). I'm not advocating that for NYCB but a breath here and there would be welcome.
  8. Saw the Saturday evening 5/19 performance. While DAG was decently danced what was missing for me was the feeling of dances at a gathering. The dancers seemed to have no relationship to each other or a particular place (with the exception of Tyler Angle, Joseph Gordon and Lauren Lovette). It doesn’t matter specifically where that place is or who these people are because each of us will bring our own perception of that. “Who am I and why am I here.” Most of today’s DAG dancers have no sense of that and it has been so for a few years with DAG. Ballet Alert old timers will remember Villela and Verdy as examples of what I mean. As Anna Kisselgoff said in the NY Times June 14, 1994 “No matter how plotless, a Robbins ballet is about relationships.” I agree that Taylor Stanley was excellent in Opus 19/The Dreamer as were Russell Janzen and Maria Kowroski in Glass Pieces. What fun to have seen Stanley and Janzen develop. I remember Joseph Gordon in class at SAB and it is wonderful to see what a fine, fine dancer (and principal soon I hope) he has become. Bravo.
  9. Saturday May 5, 2018 standing ovation at NYCB for "Something to Dance About" which is a pleasant but mediocre work. Well danced but very poorly sung (the person who did the amplification really did the singer no favors) but hardly worth anything but polite applause. However, great work by the corps, Sara Mearns, and Andrew Veyette.
  10. Saturday Evening February 25th. Neverwhere, Mothership, The Decalogue, Namouna. Martins and those responsible for programming must have thought that this program would be good for the $30 ticket night which attracts a full house and a younger demographic. Well I think they made a huge mistake. I half expected wild cheers and huge applause but all the works were greeted very, very tepidly. It seems even the uninitiated know garbage when they see it. I doubt that a single additional ticket will be sold as a consequence of viewing this program. The saving grace was the dancers. From corps to principals they were wonderful. Kudos to the interim team and the dancers for weathering a difficult time and looking better than ever. Mothership at least provided roles for 8 dancers we don't often get to see solo. Namouna is admired by many but for me it is too cute and waaay too long. Although there are moments of very interesting and musical choreography there are bits like the smoking business where I just say to myself "OK. I got that now let's get on with it." Tyler Angle was a joy as the sailor and his solo early on was just great. A twist on Vipa's words above - Lousy show - what a wonderful company.
  11. Both Applebaum and Scordato were very good in Divertimento and I agree worthy of promotion.
  12. Kathleen - I feel much the same. For me it's been 60 years going back to City Center and like you I still feel "Oh wow!" and thankful that NYCB continues to exist.
  13. I was at the Saturday evening performance of MSND. I thought Ulbricht was terrific. Of course, one expects virtuosity (and got it in spades) but I was very impressed with his presence, authority and command when he wasn't dancing. IMHO one of the best Oberons I've seen since Villela. I like Ramasar very much but I don't think the divertissement PDD is his cup of tea. I agree with Amour that there didn't seem to be mush chemistry between him and Hyltin. Schumacher's puck was perfect. Fun without going over the top. Overall, a good performance. I look forward to the magic of MSND every year and Saturday did not disappoint. P.S. I was totally unaware that Kate Moss was on the promenade.
  14. Thanks Drew and rg. I must have seen a version of Fokine's choreography somewhere along the way. As you said rg, I remember the tossing of balls the size of apples.
  15. I was at the Saturday evening performance of Donizetti Variations, La Sonambula and Firebird. It was more enjoyable than I thought it would be since like many others I'm not a big fan of either La Sonambula or Firebird. For me the evening was rescued by the dancers. Tyler Peck, Joaquin de Luz, Wendy Whalen, Robert Fairchild and Ashley Bouder were wonderful. Can someone help me with some small questions regarding Firebird. I may be getting my productions mixed up or having a senior moment but didn't the women used to roll a ball around? And didn't the men in the beginning of the wedding scene in front of the front cloth come out from either side carrying banners? I know Firebird has been revised many times and the questions are a probably inane but any help the members can give is greatly appreciated.
  16. Where did Adrian Clay come from? Googled the name and only found Facebook page which I can't access. He's not listed on NYCB website. Congratulations to all.
  17. Canbelto - Thanks for posting that Lauren Lovettee was the purple girl in Les Carillons. She was outstanding. I don't like Les Carillons very much. The music is too heavy and it goes on for too long. I had a thought while watching that it sounds like music for a bad story ballet. I too found the cast of Year of the Rabitt excellent. I like the ballet and look forward to more from Jusin Peck.
  18. I am also in the "lost for words" category. I saw the Saturday evening performance with TDF seats in the second row to the right and at first thought that the bad viewing angle was coloring my opinion. Alas, that was not the case. Things quickly went downhill. I think what bothered me most was the complete lack of respect for the score. Not only chopping it up but the terribly unmusical choreography. Very sad that the powers that be chose to present the Australian Ballet's dancers in a work that is not worthy of them. I left after the second act. Was surprised the read that . I thought the audience response was pretty tepid except after the dance of the four swans which I think was something they recognized and could grab onto. I said to my companion after the first act "I forgive Peter Martins".
  19. You hit the nail on the head. As a long time NYCB fan I totally agree.
  20. I was at the performance Saturday evening 9/18. It was good to be at an all Balanchine night and I thought the performances good all around. Maria Kowroski was particularly fine in Monumentum/Movements. I have a question about Duo Concertant. If my memory serves correctly the ending was a narrow spotlight center stage only on the two hands. The rest of the stage very black. The last couple of times I've seen it the spotlight seemed much wider and the background only semi dark. In my opionion this dilutes the effect. Is it just my mis-remembering? As Canbelto said the corps danced very well all evening. Very disciplined, energetic and well spaced. I think Danses Concertantes needs a more comedia dell'arte style than the performance on Saturday. I think McCauley is right the wit just wasn't there. Only the red pas de trois showed some signs of it. Partiuclarly Daniel Appelbaum. The audience was more responsive than I have heard in a long time for a repetory performance. Lots of applause and cheering from the upper reaches. That's great!!! I may have enjoyed it more than the dancers. I think often NYCB audiences are too reserved. I'm not advocating applause in all the wrong places. As the comedian Dom DeLuise used to say "No applause. Save for the end." I wonder if perhaps some of the new initiatives like half priced tickets are beginning to draw a new audience.
  21. I agree with abatt about Agon. What a pleasure. Sitting further back in the orchestra than usual I was really taken with the structure of the ballet. This pas de deux really does suit Whelan very well. The sharpness of her line and attack made the choreography particularly clear. For my taste Teresa Reichlen's dancing in the second Pas de Trois was a little too "soft". But a very good Agon overall. As for "The Lady with the Little Dog", perhaps it was unfortunate that it was performed after a masterpiece. It seemed very long and made no sense to me. The choreography for the principals was dull and cliched although there were a few nice dances for the corps of boys. (There was also a beautiful double tour by one of the boys landed in a perfect fifth position.) The pricipals strip their costumes to leotard and tights put the costumes back on, take them off, and put them back on again. Only once did it make sense - before the erotic pas de deux. Several times in the work the boys roll out a long carpet like strip. Once it might have been interesting but to repeat and repeat and repeat it just seemed too much. And all I could think was "They have spent half of their young lives in a ballet studio to lay carpet?" The scenic decor was nice particularly the moving "windows" which suggested to me a train journey. I am of two minds about reading the story it is based on. Reading can add more depth of knowledge and appreciation to what we are seeing but should we have to read the story to make some sense of a ballet? In this case the latter is what I would be doing and I feel a ballet should stand on its own.
  22. jerryb


    I've been an audience member for over 50 years. Never studied dance but did figure skate when I was younger which evolved into the interest in dance and particularly NYCB and Balanchine. In the late 70s and 80s when tickets were much cheaper I used to see a lot - almost every company that had a season in NY. Now its a few performances a year. Have been a lurker for a long time and decided it was time to join up.
  • Create New...