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Foreign Correspondent
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Everything posted by leonid17

  1. Markova I think is marvellous - in that 1942 version - with those stunning gargouillards and the manner in which she talks about to the young French dancer is quite lovely and for me, she comes alive completely with what is a truly magnificent memory. I am not sure I really care for Danilova's sparky and spiky quality. Almost like the RB Ashton style of earlier times, quick and staccato and very short breathed. Markova had true lyricism in her performance and as a friend remarked allied to that great quality which all great artists have - the suspension of time and the feeling that they all the time in the world to execute those movements without showing the slightest element of their difficulty.
  2. Thank you very much for posting the two films. I enjoyed the insight into watching the Nutcracker rehearsal but became puzzled in the second film of Markova's dancing as I have seen much better examples of her on film. However, when Markova is coaching the French dancers for me she really brings it all to life. PS Watching the film of Markova a second time I have posted below.
  3. Thank you Helene for posting the news. I am especially happy to see the the award for Gabriela Komleva an extraordinary interpreter of leading ballet roles and being amongst the sweetest of personalities of the Kirov dancers.
  4. . Thank you Sasark for your review of the Prague “Swan Lake”. A good number of years back I was researching two of the Directors of the Prague National Ballet ie Julius Reisinger and Augustin Berger who both directed the Prague ballet and who would at different times, direct the Bolshoi Ballet. Some time back, an issue about these choreographers appeared in an article published in Sovietsky Ballet. Reisenger of course staged the first ever production of Tchaiksvky's “Swan Lake” at the Bolshoi. He later left the Bolshoi and on September 18, 1883 the inauguration of the Prague National Theatre was celebrated. Once again, the head of the ballet company was Vaclav Reisinger.
  5. So far, I have only come across the following. THE TOPEKA DAILY STATE JOURNAL—WEDNESDAY EVENING DECEMBER 14 1921 Which displays an advertisement for Theodore Bekefi and the Imperial Russian Ballet at the Vaudeville Theatre.
  6. Thank you rg for posting this news. I saw the Moiseyev company twice and though not my primary interest in dance, I found the skill, vigour and a large amount of charm was absolutely refreshing. For an obituary. See:- http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1568250/Igor-Moiseyev.html
  7. http://www.themoscowtimes.com/arts_n_ideas/article/casting-disappoints-in-legend-of-love/510670.html Raymond Stults writes about his disappointment of the revival of Yuri Grigorovich's "Legend of Love."
  8. I am saddened to hear of the passing of Nina Timofeeva at the age of 80 having watched her performances on a good number of occasions. Nina Vladimirovna Timofeeva was born in St.Petersburg on 11 June 1935 - 3 November 2014. A graduate of the Vaganova Academy in 1953 having made her original theatrical debut as Masha in The Nutcracker in 1951. From 1953 to 1956 she was a soloist with the Kirov Theatre and later became a soloist with the Bolshoi Ballet. Her major roles were, Odette/Odile (1956), Kitri (1959), Mistress of the Copper Mountain in The Tale of the Stone Flower, Aurora(1964).Lilac Fairy(1977) both in The Sleeping Beauty, Mekhmene Banu in Legend of Love(1965), Phrygia (1958) and Aegina (1968) in Spartacus and Later in Molchanov's Macbeth(1950). In 1980 she graduated from the Russian Academy of Arts and in 1989–91 worked as a choreographer of Bolshoi Theater. In 1991 she moved to Israel, together with her daughter Nadya, who is also a professional ballet dancer. Two years later she published her memoirs, "The world of ballet history, creativity and memories." "Terra" - "Terra". ISBN 978-5-85255-274-7. Nina Timofeeva was married to the composer Kiril Molchanov. Nina Timofeeva had technique in abundance which sometime split the Royal Opera House audience as to her qualities, but she became a truly firm favourite when in her very best roles. Humble in nature, sweet in disposition, lovable. SEE:-https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NaqouUlHX5M http://wn.com/nina_timofeyeva Edited: Due to memory lapse.
  9. I think many devotees of Sir Fred would agree. More than once or twice we got into a discussion about a performance and he would get hold of my hand and slap it fairly gently as if I was a naughty boy and said, " It's too late for me to fight but I believe there will always be some colleagues who will continue to support my works and the best of the companies works which after all, it was my created works that fully established the company in a way that others couldn't quite achieve." There were many who shed tears at his Westminster Abbey Memorial Service.
  10. I seem to have got rather lost where to post this link for "La Fille mal Gardee." Here is a description of a performance which regrettably, I would not cross the road to see considering the casting for Widow Simone as a ridiculous giant. Is it an abuse of power on Mr. Tsikaridze part? http://izvestia.ru/news/578638
  11. Earlier in June this year I was more than pleased to attend an event at Ivy House home of the London Jewish Cultural Centre where a most interesting recreation of a solo from Kenneth MacMillan's ballet "Le Baiser de la Fee" was revived using the original Benesh notation with the wonderful Donald McCleary, the originator of the original "Boy" coaching a young very talented young Royal Ballet School dancer James Hay recreating the solo that we had earlier seen in a film of the original production. See: http://jelterps.blogspot.co.uk/2014/06/sir-kenneth-macmillan-source-wikipedia.html Personally I was less happy with the recreation of the original. See http://www.kennethmacmillan.com/ballets/all-works/1977-1992/le-baiser-de-la-fee.html PS. I did not see the opening night of the production in 1960 but in 1961 I saw Svetlana Beriosova as The Fairy( and fell in love with her performances) and Donald MacLeary as the Young Boy.
  12. He was after all husband number three or four?. Her first husband was the balding concert master Isaak Melikov who she married at 17. Her second husband was the distinguished actor Yuri Zawadzki and People's Artist of USSR (1948) but lived in separate apartments. A relationship followed with actor and director Ivan Nikolaev Bersenyev believed to have lasted two years and around 1950/1951she consorted with then married costume and stage designer Vadim Ryndin whose opera credits at the Bolshoi Theater include Prokofiev’s War and Peace (1959), Verdi’s Don Carlo (1963), and Molchanov’s The Unknown Soldier (1967) and was too boot a Lenin Prize winner. Due to his drunkeness, Ryndin as one elegant writer stated, "He was booted out." by Galina Sergeyevna. PS I have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible in the above without having to write a full biographical sketch. Thank you rg for posting the photographs.
  13. On reading the review of Eva Kistrup on the Nikolaj Hübbe revision of the Royal Danish Ballet company's "La Sylphide," I have no comment other than "NOT IN FRONT OF ME." My memories of "La Sylphide" from the 1960's onward suffice.
  14. Thank you for the clarification. Best Leonid17.
  15. Thank you. My apologies to Iana Selenko. It is pronounced in the same way or is some other way.
  16. Here is yet another Le Corsaire pas de deux available with Ivan Vasilev now partnered with Lana Selenko, who appears to be much more than a pretty very talented dancer and is currently a principal dancer with the Staatsballett Berlin. You have to scroll down the page (which is celebrating Marius Petipa) to the second screen to watch the performance. http://www.aif.ru/culture/theater/41337 Edited
  17. Such very good news. Thank you Mirseng I The cast for the ballet, Khachaturian "Spartacus" October 17, 2014 on the stage of the Novosibirsk Opera and Ballet Theater included for the first time in the part of Spartacus invited soloist, world ballet star Sergei Polunin, People's Artist of Russia Igor Zelensky in the part of Crassus, People's Artist of Russia Anna Zharov in the party Phrygia with Anna Odintsov in the part of Aegina. Polunin has been scheduled to dance the role of Conrad in "Le Corsair." The company repertoire includes: Apollo, La Bayadere, Immortal Beloved,The Rite of Spring,Vision of Roses,Dr. Aibolit,Don Quixote, Roads of Love,Giselle,Cinderella,Carmen Suite,Roland Petit's Carmen, Carmina Burana,Carnival,Conservatoire Bournonville, Coppelia,Le Corsair,Swan Lake, The Legend of Love,Polovtsian Dances,The Fairy's Kiss,Pulcinella,Russian Seasons,Serenade, Symphony for Dot Matrix Printer,Spartacus,The Sleeping Beauty ,Thousand and One Nights Scheherazade,Whispers in the Dark,Les Sylphides,The Nutcracker,Juno and Avos, Come in Sonata,Does it really matter? (Who cares?) See:http://wn.com/sergei_polunin Edited to correct company repertoire.
  18. In a much different context. Much to the horror of Rudi fans (who had exited through the back door and was returning to enter the stage door after a performance of the “Shades scene” in Mr Nureyev's edition, I approached him as he strutted up the middle of the street and asked him why he had changed the variation for Merle Park. He ignored me. I asked him a second time. He ignored me. I asked him a third time. He stopped and with hand on hip he said. “ Eeets therr my dear just except it.” Thereafter if he saw me he would with a wicked smile mockingly wag his finger at me. Much later when he was with the Paris Opera, he walked up to the Royal Opera House “Crush Bar” level wrapped in a kind of shawl saw me and gave a warm smile. It was the last time I saw him.
  19. Presumably you would pay a researchers fee?
  20. I understand and appreciate your requirement that Facebook pages are not to be used as a source of information on your website and will refrain from such citations in the future. Could you point me to serious opinions, supported by fact, stating that Stepanova does not have the potential of becoming a great dancer? I honestly am not aware of any, hence my statement that there is a general consensus on that point. There have been some discussions comparing her at this stage of her development to the mature Ulanova or Lopatkina or the other greats of the past but that doesn't seem fair, does it? And lastly, it is of course only my opinion that broadening the audience base for an art form is crucial to the survival of that art form, but perhaps that discussion belongs somewhere else. It pains me to take up the velvet cudgel again but as no one else has undertaken the task here goes. Dear Vivacegal, Point I. “Could you point me to serious opinions, supported by fact, stating that Stepanova does not have the potential of becoming a great dancer? “ As I do not have a either scrying ball or scrying mirror to hand I cannot comment on her potential of becoming a great dancer but one wishes her well. Point II. How is it possible I ask myself could I or anyone know anything or everything about any general consensus regarding the dancer in question, when one is so removed from most of her actual performances. Point III. Any attempt at a comparison with Ulanova (who I met on several occasions and with whom I spent a whole afternoon with her and my fellow co-curator of the Pavlova Museum in Ivy House London, is I am afraid said with some foolishness and in the case of Lopatkina, she is a million miles away from Ulanova's acknowledged genius. Point 1V. What makes you think that Academic Classical Ballet needs, “ a broadening of the audience base for an art form is crucial to the survival of that art” when the art form is flourishing and well supported in the UK, France, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Russia, Latvia, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Bulgaria, Turkey, Armenia, Egypt, South Africa, China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Argentina, CUBA and countless companies in the USA,China et al.
  21. As perhaps should be clarified: that's a fan page...(and notes only that she is still on the roster). That is, whatever it says is not an announcement from the artist. (Even if she was/is leaving the company, it would be gracious for the Mariinsky to list her prize and not exactly inappropriate, and I'm glad they did. She did win as a Mariinsky artist.) It seems to me that there is a good number of "fanzine" style responses to videos of Yulia Stepanova of late. Having only seen videos of her dancing and in matching her performances with live performances those of the 60's,70's, 80's and even into the 90's, I would say that she needs more refinement in those very thin arms and she is not for me so far as I can see on film, some distance from becoming a complete ballerina.
  22. And I think this may be at the heart of the earlier discussion: the company using anonymous donations to fund specific guest appearances. As I understand it (those of you with more knowledge please fill in my blanks or correct my errors) the standard funding structure in the UK is much more dependent on government/institutional grants than we are in the US -- those moneys can often make up all of a company's budget. I do know that several dance organizations felt they had to disband after the last big round of funding cuts -- the idea of making up the difference through individual donation, which is a standard response here in the US, didn't seem to be considered an option. (we've discussed this before on this site, in a couple of contexts). In the US, the tax code is written so that donations to charitable organizations can be advantageous to people in a certain income bracket -- those dynamics are different in the UK. See:- http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/businesses/giving/companies.htm A pretty poor show as far as I am concerned.
  23. I have probably seen 80 or more performances of London Festival Ballet/English National Ballet, of which some were a misjudgement on my part, but mostly, they were of a standard that made me go back and see them again and again due to some extraordinary performers that spent time with the company. In respect of, "Perhaps I am completely mistaken, but my impression was that, to some extent, London Festival Ballet had been a company where ballet stars spent their summer holidays, so to speak (i.e., an opportunity for non-Commonwealth citizens to dance in London, given that prior to 1980 they were ineligible to join the Royal Ballet)." Significant international dancers were of course able to achieve financial rewards exceeding those who only danced at one venue. When a ballet company is peripatetic and without a permanent home its life can become challenging. However as it developed over time to become the English National Ballet, it has achieved a status exhibiting quality performances and acquired a state of the art home with a school in London that I suspect gives it a greater sense of permanence. Among the outstanding dancers of the LFB and ENB that I witnessed were: John Gilpin, Galina Samtsova/Margot Miklosy, Andre Prokovsky/Alain Dubreuil, Dudley von Loggenburg, Peter Schaufuss, Eva Evdokimova, Cyril Atanassoff, Peter Schaufuss, Maina Gielgud, Paul Clarke,Rudolf Nureyev with Eva Evdokimova in Sleeping Beauty, Galina Panov, Valery Panov, Eva Evdokimova and Attilio Labis in Swan Lake,Patricia Ruanne and Rudolf Nureyev in Sleeping Beauty and Romeo and Juliet,Trinidad Sevillano and a much more than average cast of Onegin with Alexander Sombart, Peter Schaufuss, Natalia Makarova and many more. SEE:- http://www.ballet.org.uk/the-company/our-history/ http://www.myballetcareer.co.uk/story_beginning.htm On a personal note,"MY FINANCIAL DOWNFALL" My introduction to the Royal Ballet in the Spring of 1962 was my downfall in respect of my sustaining any kind of financial stability for many years as haunted opera houses and other venues to witness excellence in action. Newspapers heralded the arrival of the Russian defector Rudolf Nureyev and a fellow student friend said it is absolutely unmissable and that we must see this supposed phenomenon. We queued for tickets for Nureyev's debut and got caught up with other young people to see the latest hot star dancer. I really did not know what to expect, but I quickly that found this new world of the ballet would became a perfect fit for me with its atmosphere of excellence in a very old art art form. The first performance I saw was with Yvette Chauviré and Rudolf Nureyev The Sleeping Beauty 17 May 1962 and two other performances with this cast and at this time, little did I know how many hundreds of times I would enter the portals of the Royal Opera House and other ballet venues. A performance of Flower Festival at Genzano pas de deux followed with Nadia Nerina and Erik Bruhn was seen two days later followed by Sonia Arova and Rudolf Nureyev Don Quixote pas de deux 14 June 1962. With Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev in Giselle on the 15th and 20th July I knew that I would never be rich. PS Re: “I wonder to what extent ENB was or could be London's analogue to American Ballet Theatre, which has quite a few principals who appear with the company only during its Met season and perhaps some of the more glamorous overseas tours. And if so, does the importation of guest artists or ready-made principals similarly jeopardize the performance opportunities, artistic development and career advancement of the company's young dancers? “ It has been my experience over time, that it is extremely rare for highly talented young dancers not to make the grade and become fully integrated into a company. I would suggest that distinguished guest artists are the life blood of challenging young dancers to emulate their achievements. EDITED
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