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Posts posted by mom2

  1. Thanks again Jeannie!

    I appreciate your comments about Pleshenko; hopefully I'll have a chance to see the skate again. Would love to hear Elvis' comments versus Dick Buttons. As for Mr. B, in my very humble opinion, he talks too much. I like to learn things about skating through the commentators, but too much talk can detract from the enjoyment of the performance.

  2. Again, thank you so much for your posts, Jeannie! Much better than the media coverage here...which I MUST complain about.

    I feel I'm owed some figure skating news (tv, print, what have you) after all the hockey, golf, and football I must watch...but sadly, last night I was disappointed.

    Canada is still only broadcasting from TSN which is fuzzy on my tv and a station I forget about...the Ice dancing was on early, so I missed it. Then we had to wait for a HOCKEY game and at 11:30 I fell asleep at the tv waiting for skating to appear.

    I did check out the ABC coverage. They only showed the top 3 pairs and the American team. The Americans did a wonderful performance, and I fully understand the coverage...but it annoyed me that they didn't even show the entire final flight or even mention other teams (such as the Canadians). At least they did show the placements. The Chinese team was absolutely amazing, I've never been so moved by their skating.

    So we proceed on to the men. Only the top flight was shown...the other men were not even mentioned, and the placements were only shown at the end of the broadcast for the final flight. So I've no idea what happened with the Canadians.

    Go to the paper this morning...no mention of the pairs or the men... argh. A little article about ice dancing, and about Jennifer Robinson's great skate.

    Jeannie, I'm very curious to see your report about the men's final. As I've said, I know next to nothing about skating, I only watch it because I enjoy it so much. Last night Pleshenko (sp)looked a bit tentative to me, probably a result of his sore knee, but I really enjoyed T Goebel's performance...and Michael Weiss, I guess it just wasn't his time. I frainkly wondered about his choice of music...at least last night I think he needed something with a bit more energy. that being said, Concierto de Aranjuez is one of my favourite pieces of music...but it just didn't seem to be a great fit for him.

    I know things can look totally different live, and especially through the eyes of someone who really knows what to look for. Am looking forward to your posts.

  3. I actually prefer Tracy Wilson's commentary to Mr. Buttons...but you can always count on him to talk about those spins!

    Elvis actually did a great job the other night..perhaps a new career for him?

    Debbie Wilkes (sp?) is doing the commentating for the pairs events...sometimes Barb Underhill has done this too, depends on which Canadian network is broadcasting.

    Last night I wasn't able to find skating anywhere...so hopefully it will be on tonight! I'm lucky enough to be able to get the american and canadian versions, which is sometimes a nice treat.

  4. I don't pretend to be a skating expert by any means, but I have to say that the marks were very perplexing indeed. For me it was more the range of marks/ordinals that was confusing...I can see that the skaters would be frustrated.

    I felt so badly for Michael Weiss...kind of a Bourne and Kraatz thing (the olympics, I believe when they skated so wonderfully only to fall quite awkwardly at the closing pose)...

    I agree it was really interesting to hear commentary by Elvis and Tracey Wilson (what a team!)...especially Elvis' comments about artistic impression!

  5. jeannie,

    Thank you so much for all your wonderful posts here! Our Canadian paper hasn't had anything yet (other than the latest about the US judge).

    Your posts are so informative!

    I'm sure I'll learn more from you than listening to the commentators tonight!

    And I will still secretly keep my fingers crossed for Emanuel Sandhu. If he could only land two great programs back to back...ah, there's always hope.

  6. I was wondering the same about North America. There was one dancer from Mexico, but none from Canada or the US....interesting given Mavis Staines' involvement now.

    I watched the video last night and while the picture was awfully small and I fel silly watching it with my reading glasses, things seemed to be well syncronized.

  7. A little late, I suppose, but I'll offer my thoughts anyway!

    Canada was so VERY proud of Bourne & Kraatz. Unfortunately all I saw of the competition was their free dance...but I enjoyed it very much. I was somewhat disappointed with the placing of the 2nd Canadian team - but since I'm certainly NOT a firgure skater I'll have to defer to the judges, and to those who know more about the whole thing than I do. I wondered if their choice of music was perhaps a factor...it was an original composition, very unusual. Suited their program, but I wonder if it was too much of a stretch??

    Canada was also pretty proud of Takeshi Honda, as he has trained here for a number of years. I admit it does look like he has come into his own; we'll just have to wait to see how he fares against a broader field in Worlds. Emanuel Sandhu, former student at the National Ballet School in Toronto, had another one of those performances that I'm sure he'd rather forget all about. Too bad, because he is an enormously talented young man.

    I didn't really watch much of the women's performances, so can't comment there...

    The pairs were interesting to watch, and the chinese certainly are showing that hard work pays off!

  8. I'm thinking I need to scrimp those pennies even more so that I can afford to attend more than one show in a run....it does make a difference!

    I was equally pleased to see Rex in the huge hat, by the way.

    The smoking of cigarettes on stage was an interesting touch...I could actually smell them from where I was sitting! I suppose it's quite true to the period....

  9. Tapper is now a principal as well. Their return would be wishful thinking on my part. The last I read they were both happy at the Royal.

    I'm glad that P.S. sustained his performance throughout when you saw him on Saturday. He clearly has a great deal of potential. Not bad to look at either (did I say that)? the company seats are just across the aisle from mine....

  10. I was just going to post about that! Thanks and my deepest apologies to MR Witchel!!

    It was an interesting article...I wonder how they came to choose the four dancers that were featured, as there are others who come to mind as well.

    I'm trying to recall who I saw in the Contract..will have to look back in the programs; it may have been N. Kish. I quite enjoyed him in the performance, but better say no more until I"m sure of the person I'm talking about.

    P. Stancazyk was actually the one we noticed in Napoli who started with a bang, fizzled, and lost stage presence as he finished. This will be something he needs to work on.

    We quite enjoy the two Canadians, although I think somehow we have missed them in their recent major roles (why can't they cast around MY schedule)?

    Kudelka was quoted as indicating that he wants to avoid "stars" in NBOC...doesn't want the public to come out to see only a handful of dancers when the company is full of talent. No argument there. However, it was interesting that he mentioned RWB specifically...and noted that people seem only to want to see Evelyn Hart. Perhaps this is the case in cities other than Winnipeg itself...I can't speak for them...but I CAN say that there are some wonderful dancers in RWB other than Ms. Hart. I've seen that company perform twice; once here in Ontario and once in Winnipeg. Both times the house was quite full, and the audience happy (no Ms. Hart either time).

    Perhaps someone with more RWB knowlege can speak to this point; I just found it interesting.

    It also seems apparent that Rex Harrington is preparing for retirement...inevitable I suppose, but I do enjoy his dancing. Perhaps we'll be lucky enough to see the return of Persson and Tapper???

  11. Mr. Witchel,

    I'm so glad I wasn't the only one who thought something was off with Le Spectre de la Rose. Of course, having never seen it before I really don't know what it's supposed to look like, but to me the arms (Sunday matinee, i.e. Hirano) looked like they weren't quite sure what to do. It was all too much for me on top of the very pink costume.

    Interestingly, my daughter knows the gentleman who staged this ballet for NBOC. This morning she talked to him about it (he hadn't attended the Sunday performance). His comment was that the dancer we saw was the better one in the role. I admit that this confuses me somewhat, but perhaps it's due to a combination of my own personal preference and overall lack of dance knowlege.

  12. It appears I'm a bit late here...but will add my non-extert comments anyway.

    Daughter and I braved the winter storm on Sunday to see the last performance of the mixed program. Her school had done some of Napoli this past summer, so she was interested to see what NBOC would do. My guess would be that it wasn't the best show for the dancers...there were a number of little things that you wouldn't have expected in a professional production...including one dancer quite obviously losing his stage presence at the end of his variation. The comments with daughter and friend in the lobby were that turns weren't overly well executed.

    I had never seen the "Rose" before, although of course have read about it and I admit to extremely high expectations. If I hadn't known some of the history of this dance, I think I would be accusing Kudelka of completely losing his mind. I did not like the costume at all....it was far too pink for me. I had thought it should be more off white? The dancer we saw was not inspired at all, and none of the ballon mentioned for someone else in the role. Daughter commented that he had no "feet". Daughter she did say that the female dancer (Stacy Shori Minigawa, I believe) did do an excellent job. Perhaps this ballet is just a matter of taste...but I would not rush out to buy tickets again.

    I agree that Judgement of Paris isn't exactly a ballet, but it was so wonderfully entertaining! Daughter and friends thought (tongues firmly in cheeks) that they should do this for their spring show...the fact that all the dancers were padded to look "fat" was extremely amusing to these teenage dancers.

    I personally find Elite Syncopations quite enjoyable, although it's hard to know exactly where to look...there's so much going on. Rex and Nan Yu were an amazing pair...I will watch Nan Yu in particular anytime, anywhere...she is just so lovely. Martine Lamy was also excellent. I quite enjoy the added touch of the musicians on stage...one forgets sometimes how hard they have to work too...

    Elite Syncopations was really the only part of the evening that the corps dancers were in. We were so incredibly delighted when one Apprentice dancer, recently graduated from my daughter's ballet school, was dancing in the front row, and on our side of the stage to boot!

    All in all, an enjoyable time.

  13. I watched both the NBC and CBC versions of last night's pairs. Paul Martini and Barbara Underhill were commentating for CBC. These seasoned pairs competitors appeared at a loss to explain the results, and they didn't mention a 2-foot landing...I assume this means they didn't notice it. These two usually notice everything, as does Sandra Bezic. Actually, I thought that Underhill and Martini had some very nice things to say during the skate...Bezic commented that B and S seemed slower than usual and lacked some sparkle.

    I do feel that there was too much of an expectation that S and P win the gold...in the end, this may play with their minds and they may question the choice of program. I think they did well with Love Story as they were much more consistent with it than the Orchid. I also worry a little that Canada let THEM down with the expectation of gold.

    I thought Ina and Zimmerman were amazing; I loved every second of their program. I am stuptified as to how they were given their result when the Chinese got third. Sure, the Chinese took a risk with the quad throw, and I applaud them for that...however the rest of their program didn't shine last night the way it should have for a bronze with the strong field of other skaters.

    I wonder what all the excitement about judging will mean for Bourne and Kraatz...I just hope that the judges will truly call it as they see it.

  14. You BET I'll be following the skating! We're big fans here in our house! We are crossing our fingers, toes, etc. for Emanuel Sandhu (who I'm sure you've heard spent a number of years at the National Ballet School in Toronto). Of course we are also rooting for Sale & Pelltier and Bourne and Kraatz.

    Thanks for the schedule...we're lucky to get both Canadian and US channels where we are, so it should be a great show!


  15. My daughter and I were at the matinee today (Nov. 11) - what a wonderful show!

    Not only was the dancing a treat, as per Paquita's review, but there were some special features that made today very special. After the second intermission there was a film montage by CBC television archives and Norman Campbell. Karen Kain, Veronica Tennant, and one more former NBOC member whose name escapes me at the moment spoke a few words...artistic directors, past and present, were mentioned by name.

    In the audience were over 200 former company members, and all were called to the stage following the final curtain call (this included some of my older daughter's teachers, and it was so nice for them)...the stage was full of people and smiles. James Kudelka came out with a boquet of flowers for Celia Franca, and delivered them to her on his knees. Then a cascade of gold balloons rained down on the stage.

    After the performance audience members were treated to anniversary cake and coffee. Company members, past and present, were gathering in the lobby to meet and greet patrons. It was a magical experience.

  16. Loved your review of Merry Widow!

    My older daughter and I saw the Sunday Matinee, with Martine Lamy and Sonia Rodriguez. A great show, although daughter thought that there was a lack of unison in some of the dancing. I had never seen this ballet "live" before, and enjoyed it immensely. At wonderful way to start the season.

    Leigh, if you go to the Sunday matinee perhaps we'll rub elbows! I will be there, with younger daughter this time. Enjoy the show!

  17. Hi Lilly,

    My daughter and I attended the Friday evening performance - which one did you see?

    I think our experience was similar to yours...we certainly enjoyed ourselves! We had EXCELLENT seats, although I think it's difficult to have poor seats in that theatre.

    I was quite impressed with the quality of dancing, and the unison of the corps in Chopiniana.

    We loved the sports theme in the last ballet, and the performers seemed to echo the sentiment.

    My daughter will be attending the summer program this year; there was a girl from the states in her audition (in Toronto), but I didn't speak to the family so have no idea which part of the states they travelled from. The NBS summer program is different to some of those in the states, in that it is an audition for the full-time program, not a "stand-alone" Summer Intensive.

    I would certainly encourage anyone to audition, and have read posts here and on other sites from Americans who attended. In fact, I seem to recall last year that an American girl received some form of scholarship (at least that was her post).

    So....go for it, and good luck! :(

  18. We went to the Thurs. mat performance...the same one Helga attended. My older daughter was there with her ballet school...Ryan Boorne, who danced Pinkerton's friend, is a graduate of her school...so it was nice for them to get to see him. He has matured considerably in his dramatic abilitiesover the last couple of years.

    Serenade was wonderful, and I thought there were very few lapses in unison.

    We all loved Butterfly! I think that this ballet truly allows the dancers to be actors, and they all fulfilled the expectations wonderfully. Sonia Rodriguez is of course technically brilliant, but this was the first time I had seen her portray so much emotion on stage. Her husband, skater Kurt Browning, was in the audience by the way...

    I read a review on another board by someone who is much more adept with written expression than I seem to be - he talked about the "busy-ness" of the first couple of scenes. This was something that I had noticed too, and bothered me a bit; it was hard to take everything in visually. He was then struck by how this "busy-ness" might very well parallel an Englishman's experience of Japan, and that the choreography may very well be an attempt to depict that feeling...now why didn't I think of all that?

    Overall I have to say that I was quite encouraged about the state of NBOC after watching this performance. This was NOT a feeling I had after watching the Comforts of Solitude, one of the offerings in February.

  19. I wish I could help you here...but I won't see the performance myself until the 10th. I had to change my regular ticket (last Sunday).

    My daughter went to the mixed program today...I was away at her sister's performance so didn't go. Word was that the performance was enjoyed.

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