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vipa

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About vipa

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    Former ballet dancer, former ballet teacher, fan, ballet lover
  • City**
    New York
  • State (US only)**, Country (Outside US only)**
    NY

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  1. Just had to chime in that I so agree about Laracey. Her Lilac Fairy was one of the best I've seen, and I've seen a lot. Such a quality dancer.
  2. One more thing. In looking to buy some tickets for the first week, I noted that they haven't even opened the 3rd ring for individual tickets, never mind the 4th or 5th. They seem determined to hold prices and fill from the bottom up. I know nothing about marketing so I don't know if this is a good strategy or not. I will note one thing, the social media postings that dancers do, do not seem to be translating into ticket sales. Personally I feel an uninspired season coming on, but I hope I'm proven wrong.
  3. I agree about Pereira. She is one of the few NYCB dancers that I've tried to avoid over the years. She has a cheery but bland presentation, and always seems a bit uncoordinated to me. I wonder how Pollack's casting is being handled internally, given she's Jon Stafford's wife. I'm sure that's not an easy position to be in.
  4. I think one of the reasons for debuts in Nutcracker is that it sells as a holiday tradition/treat no matter what the casting. My neighbor took her visiting daughter and 3 grandkids a couple of days ago (tickets bought well in advance). All the kids talked about was the growing tree, the candy canes and the sleigh at the end. I think they were a bit bored by the pas de deux. No one in that family looks at any dancer's social media and they didn't check the program for who was who. It was an event that went with going to see the tree at Rockefeller Center. I truly believe that for many people that is the experience. They don't take it that seriously or give it much thought. Tomorrow the family I know is going to the Christmas Spectacular at Radio City. In other words, I wouldn't worry about casting disappointments. I would guarantee that most ticket buyers are not ballet students following their favorite dancers on social media, or people going through the program saying darn, I got corps member as Sugar Plum, I'll never come back to another Nutcracker at NYCB. I don't know why there are so few debuts this year, but Jon Stafford is still an unknown in terms of his identity as a leader. Maybe he is supposed to be the likable, nice guy who is a place holder. Don't know. Time will tell.
  5. I started studying ballet before I actually saw a ballet. Living in NYC I was lucky in that I could see (be taken to) NYCB, ABT and visiting companies. 5 ballets that I remember opening my eyes: Serenade Theme and Variations Apollo (The opening music had such an impact) Intermezzo (Feld ballet done by ABT. Wonder if anyone else remembers it. I don't know if I'd like it now, but back then it swept me away) Lilac Garden (Tudor. The moment of pause took my breath away)
  6. Yes, Tiler Peck and Bouder being out (for however long), puts a big hole in SPF and Dewdrop casting.
  7. I agree, and I really like these postings. Even though I've seen the ballet many, many times there are sections in which I'm so focused on the principal that I don't pay a lot of attention to the demi-soloists. This gave me a new appreciation for how much dancing they do, and how difficult it is.
  8. Since this was an anniversary show not a retirement, such as with DeLuz , it's not surprising to me that a number of dancers wouldn't be there.
  9. I've been following the NYCB season and see more clearly that the NYTimes doesn't review dance anymore. They review plays, art exhibits, music etc. but not dance. Instead there are articles about dancers. Is there a reason for this? My husband sings in a amateur (but well know) chorus which has been reviewed by a Times music critic several times recently. What's up with dance?
  10. Agree with the Lane Cornejo distress. It is a paring that the AD should promote. It's pretty obvious that Lane has never been a favorite of the AD's, I'm still a bit surprised she ever got promoted. Now she's finally getting one Juliette. A role that she is incredibly suited for. Sorry all of you Trenary fans (I like her too). I think Trenary could have waited another year for the role and Lane could have been given two. As for Giselle, Lane is one of the best I've seen. To give her one (and a matinee) is wrong. The Giselle casting is not a ticket sale consideration - it's the AD's taste. Here's my thing about Lane. She is more a complete artist than most of the other female principals, and she has grown. Given half a chance, she could be one of the great dramatic ballerinas. IMO Hee and Boylston have their strengths, but haven't really grown since becoming principals. Copeland should be giving up some of the roles she was never suited for. I agree with others, that if Lane wants opportunities, for the 4 to 6 years she has left in her career, she should go elsewhere. He husband is in ABT, but as a corps member in his 30's, he doesn't have a lot more years there anyway. But, I certainly have no insights into how she feels about the whole thing. I just know that the ABT casting makes ticket buying a challenge for this ballet fan.
  11. I just got back tonight. I'm going to use a word to describe T&V that I rarely use when describing a performance - bad. This from a long time Sarah Lane fan. As nanushka said - awful tempi and unnecessary stops and starts have a deadening effect and take the driving pulse out of the piece. Performance wise the trouble started in the opening theme when Lane somehow moved downstage so much that she was far from in line with Gorak. She tried to correct but couldn't, so the little bow they do to each other, before exiting, had no connection between them, because they weren't next to each other. The tone was set! Gorak approached the whole thing with determination. I give him credit for executing the pirouette/double tours sequence well, after reading it was a problem in the last performance. Still he danced everything as if he was getting through the steps. He didn't cover space, have breadth, musicality or elegance - just getting through. It was pretty much the same for Lane. To me it seemed a joyless performance - getting through the steps. It was OK until the solo after the adagio with the girls supporting her. The solo started OK but, in the diagonal, she did some weird catch steps to keep going. The biggest problem was the traveling across stage step with the pas de chat - pirouette. She didn't finish the turn front enough so had to face front with the pas de chat (sorry if I'm getting too much into specifics). It got worse each time until she stumbled slightly. The finishing turns into a big fourth had a stumble too. Then came the pas de deux. Don't these people have coaches? Lacking in musicality, shaping, dynamics - just step after step. At the very end, Gorak barely got Lane up into the shoulder sit. She was on the edge of his shoulder. I could go on and on about the missing moments that make this piece amazing. I'll just say there were a lot. A Gathering of Ghosts - I'm not sure why there were named characters. Cornejo looked great and I found myself wishing Tharp had just choreographed a solo for him. Not a memorable piece IMO. Seasons - I always find this delightful (if a bit too long). I missed Sarah Lane as Rose. She brings something special to it. Everyone looked good. I wish Boylston would do something about her port de bra. Brandt continues to impress and Trenery continues to have a delightful performance quality. All in all not a great night at the ballet!
  12. Just got around to buying ABT tickets. There are plenty . OK facility fee, service fee and costume restoration fee? Be honest and charge more for the tickets.
  13. I just wanted to add a comment about Bugaku. Allegra Kent had a movement quality that had some, what one could call, mannerisms, quirks, personality, etc It included the way she tended to tilt her head, moved, shaped her hands etc. It always seemed to me that Mr. B. incorporated the things that were in Allegra's natural movement quality, into Bugaku and exaggerated them. As for the ballet today. Frankly I was uncomfortable with it back in the day. It's hard for me to imagine a dancer today being comfortable doing it. I'd be curious to see the whole thing done in leotards without sets, to see if it works, but I don't think casting Asian dancers is the answer. I don't think Porgy and Bess is a comparable work of art, for a many reasons. I love Balanchine but I could stomach losing Bugaku, it's not great Balanchine. Porgy and Bess on the other hand, I believe is great music and even in the 1930's, when it was written, Gershwin insisted on black singers instead of singers in black face. As far as accurate depictions - we are talking opera.
  14. I haven't seen The Runaway but enjoy and admire Peck's Pulchinella Variations. However, I don't thing the designer designs particularly enhance it. I believe it's a strong enough ballet to survive costumes that may be less than ideal.
  15. Thanks for the review Cobweb. When I saw the Lovette piece, I didn't know what make of the costumes and even thought them silly. Then I saw an interview with Lovette in which she said that the costumes were something of a surprise to her, and sent her in a different direction choreographically. That reminded me that the fall season has the fashion designer tie-in. I believe it's a Sarah Jessica Parker innovation that keeps going, in which a fashion designer is assigned to a choreographer. The extent to which they work together seems to vary. If the fashion gimmick brings in a lot of interest, donor dollars and ticket sales that's fine. If it no longer serves that function it should be dropped, because it doesn't serve the ballets particularly well.
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