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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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  1. Spotted Allegra Kent on the promenade. Also, there is a gentelman who is always at the ballet but I don't know who he is. He always wears a leather jacket and baret. He used to sit next to Jerome Robbins in row c of the orchestra on the left site. He was there in a SUIT with his baret of course. Anyone know who he is?
  2. The issue of dance choreography ownership was recently brought up in the Protas vs the Graham Company debacle. While I don't want to get into the running (or running down) of the company by Protas, the bottom line was that she did leave her dances to him. The court rulling that her works were in essence works for hire and were owned by the company is an outrage. (I believe I got this right - any lawyers out there feel free to correct me). [Disclaimer - Protos was a colleger fraternity brother of mine, but I have only seen him once or twice in the past 41 years.] Fortunately Balanchine I believe had clear ownership of his ballets - probably contractually with the company and so the Balanchine Trust (for most of his works) now can control them and see that they are properly performed. (Even if many critics of NYCB might feel otherwise....) So as far as the Glass case goes I am 100% behind Glass.
  3. :shrug: Well if I had the physique of Peter Boal or Damien, the skimpy outfit in Prodigal might be fun, but as it is, I had better go as one of the goonies. The only problem is that I would need to find a partner and those back to back kneeling walking bits would be hell on my poor arthritic knees. A scary one would be the Rothbart costume from the Balanchine one acter. That huge black cape that he employs as outstretched wings. Love it. Up close it would scare the crap out of the little kiddies.
  4. Calcium Light Night is probably my favorite Martins ballet. It was his first and I think best work. Maybe Balenchine had a hand in it. I was hoping to see it this past spring season and it was listed for one of our evenings but got cancelled. I was very disapointed. I also love Ecstatic Orange. Barber Violin is also another well done work. I just looked at the rep for the coming season and it breaks down as follows: Balanchin 19 works Robbins 9 Martins 7 (includes 1 new work) Wheeldon 5 (includes 1 new work) Stroman 1 Eifman 1 What does everyone think of that mix?
  5. Leigh: I don't think that calling it classical ballet and then providing minimal dancing but lots of "acting" qualifies it for unique treatment. I think it is possible to evaluate different form of classical ballet, its done here everyday. Even some classical ballet vs more modern renditions. And if this performance was labelled as "Spectical" rather than "Ballet" it could then be evaluated in different terms. "See the magnificent Costumes", "See the fantastic Sets!" "Hear the wonderful Music" "Includes some dance". And although I am not a fan of full length story ballets, they can have tons of exquisite dancing. They do at NYCB and ABT. I never leave feeling I didn't get to see much dancing.
  6. That was the point. Even for nothing this was barely worth it. I am glad that you agree with me that the choreography was awful (or non-existant to this NYCB fan). I was hoping I wasn't missing something. Thanks for your response.
  7. :shrug: I attended the Saturday Night 7/31 performance of Universal Ballets Romeo & Juliet on some free tickets for the "press" so I feel compelled to write this review. Some disclaimers: 1) I don't like story ballets in general. 2) I have never seen another full version of Romeo & Juliet. The closest I've come is Lavery's version for NYCB. 3) I have never seen the Univeral Ballet before. The company seems to be dominated by Soviet era folks and Vinagrodov formerly of the Kirov seems to be in charge as AD. From the program it looks like he has brought a lot of folks from Russia with him, particularly as teachers. The ballet was choreographed by Levrovsky and Radlov in 1940 and staged by Vinogradov. The program notes that he added some dancing. Hard to believe. To quote the program: "...R&J is the first time he has created new choreography for the company. Incorporating over 40 years of creative experience and lifts...." Well lots start with the positives: great set, great costumes. The lighting was bit dark but ok. The choreography barely existed. A lot of walking around and huge group scenes with various sword and other fights. None of it very convincing. There was nearly no real dancing in the first two acts. And minimal dancing in the 3rd. The lifts were there and some were quite fantastic. The ballerina barely touched the ground in any dances until her solo in the 3rd act. And that was not riviting. I have no idea whether this ballerina was any good. She didn't do enough to show much other than a lot of emoting.... which I don't particularly prefer to begin with. The Romeo role was even more disapointing. I was expecting lots of huge leaps and some super bravado dancing from the men. Never happened. Nada. Zlich. Zero. One thing that cracked me up was the scene in the 2nd act where there is a little stage set up for a play within the play. The little stage acted like a sounding board, and every jump sounded like a thud and drumbeat. And it was at the very back of the stage with dozens of dancers spread on the ground in front of it. It was just so stupid it was hard to believe. And this at NYState Theater with its know muffling of sounds from the stage. The lead dancers look like they have some talent ... but that is just a wild guess as there was not enough dancing for any of them to be sure. It felt like an opera without any singing. I got my moneys worth, but just barely. I am very curious if any others have seen this and have other opinions. Mine might be clouded by my disdain for these kinds of work to begin with.
  8. SJP created quite a scene. We arrived around when she did and it was like the red carpet at the Oscars. Hundreds of people jammed up against baracades and dozens of press photographers popping pictures with her twirtling around so that everyone could get a shot. She must have been out ther posing for 15 minutes. I imagine photos of her are in todays tabloids. And that was the whole point. As have been said before, she is a real fan and supporter of NYCB and former SAB student. And there is no question in my mind that her support and appearance were good for ballet and good for NYCB. That being said this was a GALA. The beautiful people were there. It was an event. And this is good. As for the performance, mostly very well danced. Harlequinade: the kids were terrific as always. Duo Concertant: Every time I see Borree I think I like her more. She and Boal were wonderful. This was one of the highlights of the evening. Brahms-Schoenberg: Another highlight. Never saw Whelan doing this before and she just was fantastic. She seemed to have all the daring that can make this ballet so special. Usually sit in the front of the orchestra and her boniness is very evident. But in the usually more angular roles she does it is an asset not a problem. But from the front of the 4th ring, she looked fabulous. I didn't expect to like her as much in this kind of role. And Woetzel was a bit less outstanding than he can be. But in this kind of role that just makes him fantastic. Liebeslieder: Saw it last week and it was a snooze IMHO. Last night without the first part, I disliked it a lot less and may begin to see what others love about it. But I am far from being a fan of this ballet. Concerto Barocco: Maria Kowroski. In love with her. I start swooning whenever she is on stage. Obviously a highlight. Seeing her walk in the street would be a higlight. What more can I say. :rolleyes: The Man I Love: This was beautifully danced by both Ansaneli and Martins. In the theater, Marsalis was far less distracting as you had the option of NOT concentrating on him. Did notice that he seemed to be emphasising the wrong sections, but one doesn't expect much from horns at NYCB does one? :shrug: Vienna Waltzes: Well danced by Kyra, but I felt cheated because they did not have he full corps out there. I was anxious to see the swirling gowns from the 4th ring. But there seemed to be a lot fewer of them than there should have been. The program lists 20 couples but there were probably only 10! I always loved that section. It's amazingly beautiful. All those swirling gowns reflected in the backdrop mirror! I was anxious to see it from above for a change. Oh well, can't win them all. Overall great fun. The program did seem to be more a schedule of convenience for what is already on the spring program around now rather than any real exposition of the full range of Balanchine. But maybe that is as much as can be expected in a season that doesn't have a bad program in it! Can't wait to go again tonight!
  9. I'd start DanceTV, a dance only cable channel. Would have a variety of programs including doing things like performances from all over the world, education programs for lay people, dance technique for students and professionals, interviews, exercises (ala NYCBallet workout). You get the idea. DanceTV would be for profit (dream on) but the DanceTV Foundation would fund performances, choreographers, schools, etc. Would provide it as a free service for cable companies and would give them some advertising time on it. Would try to make a profit or at least break even through commercials. Natural advertisers would be dance suppliers (clothing, shoes, etc.) as well as upscale things like epensive cars, jewelry, perfume, etc. Just think about it - dancer on TV 24/7! How about the Balanching festival. All Balanchine for an entire month 24/7. Maybe for his 125th Birthday!
  10. I still don't get it. I never liked Liebs and last night performance hasn't changed my mind. I find it boring. :sleeping: Not crazy about the music or the singers for that matter. I have to admit I was drugged last night (from a dental operation earlier in the day) but I was just thrilled with the rest of the program. Maybe I was between pills. On the other hand the rest of last night program had me smilling and cheering for a magnifiscent performance. The corps was even wonderful. Kyra Nichols didn't seem to be showing her age. And Walpugishnacht is just so wonderful. I love the flowing hair and the way the choreography displays the music. And there is nothing better than Symphony in C! Ringer was charming in the first movement and Martins seemed to enjoy himself. Kowroski was to die for in the second movement. Every time I see her I love her more. Her develope (if that is the right term - where she unfolds her leg) makes me want to swoon it is so beautiful. And then when you thought you were in heaven here comes little Ashley Bouder to assure you that you really are in heaven. She was all brightness, light and energy and paired wonderfully with Millipied. She had this wonderful smile - she seemed to be having even more fun than we were. Her big grin reminded me of Darci when she first came up. There wasn't a role she danced when she didn't have this wonderful big grin to just captivate everyone. I (and others I spoke with) would have preferred a repeat of Symphony in C to Liebs.........
  11. I have 2 Gala tickets that I was inadvertantly sent. I posted details at http://balletalert.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=16689
  12. I recall seeing it with Farrell and Mr. B. As I recall it got mixed or poor reviews. I think that Marga and Mel got it right. I think it was much too personal a performance to imagine anyone else in those roles. The backstage drama that everyone knew about infussed it with something special. Done by others - I don't think it will be very effective. But then again, it might be interesting to see someone elses take on it - and imagining them imagining Farrell and Mr. B.
  13. :shrug: Why are you only considering actresses who can dance? How about dancers who could act? I am not sure how much dancing is required, but Merrill Ashley and Kyra Nichols come to mind. Both have done terrific Carabossa's and Kyra was wonderful as the mean mother in Double Feature. If Barishnikov can act why not some older ballerinas?
  14. I'm with Farrell Fan on Martin's Calcium Light Night, one of the few Martin's ballets I would go out of my way to see. I still remember Heather Watts and Daniel Duel doing it in its first season. Other ballets I am especially looking forward to are Glass Pieces, Union Jack (hopefully Kowroski in Farrells role), 4T's, Agon, and the Cage for starters. I wish I could afford to go every night! I don't see a single program that I would not like to attend. In addition to our 2 subscrtiptions I am looking forward to a couple of additional performances - but which ones? :shrug: So many good ones to choose from.
  15. From the number of different dancers above, who would be left in the Corps? I have a much tougher question. Who would you replace to make room for any of these dancers? Considering there are only so many roles and positions for Principals and Soloists, for every one you would elevate, who would you retire or replace? :shrug: Makes being and AD much tougher now doesn't it? But then again, I agree that Evans is way under used. And if I had to remove someone to make room for him (although he is already a principal) it would possibly be Martins, not that they are anything alike..... just body counting.
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