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Amy Reusch

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Posts posted by Amy Reusch

  1. On 12/21/2017 at 4:38 PM, abatt said:

    It's also not hard to imagine that he was given an ultimatum to resign with his full pension and benefits unharmed...

    Do ABT dancers get pensions and post employment benefits?  

  2. I would like to know what the Dress Rehearsal "horsing around" consisted of...    if a child is endangering others by out of control behavior, a director may make sudden physical contact to make it stop...    We aren't told what it was that triggered the "grabbed by the back of the neck" response...   Obviously it was over the top  on Martin's part... but I'd still like to hear the event described by a witness rather than the one who triggered the response.  If he was misbehaving back then, why is his testimony taken as flawless truth now?  Surely there would be other children there who would remember this day.  What happened?  What was Martins putting a stop to?  Why so violently?

    Clearly though, there is this same thread of "grabbing by the neck" through the stories...  that makes it clear it was a line that was crossed more than once...   What is that old line to women about "if a man hits you, once, it will happen again... get out of that relationship fast".

  3. It may be important to note that the finishing training is quite significant... it is as if at each  level  of advancement the student is capable of learning much more finesse than at the previous level... it is not as if one is just adding the top floor to a skyscraper.  In the US, the level of selection at age 9 is not the same as it is in say Russia...  The intense selection happens later, perhaps around age 14?  There are benefits to this  sytem too... sometimes not all talents are apparent at a very young age... it is hard to spot the artist in the child.

  4. I am a great admirer of Novikova... thought her dress was stunning, but missed the "tap on the back: wrap it up" cue of an earlier Bolshoi live stream... thought that was charming.... here they were clearly talking in her ears, but she coped well.


    I had a little difficulty following the Ratmansky interview... what was the new part he inserted in the third act?  Was it the entire pas with the feathery fans?  They kept saying what it was but my French is too basic to catch the term... Pas de What?


    Was the first act tempo a little faster than it had been rehearsed?


    was anyone else's livestream's audio off by a fraction?  I found myself watching to see if the footfalls matched what we were seeing on stage...  


    Costume design was gorgeous, just stunning, but I wish the bottom layers of the tutus were a little less springy... it seemed a lot of the footage was shot with the camera at the dancers' knee level so that we were looking up the skirts and the view was distracting.


    I am happy to say that most of the camera decisions were invisible... they clearly worked hard to make the kidnapping scene frame just right.  At times I wished they would allow the dancers just a little more space to dance in, but that the camera was rarely distracting is evidence of how well shot the production was.


    i wish very much that in their intermission bytes that they would decode the pantomime gestures... there several here that I was a little mystified by...  is there a history to the slave pose of fingertips to chest?  Keep your hands out of yuor pockets and visible at all times, ready to serve?


    The pas de Odalisques was one of the high points...   person next to me whispered in awe "so that's what brisés are supposed to look like!"


    finally... does the boat never rock in the storm?  I thought remembered reading once somewhere how a detachment of calvary(?) would be ordered to duty at the theater to pull the ropes to rock the boat during the storm.  This is the first time I have seen the whole production (have caught bits on the micro screen) and I had always wondered how the dancers moved on a rocking surface...  here the dancers clung to things as if the boat were rocking but the looked as placid as if it were sitting in a small ponf on a still day (until it cracked in two).  So... it never did rock? Or not in recent memory?


    we were given a printed program, but I swear it was practically in font point size 3... i will have to find my magnifying glass...


    [watched in Connecticut]


  5. I would like to see more Possokhov....  there were astonishing moments in the choreography... and some gorgeous dancers...   and I'd like to see this production live in the theater, but I can't imagine that set will ever travel to the US.


    I agree about the storyline, clearly we all needed to know the Lermontov novel well to be able to follow what was going on.


    I'd like to know how the live-stream came through in other parts of the country... for us the music frequently dropped out... but mainly I'm wondering about the quality of the [well shot, well directed this time!Bravo Vincent Bataillon!] ] video.    The Bolshoi obviously went to some expense on this production, but on screen, it seemed as if it weren't lit for the camera.  All those dancers in black kept fading into the black background...  was this just a downgraded streaming issue at my end?  Were there cities where the black-on-black came through crisp and brilliant?  I thought perhaps with the sound dropping out that the video might have downgraded to lower resolution, causing the issue.


    The composer interview at intermission was interesting... so very young... but what really struck me was his emphasis on his many discussions with the director, and an off-hand remark "and of course the choreographer".   Perhaps I am mistaken, but in the US, we're used to the choreographer being the primary director of a production, even when working for a company's artistic director...  I imagine that was not the case with Diaghilev, but usually isn't the choreographer given the reins?  I'm wondering if Possokhov set the tempos or was it someone else, the Director of the Bolshoi, the Composer, the Conductor?  Because it seemed as if in the first story, Smirnova was rushed through her movement (every split second she a chance to articulate, she did... don't get me wrong... she didn't seem to sacrifice to keep up with the speed), the movement just seemed too fast paced to be allowed to resonate... Her choreography's tempo seemed and oddly, the tribesmen (Georgians?) seemed too soft... We're used to all the youtube clips of fierce Georgian dancers and these just looked soft-edged.. I couldn't put my finger on it... they certainly the physical ability, but the dynamic, the attack was not as it is in the character dance companies... or was this just because it was not well lit?  Very hard to figure out what the problem was.  Also Igor Tsvirko, (yes, may we see more of him??), was curious... his passionate characterization well sustained the close-ups and the virtuosic movements, but it seemed like he was concentrating very hard to get the contemporary style choregraphy bits exactly correct... why?  was it the tempo?  He clearly is not lacking in ability or talent.


    The second act, was also well danced but difficult to decipher... I cannot decide if it were the lighting or whether the projections did not come through clearly over the live-stream?  It looked like some interesting water effects were happening on the scenery, but I kept feeling like they were not really visible, as if we were seeing only 20% of what was visible in the theater.  I suspect it was a technology issue local to the venue I saw the livestream in... was it widespread?  Anyone else feel something was not coming through?


    The dancers in wheelchairs... mixed-ability choreography presented at the Bolshoi!!  Very nice to see that!


    Novikova was impressive in the speed at which she could get the information out.  It did seem as if she were not getting quite what she expected from management though because she said something about not giving a description in Russian because the direction had not come through?  Also, I enjoyed the guy who would walk through and lightly touch her shoulder... I guess that was a cue that the sets were now in place and she should wrap up in 3 minutes or so?  Very curious.  


    It looked as if the next season will not have any new works?  (Corsaire, Taming of the Shrew, Nutcracker, Romeo & Juliet, La Dame aux Camelias, The Flames of Paris, Giselle, Coppelia ) Only re-choreographies of earlier ballets?  I only saw the titles go by in the theater, but on Pathe's page it looks like the Romeo & Juliet will be new choreography?    The descriptions are in French, and my skills there are lacking.  http://www.pathelive.com/programme/ballet-du-bolchoi-2017-2018



    The bit with the ballet barre in Act I... is that in the novel?



  6. I was only able to get for a bit of Friday...  The room was packed,more people than chairs... And afraid I did not take notes...  Here are some random memories/thoughts...


    One thing I wondered was perhaps addressed during sessions I missed:  under Stalin, it could be fatal to have Western connections... The exchanges started in the neighborhood of three years after Stalin's death... Was there a reluctance to be associated with a venture like this?  Perhaps the new regime might also turn against those with Western connections?   The bribes that were required in the USSR to get the exchanges to happen... Were some of these also to smooth over that reluctance?


    A theme seemed to be that the exchanges had much more impact on dance on the Western side of the Iron Curtain than on the Eastern side.  But I am not sure I entirely agree...   Sylvie Guillem, perhaps too late to be considered Cold War, but I believe she influenced the look of Russian dancers today... Their extreme flexibility... and the popularity of In the middle somewhat elevated..


    There was some talk of the cultural  exchange in Cuba and how the Cubans were resisant feeling they had their own distinct technique not requiring Russian patronizing... But there was no discussion of the details of this technique.  I find it interesting because  it often seems to me that the Cuban dancers more resemble the old soviet dancers than their Russian counterparts do.


    Ulanova was surprisingly old when she finally got to dance in the US?  I didn't realize how long it took Hurok to bring The Bolshoi to the US.  And the world nearly got DeNiro playing Hurok in a biopic.


    Russian Dancers were expected to bring back "thank you" gifts for those bureaucrats who got them in the tour... But they had very little money with which to purchase these gifts.  It was not quite explained how they managed on their piitance of a per diem to purchase the gifts.  


    I wondered why Merce Cunningham was not included... It seems he was not considered a gifted public speaker... But John Cage would have done this well for him, no?  And on the Modern Art front the US State Dept was covertly funding abstract painting from the avant garde, why was dance exported more conservative?


    There was also talk of Ailey, Dunham & Primus in Africa.   In some countries the local tribes distrusted Primus, thinking she was there to steal their dances, in others the colonial overlords feared she was fanning patriotic flames.  I wanted to ask if dances were handed down as legacy in Africa as they are in some Native American tribes but time was limited and the room was packed with noted critics, authors & scholars, so.. not sure if questions from general public would have been welcomed.

  7. The index link has sadly gone inert...  Found this nice thread when a friend posted a link to a video of that charming solo Ashton choreographed for Fonteyn at 60.  


    So, that dance they do together before Ashton leads her offstage, is that the Fred Step?


    would be a fun game some August (or Nutcracker seige) to see how many quotes we can find in the piece.  I think I see Ondine, maybe Firebird and surely Juliet?, but do not know the Fonteyn repetoire well enough to see more.

  8. Oddly, all the subject heading are shown lined up vertically as if in a column only one character wide... Until I click in far enough to read all the comments, then they suddenly align in a normal horizontal layout.  It is a little hard to read.  Not sure if this is because I am reading on an old iPad or what.

  9. I agree with Emma--certainly as far as Serenade goes. Is this what the dancers Balanchine trained and coached looked like in Serenade? Not in my experience.

    Edited to add: if the ballerina pictured moves musically and beautifully -- well, that might prove more important to me in performance than my problem with the hyperextension.

    If the move is beautiful, perhaps the skirt should be made opaque... Balanchine liked extensions but not used indiscriminately. I can't remember any pictures of oversplits in his dancers when he was alive...

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