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Mathilde K

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About Mathilde K

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    ballet critic
  • City**
    San Francisco
  • State (US only)**, Country (Outside US only)**

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  1. The soloists roster looks very slim indeed (Quenedit, in case you missed it, was promoted to Principal in May). Concerning Messmer: I lamented mishandling Messmer's case not once in recent months. Such a fabulous dancer, what a missed opportunity for the San Francisco Ballet... Even if Tómasson initially had doubts about who could be her partner, she seemed to find a fitting partner in Castilla.
  2. "Mariinsky management" in this case may be Gergiev himself (in the Mariinsky's ballet troupe jargon it always means "Fateev"). It seems that the decision to keep «Cinderella» in the repertoire and tour with it is entirely his own. Ratmansky on at least one occasion indicated that this early effort of his is dated and he wouldn't mind if it was retired. Even among Russian ballet critics «Cinderella»'s choreography is considered weak.
  3. Not exactly. "Lowly Coryphée", Svetlana Ivanova, absent in London, was the highlight of previous «DSCH» performances.
  4. To clear a possible misunderstanding: seeing Shakirova's name in the cast for «DSCH» didn't surprise me at all and, of course, I remember that she was dancing «DSCH» in July. In my original post I simply said that she didn't impress me on August 12. I saw her on several occasions before, so I know her as a dancer quite well.
  5. It is a norm everywhere that the (living) choreographer has a say (and often his voice is deciding) in the casting decisions when the premiere of one of his creations is being prepared by whatever company. The premiere of «DSCH» at Mariinsky was prepared in the Spring 2013 when Renata Shakirova could not have been even considered as she was a 7th grader at the Vaganova Academy. From that premiere, by the way, I remember how remarkable Svetlana Ivanova was (compared to others).
  6. I didn't know Ratmansky himself had picked Shakirova. I wonder where did he have an opportunity to see her on stage.
  7. Yesterday I paid the price for not realizing that «Firebird» was not for multi-story cavernous interiors like ROH. Sitting at the distance of mid Amphitheatre I was unable to see the upper body magic inscribed in Fokine's choreography for the protagonist Firebird. In this situation the most enjoyable were the fragments where Firebird was drawing broad figures with outstretched wings, all beatifully rendered by fluttering and undulations of Stepanova's arms, wrists and hands. Yulia's leaps seemed substantial but from the lofty heights where I was sitting I could not discern their quality. A les
  8. Yes, I saw Kamil Yangurazov in the front row of the 'unnamed' dancers in «DSCH». He is very distinct. Who was the third female soloist in «DSCH»? By somebody's oversight she wasn't mentioned in the cast sheet. I was seating in Amphitheatre, couldn't see the face. Was it Batoeva? That unnamed girl was better than either Nastia Matvienko whose upper body immediately betrays her lack of Vaganova's training, or Shakirova.
  9. Enigma regarding Messmer continues. I pray Simone is offered Principal by Tómasson. That will make SFB one of the strongest companies in the world in terms of its 'female principal' power.
  10. When reading Jennings one at least understands what he is talking about. Very telling are the words Jennings uses comparing the scale of the interpretations of Skoryk and Stepanova. Instead of 'grandeur' I would say bolder but simpler, and instead of 'smaller-scale' I would say - vastly more intimate. Unlike Jennings, I saw both dancers many times and have no axe to grind against Skoryk. Still, I understand Jennings' reservation vis-a-vis Stepanova's rendering of Odette: in London the reciprocity of feelings wasn't sufficiently articulated in the duets of Odette and Siegfried. She was too pr
  11. ...or how strongly has been Fateev promoting some and shutting out others. Svetlana Ivanova, for example, could provide a very atractive alternative to either Shapran in «Apollo» or to Skoryk - in the «Dream».
  12. Mathilde K


    David Dougill in Sunday Times http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/culture/arts/article1443371.ece Quote: "First off were Oxana Skorik as Odette/Odile and Timur Askerov as Prince Siegfried both of them first soloists. Askerov has a warm personality (he smiles a lot) and a plushly elegant dancing style. Skoriks Odette has beautiful line and phrasing, but is too remote and mannered in characterisation. Their lakeside pas de deux was meticulous but soulless. In the ballroom scene, Skorik was a dazzling fouetté-ist, but her seductiveness was mostly surface."
  13. Luke Jennings in Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/stage/2014/aug/10/mariinsky-ballet-swan-lake-review-skorik-parish/print Quote: "The following day Yulia Stepanova performed the same ballet with Yorkshire-born Xander Parish. Stepanova is a smaller-scale dancer than Skorik, and without the same grandeur of line, but she is gorgeously sleek, and her work has a very appealing musicality. Like Skorik, Stepanova is much more engaging as Odile than Odette. Her white swan has its joyful moments following the Act 2 adagio she gives Parish a look of the sheerest rapture but she is too reliant,
  14. I agree that those who constantly repeat 'how bad' Skoryk is tend not to notice the progress she made. I attended some perfectly enjoyable performances by her. On the other hand praising somebody for passing an exam on her 30-th attempt after failing it badly at least a dozen times seems to me a bit disingeneous. Skoryk for six years has been literally 'pumped up' and offered optimal conditions for growth at the expense of more talented and much better trained.
  15. Mathilde K


    None of the discussion that took place in the Fall 2012 lost any actuality.I find it ironic that in the thread started in anticipation of Skoryk's opening night performance of «Swan Lake» in California, not a single person reported on that performance. A catastrophe occurred, as some feared, in the fouettés. This did not prevent Fateev to give her 4 more «Swan Lakes» during that tour. In Berkeley, however, he decided to place Kondaurova on the opening night. I enjoyed that performance tremendously in spite of the fact that apart from Adagio, Kondaurova was not particularly subtle as Odette, wh
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