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Everything posted by MadameP

  1. I read the above reviews with interest, having seen Paquita several times in St Petersburg, with varying casts. I enjoyed it very much! Of course, it has Spanish and gypsy flavoured choreography, being set in Spain! I don't think the opening cast was the best though, Askerov not being renowned for his acting, so maybe that is why sparks did not fly and I like Batoeva best of the Paquitas! Of course, it's personal, and, personally, I think the choreography by Smekalov IS a success; I like the choreography for the friends, and loved the dramatic role of Carducha, as danced by Shakirova and Bulanova, both fabulous actresses and dancers. Maria Shirinkina is a lovely Christine. I also like the pd3 placed in Act 2, as someone mentioned above. The whole of the grand pas IS spectacular with the opportunity to see many soloists in some rarely seen variations. I do agree though, that the prison scene does not work - the first time I saw it, it took me a while to realise that the centre of the stage marked a dividing line and I was wondering why the dancers apparently couldn't see each other! LOL! Maybe I can tolerate the dancing horse more, being British where we have the tradition of the pantomime cow, but the St Petersburg audiences certainly love that horse also!
  2. Both Somova and Novikova are wonderful Auroras (I've seen both at Mariinsky) so I don't think you can go wrong. Both ballerinas are fine actresses and I think Somova has wonderful arms. Personally I still give the edge to Novikova as Aurora, since her interpretation is unique every time, but I love both. The VIkharev production is a beauty - retaining the whole of the gorgeous Panorama as well as the important scene with the spindle girls. Askerov is a better partner than Parish, although, as you say, not as handsome.
  3. I agree - I think she deserved second soloist! And what about Maria Bulanova? With all her roles and talent, where is her promotion?
  4. Maria Ilyushkina was promoted to Coryphee today.
  5. This has finally made it to the Bolshoi website where the roster has been updated with these dancers in their new ranks!
  6. Alyona is promoted to Leading Soloist according to the Bolshoi website. Numerous other promotions are also listed.
  7. Selina has long been a second soloist.
  8. Two promotions at Mariinsky Theatre today. Anastasia Nuikina and Victor Caixeta are both promoted to Second Soloist, bypassing the Coryphee rank.
  9. Yesterday I saw the matinee performance of Eleonora Sevenard and Artem Belyakov in Don Quixote. This was a good performance from a ballerina who is only 20 years old and it was her London debut in the role, although she has danced it in Moscow. She has all the technique necessary for the role and certainly will grow into her characterisation - she has good footwork, high jump and excellent turns. Not only that, but she had all the aplomb necessary - if she had nerves, I didn't see a sign of them. Her Dulcinea in particular was warm, gracious and flowing, and her sequence of fouettes in the grand pas was outstanding - all doubles and a triple to finish (she did veer slightly to one side at the end, but still it was a fabulous sequence of turns.) Her acting was fair - not outstanding, but I think her interpretation will grow! Belyakov partnered her extremely well - no problems with the one handed lifts, the second of which they held on for what seemed like an eternity, much to the vocal audience's delight. He also was very funny in the "mock suicide" scene. His acting throughout was excellent - this role really suits him and he responded to every situation naturally. It never seemed like acting! His exceptional height made all his jumps look breathtaking and he combined elegance with virtuosity. This was a lovely pairing and the audience plainly enjoyed their performance. Also excellent were sparkling Daria Khokhlova as one of the Friends and Daria Bochkova, who danced the first grand pas variation - beautifully fleeting and light across the stage. Oxana Sharova's gypsy was powerful too and Maria Mishina very charming as the Amor, and with great elevation on her entrechats.
  10. The problem is one of practicalities! I've seen Tissi have problems lifting Alyona and from an aesthetic point of view, I do think the lines are better if the ballerina en pointe is shorter than the man!
  11. Kovalyova needs a tall partner, an exceptionally tall partner. Much as I like Tissi, with his elegance and beautiful lines, he is not tall enough for Kovalyova, just as Ovcharenko is not tall enough for Stepanova.
  12. Yes, she graduated in 1996. As well as as being a coryphee at Mariinsky Theatre, she also teaches at Vaganova.
  13. Yes, those are roles she typically dances. Ivanova does still dance Juliet's friend occasionally, and the Young Lady in Young Lady and the Hooligan, both of which I have been fortunate to see. Her Young Lady is THE Young Lady of all for me - pure, refined, gentle and touching. So moving! I do not know when MT last performed this ballet outside Russia - certainly not recently - but it is a wonderful dramatic ballet with the most beautiful music.
  14. The same uploader also put up a concert performance of her pd2 from Act 2 of Giselle - beautiful arms and head.
  15. Buried Mariinsky treasure... Four videos have recently appeared on YouTube, showing a very young Svetlana Ivanova in what I believe was her only performance as Aurora. What a lovely performance and at her very young age, too. Ivanova is mostly seen these days as first shade or swan, little bayadere and other coryphee roles. She is a wonderful example to all corps dancers, but it is so sad that she still is only a coryphee. She has the most exquisite adagio and beautiful Vaganova technique. These days she only dances a few roles - notably Juliet's companion, the Young Lady in Young Lady and the Hooligan, and Diana in The Awakening of Flora (where I honestly thought she was the best ballerina on the stage) but she has been woefully underused. She rehearsed Giselle some years back, and danced the pd2, but injury prevented her from performing the full length role. She should be dancing Aurora today. I am so grateful to the uploader for at least this glimpse of her Aurora!
  16. Both lovely girls! I hope Khiteeva gets fast tracked like some others have been! She has the most beautiful arms. What a wonderful Aurora she would be!
  17. It has been so sad watching the news footage of this - such an extraordinary , historic and iconic building. I remember so clearly walking around that beautiful interior and then climbing up to the roof to see the gargoyles up close. I can only imagine how awful it must feel for the Parisians to see it in ruins. But at least much HAS been saved - God bless those brave firefighters for that! - and how wonderful that so much money has already been pledged to restore it.
  18. Somova/Kim in Tchaikovsky PD2 sounds fabulous and Tereshkina/Tissi is an ... interesting ... combination! I like Tissi very much - such a beautiful jump and elegance!
  19. Agree - Borodulina does have a spectacular jump. Definitely she is one to watch!
  20. Buddy, Oxana Skorik's instagram account confirms she just had her baby.
  21. SLEEPING BEAUTY: 8th February - Tereshkina/Askerov/Shapran/Lukina/Timofeyev Sleeping Beauty is always a wonderful ballet to see on the Mariinsky stage, although I do much prefer it on the historic theatre stage, instead of Mariinsky 2, as it was last night. It seems more fitting. This is the pinnacle of classical ballet and deserves the beautiful setting of the old theatre. Anyway, for me Viktoria Tereshkina is not an ideal Aurora, being somewhat "hard" and lacking the softness and fluidity I love in a ballerina. Usually she is on top form technically, and she did perform all the balances in the Rose Adagio well, raising both arms to 5th in all the attitude balances. She does not have great extension a la seconde anyway. What WAS very surprising was that in her variation, where she normally does 4 triple en dehors pirouettes, she failed on every one, falling off pointe. I never saw her do this before. However, the rest of her performance went without a hitch, and she was secure and grand in the final grand pas. Her partner, Timur Askerov, is a reliable prince, in that he is a good partner, but I wish he wasn't so bland. Technically though, he is excellent, with beautiful soft landings to his double tours, and high easy jumps. The Lilac Fairy was Kristina Shapran, who performed technically well, but does have a somewhat "frowning" natural facial expression, and lacked some of the serene warmth I like in a Lilac Fairy. Best among the fairies for me was tiny Valeria Martynyuk as the Canary Fairy, with the crispest technique, speed and charm. Highlights of the performance for me were Princess Florine and Carabosse! Anastasia Lukina was Florine, and she is a beautiful ballerina with gorgeous feet, lovely face and expressions and glamour on stage. She has lovely arms and pure Vaganova technique and was an absolute delight. I wished she had been Aurora this time, as she is an excellent Aurora also. The other outstanding performance was Elena Bazhenova as Carabosse. This wonderful artiste is excellent in every role she performs. It makes total sense for Carabosse to be a beautiful woman, who is an evil fairy, and the mime scenes were so clearly performed. Every movement made total sense and it was a great acting performance. I love watching her always! As usual, the corps were outstanding, and it was a particular pleasure for me to see the most beautiful ballerina in the company, Oksana Marchuk, on stage, although only in the tiny role of Cinderella. She is woefully underused. What a wealth of talent Mariinsky possesses - if only it could be utilised to best advantage. I would LOVE to see Oksana Marchuk as Aurora! But there are so many dancers underused...
  22. The phrase, "Emperor's new clothes" springs to mind! 😊
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