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Everything posted by christine174

  1. It has been very interesting to read the commentary on Osipova. I saw her in Giselle last year and Don Q on Tuesday. Both times I had the same reaction: Wow!!! ... followed by, she makes everyone else on stage look bad. (I saw her last year in Sylphide, too, but she didn't make as much of an impression there.) As somone else commented, she makes ABT look like a regional company. But that puzzles me, because it's not like I've never seen bravura dancing before. But when I'm watching Murphy whip off a series of triple fouettes, or Corella spin so fast his turn implodes on itself (don't know how else to describe it!), or Simkin do his dazzling ballet-cum-gymnastics thing, I'm not thinking to myself that no one else on stage is at their level. But that's what I think when I see Osipova. There's something about her that strikes me as "other," and I don't know if that has to do with the sheer level of her virtuosity, her style being different from ABT style (if ABT even has a consistent style), something about her stage personality, or... or what.
  2. Osipova = incredible! But: as I think it was Carbro warning last year with Simkin, she has to make sure she develops artistically and doesn't become a circus act with that incredible elevation. Carreno -- indeed the ABT principal contingent is aging, but I thought he looked better than in some time. Simkin, gypsy king, left the audience gasping. Boone, lovely!! Look forward to seeing so much more of her. Kajiya as Amour... I have no complaints, but Sarah Lane "owns" this role in my mind. And Renata Pavam and Isabella Boylston lovely as flower girls. A great evening!!
  3. I was also at Friday night's performance, with Corella and Herrera, and Stella Abrera replacing Veronika Part. (No indication of why the replacement was made; hope all is well with Veronika!) It was a very fun show, very enjoyable compared to the two lackluster performances of La Bayadere that I saw a week or so back. Both Herrera and Corella have declined in their technique from past years. Herrera is better off than he is, although she doesn't seem as light and springy as she used to. Corella it seems to me suffers from a decline in his stupendous abilities, as well as his recklessness and abandon. He wound up looking sloppy. There were also some partnering glitches. Still, while he may no longer be stupendously dazzling, he is still great, and a great showman to boot. The audience loved him and Paloma. Marcelo Gomes, as someone else noted, looked like he was having the time of his life. He was riveting every moment he was onstage. Overall, I was relieved that this was such a lively and enjoyable show. I was dismayed at the moribund quality of the two performances that I saw of La Bayadere (Gomes/Vishneva/Murphy and Herrera/Hallberg/Seo). Maybe I've just reached the saturation point, with 20+ performances every Met season for some years now, but I feel ready for something new. I wish I'd seen Kristi Boone as Mercedes/Queen of Dryads yesterday! I feel a little ho-hum about many of the principals (again, maybe just because I've seen them do the same roles over and over and over); the dancers I really look forward to seeing are several of the soloists and corps members.
  4. Wow, I've been wondering where IS Misty? Will she really not be dancing this season, is there anything official on that?
  5. Angelica, thanks for the lovely story! And my office is only a block from there! ... if I ever spot them, I'd probably be too intimidated to say anything, but I would love for them to know how much joy they have brought to my life, as they have to yours! But a quick look at the ABT schedule has me confused. Aren't they both supposed to be in China, like, today?
  6. I'm disappointed to see so little here for my favorite up and coming corps members: I don't see anything new here for Eric Tamm, and where is Isabella Boylston? ... but perhaps I'm expecting too much. But I'm totally dismayed at the absence (are they in there *anywhere*?) of Misty Copeland, Kristi Boone and Yuriko Kajiya.
  7. I didn't see Gomes & Herrera, but I did see the matinee -- Hallberg & Murphy. I meant to post earlier, but at this point in the season, after 25ish performances in such a short period of time, I start to get a little tipsy on ballet, if that's possible. It all starts to blur together and feel good, but overwhelming. In this case, I was intoxicated by the blondness and beauty of David Hallberg. Murphy was good too, I think -- but I was mesmerized by Hallberg. I like the ballet more than I did before. I know that's counter to everything everyone has been posting. It definitely gets long, especially the last act, and I would not object to more dancing, as opposed to posing. But I found it quite beautiful. I love the "pas de trois" with Romeo, Mercutio, and Benvolio. And the music is magnificent and sweeping. It swept me right up, that and Hallberg, into a state of ballet ecstasy. Tonight, my final performance of the season: Seo and Stearns. I'm sure Veronika Part has had enough of Lady Capulet, but I hope she's on tonight!
  8. I saw Vishneva last night, for the first time this season, and was totally reminded of why I've loved her so much in the past. She is just so strong, so fluid, and so so sensuous! And so dramatically present. I'm really sorry I missed her Swan Lake, and totally bummed I can't get to R&J on Monday night. Next year, I hope! I also saw Tuesday's performance (Herrera and Gomes). Alexandre Hammoudi was a terrific Orion, with a strong, masculine presence, and conveying so much menace that I was envisioning him as Von Rothbart. Another hope for next year? The single image that most stands out for me from the two performances of Sylvia that I saw is Kristi Boone as Diana. Talk about regal! That crisp, clear mime as she stares Orion down, takes the arrow from the quiver, puts in the bow, and boom! I was transfixed by her every movement onstage. Another fervent hope for next year: Boone as Myrtha. The interpolated scene of "Diana in Love" appeared to feature the lovely Melissa Thomas. Where has she been this season? Injured? This was probably hashed out on BT when Sylvia was new, but what is going on with the costumes? The Roman-themed skating dresses worn by the men had me scratching my head. On the other hand, loved Diana's leopard-print bikini top and deep green velvet drapery skirt.
  9. I totally agree with carbro about Bolle's performance. In stark contrast to Part's inner richness, he seemed empty and bland. And while he had some very fine moments of dancing, great height, clarity of footwork and form, overall I found him slow and lagging. On the other hand, he did do some pretty terrific partnering. Also have to agree with the many comments here about the sorry state of the corps. I thought they were pretty ragged last week in La Sylphide, but I excused it on the basis that they don't dance Sylphide every year like they do Giselle. But what on earth was going on last night??? There's no excuse for this! It was a total mess, and not just the swans, but even the aristocrats and peasants in Act I. I thought the pas de trois looked very good last night. I haven't seen Stella Abrera since she came back from her injury. She wasn't a favorite of mine, but last night I could see why so many of you like her so much. And I thought Riccetto was lovely. I've seen so many dancers do that variation, but I find only a few really make it sparkle with the crispness and freshness it needs, and Riccetto matched the fond memories I have of Sarah Lane and (especially) Xiomara Reyes in the role. Blaine Hoven looked very solid and like he was enjoying himself, and overall, the three of them danced in great harmony. Will we see Eric Tamm in this role next year? (... or has he done it already?? wish ABT would post these things!) ABT fielded a great cast of princesses last night, and between Misty Copeland, Hee Seo, Renata Pavam, and Leann Underwood, I was totally torn about where to look!
  10. Veronika was stunning. This is absolutely her best role. I was so moved that I got a little teary and could barely function during intermission, I just sat there in contemplative silence as I reviewed the way she sliced through the air with such precision and fluency. I wish I had the knowledge and vocabulary to describe particular moments better, but it's etched in my memory. She conveys the deepest, richest inner life, and on top of that I was thrilled to see her looking so confident and solid, holding balances way longer than necessary, to the point of showing off. I can forgive that in her!
  11. The audience went wild for Veronika Part, and she looked thrilled at the curtain call, which was quite, quite prolonged. Brava Veronika!
  12. Tonight's performance with Steifel/Herrera/Hallberg... some highly idiosyncratic impressions... Is it Paloma Herrera that's changed, or is it me? I used to avoid her performances like the plague, something about her onstage manner just seemed unfocused, uncommitted. I used to joke that (while a technical marvel) she used to look like she was standing around bored onstage. This season I really love her! She really inhabits a role, and while this wasn't the most fearless performance I've ever seen from her, she throws herself into it. How old is she? I hope I get more time to enjoy her. And it was great to see Ethan Steifel. At the curtain call they seemed really affectionate with each other and happy to dance together. It was sweet. David Hallberg, what can I say. !!! Even in that ridiculous opening sequence (I really don't get the whole dual sorcerer thing), behind the gauzy scrim, his incredible line makes it all worthwhile. He's so mesmerizing onstage that I had to remember to watch the black swan pdd, I was tempted just to train my binos on Hallberg standing around and gesturing at the queen! My budget hasn't allowed me to see quite as many performances this season as I'd like -- only 14 so far :-( -- so I haven't seen as much of Misty Copeland as I could wish. I'm sure she'd rather be doing something other than a cygnette, but I was thrilled to see her. Since she did perform tonight, I'm not sure why she was replaced as the Hungarian princess. Misty, I wanted to see you! The "national dances" do get long. My favorite is the Spanish dance, for its intensity and drama. My second favorite is that crowd-pleaser, the Neapolitan. I could do without the Hungarian & Polish dances, although I did get some enjoyment tonight from training the binos on Leann Underwood. Also Alexandre Hammoudi (Spanish dance) just has a terrific air as a partner, careful and protective of his partner in a way that reminds me of Marcelo Gomes. I know a lot of you really hate it, so I hesitate to say this, but I do like the swan sequence that's the prelude for the final act. I find it quite poetic. As many others have commented, it would be great if ABT would post casting for roles like the pas de trois. I'd be highly inclined to buy a ticket if I knew Eric Tamm or Isabella Boylston was doing the pas de trois, and I'd even be tempted to come just to see Leann Underwood or Katherine Williams do one of those princess roles. On to Veronika!
  13. Just a quick note. I also found Part quite wonderful and beautiful, despite my doubts in advance about whether she was sufficiently "sylphlike." That just didn't matter -- she was so rich and expressive and beautiful. I've been a big big fan of Hee Seo. She danced beautifully at the matinee, looking fluid, lightweight, and holding her positions so solidly. But like another post-er, I found her unmoving. Hallberg at the matinee was very moving in his acting. Totally believable. You had the picture of a young man profoundly disturbed by this "visitation" and what was happening to his life; he fought against it and tried to hold onto his life, but in the end gave in totally to his incredible yearning for the Sylph. Stearns danced well, and has a promising future, but his characterization wasn't as rich or moving. Gurn -- this role makes me realize what an odd piece Sylphide is. Simkin and Salstein are both natural comedians, but the slapstick seemed odd when paired with the more disturbing aspects of the ballet. Not their fault, it's just an odd emotional combination in the ballet. But overall, this being my first encounter with Sylphide, I like it, and would love to see it again. I also like Airs more, having seen it three times now. Sorry I missed the cast with Misty Copeland. I enjoyed Katherine Williams.
  14. Just back from Sylphide. I'd never seen it before and liked it a lot. Osipova and Cornejo were both wonderful. I'm looking forward to seeing Hee Seo and David Hallberg. I am wondering, though, how Veronika Part and Cory Stearns fared. This doesn't strike me as the best role for Part -- she's so majestic and lush, not exactly sylphlike. And I wonder if Stearns is up to the technical demands. Reports on the matinee, please! I'm a little less keen on Airs, but it's definitely better than Desir. I think it may grow on me.
  15. Osipova/Hallberg/Part I'll be brief, since most of what I have to say has already been covered! Osipova was incredible. From the moment she took the stage you could tell that she's head and shoulders above anyone in her elevation (*incredible!*), buoyancy, complete control of everything she does, and beautiful musicality. Sad to say, she truly made everyone else onstage look like a student. Even Hallberg, I felt, wasn't quite up to her level... and that's saying something, because normally I find him amazing. I felt their partnership had great potential, and I'd love to see it develop, although I felt it wasn't quite "there" last night. Perhaps that's connected to what others have said, and which I agree with, the lack of depth and passion in Osipova's characterization. I saw Ananiashvili on Friday and Dvorovenko on Wednesday night, and both were more moving than Osipova. And as an overall partnership, I felt Hallberg was a more perfect match with Riccetto at the Wednesday matinee. But then, they must be much more familiar with dancing with each other. I absolutely can't wait to see Osipova again. Hee Seo and Blaine Hoven in the peasant pdd were fine but not great. They weren't significantly off in any way, but because I've come to expect such wonderful things from both of them, it was just a little disappointing. Leann Underwood as Zulma was outstanding yet again. Those legs are so long and beautiful, her arabesque and penches are stunning, and she poured her soul into the renverses. It's been a great week of Giselle. I've never seen Airs or La Sylphide before. I only hope it can halfway measure up to the great Giselle experience!
  16. Hallberg was perfect. He portrayed Albrecht as being truly in love with Giselle. When Bathilde appeared on the scene, you could see him struggling with his emotions -- stricken, ashamed, barely able to raise his eyes to meet Bathilde's greeting, his heart with Giselle but realizing the hopelessness of the situation. There was a small detail that stuck in my heart -- when he dashed offstage after Giselle's death, distraught, at the very last moment before he disappeared into the wings, his head suddenly was thrown back. It was a dramatic gesture that underlined the intensity of his grief, that even as he rushed away from the scene his grief was growing and was literally tearing him apart, that he was no longer in control of his body. Going to last night's performance (Ananiashvili/Carreno/Murphy), Isabella Boylston subbed for Maria Riccetto as Moyna (I guess to give Riccetto the night off before the matinee). She was so beautiful. I hate to be fickle and change my "corps favorite" mid-season, and Hee Seo was lovely as Zulma too, but I've been seeing so much of Isabella, and she's doing everything right. Daniil Simkin and Sarah Lane did peasant pdd. I agree with everything that's been said about Simkin in terms of his dazzle, freshness, and promise. He could relate to his partner in a deeper way, but I'm sure that will come with more experience. Sarah Lane danced well, but I have trouble really warming up to her. I was thrilled to see Ananiashvili. Carreno was a great partner for her. The curtain call was prolonged. Nina's fans want to say goodbye!
  17. Re last night's performance (Dvorovenko/Beloserkovsky/Part), I have to agree with Classic Ballet about Leann Underwood. She was beautiful. Those legs are so long! I think of her as very tall, so I was surprised seeing her standing next to Melanie Hamrick, that Underwood isn't really any taller than Hamrick. I guess it's those long long legs and arms, which she uses to beautiful effect. And very musical. "Graceful" is the word that most comes to mind. I also especially enjoyed the peasant pas de deux with Isabella Boylston and Mikhail Ilyin. Boylston was lovely, and Ilyin was a huge improvement over Lopez in the afternoon performance.
  18. I'm in general agreement with aurora about today's Riccetto-Hallberg matinee. I found Riccetto's performance very pleasing, with a few caveats. She was technically very secure, but it didn't flow as well as it might; it was as if you could sometimes see her moving from one element to the next. Also, her interpretation is not as deep as some others. However, presumably this would smooth out with a few more performances. I would definitely see her again. Myrtha was Simone Messmer, and the demi-soloists were Isabella Boylston and Hee Seo. Peasant pdd was Carlos Lopez and Yuriko Kajiya. Kajiya was lovely, so fluid and airborne. Lopez seemed to be having an off day and did not look secure at all in the solo sections.
  19. I was there Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. I'd never seen Prodigal Son before, and was totally blown away. I'm still a relative newcomer to ballet, and between this and several viewings of the Tchaikovsky-Balanchine program, I'm really appreciating Balanchine in a way I never did before. I saw two casts: Corella/Boone and Simkin/Dvorovenko. Both were excellent. Simkin had freshness, impteuousness, and tremendous height and form; and Dvorovenko was, as someone else said, virtually flawless. So right for the role, and in command of all that fabric! Corella I thought was the better actor. Years ago I found myself resisting him, as if suspicious of his charm and dazzle. Now that he's older, I find I really appreciate him as someone with an unusual connection to the audience, someone who goes all out in whatever way he can, when he's onstage. I thought he was tremendous, and I was in tears at the end on Saturday night. Kristi Boone is slightly less fluid and sinuous than Dvorovenko, and she had a little more trouble getting the fabric where it was supposed to be. But these are minor quibbles; I thought she was sexy and very commanding. Desir... put me with the crowd that found this really dull and repetitious. Misty Copeland, Hee Seo, and Isabella Boylston were all terrific. As other post-ers have said, Boylston's line is beautiful, and Misty brought an intensity and explosiveness. But having seen this piece three times now, I feel that's two times too many. On the Dnieper... I wasn't so crazy about it. It's too confused and muddled for me. There's too much goings-on, confused groupings, staging moving about, and few if any memorable images. The music doesn't strike me as the best music for dance. I saw Saveliev-Messmer-Tamm-Riccetto; Carreno-Vishneva-Hammoudi-Seo; and Gomes-Herrera-Hallberg-Part (if I'm remembering correctly). I thought Simone Messmer danced beautifully, and Eric Tamm impresses me every time I see him. Alexandre Hammoudi looked terrific too. Hee Seo was the most dramatic of the Natalias that I saw. To my astonishment, I'm really liking Paloma Herrera this season. And David Hallberg... well, here words fail me, but to all who have seen him, you know what I'm talking about
  20. I know this may be wishful thinking, but is there anywhere online one can go and see a full cast listing? Even if not in advance, for ticket buying purposes, I'd like to be able to check out what dancers get cast in various roles. I'm with you, vipa! I wish we could know casting for these demi-soloist roles... and Isabella Boylston is someone I'd go see, if only I knew!
  21. Here's hoping as many of you as possible will post your impressions of Corsaire. Details, please!
  22. Have to agree with sz about Irina Dvorovenko in AB Thursday night. I have this view of her from past years as someone I find too showy, but more recently she keeps surprising me with how mesmerizing she is. I thought last night, "she's the unsung hero of the ABT female principal contingent." I don't know how "unsung" she really is, but anyway, that was my thought.
  23. I was at the performances last night and tonight. What most stands out is how absolutely stunning Hee Seo is looking (these nights, in featured corps roles). With a million-dollar smile and brimming with charisma, she looks like a star. I can't wait to see her in... well, especially in the three principal roles she's taking on this season, but really, I'm glad to see her in anything! Blaine Hoven did Mozartiana both nights (with Riccetto last night and tonight, replacing Belosoverkovsky, with Part). He also was a tremendous pleasure to watch. I enjoyed the Kajiya/Stearns Theme & Variations. Also, surprisingly, I loved Gomes and Herrera tonight in Tchaikovsky pdd. I always love Gomes, but Herrera is someone I have repeatedly been disappointed in over several years. Tonight, however, a different story. Engaged, committed, and she and Gomes looked like they were having a grand time. And, of course, they delivered a spectacular, very crowd-pleasing performance. I wish someone would report on the Copeland/Matthews Tchaikovsky pas de deux. I'd love to see Misty in it, but I'm a little less certain about how Matthews will fare. Any reports?
  24. OMG. I honestly thought I would NEVER live to see this day! Congratulations Veronika!!!
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