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Swanilda8

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Everything posted by Swanilda8

  1. My new book Ballet in the Cold War is coming out in a couple of weeks from Oxford University Press. You can find the link to the Oxford site here and to the Amazon page here. The book is about the first few years of exchange between the Soviet Union and the United States. It deals with the differences between how American and Soviet audiences saw ballet and what the political impact of the tours was. I hope you enjoy it!
  2. I saw this too and I pretty much agree with everything. I also have trouble loving 4Ts, but some of the lead performances gave this one interest. Alexander Peters as melancholic was a big standout to me, along with Lauren Fadeley as choleric. They both performed the parts as roles rather than as abstract dances, and I think that makes a big difference. I loved the dancing in Duo Concertant - Renan Cerdeiro especially. And Miami City Ballet has a real treasure in Francisco Rennó, their pianist. But the violin playing was rough; a lot was out of tune. I had the same trouble when I saw NYCB perform this. It's a really difficult violin part and unless these companies are going to invest serious money in getting someone to play it, they should just let it drop from the repertoire. Flower Festival pdd was amazing. Shimon Ito really has the Bournonville style down, which is particularly interesting for a dancer at Miami. It's also just so refreshing to see anything that isn't Balanchine/Robbins/Peck. Also agree that Ito should be a principal. Why is he still a soloist? He's cast as a lead in just about everything they stage and his jumps are so beautiful. Heatscape was fun. The programming at MCB is starting to really get to me. There's only so much Balanchine and his followers that I can take. If it's in combo with other stuff on the program, then I love Balanchine. But the same exact style of choreography again and again and again is just exhausting. Balanchine didn't even program himself this much! Some of the dancers in the company are amazing, and they can make it worth going but I'm seriously considering skipping one or two of the programs next year if they don't do anything else.
  3. As a heads up, James Steichen's book on Balanchine and Kirstein in the 1930s just came out (Balanchine and Kirstein's American Enterprise). I'm biased because I know the author, but I really enjoyed it. It's a very interesting look at American ballet in the 1930s and the research is phenomenal. In particular, I think we so often look at Balanchine in the 1930s through the lens of the 50s and 60s that the picture becomes distorted. This does a great job of placing Balanchine in this time, not inherently destined to become THE ballet choreographer and leader of NYCB but rather one of many interesting Russian ballet choreographers working in the US, part of a network of dance experts and artists and philanthropists and impresarios – there's really interesting stuff about the early versions of Serenade and Concerto Barocco as well. https://www.amazon.com/Balanchine-Kirsteins-American-Enterprise-Steichen/dp/0190607416/ref=zg_bsnr_1474_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=CAWAEYS9VS9PY3NCVNKP
  4. I have nothing to add to this conversation but excitement! I just moved to Miami this year – looks like it was the right time. And for Jeanette Delgado to be coming back as well. 😁
  5. This is all a little late for the topic, I realize, but asking for a passport number is pretty much business as normal in Russia – it's not seen as the same kind of radical demand as it would be in the US or the UK.
  6. I'm puzzled as to why you're returning to this point. The Post has come up with two very specific instance of harassment – Boal accusing Martins of shaking and choking her in the workplace and the earlier charges from his ex-wive of violence. If your point is that it's not clear this harassment was sexual in nature, than I guess I agree with you; but in that case, the problem is that the title of this thread should be "Peter Martins Sexual Harassment and Violence Allegations." It doesn't mean that the complaints are irrelevant. It's completely unacceptable for someone to harm their employees in any way. It would be unacceptable for anyone - boss or not - to act in that way. The fact that it's the AD makes it even more of a problem because he has control over these dancers lives in ways that make it difficult for them to report such violence. As for the rumors of him sleeping with dancers (and the Post is clear that these are rumors), to me that crosses over into harassment regardless of whether there was an explicit quid pro quo about roles. When a workplace superior makes sexual advances to their subordinate, it's very difficult for that subordinate to turn them down without fear of reprisal. The situation is coercive whether or not the person making the advance has manipulation as their intent. That's why many organizations, including NYCB since 2010, make rules against supervisors having any kind of romantic or sexual relationship with subordinates.
  7. I saw Miami City Ballet perform Jewels on Friday and then on Saturday. I agree with Birdsall that Emeralds was particularly excellent on Friday night, and that Tricia Albertson was very notable in her solo. I also just love Shimon Ito whenever I see him dance — he had such smooth landing in his jumps on Friday. I was sitting very close to the stage (far to the side) and you couldn't hear a thing when landed. He's very graceful all around. Furlan and Messmer did well in Diamonds on Friday, and congratulations on Furlan for his promotion. But the cast of Diamonds on Saturday night, with Cerdeiro and Carranza, was the phenomenal one. Their pas de deux was excellent, and Cerdeiro was just perfect in the third movement solos. His double tours were a thing of beauty - no fumbling, no correction, just 720 degrees of awesome. The turns in second over the violin bariolage were also great. But more than that, he just radiated charisma throughout the ballet. Carranza didn't seem quite like a Balanchine dancer to me. Her quick movements weren't articulated enough for that, but she still put in a lovely performance in Diamonds, and did better in Rubies the night before. I'm looking forward to seeing the company again in December for Nutcracker and then again in January. It's nice to see them looking this good, even with the departure of the Delgados.
  8. My impression in talking to people in dance studies is that there are a few academic biographies of Balanchine in the works. I'm very much looking forward to have a wealth of critical, academic biographies to compare, because it is so hard right now to separate out fact from myth.
  9. I got tickets for the June 10 ex-Polunin performance as well, this time with very nice seats in the Grand Tier. Thanks, everyone! Hopefully this will also prove to be a good list of resources for others in the future looking for sold out shows.
  10. Thank you so much, one and all! I am going on June 8 to see Alessandra Ferri, Francesca Hayward, and many other favorites. I'll also be keeping an eye out on the ROH website for June 10 tickets.
  11. Hi Everyone, I'm going to be in London very briefly this summer, and I'd really like to see the Ashton triple bill at Covent Garden on June 8 or 10. It's currently sold out and it's a pretty impressive program and cast, so I'm not optimistic about my chances. But does anyone have special tips for getting Royal Ballet tickets to sold out shows?
  12. The Maillot got very good reviews when the company toured London, so I assume they're hoping it goes over just as well in the US. Unfortunately, however, I don't think there's really anything they could do to make Macauley like them, and they can't get any other high profile reviews in New York. As for Jewels, they're only doing Diamonds; NYCB will perform Rubies and Paris Opera will perform Emeralds. And while I wouldn't argue that anyone in the world is better than Sarah Mearns at the lead part in Diamonds, I do think that, on the whole, the Bolshoi is just as good at that act as NYCB. I think it should be a very interesting night.
  13. I'm going to be in New York next January through May, so I'm purchasing a choose your own subscription series. This is my first time ever buying a NYCB subscription - does anyone have any advice before I make the purchases? (i.e. does one get better tickets by calling them up or is it ok to do online, are there some categories of tickets that I should avoid, or is there something else I haven't even thought of yet?)
  14. Just want to add two names to the list: Agnes de Mille, mid-20th-century ballet (and Broadway) choreographer and Lucia Chase, an early director of American Ballet Theatre (not quite the founder because their history is complicated but certainly the person who made it into a big company and kept it afloat for the first decades of its existence).
  15. I don't think that this is a picture of Kent fully extended in that ballet - or at least not the fullest she performed it. I've seen film where her leg is much higher (though of course not the 180 degrees that we now expect).
  16. Hi, truthyness! Welcome. I'm afraid I don't know much about this company - I'd never heard of it before - but from a little internet searching, I came across perhaps the reason that you've had difficulty finding information about them, which is that their name is the Ruse State Opera, not Russian State Opera, and they are based in Bulgaria. Here's the company website: http://www.ruseopera.com/index.php And I also found a video on youtube of two of the soloists performs Don Quixote - so a different ballet but it might give you some idea of their style. (sorry, I don't know how to embed the video).Good luck with the gift!
  17. Thank you so much! This is wonderful footage. Not only is it great to finally see a few moments of Ulanova's Odette, it's also a pleasure to see her out of character before they start shooting. I have to say she does seem a little more Odette-y to me than most Odiles, but not nearly as deficient as I've heard her described. I've often wondered if people play up the Ulanova-Odette, Plisetskaya-Odile thing a little too much because it makes a better story. As for the show, it is Absolyutny Slukh, which means "Perfect Pitch." The title is a delightful little pun in Russian because you can also translate the same phrase as something like "perfect gossip."
  18. Thank you for explaining what's going on! I am an American but right now live in Europe where I spend most of my time with British people, and I may have picked up some of their speech patterns. I will stick with the American form in my diss, as I'm enrolled at an American university. Thanks again to everyone who responded!
  19. Hi Everyone - I have a question for the general ballet wisdom. I'm finishing up my dissertation and fixing all the nitpicky little grammatical details (so close I can taste it!). And I realized that I can't decide what the appropriate pronoun for a dance company should be. Which of the following two examples reads better? "Such was the tumult that greeted the Soviet Union’s Bolshoi Ballet when it appeared in the United States in 1959 for its first ever engagement in the Western hemisphere." "Such was the tumult that greeted the Soviet Union’s Bolshoi Ballet when they appeared in the United States in 1959 for their first ever engagement in the Western hemisphere." I hope this is the correct place for this question - if not, I apologize to the moderators!
  20. That was quite a turn around from the earlier voting. I'm delighted for Kim and Shakirova, even if they weren't my absolute favorites in the competition. But there's no way they would have won if Ruzimatov hadn't been replaced by Toomas Edur.
  21. Episode 6 is now up: http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/03/bolshoi-balet-episode-6-part-1.html http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/03/bolshoi-balet-episode-6-part-2.html I love the contemporary choreography week! It's harder to judge, because it's impossible to know if the problems that a couple is having is the result of bad choreography or bad performance. BUT I love seeing the range of pieces, and it's good to see some of the dancers - particularly Kim and Shakirova - pushed to try something new.
  22. Thanks, Buddy! I'm sorry I didn't answer sooner - I've been in Copenhagen this week, and I haven't been spending as much time online as a result. I'm a musicologist - I work on Soviet ballet, and I spend a lot of time in Moscow attending the ballet, so I find this competition very interesting. I've finally finished episode 5. I haven't even seen the last two weeks, but I'll try to post summaries soon. http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-5-part-2.html
  23. I'm only half way through last week's episode. Vladimir Vasiliev was a guest judge and he had a lot to say, but then all the other judges decided they had a lot to say as well, and here we are. http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-5-part-1.html
  24. I've finally finished the posts from episode 4, which can be found here: http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.de/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-4-part-1.html http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.de/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-4-part-2.html My concerns about Kim and Shakirova remain the same - why aren't they performing something other than bravura Petipa duets (obviously, this week Vaganova in the Petipa style)? Even within the universe of Petipa, they are confining themselves to a very narrow aesthetic framework. They would have to perform very differently for Swan Lake or even Don Quixote. I am much more impressed with Terada/Okawa and Tsvirko/Khokhlova. I do hope that this competition does great things for Midori Terada and Koya Okawa's careers. I'd love to see them in person some day.
  25. Agreed - Kim is phenomenal. I wish they would give him better roles, though. It's been a succession of fairly similar bravura pdd every week - except for week 3, when the theme essentially ruled it out. It makes for very dull viewing. Surely he does other types of roles at the Mariinsky?
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