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Everything posted by Drew

  1. A day or two ago, when I first saw a post online about Philadelphia Ballet I just assumed it was some small local group maybe even semi-professional. Then I read more closely. I wonder if behind the scenes they don't have reason to think that the moniker Philadelphia Ballet may help them raise money locally or perhaps draw out same pool of people who support the orchestra?? To me it was a puzzling change because "Pennsylvania Ballet" has some cachet as a top U.S. company outside of NY.
  2. Batoeva’s Gulnare in D.C. was pitch perfect. More than that, she looked like a ballerina and effortlessly (or seemingly effortlessly) drew one’s eye. Just a few months later dancing the lead in Paquita, also in D.C., her dancing was excellent, but .... she looked like a soloist. It may have been an off night but it was disappointing to see her have such a pallid outing when she was dancing as the bona fide lead. (I don’t find video the best way to assess the distinction I’m trying to capture.) I imagine she will be cast in Rubies in D.C, and, if she is, then I hope to see it. I do always enjoy her unaffected, clean style....
  3. I enjoyed this rehearsal too...and thanks @naomikagefor posting about May Nagahisa's promotion. I remember her dancing an especially effective 3rd shade in Bayadere at Kennedy Center a few seasons back. Congratulations to her--
  4. Met her briefly when I was younger, but was intimidated and awkward and everything bad about being younger. She has left a great legacy--may she rest in peace--
  5. Congratulations from me as well to Novikova—
  6. Thanks for this reminder. Premiers by company dancers are a nice way to develop in-house choreographers but one can't help feeling that they may be another money-saving measure as well. The Schreier premier is the highlight for me --and a chance to see her Pleiades Dances in the theater. After that, the Paquita--which is both a wonderful slice of classical dancing and, of course, rather a test of where the dancers are as classical dancers. When it was danced by the company during Nedvigin's first season, the "second" cast, which was the only cast I saw, struggled--at least so it seemed to me. And the dancers who were (to some extent) exceptions--Mara, Nash, and Rogers--are all of them no longer with the company. I will be curious to see Giselle as well, but probably take a pass on Nutcracker. Of course, I'm assuming that the Covid situation in GA will be well under control . . . if there is any doubt . . . well, no live ballet for me.
  7. Drew

    Natalia Osipova

    I had recently read about the quarantine issue and was wondering how that impacted Osipova. (Though if that's behind her decision, she has not said so...) I assume one problem traveling/guesting dancers have is that the scheduling is done ahead of time but Covid makes things unpredictable.... (Kekhman accused Ananiashvilli of lying a few months back--dispute over directorship of Novosibirsk ballet--so that's kind of his m.o.)
  8. An interesting, moving, and enjoyable read...and what a striking portrait of Mitchell's huge presence, on-stage and off.
  9. Loved the photos from the graduation preparations etc. Thanks for posting.
  10. A photo of Lucette Aldous graced one of the earliest ballet books I owned (well, "owned"--I assume my parents got it) -- which was also my very favorite. May she rest in peace....
  11. I don’t think I was, but honestly don’t know.
  12. I must be remembering that same version and for me it didn’t remotely capture Farrell’s impact at that moment. A closer shot might have done more....there was such POWER in the way she completely yielded to the music and movement....I guess it’s just another example of why live performance is such a challenge to capture on film or video even when the choreography is, technically, visible.
  13. I had to laugh (ruefully) asI read this. As you probably have seen, there is footage of Farrell’ in the role and her exit at that moment was SO extraordinary, I was eager to see if the camera captured even a whiff of it. Alas no—the camera cuts away to show instead the swirl of couples as the crowd enters, so you can’t get any sense of what Farrell did with that moment....and I will never not be unhappy about that!
  14. She was indeed extraordinary....and thank you for the link to Gramiliano. Other responses to her death on this site can be found under ballet obituaries and memorials:
  15. Drew

    Sarah Lane

    I very much admire Lane for speaking here about her eating disorder and more generally directing some of her remarks at young dancers. It surprised me to learn that she had specifically requested not to dance with one of her main partners, and I was struck that in her own account of life at ABT that decision seemed to mark a (negative) turning point. Since it's easy enough to connect the dots and realize who it must be--one is left wondering what she thought might happen when she refused to dance with a)one of the very few dancers in the company for whose height she is perfectly matched and who is also b)one of the company's most widely admired stars. The reasons she gives are understandable and yet, taking those two things into account, the decision--at least as she explains it in this interview--still seems surprising to me. If Joseph Gorak had come into his own as a partner/lead then she would have had more options. They were just beautiful together in Ratmansky's Tempest. After seeing it, I was awaiting their Giselle (in my dreams)...but alas no and the next time I saw Gorak partner someone (Boylston in Sleeping Beauty) I lost any remaining enthusiasm for the idea.
  16. Profoundly saddened by this news. Fracci was one of the first truly great ballet artists I saw dance and my memories of her performances are among those I most cherish--and most advert to in my mind. Like others, I have been spending time watching video of Fracci dancing--in every way, she belongs to ballet's pantheon...
  17. Congratulations to all the dancers. (I only saw Kaneko in secondary roles when I last saw the Royal, but she definitely caught my eye.)
  18. Like @ECatI was thinking I would be interested in seeing Illiushkina essay Giselle--it seems a temperamental fit. In an case, I'm pleased to read she continues to be cast in major roles and is getting more than one shot at them. And very much hope she is on next year's tour to D.C.! Very saddened to read about Zaleev--wishing him a full recovery!
  19. Thank you for posting. Are you excited by any thing in particular? (I see a number of things that sound pretty appealing.)
  20. My mind immediately flashed back to Salvatore Licitra ... May Zaleev fare more happily.
  21. Regarding casting over the years (not speaking of this series)....I'd add Zakharova. Don't know if it's a role she still dances. (Perhaps not if she hasn't been cast this go round... )
  22. It was interesting to me to read your comments--oh! as I'm typing @cobweb just weighed in as well. I have tentatively decided against a trip to NY in Fall, strong emotions notwithstanding -- and there will probably be a lot of emotion in the theater and onstage. My reasoning is that not one single weekend do the two programs promise enough that (for me) qualifies as "must" see/can't live without -- and it's very hard to justify travel expenses for a weekend even when I factor in that sometimes the programs or ballets I'm less excited about turn out to be much better than expected and that all of it is bound to be good in some fashion. (It's an expensive trip.) Each weekend there was one ballet, where I thought--yes, I'd come up for that (including 21st-century works) and maybe one or two other ballets where I thought 'well, that could be interesting' or 'that would be nice,' but taken altogether I was a wee bit deflated by the programming. It did occur to me that perhaps the problem was me and not the programming--I know I'm far from mentally "post-Covid--but, as I say, it was interesting to me to read Vipa's and Cobweb's reaction to the season. On a different note I enjoyed the gala -- the whole thing, but especially the two male solos (and I consider myself a decidedly ballerina-centric fan). The opening Robbins solo looked as if it could have been created for this specific occasion of the return to the State Theater...a dancer in a studio resuming his dancing life...and I found that quite magical. (And the way the camera just flowed with the casualness of it.) And I found the new Justin Peck solo for Huxley terribly moving--I guess it could just have been the Barber adagio for strings having its patented tear-jerking impact, but I think Peck and Huxley played a role too. And it had a wonderful resonance with the Robbins. Huxley's dancing, too, as mediated by the black and white film, was just breathtakingly beautiful. What a great dancer. And hurray for Sophia Coppola--
  23. Pre pandemic they were talking about a contemporary/20th-century program at Ken Cen with Push Comes to Shove (which Kim dances) and, I think, Serenade on the program as well. In that context, well, I'd rather see Jewels. I had wondered if post pandemic it would be Swan Lake. Which, since it's the Mariinsky, I could definitely live with and enjoy. In my fantasy, I was hoping (or, really, just daydreaming) Sleeping Beauty--either version they do, though presumably touring with the Sergeyev production is easier. So would Jewels have been my first choice? No ...but it's far from last choice!
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