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About Dreamer

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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  1. Thanks, ksk04 for the reminder. For those interested in attending, there are plenty of seats to chose from. Too bad the casting hasn’t been posted yet.
  2. I just learned of this sad news while going through Froustey’s Instagram. RIP, Mr. Ulrich.
  3. I am one of those people who likes to sit close but I would avoid the front row at the Segerstrom Hall. Not only because it is too close to the stage, especially for classical pieces such as La Bayadere, but mainly because of the design of the barrier that separates the orchestra pit from the seats. It doesn’t go all the way to the floor leaving a gap so that the lights that musicians use to illuminate their score sheets can be quite distracting. I would also make sure to not select a seat directly behind the conductor.
  4. Thank you, AB'sMom for alerting us to ticket sale. I was able to get additional tickets in my preferred section. Khoreva just debuted as Nikia and there are already some videos of her performance on YouTube. I hope she gets the chance to better prepare for this role before they embark on their US tour. She doesn't look quite comfortable yet and too focused on the technique to pay attention to music. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLQ5B9J-dtQ&list=RDW4tGjHjY40Q&index=2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQF70fTgj4Q&list=RDW4tGjHjY40Q&index=4 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=biBUpg7R_DM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kt-N8FM8NZE
  5. I find Khoreva to be a work in progress—much potential but not fully realized yet. I plan to see her performances mainly because of Shklyarov. I have never seen Somova, and only know that for a long time she was the subject of criticism on this forum, just like Skorik, but apparently she is quite different now after having been on two maternity leaves. The male cast looks much more enticing to me and I am equally excited about all three dancers.
  6. The casting for La Bayadere is up: Wednesday, October 16 at 7:30 p.m.Nikia – Alina SomovaSolor – Kimin KimGamzatti – Nadezhda BatoevaThursday, October 17 at 7:30 p.m.Nikia – Maria KhorevaSolor – Vladimir ShklyarovGamzatti – Anastasia NuikinaFriday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m.Nikia – Ekaterina KondaurovaSolor – Timur AskerovGamzatti – Ekaterina ChebykinaSaturday, October 19 at 1:00 p.m.Nikia – Alina SomovaSolor – Kimin KimGamzatti – Nadezhda BatoevaSaturday, October 19 at 7:30 p.m.Nikia – Maria KhorevaSolor – Vladimir ShklyarovGamzatti – Anastasia NuikinaSunday October 20 at 1:00 p.m.Nikia – Ekaterina KondaurovaSolor – Andrei ErmakovGamzatti – Ekaterina Chebykina
  7. I attended all three performances and with these multiple viewings I could at least appreciate, if not particularly like, this ballet. The opening night, though warmly received by the audience, left me in doubt if I should bother coming back for the remaining performances. It was not just the story itself — I really didn’t care much for mental anguish of 19th century European aristocracy — but mostly the two protagonists danced by Hirano and Osipova who failed to engage me in tribulations of their relationship. I had to look up the 2018 review in The Guardian on Hirano/Osipova cast which described the lack of chemistry between the two leads as disappointing and Hirano’s portrayal of Rudolph more stoic than paranoid. Sadly, nothing has changed since that October 2018 performance. Hirano is a tall handsome dancer and a fine technician but unfortunately he lacks or has not yet developed dramatic skills. Yes, he made contorted faces to convey deep emotions, breathed heavily to show physical pain, carelessly threw himself on the ground in despair but it looked too calculated and melodramatic. On the technical side, however, he was the only dancer who effortlessly executed those tricky lifts with Francesca Hayward as his wife Stephanie where from the kind of a fish dive position he threw her up in the air while her body turned around and then she landed perched on his shoulder. It was fascinating to watch Hayward in her detailed characterization of the newly wed wife who was neglected, terrorized and violated by her maniac husband. Her agony during the bedroom PdD was heartbreaking and the image of those trembling legs will be forever imprinted in my memory. I found Osipova’s Mary Vetsera not believable and thought she was miscast for this role. Apart from her often mentioned technical and stylistic deficiencies I was bothered by her stern, almost angry facial expressions. She did not look like a young love struck woman nor as a sexually obsessed, infatuated teenager but rather as someone whose mission was to hound Rudolph to a tragic end. In the scene of act 3, when Mary comforted drunken Rudolph while Bratfisch tried to entertain them, Osipova was genuinely sobbing and I guess these raw emotions might be an epitome of great acting but I personally preferred a more subtle and nuanced approach of Sarah Lamb and Lauren Cuthbertson. The second night performance with Matthew Ball and Sarah Lamb made me a convert. This performance deserves a dedicated review which I don’t think I am capable of writing, so I will only say that Matthew Ball was born to dance this role. He embodied this character to the fullest and the transformation of this young dancer into a psychologically tormented and mentally damaged individual was astounding. In his Instagram, Ball mentioned that Edward Watson helped him prepare for this role. Sarah Lamb as his soul mate was exquisite in every aspect. Her delicate build and the fluidity of her movements made all the crazy acrobatics of MacMillan’s choreography look graceful and elegant. Dancing two roles, countess Larisch in the opening night and Mary Vetsera the following evening, Lamb showed her incredible versatility and was equally impressive as a cunning aging mistress and as a young debutante discovering the power of her youth and beauty. Thiago Soares gave yet another interpretation of Rudolph’s dark character. His Rudolf was more melancholic than mad, somewhat contained, maybe even a bit conscientious, never losing his aristocratic appearance and yet his brooding menace was palpable even when he stood still. Soares was not in the top physical shape (apparently he had a torn calf) but his dancing was so eloquent and expressive that some technical inadequacies could be easily forgiven. Alexander Campbell, James Hay and Paul Kay as Bratfisch were all excellent. It was also a great pleasure to see Laura Morera as countess Larisch, Marianela Nuñez as Mitzi, Cesar Corrales as a Hungarian officer, Anna Rose O’Sullivan as Stephanie and Gary Avis as Middleton.
  8. I wonder if the wedding PdD will have the newly reconstructed choreography Boylston and Whiteside danced in St. Petersburg at the Diaghilev Festival last December. Here is a link to the article detailing the differences between all previously seen version and the one based on Gerdt’s sketches (in Russian only). http://oteatre.info/petipa-ps/
  9. Thank you, Meunier Fan, for taking time to reflect on SFB performances. I glad the company left a very positive impression on Londoners.
  10. It would be fantastic if Bolle joins the tour. Last year, he danced three out of four performances of Giselle that La Scala gave in Costa Mesa. In this thread, I erroneously reported that Bole might have other engagement from July 31 to August 4 without realizing I was looking at his 2019 schedule.
  11. Congratulations to Andrei Yermakov, one of the finest Mariinsky male dancers, for his promotion to the principal rank!
  12. The article in the OC Register likely mentions only the classical ballet part of the dance series. I expect there will be programs of contemporary dance as well. Mariinsky is also bringing La Bayadere to Northern California (Berkeley) from October 30 to November 3. This makes a 10 day gap between their SoCal and NorCal appearances. I wonder if the casting might be different. The engagement in Costa Mesa comes on the heel of seven performances of Paquita in DC (October 8-13). I, too, wonder if Roberto Bolle will dance in Onegin. His website indicates that he has a show of Ferri, Bolle and Friends in Tokyo on July 31, though. But I think it wouldn’t be unreasonable if he catches a flight from Tokyo to LA the following day and makes an appearance in Costa Mesa. Fingers crossed. Edited to add: Ferri, Bolle and Friends performances run through August 4. So, we shouldn’t expect Bolle in Costa Mesa. He does dance Onegin with La Scala in October-November, though.
  13. ITA with sf_herminator and pherank regarding the new season. Possokhov's Anna Kareinina is a co-production with The Australian Ballet so I expect it will be taken Down Under for the 2020 season.
  14. What a wonderful week of awesome ballet and blossoming cherry trees in DC! I attended several performances of Le Corsaire having seen three different Medoras (Khoreva, Chebykina and Kondaurova) and four different Conrads (Askerov, Yermakov, Parish and Zverev). To whatever has been said by other BA members about the Mariinsky’s dancers I can only add that I found my long trip worth every penny. The Saturday night performance (Kondaurova, Yermakov, Kim) witnessed by some of us on this forum will definitely stay in our memories forever. It felt as if everyone on stage was feeding off each other’s energy and that the three protagonists tried to outdo each other — Yermakov with his gigantic leaps and unequaled bravura, Kondaurova with her exquisite lines and fouettes that seemed to have lasted for a few extra counts and, of course, Kim, who simply flew through the air. It was my second time seeing Khoreva live (I saw her in Apollo during the NY City Center festival last November) and I hope she continues developing as an artist. I expect one day I’d be able to say that I witnessed this ballerina at the start of her career when she was only in her first season with the company. But for now, I am not sure I would seek the cast featuring her. I found her dancing too studious and her demeanor too detached, she had very little rapport with her partners and hardly interacted with anyone on stage. Parish was the most forgettable Conrad and I am frankly surprised he was promoted to the Principal this year. He lacked the necessary virtuosity and charisma for this role. Although he did a commendable job but I didn’t find him particular exciting. Amongst Conrads, my vote unequivocally goes to Yermakov and Zverev, both at the first soloist rank. Why these two dancers have not yet been made principals is beyond my comprehension. It was a huge pleasure to see Nadezhda Batoeva (Gulnare), Nadezhda Gonchar (the first odalisque) and Yana Selina (the second odalisque), some of the most precious Mariinsky’s treasures, who have magnificent technique and incomparable Mariinsky’s port de bras and epaulement. Philipp Stepin as Ali may not have had the same “wow” effect as Kim, but his superior training showed in more accurate and articulate steps, when even small glissades were executed with fully pointed feet quickly closing into the clean fifth position. I did like Caixeta as Lankedem — I thought he created a funny, cheeky character which elicited many laughters from the audience. Also, I need to mention Smekalov who was the most temperamental, hilariously hotheaded Birbanto. No one shot pistols more theatrically than him, with such a cunning devilish grin, or could match his quick temper when he kicked that poisoned flower bouquet high up in the air that it got caught in the set backdrop taking the stage crew awhile, as heard the following day, to find it. I am so grateful to all these wonderful dancers for unforgettable evenings. Looking forward to Paquita in October.
  15. Congratulations to Madison, Esteban and Conley! Though I am, too, surprised over Esteban being promoted ahead of Benjamin Fremantle. SFB male principal rank is getting scarce of tall, princely, danceurs nobles. I would like to see Henry Sidford getting there sooner rather then later.
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