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Roberta

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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    Washington
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  1. Oh, no. Rest in Peace. Adding a day later: The international reaction has been, uh...interesting. I suppose that there are very few us are around who saw her dance live. I saw her Giselle, Carmen Suite and Grand Pas de Quatre when the BNC was on tour in Spain, around 1980. Age 60 but still fantastic. Esquivel was her partner. But that was a long time ago!
  2. Not to mention the other ballets in which this partnership teamed so magnificently: GISELLE, SLEEPING BEAUTY, OTHER DANCES, T&V, etc. To me, it is absurd that Lane is not a part of Herman's celebration. Ridiculous.
  3. I found the link to the documentary, with English subtitles, no less: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tX8b1d0MzyE
  4. Did you see this? https://beautifulrus.com/agrippina-vaganova-queen-of-variations/ From this: Personal life Vaganova connected her life with the tsarist army colonel Andrei Alexandrovich Pomerantsev. The marriage was not official, as Pomerantsev didn’t divorce his first wife. In 1904 Agrippina gave birth to their son Alexander. You know, Vaganova’s granddaughter Lyudmila also became a ballet dancer. Like anything else from the internet, take such information with care, doing your own research. The article mentions a 2010 Russian documentary, Agrippina Vaganova: The Great & The Terrible, which may be the source for the above info? It may be interesting to track that doc. YouTube? Adding: The tsarist army colonel, Andrei Alexandrovich, may have been connected to the famous architect Alexander Pomerantsev, who would have been old enough to have been Andrei's father. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Pomerantsev
  5. The entire Schedrin-Bizet work is about 45 minutes long so, with one intermission, there must also be a divertissement of 30+ minutes. If the advertisement promises a tribute to Plisetskaya, then there surely will be a Dying Swan too?
  6. Iain Webb, AD of Sarasota Ballet, sent the following message to company patrons - Ashton to be inducted into the National Hall of Fame and Museum of Dance in Saratoga Springs, NY: https://mailchi.mp/sarasotaballet/museum-of-dance-hall-of-fame?e=a6dedc88ec Webb will accept the award on behalf of the Ashton family.
  7. Yes, now that you mention it, I checked my notes...during the adagio, as she went into the first of two supported turns a-la-seconde, she stumbled when her foot hit him in "a tender spot"...but of course it was he who failed to get out of the way! The repetition, 10 seconds later, went much smoother. This reminds me of Balanchine's pdd for Liberty Bell and El Capitan in Stars & Stripes...El Capitan almost makes a joke of stepping way back every time that Liberty Bell's foot comes close to him in a supported pirouette...he jerks way back in a funny manner 3 or 4 times. Xander needs to study the Stars & Stripes pdd for some pointers!
  8. So helpful. Thank you, Mme P. Well, we guessed Drigo correctly! How a military-style mazurka tune fits into VESTALKA (set in ancient Rome, Vestal Virgins and what not) is beyond me but, hey, that's 19-C Imperial Russian ballet for you.
  9. I returned to give this ballet a 2nd chance on Saturday night - the Batoeva-Parish-Shirinkina cast. I sat in the same seat, front row of 2nd tier, smack in the middle. This time, Acts I & II were slightly more enjoyable. I believe that spacing among various clusters of dancers was fixed & the lighting was brighter and sharper in group scenes, making a big positive difference. Still, there are way too many characters and the stage business is to busy and fussy for a ballet. It made me recall a similar problem with the long-gone Pulcinella by Balanchine (& Robbins?)...a rare Balanchine lapse in spacing and staging! So I guess that means that Yuri Smekalov is in good company. The dancers tonight - magnificent! Batoeva nailed her 32 fouetees, her delectable variations, and was even more convincing an actress than was Terioshkina on Tuesday. AND...she had the far superior Xander Parish as her Andres. It was only my 2nd time seeing Xander live and he was terrific in every respect. Maria Shirinkina, who I haven't seen live in a while, has really transformed herself - always exquisite (wonderful Juliet!) - but now truly "prima" material. I'm thrilled about her promotion. The four other solo variations all had tiny shaky moments, except for the PERFECTION that is recent (2019) Vaganova graduate, Alexandra Khiteeva, in the 2nd variation (harp solo by Zabel from Corsaire). Eyes on Khiteeva. I preferred gorgeous Maria Bulanova's Carducha (the villainess "rich girls" in A2) to Shakirova...Bulanova has that certain glamorous face that gives her the edge in such roles, IMO. Like cubanmiamiboy, I believe that the Vaganova kids were the true stars of this show! Each and every one a miniature Romanov Grand Duke or Duchess -- to the manor born! The audience on Saturday night was even more demonstrative of its adoration for the kids than was Tuesday night's crowd; huge volley of "Bravo!"s whenever the kids appeared, even in the midst of the dance, at times.
  10. You tried your best. Thanks. Some day we'll find out what this is. In checking Meisner's bio on Petipa, I read that Petipa himself choreographed a full-length ballet based on Cervantes' LA GITANILLA, titled THE BANDITS (not notated, that we know). Interesting, right?
  11. I've seen Smekalov's staging of THE BRONZE HORSEMAN, of which at least 65-75% are the steps of Rotislav Zakharov, since films exists of substantial portions of the original ballet. It's a great production, which was webcast a couple of years ago, starring Terioshkina and Schklyarov. The decors are similar to the 1940s originals and the scenario is not mangled. A totally different animal than what he's giving us in PAQUITA. I'm sorry that the Mariinsky didn't go with the gorgeous Lacotte PAQUITA for POB. The only negative of the Lacotte, IMO, is that he did not include multiple female variations in the grand pas...just the "jete variation" for Paquita (plus the variation for Lucien). C'est tout.
  12. Hi, cmb. Related to this the variation for 4 military men that precedes the kids' dances here is set to Drigo's male variation for the LA SOURCE pdd, interpolation. Curiously, this LA SOURCE music (also a mazurka) was used by Yuri Burlaka as the solo variation for the Lucien-Andres character in his stagings of the stand-alone PAQUITA GRAND PAS at both the Bolshoi (2008) and the Vaganova Academy (around 2016/17...before he worked on the full ballet with Smekalov). So there is no one Yuri Burlaka PAQUITA GRAND PAS. You'll notice very different variations in all versions of Burlaka Grand Pas found on YouTube. The music for the mysterious Andres variation in A3 of the current full-length Mariinsky PAQUITA is a mazurka that's sounds a lot like other Drigo mazurkas...very rich Italianate orchestration, a great melody. I know that Burlaka (& Ratmansky) worked with Drigo's score for THE ENCHANTED FOREST while crafting their 2007 LE CORSAIRE for the Bolshoi. So maybe Burlaka found this mysterious mazurka back then? It's very Drigoesque.
  13. Continued? Hopefully not in this fashion. I did not write about a similar incident at the opening night (Tues) but something also happened. There was a very long pause (about 5 minutes?) in A2, before the first jail scene. Even from my perch up in the 2nd Tier, I heard shouting from behind the scene by several men, in both Russian and English. I was relieved when, finally, the lights came on to reveal Terioshkina, as Paquita, coming down the steps to her jail cell. Too bad about Batoeva's fouettes last night. Hope that all of this is fixed by tomorrow night.
  14. Washington Post (Kaufman): https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/mariinsky-ballet-e2-80-99s-e2-80-98paquita-e2-80-99-glittering-dancing-but-a-skimpy-story/ar-AAIxaKA
  15. After her Medora last year, I have to agree with you. Not my cup of tea, to put it politely. On the other hand, I cannot wait for Batoeva. I'm not expecting the greatness of Terioshkina, the troupe's #1 prima after Lopatkina's retirement, but Batoeva's Gamzatti impressed me last year. I also fondly recall Xander Parish's Siegfried in London a few seasons ago. Batoeva/Parish should be a dynamite team, no matter the crappy production, cotton-candy pink trees in the background, horse gimmicks, and what not.
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