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About PeggyR

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  • Birthday January 1

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    Ballet lover
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    Santa Rosa
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  1. I’ll second that! I only saw him a few times, but Robison was always very impressive, and he was one of the few saving graces of Frankenstein. I hope this is a permanent return and not just for 2019. SFB is lucky to have such a strong roster of male dancers at all levels.
  2. PeggyR

    Dancer Promotions for 2018-2019

    Good promotions, particularly Park; I've only seen her twice, but she makes an impression, especially for one so apparently young. I agree (hope) that Hummel may be next; she's very musical. Bizalion only showed up on my radar from her Lilac Fairy performance - mature, polished, beautiful port de bras - and I look forward to seeing her development. I'm curious why you think there's pressure to hire from outside, and pressure from whom? I can't imagine that anyone (audience, hiring committee, whatever) who knows enough about ballet to recognize genuine talent, as opposed to performers of stupid pet tricks, wouldn't acknowledge the talent in the soloist and corps ranks and prefer to see promotions from within whenever possible. Strongin would seem likely to take over Kochetkova's spot; very different type of dancer but Kochetkova is unique anyway - no point trying to 'replace' her. Of course, when the inevitable retirements of Tan and Sylve happen, then I can see bringing in from outside if the soloist women haven't developed enough to take on principal. In any case, interesting to see what happens down the road.
  3. PeggyR

    UNBOUND 2018: A Festival of New Works

    I’ve been Googling for reviews for a few days and nothing at all, not even the SJ Mercury, which seems to post reviews fairly promptly, and nothing from SFGate so far. Very curious. The best news in Macaulay’s review is that Joseph Walsh is back on stage, although Franziskonis’ partner is listed in the on-line Casting as corps dancer Joseph Warton. Given that later in the review, Alonzo King’s ballet 'The Collective Agreement' is referred to in shortened form as ‘Argument’ (“As in Mr. King’s ‘Argument’, these duets…”), it’s a little hard to know what, if anything, is correct. Anyway, it sounds like the first three each had various merits; I look forward to hearing other opinions from BTers.
  4. Just got the email myself. Surprised and sorry to see her leave. I wonder if there will be a place for her at ABT, or maybe she's just going to freelance for a while. She will be missed, and it will be interesting to see where she ends up next. Lucky company that gets her. The question has to be asked, will this leave room for another promotion? The female principal group is a strong one, but with Tan and Sylve approaching retirement age, and Kochetkova leaving, I hope that leaves an opening for Lauren Strongin.
  5. PeggyR

    Dancer Promotions for 2018-2019

    For my money, Keesler is no more than competent; there’s none of the technical proficiency and especially the movement flow and beauty that I look for. Although she’s certainly photogenic, she’s just never stood out in any other way. I’d certainly prefer any of the dancers Pherank mentions, particularly Hummel, always watchable, and Park, who was simply lovely in Serenade (I’m really interested to see if/how newcomer Park will develop over the next few seasons).
  6. PeggyR

    2019 Season

    And she still dances that way; plus, she can act. One of the best all-around dancers in the company.
  7. PeggyR

    2019 Season

    Perliminary take on 2019: Shostakovich Trilogy – A genuine masterpiece. I can easily see attending every performance, if the budget holds out (I guess that’s what standing room is for). Taras Domitro will be much missed in Symphony No. 9, but with luck Sarah Van Patten and Luke Ingham will reprise their roles. Hoping Joseph Walsh will be back to replace Davit Karapetyan in Chamber Symphony. Divertimento No. 15 – SFB danced it well last time it was performed. Can only hope enough good work will come out of the new works festival to justify only one Balanchine. Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes - Maybe not a masterpiece but fun, and it’s always great to see the sterling men of the company showcased. Etudes – I remember seeing this about a million years ago with Toni Lander; don’t remember loving it, but as I recall it works if the dancers can pour on the flash; SFB should be able do that. The Little Mermaid – Flawed (Neumeier throws in everything but the kitchen sink) and too long, but nevertheless a riveting piece of dance theater. Tan's sinuous Mermaid - beyond beautiful; Van Patten's ultra dramatic Mermaid-well, ultra dramatic as only she can do it. Interesting to see who else might take on the role this time. The Fifth Season: The only Tomasson ballet I can watch without yawning prodigiously. Sleeping Beauty: One of my favorite scores, an interesting production, and it's a good showcase for the dancers. Plus, I suppose it makes sense to do a big production like this two years in a row, since presumably that minimizes rehearsal time. But I can't help wishing we could bring in a La Sylphide, or a full length Bayadere, or SOMETHING else for a change. Yes, Virginia, another Don Q: See Sleeping Beauty. To be fair, this is a good production and the dancers do it justice. I hope the unexpectedly funny (Fancy Free, 2nd sailor) Ulrik Birkkjaer gets a crack at Basilio. Good to know a fairly large selection of the new works will be showcased, although, of course, the audience may not agree with Tomasson what's worth repeating.
  8. PeggyR

    Dancer Promotions for 2018-2019

    More than agree about that. Actually, I haven't seen her since her stunning Prayer in Coppelia a couple of years ago. Has she been out for some reason, or have I just been unlucky with casting?
  9. PeggyR

    Dancer Promotions for 2018-2019

    Very good news on all accounts, especially Weeks, who I understand was injured, which seemed to delay this very well-deserved promotion. He can have an intensity that’s almost scary; he’s definitely someone I’ll go out of my way to see. As to Wei Wang, to be honest, as much as I like him, I have to wonder if he would benefit from another year or two at the soloist level, mainly to increase his stage presence. He joined as apprentice 2012, corp 2013, soloist 2016, principal 2018, so he seems to be very young. Having said that, it’s great to see an SFB male soloist being promoted instead of bringing in another male principal from outside, excellent as those imports have been. Speaking of promotions, when is Lauren Strongin going to be made principal?
  10. A couple of weeks ago on another thread (which I can’t find at the moment), there was a discussion about promotional clips of various ballets set to a single piece of music, regardless of how appropriate it is to the video clips. Aside from about a nano-second of The Red Shoes, this sticks to dance routines from movie musicals (which maybe fits TRS a bit), and it’s pretty well done.
  11. OT, but "...newsroom undergoing major changes." isn't filling me with confidence either.
  12. PeggyR

    Giselle live from FNOB

    I don't have time to watch right now; plan to see it this weekend. But I'm curious about the timing: 2 hours 34 minutes. Has anyone seen this yet? Does it really last that long?
  13. PeggyR

    Program 2 - Bright Fast Cool Blue

    Three performances of Program 3 in a week. Serenade was the attraction for buying extra tickets, but this turned out to be one of the most enjoyable triple bills I’ve seen in years – the masterpiece, the likable (plus a bit of a mystery), and the fun. SERENADE Composer: Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky Choreographer: George Balanchine Conductor: Martin West February 18 Waltz Couple: Wona Park, Wei Wang* Russian Girl: Frances Chung Angel: Dores André Dark Angel: Ulrik Birkkjaer February 24 2:00 pm Waltz Couple: Yuan Yuan Tan, Carlo Di Lanno Russian Girl: Sasha De Sola Angel: Jennifer Stahl Dark Angel: Luke Ingham February 24 8:00 pm Waltz Couple: Maria Kochetkova, Vitor Luiz Russian Girl: Sasha De Sola Angel: WanTing Zhao Dark Angel: Luke Ingham Casts for Serenade were all good, but newcomer Wona Park caught my attention. To be sure, probably any female member of the corp could perform the steps competently. But aside from strong technique and intense musicality, Park’s dancing had an unexpected size and sweep. In contrast to Tan’s languid, remote beauty, and Kochetkova’s airy lightness, Park brought a rather earthy, vibrant energy to the Waltz couple, well partnered by Wei Wang. It’s going to be interesting to see how she develops. THE CHAIRMAN DANCES—QUARTET FOR TWO Composer: John Adams Choreographer: Benjamin Millepied Conductor: Martin West February 18 Maria Kochetkova, Carlo Di Lanno Yuan Yuan Tan, Ulrik Birkkjaer Jennifer Stahl, Benjamin Freemantle February 24 2:00 pm Frances Chung, Vitor Luiz Koto Ishihara, Tiit Helimets Elizabeth Powell, John-Paul Simoens February 24 8:00 pm Frances Chung, Vitor Luiz Koto Ishihara, Tiit Helimets Elizabeth Powell, John-Paul Simoens The surprise was the Millepied. I’d seen ‘The Chairman Dances’ (without the ‘Quartet for Two’ section) at the 2017 Gala. There are so many negative comments about Millepied’s choreography on this board, I felt a little guilty about liking it. Still like it. Not particularly original (lots of ‘walking’ a la Robbins' Glass Pieces), not something I’d go out of my way or spend extra money to see, but perfectly happy if it’s programmed. Part 1 has a vaguely military look with athletic solos and pas de deux. Toward the end, and for no particular reason, everyone dances a foxtrot. Good humored and lively. A seemingly unrelated second section has been added: ‘Quartet for Two’. I loathe cute titles for ballets (or ballet programs), but this actually made sense. Four dancers – two male, two female – dance three short, intense pas de deux: male/female; male/male; female/female. Among the three versions of the PdD, similar, sometimes identical, choreography, but interesting with the various pairings. In contrast to the bright blue/red uniforms of The Chairman Dances section, all wore plain white costumes, and the music further emphasized the disconnect from the first part. It seems like Millepied has the makings of two interesting, short ballets that don’t make any particular sense as one ballet. I’d be grateful if anyone could explain what the point of combining them might be, aside from filling up a 20-minute slot. As for the casts: Chung/Luiz best captured the fox-trot humor in the first part; and Tan/Stahl were particularly beautiful in the female/female pairing in Quartet for Two. RODEO: FOUR DANCE EPISODES Composer: Aaron Copland Choreographer: Justin Peck Conductor: Martin West February 18 Sarah Van Patten, Luke Ingham Max Cauthorn, Daniel Deivison-Oliveira, James Sofranko February 24 2:00 pm Sofiane Sylve, Carlo Di Lanno Max Cauthorn, Daniel Deivison-Oliveira, James Sofranko February 24 8:00 pm Dores André, Ulrik Birkkjaer Esteban Hernandez, Hansuke Yamamoto, Wei Wang I commented about this on the Gala thread and three more viewings haven’t diminished my enjoyment. Great fun. The men of the company outdid themselves, with Esteban Hernandez standing out.
  14. PeggyR

    SFB 2018: Sleeping Beauty

    re Scheller, She seemed a little cool and just a bit grand for a 16 year old. I’d be interested to see her as Myrta, which I don’t think she has danced. Re Lonnie Weeks I was surprised he didn’t make soloist during the last round of promotions butI didn’t know he’d been injured. He’s looking very good, though. Fingers crossed for his promotion soon. they just posted casting for the rest of the run (I’m on an iPad and donT thing I’m up to copy paste with this awful keyboard). I had bought a ticket for 2/3matinee without knowing the cast, but lucked out with Chung/Luiz. Hernandez and Sheehan will be dancing BB at that performance, and I’m looking forward to it. He did dance as an Act III cavalier on Saturday and was very good. I’m sorry to miss out on De Sola.
  15. PeggyR

    SFB 2018: Sleeping Beauty

    Sorry, it's hard to explain what I'm trying to describe; I'll try to find some video. I didn't mean to imply that the balancing issue has anything to do with her injury; she's been pulling the same stunt since she came to SFB. It's very admirable that she can balance that long, but she's too good a dancer to need to milk it. That wavering back and forth to hold on to the balance completely ruins the moment, especially in the middle of a story ballet. I've seen a few other dancers do the same thing, and it's just as annoying.