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Everything posted by FauxPas

  1. Hammoudi has partnered Veronika in mixed program ballets - contemporary stuff if I remember. I remember they danced together in one of those opening night gala occasions. "Swan Lake" is a whole other level of course. I think it is a shame that Whiteside isn't dancing with Veronika since I think he handles her well. Also, Boylston's usual partner as Siegfried Daniil Simkin couldn't dance two shows because he would be dancing on Tuesday night and then the Wednesday matinee back to back. I think the best move would have been to revert to last year's casting and schedule Boylston/Simkin and Copeland/Whiteside. Or Boylston/Simkin and let Hammoudi partner Misty as he did in Australia and keep Whiteside with Part. There was a big TimeOut interview with Hammoudi: http://www.timeout.com/newyork/dance/alexandre-hammoudi-talks-about-his-career-at-american-ballet-theatre Two things stand out - one was that he was trained privately in Paris with a POB-trained teacher but never worked at the POB: "I actually never went there. All of my teachers did. Max Bozzoni was a big principal; he did all the [serge] Lifar ballets in the Paris Opera, and he is the teacher who made Patrick Dupond, basically; if we have a mentor, somebody we learn from, I pretty much learned from him. And it wasn’t that much about technique. It was a very old-school way of going about ballet and steps and movement, because I had zero discipline at that age. I was wild and full of energy and he was like, “Dance, dance, dance.”" The other is that reading between the lines you sense a certain lack of drive and discipline. Hammoudi doesn't come off as someone who is pushing himself past pain and exhaustion to polish his technique to dance on the highest classical level. There is a certain lackadaisical attitude to him and a touch of passivity. Neither trait would have gone over well at the POB school. Alex was accepted there but dissuaded from going by his teachers and family - partly because of the commute and having to board, schooling etc. Best leading role I saw Hammoudi dance was the title role in the Lubovitch "Othello" which is contemporary ballet choreography. That I think is his best fit - he had the charisma and the dramatic projection and his level of classical technique was a perfect match for a role designed on Desmond Richardson.
  2. Note: the first week of the season devoted to Ashton's "Sylvia" is discounted on Goldstar: https://www.goldstar.com/events/new-york-ny/american-ballet-theatres-sylvia-tickets?mal=1 Goldstar tacks on a processing fee that is not negligible but it is free to join.
  3. Ratmansky has a great deal of say into who dances Aurora in this ABT production. For example: Veronika Part danced Aurora on the opening night of the McKenzie/Kirkland/Chernov production. Part danced Aurora again in the few revival seasons that production had - she was actually much improved and technically fine the last time I saw her dance it. Since the Ratmansky staging opened, Part has only danced Lilac Fairy (with a simplified variation) in the Ratmansky. Clearly, Ratmansky or Part no longer feel she is appropriate as Aurora. Part is an experienced principal ballerina and a favorite of Ratmansky's. I will not say whether or not Copeland can or cannot dance Aurora, since I have never seen her dance the role. I won't even opine if she should or shouldn't dance the role. In fact I haven't seen enough of Copeland dancing prima ballerina roles in full-length Petipa classics other than Gamzatti that I can confidently predict her success or failure. (I didn't go to her "Swan Lake" matinee) If Copeland is filling the theater and large numbers of new ballet fans see her, "Sleeping Beauty" and excellent ABT dancers like Sarah Lane, Cassandra Trenary or Isabella Boylston then that is a good thing. Win-Win.
  4. I was personally wondering why Julie Kent wasn't tapped as a full-time ballet mistress at ABT to replace Susan Jaffe and the late Georgina Parkinson. Kolpakova is in her eighties and is cutting back though she seems indestructible. The JKO School Summer Intensive seemed kind of small potatoes for her. We don't know if Julie is giving up that position or if Victor Barbee is leaving his position of associate artistic director at ABT. Anyway, congratulations to both of them!
  5. At the first announcement of casting for the 2016 Met season, I was cheered by the fact that McKenzie seemed to be more egalitarian. All the of the ballerina roles were equitably shared by all the principals. (Of course there are always some shattering disappointments - no Stella Abrera "Swan Lake", no Veronika Part "Sylvia", no Kochetkova Lise in "Fille") Now this rearrangement has reverted everything back to the old "Hee Seo Ballet Theater" model. Why give Hee Seo three Auroras when Abrera, Trenary and Murphy (a bigger box office attraction) are only getting one performance each? Why was Sarah Lane being dropped from her one performance of Aurora instead of assigning Gorak or even Simkin as her partner? Why is Seo the only possible replacement for that show even if it means having her dance three performances in four days? WHY??? Update - the current Metropolitan Opera website page for "Sleeping Beauty" shows Lane still dancing Aurora on July 1st with Cornejo. http://www.metopera.org/Season/2016-ABT/The-Sleeping-Beauty/
  6. I will be doing a double header on Saturday the 27th seeing Kolegova at the matinee and Big Red in the evening. Would be happy to meet up between shows.
  7. Clarification: The Holmes/McKenzie production still had Abderakhman as a Saracen - this wasn't "Good Christian Knight vs. Bad Christian Knight". Lots of the character dances were cut in Act II (politically incorrect stuff there) and a great deal of mime. As to political correctness - as I said, only three or four years after 9/11 this was a very fresh wound in America and New York especially. So if it wasn't too politically incorrect then to do the full version, then it isn't now. I saw Dvorovenko, Part, Herrera and Ananiashvili. Veronika Part danced the role of Raymonda's friend (Henriette? Clemence? my memory isn't that good) at the premiere season. Michele Wiles danced the other friend and nearly stole the show. The other Raymondas in that first season were Michele Wiles (from this site's reviews Wiles was not so hot the first year she danced it and much improved in 2005) and Xiomara Reyes (probably technically good but too small scale physically and in type). Murphy I think would have gone in the second year but I can't remember exactly. Julie Kent never danced it sadly and even in 2005 she may have been past her best in it technically. There are stylistic and choreographic similarities to Aurora in the first two acts of "Raymonda". Julie Kent had been a nearly ideal Aurora in the old MacMillan "Sleeping Beauty" circa 1997. Part graduated to the title role of Raymonda in the second year of the production's run in 2005 - a Wednesday matinee and I took off of work to see it. Marcelo Gomes was her Jean de Brienne. There was a problem with a lift in the "Dream Vision Grand Pas" in Act I that was not Marcelo's fault - Veronika couldn't get into position. She was ravishing elsewhere and her musicality, phrasing and port de bras gave a lot of pleasure. She said it was her favorite role but never danced it again - even when Kolpakova staged the "Raymonda" suite at City Center the ballerinas were Herrera, Murphy and first cast Hee Seo. ABT had an older "Raymonda" Act III distillation that I saw in the early nineties - Susan Jaffe and Cynthia Gregory (her last season before she retired) danced it. I think I saw it with Jaffe and Julio Bocca - there were no Hungarian costumes with the hussar jackets and fur trimmed hats.
  8. The BAM site has two different pages for the programs with different information about the Opening Night on the 25th. Per the individual page Vishneva is performing "Carmen Suite" on the 25th, not "Woman in a Room". Program A: Lopatkina in "Dying Swan" and Vishneva in "Carmen Suite" - kinda skimpy... http://www.bam.org/m/dance/2016/a-tribute-to-maya-plisetskaya-program-a Carmen Suite (1967) Performed by Diana Vishneva With members of Mariinsky Ballet Company, St. Petersburg Choreography by Alberto Alonso Music by Rodion Shchedrin after Georges Bizet The Dying Swan (1905) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Camille Saint-Saëns Boléro (1961) Performed by Maya Plisetskaya (Film 1975) Choreography by Maurice Béjart Music by Maurice Ravel Program B: this is more like it! http://www.bam.org/m/dance/2016/a-tribute-to-maya-plisetskaya-program-b Pavlova and Cecchetti (1971) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina & Roman Belyakov Choreography by John Neumeier Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky Pas de deux of Colombine and Harlequin from Le Carnaval (1910) Performed by Valeriya Martinuk & Alexei Popov Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Robert Schumann 7th Waltz from Chopiniana (1908) Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina and Maxim Zyuzin Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Frédéric Chopin Le Spectre de la rose (1911) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Vladimir Shklyarov Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Carl Maria von Weber Russian Dance from The Nutcracker (1892) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina Choreography by Marius Petipa Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky Pas de deux of Princess Florine and the Bluebird from The Sleeping Beauty (1890) Performed by Valeriya Martinuk and Alexei Popov Choreography by Marius Petipa Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky Pas de deux of the Firebird and Prince Ivan from The Firebird (1910) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Igor Stravinsky Pas de deux from Giselle (1841 and 1884) Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina and Vladimir Shklyarov Choreography by Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot (1841), revised by Marius Petipa (1884) Music by Adolphe Charles Adam Pas de deux of Zobeide and the Golden Slave from Scheherazade (1910) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov Excerpt from Petrushka (1911) Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina, Vladimir Shklyarov, and Roman Belyakov Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Igor Stravinsky The Dying Swan (1905) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Camille Saint-Saëns Program C: (I am seeing "Raymonda" in DC that day both shows - no lemons for me) http://www.bam.org/m/dance/2016/a-tribute-to-maya-plisetskaya-program-c Woman in a Room (2013) Performed by Diana Vishneva Choreography by Carolyn Carlson Music by Giovanni Sollima and René Aubry Music editor: Nicolas de Zorzi Carmen Suite (1967) Performed by Diana Vishneva with members of Mariinsky Ballet Company, St. Petersburg Choreography by Alberto Alonso Music by Rodion Shchedrin after Georges Bizet Program D: See you there! http://www.bam.org/m/dance/2016/a-tribute-to-maya-plisetskaya-program-d White Adagio from Swan Lake Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov (1895) Revised choreography by Konstantin Sergeyev (1950) Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky Maria and Vaslav adagio from The Fountain of Bakhchisarai (1934) Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina and Maxim Zyuzin Choreography by Rostislav Zakharov Music by Boris Asafyev Melody (1949) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Asaf Messerer Music by Christoph Willibald Gluck Balcony pas de deux from Romeo and Juliet (1940) Performed by Maria Shirinkina and Vladimir Shklyarov Choreography by Leonid Lavrovsky Music by Sergei Prokofiev Pas de deux from Giselle Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina, and Maxim Zyuzin Choreography by Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot (1841) Revised choreography by Marius Petipa (1884) Music by Adolphe Charles Adam Excerpt from Act III of The Fountain of Bakhchisarai (1934) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina, Maria Shirinkina and Roman Belyakov Choreography by Rostislav Zakharov Music by Boris Asafyev Excerpt from Carmen Suite (1967) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina, Andrey Ermakov, and Roman Belyakov Choreography by Alberto Alonso Music by Rodion Shchedrin after Georges Bizet Excerpt from Laurencia (1939) Performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina, Maxim Zyuzin, Valeria Martinuk, and Alexei Popov Choreography by Vakhtang Chabukiani Music by Alexander Crain Pas de deux of Mekhmeneh Bahnu and Ferkhad from The Legend of Love (1961) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Yuri Grigorovich Music by Arif Melikov Pas de deux from Don Quixote Performed by Valeria Martinuk and Vladimir Shklyarov Choreography by Marius Petipa (1869) Revised choreography by Alexander Gorsky (1900) Music by Ludwig Minkus La Rose Malade (Death of the Rose) (1973) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina and Andrey Ermakov Choreography by Roland Petit Music by Gustav Mahler The Dying Swan (Film, 1905) Performed by Maya Plisetskaya Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Camille Saint-Saëns The Dying Swan (1905) Performed by Uliana Lopatkina Choreography by Michel Fokine Music by Camille Saint-Saëns
  9. The religious aspect was already gone from the Holmes/McKenzie staging - Abderakhman was just costumed as an Arab "exotic" but not really developed dramatically. The Bolshoi staging by Grigorovich gives him more choreography - at ABT he mostly partnered. (Was that staging co-owned by Boston Ballet? Where did it go after ABT dropped it?) There were comments in 2004 that mime was cut and the character dancing minimized. There was an excess of prettiness and very little dramatic tension and development (a problem that has its foundation with the original libretto). The characters are basically pasteboard figures with no depth - the dancing has to fill them out. Lots of sparkle on the scenery and costumes which looked more nineteenth century than medieval (that probably was the case in the original production in 1898). This was the thread in 2004 about the staging: http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/16875-raymondathe-met-2004/ Here are contemporary videos introducing the ballet: http://www.abt.org/performances/abtstudios.asp
  10. I remember a review that lambasted the production as "Barbie's Dream" or "My Little Pony" version of "Raymonda" - kind of like "Barbie's Swan Lake". I remember lots of pink and blue in the designs. The costumes were very pretty. I also remember that Jean de Brienne entered in the first scene and took his leave of Raymonda to join the crusades. In the original scenario by Lidia Pashkova, Raymonda is shown a full-length portrait of Jean de Brienne in Act I and dreams of him in the Dream Vision grand pas. He only appears in the flesh when he saves her from Abderakhman in Act II like he "stepped out of a dream". It was my first "Raymonda" that wasn't on video (and the Bolshoi video I had seen with the divine Semenyaka was dark and grainy except for her and Gediminas Taranda). I had no other references as to productions and thought it was a very workable production that didn't show much invention but the dancing was good. Nina Ananiashvili and Paloma Herrera were very fine Raymondas. I saw the opening night Raymonda, Irina Dvorovenko who should have been perfect and was coached by Kolpakova. Unfortunately, I found Dvorovenko very "steppy" and disjointed in her phrasing. She broke the choreography up into little discrete units and didn't phrase through the music - no idea why that happened. Veronika Part had lovely moments and some uneasy ones - she was still struggling in the company and not dancing many leading roles and wasn't in tip top shape. What she did well was gorgeous and dream-like. I remember going to the stage door to meet Diana Vishneva and I asked her why she never danced Raymonda with ABT as it was the only major classic ballet I hadn't seen her in. She mentioned that she danced the ballet with the Mariinsky but that the ABT production was "not very good". Vishneva only danced one performance of the McKenzie/Kirkland/Chernov "Sleeping Beauty" and then fell ill. She never went near it again until the Ratmansky production last year. I think that Kevin having Irina Kolpakova stage the Act III variations as a stand-alone piece suggests that he has no plans to revive the full ballet. In 2004 this was less than three years after 9/11 and the political implications were even fresher and more raw for New Yorkers. I think the deliberately fairy tale children's picture book approach was designed to suppress such resonances and render the piece anodyne.
  11. I think in one of the Somova threads there were citations of demotions of first soloists to lower ranks in the Mariinsky - two instances where dancers were lowered in rank. One or two got the hint and left the company.
  12. Just a warning: I checked the NYCB website for ticket availability for the Saturday and Sunday matinees of the NYCB "Nutcracker". Due to the Thanksgiving Holiday long weekend when many New Yorkers are out of town, there are over 250 available seats for each show. I had felt a similar urgency to catch Ashley Bouder before her maternity leave. However, it looks like there won't be standing room for this coming weekend's shows barring a sudden rush for tickets.
  13. Angelica I am not hating on Whiteside as much as some other posters - previously he has done well as Veronika's partner in "La Bayadere" and in "Don Quixote". Frankly, anyone would be better than Cory as her Siegfried. Whiteside at least seems another adult with just enough personality and force to match hers. Yes, Bolle would be the ideal partner but Hee Seo seems to have an exclusive lock on him in "Swan Lake". Ratmansky has always looked after Veronika at ABT and I notice she is cast in all his programs and even gets the opening night cast of "Golden Cockerel". So with all that Ratmansky (Shostakovich/Golden Cockerel/Seven Sonatas) she will be busier than usual though she doesn't get to repeat "Sylvia" which as I said is really a loss. I also wish ABT had given Abrera a "Swan Lake" but who knows - maybe things will change before the season starts. Abrera was never supposed to dance Giselle last season but that happened - I don't know how but it did! But really a "like" on all your other comments.
  14. Abatt, I do believe that guest artists are hired in somewhat later in the game. Last year all the Russians that went into "La Bayadere" were announced only a few months before the season started. Also, guest artists have been brought in to replace injured principals. The casting for the Met 2015 season changed a lot late in the game and throughout the season due to guest artist additions/subtractions and the injuries effecting Hallberg, Semionova and Osipova. Plus this season ABT has acquired two new international principals taken from other companies - Kochetkova and Lendorf - who need to be given new assignments which might otherwise have gone to guests. I agree that the male TBA spots in the Shostakovich Trilogy Chamber Symphony section, R&J, Sylvia, Firebird and Sleeping Beauty are being kept open for a projected Hallberg return. What I do notice is that this season with all the Ratmansky there is less reliance on so many classical full-lengths. (This in my book is not a bad thing - ABT didn't revive the complete Shostakovich Trilogy after premiering it to critical raves) The classical full-lengths in standard international versions are the most practical spot for the foreign guest artists to be squeezed in. Since there is no "Bayadere" or "Giselle" or "Don Quixote" during the Met season and more "Golden Cockerel", the non-standard Ratmansky "Sleeping Beauty", the Shostakovich Trilogy and the Ratmansky mixed bill - not so many spots for a Shklyarov, Nunez, Kimin Kim or Obraztsova. Like the stylistically and choreographically unique Ratmansky "Beauty", the McKenzie "Swan Lake" isn't exactly guest artist friendly either because of the non-standard fourth act. "Le Corsaire", "Romeo and Juliet" and to a more limited extent "La Fille Mal Gardée" or "Sylvia" (RB dancers like Nunez or Steven McCrae could guest in the Ashton full-lengths for example) are the most likely candidates for a guest artist jump in especially if Hallberg does not feel ready to dance classical full-lengths by the Spring of next year. BTW DeCoster: Part did dance a Wednesday matinee of "Sylvia" with Gomes who replaced an injured Cory Stearns at the last minute. Veronika was ravishing in the role - it is a great shame she is not being given an opportunity to dance it again. She would be infinitely better than Hee Seo who doesn't have the strong feet and ankles for all the multiple pirouettes and turning required in the part. Boylston is strong in those areas and if she gets some good coaching in her port de bras she will do well. Vishneva also danced a lovely Sylvia with ABT and created a role in the Piano Concerto #1 section of the Shostakovich Trilogy but hasn't been invited to repeat either. There is a little less of the "Hee Seo Ballet Theatre" syndrome this year - Seo isn't getting a disproportional number of opening nights (only R&J) and is no more prominent than Boylston, Copeland or Murphy. The casting in general seems more balanced with equal work loads being given to all the principals. Also with Vishneva only dancing Juliet and nothing else, no Osipova or other guest artists and more reliance on the home team, it is a lot less starry. This season is actually the answer to many BT posters' prayers regarding their complaints about the previous two seasons - too many guest artists, more Ratmansky, not enough Ashton - bring back "La Fille", Part only being given matinees and no new roles, Abrera being neglected and slighted as an underused soloist who is overdue for promotion, too much Hee Seo in everything and not enough opportunities being given to talented soloist and corps dancers. Now we are being given what we asked for and we are complaining. This season may be a necessary corrective to McKenzie's previous policies and predilections.
  15. Thank you California. Oddly the casting shows up on my iPhone but not on my desktop PC. Abrera and Part do have the Queen of Shemakhan role in The Golden Cockerel. Semioniova is back which helps. Casting looks way more balanced though Abrera could do more and Seo less.
  16. The casting is gone now.... Was Semionova down for anything? Were Abrera and Part listed for the lead in "Golden Cockerel"? Who was dancing "Sylvia"? In the past Reyes (replacing Osipova), Herrera, Kent (1st season - badly), Wiles, Vishneva and Osipova (scheduled, never happened) danced it. Evidently Vishneva is no longer doing it and Osipova isn't currently down to guest. So that leaves us with Murphy and Part. I suspect Boylston will add it to her ABT rep and thanks to Kevin so will Hee Seo who is miscast and so will Kochetkova who will dance it with Cornejo as Aminta. Well we'll find out soon - and it will change a lot before next May... Also what is Sarah Lane dancing? Is she repeating Aurora or adding Lise in "Fille"?
  17. I know that there was a La Scala ballet tour where the Petit "Carmen" was presented but I think Ferri was injured/ill and Viviana Durante took over dancing with Massimo Murru. Anyway, do it again with Bolle as Don José. I do remember reading that Ferri coached Sarah Lane in Juliet and she was back last year coaching Elena Obraztsova and the other ABT Juliets including Misty Copeland. So she has been back coaching.
  18. When ABT acquired the Neumeier "La Dame aux Camellias" I was sorry that they didn't do it ten years earlier so that Ferri could have danced it. Ferri had performed the ballet at La Scala. If Ferri wants to come back to classical ballet at ABT it would make more sense to return dancing the role of a more mature woman in a ballet she hasn't danced in New York before - she wouldn't be competing with her younger self. The Roland Petit "Carmen" is another possibility.
  19. Push Comes to Shove was revived by ABT in 1999 for a City Center season. I saw José Manuel Carreno in the Baryshnikov role, Amanda McKerrow in the Tcherkassky role and Irina Dvorovenko very effective in the Van Hamel role. It didn't look thin and it was fun. However, the shock and surprise value that it had forty years ago was gone - we have seen that "Ballet dancers go funky and silly" approach many times over the next four decades. Also the novelty of a Russian virtuoso superstar dancer doing "American" stuff was no longer present. According to an Anna Kisselgoff review archived on the NY Times site: Radojevic, Kirk Peterson and Gil Boggs followed Baryshnikov in the lead role.
  20. Hallberg would be the perfect regular partner for Stella - he should demand that McKenzie cast them together. BTW: Stella has danced successfully Gamzatti in "La Bayadere" which has some similarities in technical demands to Odile. Certainly Julie Kent went on for years as O/O until very recently and probably fudged/simplified some of the Act III steps - I wasn't there so I don't know - but there is a precedent. I think Stella could do a fine Odile even if she has to substitute a circle of piques for the fouettes. But I wouldn't be surprised if she could manage a decent set of fouettes - certainly as well as Copeland and Hee Seo can.
  21. Bolle danced one "Swan Lake" with Part and evidently it was a revelation. Never happened again - from then on she got Cory, he got Hee. Thanks to Ratmansky, Part and Bolle also danced the first section of the Shostakovich Trilogy - the Symphony #9. They were great in that as well. I suspect Ratmansky will take good care of both Stella and Veronika and they will repeat their major roles in the Shostakovich Trilogy (Stella would be good in "Chamber Symphony" as well) and hopefully will have leads in "The Golden Cockerel". The new piece by Ratmansky seems to be choreographed for seven men. Another big question is whether Hallberg and Semionova are returning and in what capacity, let alone Osipova. The problem with Osipova is her concurrent commitments with the Royal Ballet - that is why she couldn't dance "Giselle" with Gomes as her partner - they never danced it together and there was no time to rehearse with her schedule. So they brought in McRae, her usual RB Albrecht, and then she got injured onstage. Ditto her dropping out of the Ratmansky "Sleeping Beauty" - no time to absorb the radically different placement and style of that production in a fly-in, dance, fly-out situation. Osipova does dance "Fille" with the Royal so that might be okay. For "Sylvia" they have Murphy, Part, Boylston (debut), Vishneva (?), Semionova (?) and Osipova (?). Copeland and Kochetkova seem a little petite for Sylvia but are contenders. Hee Seo seems a little soft and retiring in technique and personality. Abrera would be a lovely Sylvia though somehow she might get passed over for it - I think a successful Lilac Fairy and Gamzatti should handle it well. I am glad to see "Fille" coming back as everyone has been asking for it. Lise: Murphy, Kochetkova, Boylston (debut), Lane, Copeland, Seo and Osipova (?). Skyler Brandt would be a delightful Lise as would Luciana Paris. Colas: Lendorf, Cornejo (moved up from Alain), Stearns, Hammoudi, Gomes, Whiteside and Gorak, Simkin is physically more of an Alain but could dance Colas excellently. Cirio, Arron Scott, Calvin Royal and Gabe Stone Shayer might be Colas but are more likely to get Alain. Stella should debut as Juliet and Odette/Odile and has already performed Aurora in New Zealand. I hope the Ashton "Monotones I and II" returns in the other Mixed Bill.
  22. I have absolutely no idea what you are referring to here.... http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/index.php?/topic/34070-abts-male-principal-problem/?p=339679
  23. One thing about the promotion of Stella and Misty is that they will become the new junior principal workhorses of the company. Hopefully Hee Seo will no longer be doing three Nikiyas, three Juliets and two O/O's in "Swan Lake" in one week due to cancellations which will be good for the company, good for audiences and good for Hee Seo. ABT has spent time and resources coaching Misty as Juliet and Odette/Odile in "Swan Lake" this year and the lead roles will keep coming. Stella currently has fewer standard classic prima ballerina roles in her current repertoire with just the addition of Cinderella and Giselle this season. Stella has hard work ahead of her to master Nikiya, Odette/Odile and Juliet and I would imagine she could be gorgeous in Manon, Lady of the Camellias (which I don't see them reviving) and "Onegin". Stella would be a lovely Titania in "The Dream". She has done Aurora in New Zealand though she is the best of the Lilac Fairies at ABT. Stella has done leads mainly in one-act ballets in the mixed bills including the addition of "Les Sylphides" this year. Abrera has become a reliable Gamzatti which bodes well for a future Kitri (though she was gorgeous as Mercedes/Dryad Queen). Misty I think has the right sassy temperament and charm for Kitri, she has done Swanilda in "Coppelia" and would be delightful as Lise in "La Fille Mal Gardee". However, Misty doesn't strike me as a Romantic ballerina and I have trouble imagining her as Giselle - but I haven't seen her yet as Odette and will reserve making a pronouncement until I have. Aurora would require very precise classical technique but would be a good role for Misty to grow on. Kochetkova is a practical short term solution - Cornejo needed a petite partner and clearly Sarah Lane is not being groomed for principal roles. (That is Kevin's choice and he had many opportunities this season to give her a Juliet or an Odette/Odile and passed on them.) Cojocaru might have been amenable to a similar arrangement with ABT (a part-time principal with multiple other affiliations) but her accumulated injuries and cancellations perhaps have soured McKenzie about making her a permanent principal. I would have chosen Cojocaru as a part-time principal and partner for Cornejo over Kochetkova. I can't complain about Alban Lendorf - he bowled me over when I saw him with the Royal Danish Ballet on tour three years ago. Cassandra Trenary and Skylar Brandt were used extensively by Ratmansky in his "Sleeping Beauty" and the opportunities he gave them definitely were a factor in their advancement. Ratmansky chose Skylar Brandt to dance the role created by Natalia Osipova in the excerpt from Ratmansky's "Piano Concerto No. 1" that was performed at the 75th Gala Evening and her jetés were impressive. Brandt delivered vibrant, sparkling performances all season and Trenary charmed as Florine and in every other assignment. She improved visibly throughout the "Sleeping Beauty" run too. Melanie Hamrick is a beautiful woman and a beautiful dancer but her technique isn't as fully reliable as that of say, Christine Schevchenko or Devon Teuscher. Also she has been injured this season and removed from all of her soloist roles including the character role of one of the harlots in "R & J". I think she just came back as one of the Big Swans in "Swan Lake" this week. Not her year. Luciana Paris is a versatile hard working dancer who was functioning as a soloist this season even before her promotion. This is well-deserved and I believe she is well-liked within the company - I remember that Paloma Herrera hugged and spent a lot of time with Luciana during the curtain calls/presentation at her farewell. Arron Scott is also a longtime, hard working corps dancer who has functioned as a soloist for many years - another well deserved promotion. Tom Forster stepped forward in the last two years with the departure of so many male soloists and promising corps dancers like Roddy Doble and Eric Tamm. Blaine Hoven is another corps dancer who has been functioning as a soloist but he was passed over for promotion. My initial reactions to him were very positive but cooled in recent years but he danced really well all season and looked in fighting shape. Maybe next time. I think Jeffrey Cirio will inherit/share the soloist roles that Joseph Gorak has been the premier exponent of at ABT in recent seasons. That will free Gorak up to prepare to move up to Siegfried, Albrecht and other premier danseur roles. I know nothing about Cirio though I probably saw him dance when the Boston Ballet toured to NYC. There are other corps dancers who are underused and need to be given more opportunities - notably Daniel Mantei, Gemma Bond and Gabe Stone Shayer. The promotions of so many soloists and corps dancers hopefully will create new opportunities for them if McKenzie doesn't see them as background decoration like wallpaper or potted palms. I would like to see Gemma Bond given some of the soloist roles that went to Stephanie Williams this season and she has the right gracious, elegant, authoritative presence for the Lilac Fairy. If it was not too late for Stella Abrera then maybe there is hope for Zhong-Jing Fang? Every solo role she was given in "Beauty" and "Giselle" was a treasurable thing of beauty. I also second all the votes for Calvin Royal III and Sterling Baca has only just emerged from the corps late last season but is definitely in the mix. Isidora Loyola was adorable and scene-stealing as the White Cat in SB and as the main harlot in "R&J" - she would shine in things like "Gaieté Parisienne". Two of the newest members of the corps could be developed for bigger things - Scout Forsythe and Jonathan Klein. Klein who danced the role of the Bridegroom in the scene from Robbins "Les Noces" that was performed at the 75th Gala has caught my eye right from the start of his ABT career for the elegance, concentration and precision of his work in the corps. (He is also very handsome) Forsythe has a lot of potential and needs to be groomed for bigger things like Myrtha. (She is also very pretty). I like this round of promotions because so many hard working company veterans got recognition - including 15 year veteran Misty Copeland!. And finally: STELLA!!! STELLA!!! STELLA!!!
  24. Part is magnificent as "An Episode in his Past" in "Jardin aux Lilas" - and she was again on Tuesday night. Part is very mature and commanding and sensual and throws herself into the acting with abandon. Part does very well in these period dramatic ballets.
  25. Actually even more urgent are Kent's performances as Desdemona in "Othello". The role would fit Hee Seo perfectly but Sarah Lane would be fine too. However, if they are looking for a guest artist, Yuan-Yuan Tan I believe created the part.
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