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drb

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  1. Attempting to use microsoft so hope this gets through... I, of course, agree KFW. Certainly we can all identify dead wood principals. Three come to mind who currently lack the skills to have even a prayer of getting into the Company's Corps. Two are, of course, members of the BMIC's family: Darci (one could of course see the Allegra Kent excuse for keeping her on... if it didn't mean axing a number of corps dancers) and her stepson Nilas. And the perpetual question that is Borree... I wonder how many corps dancers could be saved if they all did the "noble thing" for the Company tha
  2. Closing night, 3 January 2009 This was only my second (first last week's Morgan/T'Angle, Pereira) Nutcracker of this heavily sold season. The performance was far more energetic than the first, as they all seemed to be celebrating the end of the annual "ordeal." I didn't note any specific surprises, as in the old days when one might see Mr. B. or R. sneak in an appearance. Teresa Reichlen was a complete SPF, NYCB's most glittering ballerina (how can management continue to humiliate the Company by cheating her of Principal rank, and salary?) these Bouderless days, and lit up the stage from
  3. Agree, Bobbi. I hope, when she has her retirement Gala, that people will remember her from when she was NYCB's Prima Ballerina, rather than just in terms of the terrible miscastings late in her career. After all, should we blame the miscast dancer or the one who miscasts her? At least Maria Kowroski is back in Chaconne! Regarding other 'missing' dancers, rg's mention of the Bouder boot cast is terrible news, and I hope it won't lead to her losing her Mariinsky Don Quixote. As for Craig Hall, he just danced After the Rain (PdD) to great acclaim in Moscow Sunday (Ratmansky Farewell Gala), s
  4. Here is TV-5's coverage of the Gala, including dance footage and a short interview with Nina Ananiashvili, who brought many to tears dancing Ratmansky's Leah, in which she says "He is a talented person who sees in his own way, hears in his own way. Someone says, 'Alexei, it can't be done.' And he rises to do it." She also praises his 'plastic.' Text in Russian is given on the video's page ('tho you can increase picture size to full screen) that you can have google translate: http://www.5-tv.ru/news/16044/ Russia's YouTube has a collection of videos. So far the Vishneva Cinderella, Anani
  5. Already a few reviews of the Ratmansky Gala have been published, and it seem that those who were announced did perform. I found the first video of the event on Russian YouTube: http://ru.youtube.com/watch?v=7is6g3Ka_Jg Vishneva/Merkuriev in Cinderella.
  6. Yesterday a surprise visitor to the Christmas Fair joined in the fun, striking a coin, kissing a child, painting a letter of the alphabet, donating a plush toy, and warmly addressing the crowd. Vesti supplies a video of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's visit: http://www.vesti.ru/doc.html?id=237153&cid=5 Vladimir Vasiliev is on the list of letter painting guests, but so far no story or video.
  7. Bart, I share your season/academic year perspective. Trouble is, when you started that version of "best of" we were still mid semester here in NYC. And my "Best" was yet to come. First I must thank two ballerinas that spoiled us this year. Nina Ananiashvili danced both herself and Diana Vishneva for ABT's Met season. I don't know which was better.... But in her 40's maturity I feel she has gained more than she has lost. It is what in Russia they call Artistry. And Nina's Artistry saved a company's season. Brava. The other ballerina, NYCB's Ashley Bouder. Prima Ballerina Assoluta. S
  8. Alexei Ratmansky's Gala is this Sunday, 28 December. Details of the Gala and of his plans have been appearing in the Russian press. New Izvestiya's December 23 interview covers his experiences at the Bolshoi and goes into some detail of his current artistic projects. http://www.newizv.ru/news/2008-12-23/103678/ Probably the biggest news comes at the end of the piece, and concerns his next work for the Bolshoi. Due in two years, it will be Balzac's Lost Illusions, to a newly composed score by Leonid Desyatnikov [the composer of his Russian Seasons]. When asked by interviewer Maya Krylova
  9. From today's Gia Kourlas article in Links, a singularly beautiful farewell to Mr. Barnes: Whenever I see her again, I suspect I'll think of Clive. There could be no more beautiful monument.
  10. If you look at ticket availability for NYCB's George Balanchine's The NutcrackerTM on their site, it has been pretty much sold out all season. When I've gone to buy tickets at the Box Office extremely little has been available. If memory isn't failing me, sales look better than last year, and Nut is much more expensive than rep. There is greater availability for after Christmas performances.
  11. Diana Vishneva was the featured celebrity at the opening of the third Saint Petersburgh Christmas Fair last weekend in Ostrovsky Square. This is a charity event, lasting through January 7, to benefit children in the city's orphanages. Under the main tree is a "Magic Box" where visitors may place clothes, shoes and soft toys for the children. Later, Father Christmas will deliver the gifts to them. Ms. Vishneva may be seen about 1 minute 50 seconds into the video report. She is painting an "A" onto a painting of an Angel (a symbol she says is important to her). The painting will be auction
  12. drb

    Russian Seasons

    Marc Haegeman has added a number of photos of November 16th's performance of Russian Seasons--some casting variation from those seen above, but lots for Osipova fans. Thanks! http://www.for-ballet-lovers-only.com/bols...easons2008.html
  13. Saturday matinee, December 13, 2008 Varna Champion Whitney Jensen in Valentina Kozlova's Nutcracker Even though Ms. Kozlova plays Drosselmeyer (here a Countess) this is a very traditional Nutcracker, and even though there are some professional dancers this is very much a school performance. And it is the school's style that stands out. Very Russian, of course, but far more Bolshoi than (contemporary) Mariinsky. No ballerinas here trying to kick stars out of the sky, just the harmony of indivisible upper and lower bodies, dancing with rigor and personality. Sugar Plum Fairy Whitney Jensen
  14. Getting back to the dancer in question, Whitney Jensen, it seems that competition as such was her motivation to study ballet. From a September 7th interview in Utah's Deseret News she explains why--as a little girl studying tap, jazz, and ballet--ballet took over: A bit of googling shows she has entered YAGP in '05 (Junior Gold at age 12), '06, and '07 (Junior Silver); WBC Orlando '07 (Junior Gold); Seoul '07 (Gold); Varna '06, '08 (Special Distinction, above Junior Gold). She has surely been active! Yet there are Vladimir Vasiliev's words: Surely this will be an interesting career (
  15. Further information on Whitney Jensen's win was given by Nina Alovert* in last week's issue of Brooklyn's Russian language weekly, Russian Bazar. Included was an interview with Ms. Jensen's teacher Valentina Kozlova that included a quote from Varna's judge Vladimir Vasiliev. Referring to Ms. Jensen as Grand Prix winner, the first American to do so in the competition's 44 year history, Ms. Alovert quotes former Bolshoi and NYCB ballerina Kozlova: The rest of the article goes into great detail about Ms. Kozlova's school, and also alerts readers that Whitney Jensen will be dancing the Sugar
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