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Laurent

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About Laurent

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    teacher
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    Paris
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    France

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  1. Far more likely this is a sign that while the rest of the Mariinsky troupe is on vacations, somebody had to toil: the show must go on while there are not enough of qualified dancers to make it happen.
  2. Laurent

    Yulia Stepanova

    Yet another little gem from lapetitratdelopera
  3. Laurent

    2017/2018 season

    You may revise your conviction that La fille du pharaon "has zero dramatic value" when you see it danced by the right artists.
  4. Laurent

    2017/2018 season

    Does so well what ? In other variations Smirnova displayed the same defects she has been always afflicted with, her hands defying all attempts to conform to the canons of classical dance. If this is going to stay, she will never be a great classical ballerina.
  5. Laurent

    Royal Ballet Winter 2018-19 Casting Posted

    There are other artistic directors who do the same. With pretty much the same result: lots of "dross" that should NEVER go on stage. A calamity strikes when a newspaper critic, or two, writes a favourable review. Then the piece is guaranteed to stay in the repertoire for a while, even if it is "unspeakably bad".
  6. Laurent

    Yulia Stepanova

  7. A great danger of internet is the illusion it gives of acquiring knowledge fast and with little effort. No one can claim knowledge of the 19th Century ballet without spending hundreds of hours studying the archives and reading through thousands of pages of documents as no one can know much about, for example, the 18th Century France, without devoting to it thousands of hours, studying the sources.
  8. It doesn't have to be wholly irrelevant. It is enough that it is mostly irrelevant. Especially to the question of why actors playing exotic characters in the 18-th and 19-th century ballets had to be accordingly dressed and wear an appropriate make-up.
  9. Nanushka, being a cultural historian on top of being a ballet expert, I would gladly answer your questions, except that this is a thread on the 2017-2018 season at one of the major ballet companies, not on the social history of France (or Russia). A peripheral issue in Pierre Lacotte's re-creation of one of the 19-th Century ballets overshadowed every other aspect of that production. One of the active participants applied a certain term to the 18th and 19-th century in a way that I found misleading and incorrect, that's all, neither the 18th and 19-th century was about "conspicuous consumption". Perhaps the post war U.S.A. was, maybe the "21-st Century man" is (whatever some participants in the discussion of that peripheral issue put into this term).
  10. I appreciate your comment and would like to point out that Veblen applies it specifically to what he terms "the Theory of the Leisure Class". Neither the 18th, and certainly not the 19th Century was about the "Leisure Class".
  11. Seeing everywhere "race" and "racism" seems to be a particularly American, post 1960-ies, syndrom. I don't see any such issues in French ballets of pre-modern era. Classical mythology, fable and exoticisms (full of local, vivid, color, in order for the audience to be engaged) are a staple of the storylines. Let us have at least this right: the libretto is by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges, a collaborator of Théophile Gautier in Giselle, and is based on Gautier's Le Roman de la momie. Gautier was a great poet of the Romantic era and is still celebrated as such today. Saint-Georges was a man of many talents, in particular he was an excellent playwright. Nubians were not some "racialized" Blacks, but the people at the southern end of Egypt who were constant partners of Egyptians, sometimes adversaries, sometimes allies or rulers (there were several Nubian pharaons in the history of Egypt). The appearance of the ballet coincides with the construction of the Suez canal. I don't understand what do you mean here, what "conspicuous consumption … in the 18th/19th centuries" ?!? Another modern, US made cliché applied to a different era, different culture? The 18th and the 19th Centuries were about anything but "consumption" (unless you understand by this a wide-spread menace of dying from consumption, i.e., tuberculosis). When the "21-th Century" man becomes, literally, a slave of rigid and limited perception, unable to make basic distinctions, then, indeed, much of the premodern culture, with its enormous riches, may be inaccessible to him, and lots of things in it feel "unfortunate".
  12. Laurent

    2017 -- 2018 Season

    One of the best moments I had this season anywhere, Shakirova's sublime execution of the female variation from le pas de deux des paysans (Giselle). It warms the heart to see such a deep understanding of what the classical dance is about.
  13. Laurent

    The Bolshoi under Vaziev

    The amount, not the quality. I have had an ample opportunity to observe the company since Vaziev took it over two years ago, and I was positively impressed with Zhiganshina on several occasions.
  14. I am much more scandalized by the majority of opera and ballet productions today that are made to reflect "21st sensibilities", to be concerned by the fact that some self-appointed censors consider Pierre Lacotte and 19th Century ballets "offensive" to those sensibilities.
  15. Laurent

    Promotion of May Nagahisa

    There is sponsorship and "sponsorship". The way it functions at Mariinsky is different from the examples given for American companies.
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