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Everything posted by volcanohunter

  1. The Hamburg Opera House has just re-opened, and it was interesting to read what Covid safety protocols are in place. Tickets have the holder's name printed on them and must match ID. Spectators must present a negative PCR test taken within the preceding 48 hours or a negative antigen test taken within the preceding 12 hours; or proof of full vaccination at least 14 days earlier; or proof of infection 28 days to 6 months ago plus a negative PCR test taken within the previous 48 hours. (Not sure why anyone would fess up to having been infected if a negative PCR test is adequate.) FFP2/N95-type masks are obligatory at all times, the bars are closed, physical distance must be maintained and moving to a different seat is not allowed.
  2. La Scala paying final respects to Carla Fracci
  3. If she felt unsafe on stage because duets were under-rehearsed, I'm not sure she could have done anything differently. (In particular, more than one dancer has suffered a debilitating injury because of the feet-first slide in Manon.) But as you say, she was in a weaker position in that equation, and if he implication was "choose him or me," she ended up on the losing side. Perhaps she remembered the experience of Sascha Radetsky, who accepted a principal contract with the Dutch National Ballet and headed off for Amsterdam without Stella Abrera, but ultimately returned to ABT and his old rank less than a year and a half later. As far as distance goes, Amsterdam isn't the furthest European capital from New York, but it was far enough.
  4. Today I've been watching her Giselle, her Dying Swan, clips of other roles, and I feel an eviscerating sense of loss. May she rest in peace, but we are so much poorer without her.
  5. The National Ballet of Canada in Balanchine's Apollo, with Brendan Saye, Svetlana Lunkina, Jeannine Haller and Calley Skalnik, and Tarantella, with Koto Ishihara and Skylar Campbell
  6. This is a rehearsal of Kyle Abraham's piece from the same program.
  7. This is the rehearsal of the Pite pieces. This is the link for purchasing access to the stream, which begins on 28 May. https://stream.roh.org.uk/packages/21st-century-choreographers/videos/21st-century-choreographers
  8. I agree with you. I don't think it would have violated her style too much to move "on the marble floor" to a different part of the sentence.
  9. I'm sorry to read that the opening program was so deflating. I had been debating purchasing a ticket to the streamed version, but I will probably pass, especially since I agree that Within the Golden Hour is over-programmed.
  10. Fumi Kaneko and Cesar Corrales have been promoted to principal dancer. Mayara Magri and Anna Rose O'Sullivan will be principals as of September. Full list of promotions here: https://www.roh.org.uk/news/the-royal-ballet-announces-company-promotions
  11. But it often depends on the vehicle. During the Bolshoi's last visit to the U.S., Lincoln Center was forced to offer a 25% discount on tickets to The Taming of the Shrew. Three years ago in London there was a discount on the Mariinsky's Don Quixote and a year later on the Bolshoi's Bright Stream.
  12. You know, I lasted about two minutes. Those extensions are grotesque. I have not seen Kovalyova as Nikiya or Odette-Odile because I have no inclination to do so. I have seen her as Myrtha (not very formidable) and the Queen of the Dryads, because I came to watch other dancers in the cast. Two disastrous performances I saw were in Etudes, because she absolutely could not execute the variation, fell off pointe repeatedly and the partnering was very scary, and as "Armida" in Flames of Paris, because during the final diagonal of hops alone she managed to fall off pointe four times. It wasn't her first performance of either ballet; I believe it was her seventh of Etudes. Evidently, management is determined to cast her until she stops falling over, and in the meantime the audience is expected to pay to watch. This does not mean that tall dancers are incapable of doing these roles, for example Agnès Letestu, who is almost 5'10", was near perfect in her execution in Etudes. Her body proportions are different: longer torso rather than very long limbs, and the lower center of gravity no doubt accounted for part of her technical security. Indeed, no one at the Bolshoi comes close to performing the variation at this standard. (I rather wish it would stop doing the ballet. The dancers no longer look as ragged as they did in the ill-advised cinemacast of the premiere run, but they now look like joyless little automatons.) Anna Antonicheva, the original Mireille de Poitiers in Ratmansky's production of Flames, is also not a natural hopper, given her elongated, flexible body and pliant feet, but she did manage it. I think it's extremely unfair of the management to put Kovalyova in roles to which she is so unsuited technically. It would be rather like asking a dancer who can't jump to do La Sylphide or one who can't turn to do Don Quixote. When I saw her do the second movement of Symphony in C, watching her ankle tremble underneath her as she did the sequence of fouettés into arabesque with pliés on pointe was nerve-wracking. A role to which I think she is suited is the Ballerina in Béjart's Gaîté parisienne, because height incompatibility and awkward partnering are pretty much built into the choreography (the Bolshoi's other interpreter of the role is equally tall), and because the gaucheness of Kovalyova's stage manner plays into the comedy, and she demonstrated good humor and no vanity while doing it.
  13. Alexandrova is more robust than Zakharova, but they are both about 5'7" tall. They both have long feet. Alexandrova's are long and narrow, while Zakharova's are large all over, so both "grow" disproportionately on pointe. Kovalyova's additional four inches alter the physics considerably, especially when her big feet are on pointe. Kovalyova also has nothing resembling the technique of Alexandrova or Allash. That body of hers is very hard to control. Alexandrova is not my very favorite ballerina, although I have great respect for what she does on stage. Kovalyova I avoid if at all possible. I've seen her fall off pointe far too many times. (Part of the problem is the parts in which she is cast. She can't hop on pointe. It's doomed to end in failure.)
  14. The Bolshoi electronic archive includes cast lists from the previous revival, starting in 2002, and Allash was dominant then as well. Rodkin is strong, but at 6'1" he's not really tall enough for Kovalyova, and some maneuvers will be difficult from a purely mechanical point of view.
  15. Both Zakharova and Stepanova have danced the role only twice at the Bolshoi, although Stepanova would be likelier to dance it again in the future. Over the past 20 years the most frequent interpreter of the role has been Allash, by a mile. Kovalyova won't have an easy time of it. She is about 5'11" tall, and the dream duet in particular will be challenging for her partner.
  16. In case you missed the online premiere, William Forsythe's The Barre Project (Blake Works II), with Tiler Peck, Lex Ishimoto, Roman Mejia and Brooklyn Mack, is available on the Sadler's Wells site until May 16. Apologies in advance if anyone encounters a geo-block. https://www.sadlerswells.com/whats-on/2021/william-forsythe-and-cli-studios-the-barre-project/
  17. Note that the Vienna State Opera's guidelines didn't last long. The theater has been closed to audiences since November.
  18. May he rest in peace. My condolences to his family, friends and fellow Guys of Truth.
  19. The Vienna State Ballet in Manuel Legris' Sylvia, available for about 24 hours https://play.wiener-staatsoper.at/event/bde76244-a185-4f48-b57b-6bdc2a3bf6d5
  20. The photo of Kain is by Andrew Oxenham, who had also been a dancer with the National Ballet of Canada. The author of the Nault photograph isn't listed, unfortunately.
  21. To mark International Dance Day, Canada Post has issued two new postage stamps, one featuring Karen Kain, former National Ballet of Canada principal dancer and its current artistic director, and the other with the late Fernand Nault, a former ABT dancer, choreographer and co-artistic director of Les Grands Ballets Canadiens. https://www.canadapost-postescanada.ca/shop/collectors/stamps-and-collectibles-by-year/2021/legends-of-canadian-ballet.jsf?execution=e1s1 The National Ballet of Canada was only too happy to have Kain talk about the stamps. (Well, mostly about herself.)
  22. As @JMcN mentioned, Katherine also blogged about etymology, especially Canadianisms. https://katherinebarber.blogspot.com Today her passing was acknowledged by the National Ballet of Canada
  23. The National Ballet of Canada presents new works by Jera Wolfe, Alysa Pires and Kevin A. Ormsby.
  24. No, the problem is that the distraction is so great that I can't see any other part of her. Think of it the other way around, I remember an American dancer named Andrea Boardman. She had really bad feet. The thing is, I never noticed it until I watched the film of Edouard Lock's Amelia. Lock's choreography is largely stationary, with women being spun back and forth on pointe, and on film, of course, there are lots of close ups, and when I first saw it I couldn't get over how unattractive her feet were: these large, inflexible boats. But I'd seen her dance many times before, and I never realized this. I mean, I saw her in Symphony in C, for crying out loud, and I never noticed, because she made everthing else about her so expressive and beautiful. By strength of personality she compelled the audience to watch her from the waist up. So no, one flawed portion of the body isn't necessarily decisive if a dancer compensates for it.
  25. If "droopy" Emeralds are now a norm, I'd hardly call that dancers making the roles their own.
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