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About balletdad

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    ballet fan, parent of dance student
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  1. I agree that Ms Altamn is a wonderful Myrtha but then she learned from Muriel Maffrie the finest myrtha SFB has had. I am looking forward to Ms Sylvies return. I though Francis Chung did a very fine job Sunday. She had a wonderful nobel air but I think she lacked the fierceness that Ms Altman and Ms Sylvie bring to the role. I thought Mr Baker was outstanding as Hilarion. He displayed an amazing emotional depth in the role. I also agree that Sarah might be the best Giselle in the Company. She was outstanding Sunday. He mad scene is quite special. I was very impressed with Mr Helimets. I have considered him to be incredibly accomplished as a partner but a bit weak on the solo variations. However Sunday he danced wonderfully in his second act variations. Very impressive.
  2. How nice that Rory is back for Westside Story. He is such a fun and dynamic dancer. Does anyone know what he has been up to and/or where he is dancing since he left SFB? I found nothing through a Google search.
  3. I hope it is not really true as it would be a real loss for the company and for dance in SF.
  4. Welcome bean, hope you enjoy your trip to SF. A good way to get to Stern Grove from Union Square is to take the subway/streetcar from the Powell Street MUNI station at Market Street near the cable car turnaround. Go to the MUNI plarform (not BART) and take an outbound M or K train to Sloat Blvd (and St Francis) stop (this stop is above ground. Walk west 1/4 mile (4 short blocks) to 19th Ave and cross 19th to Stern Grove. Two words or warning. The Grove fills up fast for the Ballet so you may want to get there early, probably by 11, noon at the latest. Also is can be chilly at Stern Grove so you might want to dress warmly and in layers so you can adjust as the temp changes. Of course it is always best to dress in layers when visiting SF. August tends to be one of the chillier months. Hope you enjoy the performance. Stern Grove is a beautiful venue.
  5. I have mixed emotion at the departure of Gonzalo from SFB. I am happy for him as working with Wheeldon's company will be a wonderful experience for him but I will certainly miss him when he leaves SF. He is a wonderful dancer. I am surprised to hear is is only a guest with Wheeldon's company as the story I had heard was that he was leaving to become a member of that company. But either way I wish Gonzalo great fortune in his career after San Francisco.
  6. The mystery of Yuri's future is solved. He will be resident choreographer with SFB. http://www.sfballet.org/news/detail.aspx?id=34
  7. You can add Yuri Possokov to the list of Company members leaving after this season, though he is staying through the New York performances. Here is the link to the Company" press release. Again, no mention of his future plans or any continuing affiliation with SFB as a choreographer. http://www.sfballet.org/news/detail.aspx?id=32
  8. I wonder where Amanda is going? The SF Chronicle reported last week that Peter Brandenhoff is also leaving the Company. "Add Peter Brandenhoff to the list of major names on the San Francisco Ballet roster who will be leaving the company this year. Stephen Legate previously announced his retirement and a couple of others are in the wings, I hear. The Danish-born Brandenhoff has had a 13-year career with the Ballet, bridging a year with the Hamburg Ballet. He plans to remain in the Bay Area as a dancer and pursue other artistic endeavors. " here is the link to the Chronicle story: http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c...d&sn=002&sc=994
  9. The SF chronicle liked this program. They say Fifth Season maybe Helgi's best work yet. http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c...DDG6THVIFC1.DTL
  10. Here is a link to the review in the SF Chronicle. http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c...DGP0GVG1521.DTL
  11. I did not have the opportunity to attend the Gala but a friend who attended said it was wonderful. He was particularly pleased with Lorena Feijoo and Davit Karapetyan in the Black Swan pas from Swan Lake. He said it brought down the house and got the most enthusiastic response from the ballet students standing 4 deep in the standing room section. For those interested here is a link to today's review in the SF Chronicle, http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c...DDGNMGT2IF1.DTL
  12. I would second lillianna's comments. Tan is a wonderful dancer and an incredible technician but no actress. She does not bring much more than her dancing (incredible though it is) to a story ballet role. She does not get into the character. Tina LeBlanc on the other hand really seems to become the character. I say her last year in Giselle and she was magical. The mad scene with (the great character dancer) Anita Paciotti as her mother was breathtakingly poignant. I saw several Giselles last year and Tina was most certainly the most outstanding. If I only see Swan Lake once it would be with LeBlanc and Garcia (I already have tickets for Firday night but might get standing room to see Lorena and Davit). Garcia has been working with LeBlanc for awhile now and the pairing has really helped him improve as a dancer (here is a link to a story about them from the SF Chronicle, http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c...sn=001&sc=1000). As far as the Odette/Odile dicotomy, of the two you are considering, I think Tina would bring the most to the characters. Enjoy
  13. The Company has not yet announced the casting for Swan Lake. If you want to check it yourself here is their web address... www.sfballet.org I suspect Lorena will be one, as she is dancing the black swan pas in the Company's Gala earlier the week of the opening. Lorena's sister is with Boston and a couple of years ago they did Swan Lake. Lorena flew out to Boston to perform with her sister. One was to dance Odette the other Odile. The plan had been to bring their mother from Cuba to see them dance together. Unfortunately there were visa problems and mother could not get into the country on time. Perhaps they could arrange a similar thing in SF during this run of Swan Lake. That would be somethnig to see!
  14. I saw Hansuke Yamamoto dance Russian and he was very good. He danced with enthusiasm and barely controlled abandon, which I think works great in this role. I also had the chance to see Nutnaree Pipit-Suksun dance Snow Queen and she was wonderful. I have also seen Katita Waldo and Muriel Maffrie in that role this year and Nutnaree Pipit-Suksun certainly holds her own in comparison to those two incredible dancers. She danced it softer than Maffrie but still sufficiently "snowy" I saw Nutnaree in the role last year and was not impressed but she was much better this year. I have seen the show from the balcony and standing room and agree that it looks best from a distance (though the balcony is a bit far to see some of the beautiful details). The geometry of the larger pieces, snow and flowers, is much more apparent and the whole thing fits together much more nicely. I think the magic works better from a distance (but then I have always felt that about ballet in general and do not sit in the orchestra section if I can aviod it). Paul.. regarding the "fancy dressing room" where Clara transforms into the ballerina, it is the gazebo Clara receives as a gift in the party scene when all the children receive their gifts. If you notice her sitting with the "younger" girls (many of whom are the same age as the girls playing Clara) after the gifts she opens it up to show her friends the ballerina doll within its mirrored interior. The doll wears a tutu similar to that worn by the second act Ballerina. BTW the woman in the opening with Dross, as well at the policeman, butcher, nurse and nuns in the prolouge are supernumeraries who wrk with both the ballet and SF Opera. The others are company corps members and SFB school students. I very much enjoy this new Nutcracker and will likely see it a couple more times yet this season
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