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About Mashinka

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    Long time ballet fan and former modern dance administrator
  • City**
    London UK

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  1. All sorts of things get brushed under the carpet at the RB and inquiries tend to be damage limitation jobs. This outcome is pretty much as I expected.
  2. No, the government wants the population to catch the virus to develop 'herd immunity'. Worrying if like me you're over seventy with asthma. The Astana Ballet in Kazakhstan plans to perform as usual without an audience and live stream the performance. Good idea.
  3. Covent Garden remains open as do all theatres in London though there is some evidence that ticket sales are declining in the West End. ROH has very elderly audiences compared with other European houses, especially for ballet and I think they should consider closing the House during the day when all and sundry wander in and should open an hour before performances, strictly for ticket holders only.
  4. Domingo's London performances have now been cancelled. The timing is a disgrace, they sold the tickets and then made the decision. People will have booked flights to London to see him, were I one of them I would be seeking compensation. My in box is overflowing with email messages of anger from outraged opera fans this morning. Putting aside other considerations the ROH can't afford ill will in a season where attendances have dropped off a cliff. The sheer dishonesty of promising a singer, getting in the money and then announcing that he won't be singing is downright theft in my opinion..
  5. The Grigolo incident caused bemusement, as he appears to have touched an extra's prosthetic belly during a curtain call in front of a couple of thousand people. The RO is struggling to sell seats this season and the truly ghastly, highly unpopular production of Lucia scheduled later is unlikely to sell at all without Grigolo. Domingo is still singing throughout Europe and despite his declining vocal abilities and the unsavoury accusations still has a massive fan base partly made up of travelling fans. Don Carlo is likely to be a sell out. I smell hypocrisy too.
  6. Just heard the news that the great Kirk Douglas has passed away. He was 103, so a terrific innings. May he rest in peace.
  7. If a new principal male dancer is to be appointed I would have thought the obvious choice would be Cesar Corrales. Personally I would like to see Fumi Kaneko and Breatrix Stix-Brunell promoted at some point.
  8. I have also been aware of his suspension for some time and thought the RB would keep it under wraps but this morning the story is on the front page of The Times. As that paper is behind a pay wall here is a link to the fullest account else where. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7945375/Royal-Ballet-choreographer-Liam-Scarlett-suspended.html Like Ashton fan I would like to think these are allegations that will be refuted, but unlike other such cases in the arts world these are not just historical and as social media was involved, hard core evidence will exist. A tragedy for the Royal Ballet and could not come at a worse time for the ballet world with a ten year jail sentence handed to a former RB principal for indecency with young girls and a former ENB dancer awaiting trial on similar charges.
  9. A Raymonda reimagined as Florence Nightingale and set in the Crimean war? I imagine the crusades are on the politically incorrect list like so much else. Wild horses wouldn't drag me to this one.
  10. The fate of Elizabeth's mother and her stepmother's death after childbirth are sometimes cited as reasons for her unmarried state. Considering marriage with princes of several nationalities was a clever political ploy, though she seemed to be genuinely fond of the French contender The Duke of Alençon, her 'little frog'. A French alliance against Spain would have been extremely advantageous at the time but perhaps even Elizabeth would have baulked at having the formidable Catherine de Medici as a mother in law.
  11. Balanchine is getting a lot of stick here but he's not the only choreographer to be inspired by Japan, there was Ashton with Madame Chrysanthème (now lost), MacMillan's Rituals and Ratmansky's Dreams of Japan. I remember a critic opining that all choreographers seem to have a Japanese ballet in them somewhere. The performance styles of the far east intrigue and fascinate, MacMillan's Rituals came not long after a Kabuki company performed in London and he copied the make up and the costumes, though they were of course adapted for greater movement. The most recent Butterfly I saw was sensational, set in the 1940's it became a seedy story of buying and selling female flesh. When Butterfly's friends turn up for her wedding they are wearing their school uniforms. At the end Pinkerton was actually booed, perhaps because in that version he was recognized as a paedophile. It was a Glydebourne production, lots of images available on line for anyone interested.
  12. So we're banning Butterfly as well as Bugaku then?
  13. I can remember a private performance (dancers entertaining dancers) where a pair of dancers came on and gave an hilarious performance of a pas de deux from their company's rep with index fingers extended. One dancer was Chinese and the other was half Japanese. They were having a joke at a ballet convention. Had it been that offensive I imagine they would not have done it.
  14. Thanks for jogging my memory, yes, it was Versailles, I couldn't watch more than a few minutes. A brilliant film could have been made about Louis, instead we got that rubbish. I'm not usually a fan of crime, but the Scandinavian productions have converted me.
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