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Everything posted by nysusan

  1. Alexandra, I agree. I hadn't seen Fancy Free since the mid seventies, and I was shocked by the harshness of the pocketbook scene. I don't recall if it was danced differently then but this time I found it to be very mean spirited and threatening, and I didn't remember it that way at all. I remeber it as being much more playful & less aggressive. Maybe political correctness has overtaken me, or my point of view has changed drastically in the past 20 years, but I was thinking that if it were me I wouldn't come back & hang out with those sailors, I'd call the cops on them! Then again, who could resist Radetsky, Cornejo and Carreno? I also agree with the reviewer who commented on Radetsky's performance (sorry, I forget who it was). I think this was the best I've ever seen him - dreamy & evocative, combined with a kind of goofy sincerity. Very nice to see him making the most of an opportunity.
  2. ISN'T IT A PITY? Veronika Part has finally made an appearance - last night in the corps of the George Harrison tribute. In "Isn't it a Pity" and "My Sweet Lord" - she had little to do. Still no sight of Monique Munier. On a positive note, you couldn't help but notice Michelle Wiles in a small soloist role in the same songs. Those port de bras, those developees, she is such a beautiful dancer. Some quick thoughts... After a second viewing, I must have had too much wine before the curtain went up on opening night. That's the only explanation I can come up with for being "almost bored" by Symphonic Variations. It is a gorgeous dance - quite sublime. Unfortunately I still think that the weak interpretation of the ballerina role shifted too much focus to Belotserkovsky. I hope they keep this in repertory and give different dancers an opportunity to interpret it. ATM711 - how lucky you were to have seen Fonteyn, Kaye & Danilova! Unfortunately I was only able to see Fonteyn a few times at the end of her career. I can only imagine how different Symphonic Variations would have been with a ballerina of qualities. On the other hand, my reaction to Pillar of Fire was different from yours. I've never seen Kaye, but I saw Sallie Wilson as Hagar many times in the seventies. When I heard that Murphy was cast in the role my first thought was - she's so physically beautiful, will she be convincing as a character who's afraid she'll wind up a spinster? Can she portray an outcast, a misfit? I've also found her dancing in modern pieces to have a very strong sensuality and wondered if she would be effective in expressing Hagar's repressed sexuality. I thought she did very well. Different, perhaps, from what I remember but still a beautiful, compelling interpretation. Strangely enough, I agree that she lacked abandon in some of her pas des deux (especially with Gomes) but I thought she was able to express Hagar's emotions very powerfully - her longing and pain and ostracism. When the curtain fell my first thought was that Tudor held up very well, It had almost the same emotional impact as the first time I saw it. I also thought Erica Fischbach was a very fine older sister. Oh well, different strokes for different folks... Sandra Brown has been everywhere this first week. IMO she was the best thing about Diversion of Angels on Thursday night, a beautiful "Woman in Red". Vivacious, flirtatious and yet also, very womanly. I thought hers was definitely the strongest performance in the Graham piece. Last night she was cast in all 3 ballets and continued to impress me, especially in the Forsythe work and with Carreno in "While my Guitar Gently Weeps".
  3. Silvy, I don't really recognize Bertica Prieto but by process of elimination I think she portrays Bathilde in this video. I know that Ruth Mayer is the mother and Jolinda Menendez and Nanette Glushak are the 2 wilis. This is my favorite video of Giselle. I saw Makarova/Baryshnikov in Giselle several times in 75 & 76 and for me no one else can compare. This video really does a good job of capturing the magic of their performance. Try to get a copy and watch the whole thing, you will love it!
  4. No Julie Kent last night either. Dale, I saw 3 Virgins back in the 70s and, while I enjoyed last night's performance I have to say that your guess is correct - I remember the characterizations being much stronger, perhaps even a little broader. I thought this cast was fine, though, and the audience seemed to agree. Maybe they'll loosen up and have more fun with it as the season progresses. This was my first time seeing Symphonic Variations. I'll reserve judgement since I'm seeing it again this season, but last night I was almost bored at certain points. I found that strange since I love everything else I've ever seen by Ashton. I thought the costumes & scenery were gorgeous, and that Belotserkovsky's elegant style was well suited to this piece. I haven't seen much of Tuttle previously so I don't know if she was miscast, or having an off night but IMO her style really didn't seem to fit the music or the choreography and I think that was a large part of my problem. I remember liking it a lot at the beginning and then having my attention fade. I think I have tickets for this later in the season with Stella Abrera in the ballerina role and I'll be curious to see if I feel differently. I wish they'd cast Kent or Murphy ...I thought Murphy was wonderful in Diana & Acteon with Carreno. They both brought the house down (deservedly so). Michael, I also expect great things from Michele Wiles but last night I found myself thinking that Murphy & Dvorovenko were going to slug it out for the top spot on the roster over the next few years (interesting imagery, don't you think!) Speaking of casting, I was very curious when I saw Reyes & Malakhov cast together in a pas de deux. Their sensibilities are so different. Now that I've seen La Grand Pas de deux I think the casting was inspired. This is part of their family friendly matinee program & I bet it will get howls from the kids. It's easy to go overboard with this kind of piece but I agree that it was very funny & very well done. In Theme & Variations I kept finding myself watching Wiles and also Anna Liceica. Herrera will never be my favorite dancer, but she & Gomes seemed to have a connection here, which made her performance more appealing to me somehow. An interesting start to the season!
  5. I just got back from seeing their repertory program tonight , and I loved them. I really enjoyed their performance - once I got used to the different look of the corps in Act 2 of Swan Lake. I'm not talking about their muscularity, I liked that, but compared to what I'm used to they didn't seem to "breathe" through the movement. I like a very fluid, flowing style and to my eye a lot of their movements seemed to end abruptly rather than linger. I don't really know the technical terms, but I've read some posts here that discussed dancing on the beat vs dancing through the music. I think that they danced on the beat and that was what I didn't like about their style. I also think I prefer positions to be stretched, rather than held (if that makes any sense). Anyway, after the first few minutes I think I just accepted the differences as simply being a style of dancing I wasn't familiar with and my eye adjusted. Odette and Sigfried were danced by Viengsay Valdes and Joel Carreno, and while both were good, she was outstanding. Carreno's dancing was very elegant and understated, but his role is a supporting one here. The entire evening was danced to recorded music, and the adagio was very,very slow. Some people don't like that, but I do. Valdes' dancing had a beautiful quality to it, a kind of pliability and expressiveness without being wimpy. Her balances where wonderful and she came out of them with great control and fluidity. The shapes that she carved out with her upper body were really beautiful. One of the things I liked most about everything I saw from the Cubans tonight was that technique was very much in the service of artistry. Valdes reallly communicated the pathos of Odette's dilema through every movement. Drew mentioned in a post about the performance he saw that they appeared to be very well coached and that each dancer had a sense of what they were doing at every moment. I really felt that too, and really admired it. I think that's so important. Next, Barbara Garcia and Romel Frometa danced the Black Swan pas de deux. Again, I really loved the ballerina. She is tiny but what a steely portrayal of Odile, and she was quite a turner. When this pas de deux is danced as an excerpt the context is often lost. Not here. Von Rothbart presented Odile, and although it was not danced as a pas de trois he was present throughout to guide Odile through her seduction of Siegfried, just as he would have been in a full length production. I wasn't crazy about Canto Vital, but it was interesting. It's a modern, athletic piece for 4 male dancers. The dancers I saw were Miguelangel Blanco, Joan Reyes, Eller Bourzac and Daniel Sarabia. They were all excellent, it just wasn't my cup of tea. The evening ended with "Blood Wedding", which I would describe as a dance-drama. The book is after a play by Federico Garcia Lorca and the music is by Emilio de Diego. The music has a very strong spanish guitar, flamenco feel to it, and the dance also makes use of flamenco style dancing. It's very much a psychological drama, and at some points it almost reminded me of Tudor, the way he used dance to express inner turmoil. I liked the way it mixed traditional style spanish dancing with more balletic type of movement to tell a story. Again, every dancer on the stage was completely in character from the first moment to the last. I had a great time and am looking forward to seeing Don Q tomorrow night.
  6. Hi Laura! I would try the 4th ring - it's a great value! These days I prefer to sit closer to the stage but I sat in the 5th ring (sides) at the NY State Theater for the first several years of ballet going (a long time ago). Though I now prefer a more close up view I was certainly happy with those seats in the beginning, and the overhead view does give you a wonderful appreciation for the patterns that you never get sitting in the orchestra. I think ABT's City Center repertory is wonderful this year. I'd try either the "Masterworks" or the matinee program if you can afford to buy orchestra, grand tier or mid mezzanine seats. The advice you've been getting about the sight lines is correct - some seats have horrible views. In addition to the balcony (gallery) beware of rear mezzanine seats. With the exception of the first row (row J) you lose most of the stage from many of the seats - really not worth going to City Center if you can't afford the better seats Re: Swan Lake - I would NOT recommend the NYCB version. Although the dancers I saw were wonderful I found the production's modern sensibility really detracted from my enjoyment of the performance. Since you've never seen Swan Lake I think it makes sense to start with a traditional version so you can see why it became a classic that is still being performed after over 100 years. I have never seen the Kirov's Swan Lake but I've heard that it's one of the 2 or 3 "gold standard" traditional versions. They will be performing it at the Kennedy Center at the end of December- beginning of January. I don't know how long a trip it is from Philly to DC, but I'm planning to take the train from NY and see 4 performances over a weekend...
  7. Some dancers coming to New York - There is a brief story about Joel Carreno in Sunday's NY Times (he's Jose Manuel's younger brother). It says that he and Viengsay Valdes will be appearing in the full length DonQ, and that he will also dance in Les Sylphides and pas de deux from Swan Lake, Don Q and The Sleeping Beauty. I guess that was before they switched Les Sylphides to Swan Lake act 2. It also said that Alihaydee Carreno will NOT be performing in NY, she stayed behind in Cuba to be with her new baby. I am going to the Friday & Sat night performances. I've never seen this company and am very much looking forward to seeing them!
  8. Good advise Scoop (about the taxi's). I'm really looking forward to the trip. Didn't quite realize how far away the date was when I booked it! Susan
  9. Thanks so much for your review. I'm going to see their Don Q and their repertory program in NY next week and your comments have only added to my anticipation. I just saw DQ for the first time last season (ABT's production) and I'm very interested to see the stylistic differences - I'm assuming there will be many! Susan
  10. The Kennedy Center site says that tickets go on sale 10/11. I'm planning to take the train in from NYC to see them and will probably go to 2 of the three performances of La Sylphide. I'm trying to decide between Sat & Sun matinees or Sat matinee & Sat night. Do you guys think it's a pretty safe bet that Gudrun Bojesen will be in the Saturday night cast? I really want to see her! Susan
  11. I've been looking forward to this City Center season ever since they announced the repertory, can't wait for it to start already!! I'm as surprised as everyone else that Meunier and Part are nowhere to be found on the casting but I'm hoping they'll show up in some of the TBA's or the new works where the casting is just listed as "company". One can only hope On another note, I haven't seen Pillar of Fire since the late 70's, when Sallie Wilson danced Hagar. Does anyone know whether ABT has revived this previously in recent years, or if all of the dancers are new to their roles? Seems like a lot of debuts on the casting. Susan
  12. Jack, thanks for the info. I saw a website for a small hotel on the Isle of Venice (or it might have been the Isle of Capri), and it really looked charming. I was going to check it out the last time I was in FLL visiting my family but never got the chance. Instead, my brother & I went to Los Olas to hang out & hear some music & I found myself standing in front of the Riverside Hotel. It seemed to have an old world charm and I believe it's a landmark building - and right in the middle of the Las Olas "strip". I decided it would be a very convenient & central place for my first trip to see MCB. In the future I'd love to try some of the small hotels you recommend near the beach as long as I can cab to and from the Broward center. When I'm out there in March I plan to check out the land & water taxi situations and hopefully that will open up more options for future visits. Thanks again for the recommendations. Whenever I've gone to So. Florida in the past my trip has always been centered around either family or work, so I'm really looking forward to this "ballet centric" trip.
  13. Wow, what incredible luck. I'd just been checking the online the video sites trying to buy a copy and it's not available anywhere. I love Fonteyn, she made me fall in love with ballet (and Swan Lake) instantly the first time I saw her Odette back in the mid sixties. Lately I'd been thinking how nice it would be to have a glimse of her Odette again (besides that Nureyev production). It's been so long since I've seen her dance that I really only remember "impressions of her as Odette - her line in arabesque, the curve of her neck and the tilt of her head. Thanks for the heads up, I will definitely set my VCR! :jump: :jump:
  14. I voted yes because - any publicity is good publicity. I hate the fact that most of the news coverage has focused on the sensational aspects of the story and I think that it not only reinforces a negative stereotype, it actively makes fun of ballet dancers and the general attitude of the ballet going public. Still, if Volochkova tours (and she will!) and 100 people who wouldn't normally go to the ballet go to see her because of all this fuss and 1 of them falls in love with ballet...it's good for ballet!
  15. Hi, Corella/Tuttle and Cojocaru/Kobborg are among the ballet dancers scheduled to perform at City Center in the "Career Transitions for Dancers" Benefit on 10/27. I'm not sure if I'm posting this in the right place but I haven't seen mention of this elsewhere on the site and I thought some of the NY based members would be interested. It's a gala benefit, so the good seats are really expensive but the seats in the rear mezanine - rear gallery go for $45 - $20. Here are the details from the City Cener site http://www.citycenter.org/events/event_det...vent_code=CTD04 Movado presents Career Transitions for Dancers' 9th Annual Gala Gotta Dance – A Dance Tribute to Hollywood Directed by Randy Skinner Career Transition for Dancers' 9th Annual Gala, "A Dance Tribute to Hollywood," will honor and pay tribute to many of the films and stars that provided those glorious moments of dance on the silver screen from such films as “Singin’ in the Rain,” “The Red Shoes,” “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,” West Side Story,” “Sweet Charity,” “Saturday Night Fever,” “The Turning Point” and stars such as the Nicholas Brothers, Fred & Ginger and Gene Kelly. . Career Transitions for Dancers' honorees for the evening will be - Cyd Charisse - Fayard Nicholas - Donald O’Connor - Turner Entertainment Co. The Gala will be dedicated in memory of Caroline H. Newhouse Dancers from American Ballet Theatre (Angel Corella & Ashley Tuttle), Les Ballets Grandiva, Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, New York City Ballet, National Dance Institute, The Royal Ballet’s Alina Cojocaru & Johan Kobborg and others will perform. Some of the hosts and performers for the dance event of the year are Leslie Browne, George Chakiris, Marge Champion, Cyd Charisse, Arlene Dahl, Jacques d’Amboise, David Elder, Karen Lynn Gorney, Cynthia Gregory,Maurice Hines, Mary Tyler Moore, Bebe Neuwirth, Fayard Nicholas, Marni Nixon, Donald O’Connor, Robert Osborne, Elizabeth Parkinson, Rosie Perez, Jane Powell, Lynn Redgrave, Ann Reinking, Chita Rivera, Donald Saddler, Russ Tamblyn, Esther Williams, the Williams Brothers and others. The Gala will feature some World Premieres that are especially created for the show.
  16. Could you recommend some of those mom & pop motels in Ft. Lauderdale? I'm a New Yorker who's decided to take a trip down to South Florida to see MCB. I have family near Ft. Lauderdale so I decided to go to Broward instead of South Beach. I have a reservation at the Riverside Hotel for this trip but I'd be interested to see what you recommend for future trips... I have no problem with quiet country motels, but I don't drive so I'm looking for a place to stay where I'd be comfortable walking to the theatre, or where it would be easy to get a cab!
  17. I remember seeing Marianna Tcherkassky often in the early seventies in soloist roles with ABT. Although at that time I didn't really think of her as one my absolute favorites, I always enjoyed her performances. As other posters have said, she was very beautiful and soft, both her looks and her dancing. I remember especially enjoying her in Giselle in the peasant pas de deux and once in 76 in what I think was one of her early performances as Giselle with Ivan Nagy ( a big favorite of mine!). She dances in La Spectre de la Rose in the "Baryshinok at Wolf Trap " video and in Les Sylphides in" ABT at the Met (Mixed Bill)". For me those videos really reflect my memories of her.
  18. Hi Giannina, I saw Dvorovenko/Belosterkovsky in DQ durring ABT's summer season in New York. I read your post about their Costa Mesa performance and wanted to second your opinion. I 'd seen very little of Dvorovenko until this season, and her Kitri really blew me away. I saw three casts in DQ - Herrera/Carreno, Murphy/Stiefel and Dvorovenko/Belosterkovsky. All were wonderful, and each brought something special to their role but IMO Dvorovenko's performance was just amazing. Her technique and characterization both sparkled but to me the most remarkable thing was the conviction, charisma and energy that she brought to the role. Earlier in the season I thought that the audience at the Met seemed pretty reserved and quiet. Not by the end of this evening. It was amazing to watch the way Dvorovenko burst onto that stage in the first act and just took control of the performance, really owned the role and set the tone. As the evening progressed it was almost as if she was able to lift the energy level first of the rest of the cast and then of the audience through the sheer force of her personality. An amazing performance. I also loved Belosterkovsky. He's such a smooth and elegant dancer but it seemed almost like he was overwhelmed by Dvorovenko - confronted by an uncontrollable force of nature - and I felt that his perfomance may have been overshadowed in comparison to hers... Susan
  19. Thanks everyone, for all the info - I've been debating whether to go to one performance or both since I got the flyer yesterday. After reading all this glowing commentary I decided I couldn't order just one! I wasn't able to use the discount code on the website either but you can just call cititix at 212-581-1212.
  20. Thanks for the advice, I got first row mezzanine seats at the Broward. I wish they scheduled different programs over a single weekend so I could see them in a few things and get a sense of their style. I love Giselle though, and I'm looking forward to them.
  21. Hi! I'm new to the boards. I live in NY but I have family in South Florida & visit frequently. I've heard good things about MCB so I'm trying to plan a Feb or March family visit to coincide with their performances of Giselle. Does anyone have any advice for me regarding seating at their venues (I'll probably go to Broward but could go to Miami or Palm Beach) or casting. I really have no familiarity with their dancers or the sight lines of any of their theaters so any & all advice would be appreciated. Thanks, Susan
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