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Posts posted by abatt

  1. I'm sure many Ballet Talkers have read the sad debacle re NYC Opera during the past few days. Gerard Mortier, the incoming director, has abrubtly abandoned the sinking ship that is NYC Opera. His stated reason is that the Board of Directors could not come up with the financial support he was purportedly promised to stage various operas in the upcoming season. The future of NYC Opera, which has been losing money, is now in doubt. Ironically, these developments may be favorable to NYC's balletomanes. For many years, the great ballet companies of the world have bypassed visits to New York simply because there is no adequate theater for them to rent. If the"Koch" theater becomes available for most of the year, we New Yorkers might finally be able to see all those great companies that appear at the Kennedy Center and at other major US venues. Also, it is possible that ABT might want to appear at the Koch instead of the MET. (Kevin McKenzie indicated a potential interest in the State Theater in an interview he did a few years ago when City Opera was seeking to build a new theater.) Any thoughts?

  2. Of the corps dancers, I was most impressed by Melissa Thomas and Hee Seo (spelling?). I think C. Stearns needs more time to develop into major roles, and ABT is giving him too much too soon. In the soloist ranks, I can't wait to see more of Simkin. I loved all the Tudor ballets. The biggest dud of the season was, without question, Citizen.

  3. Faux Pas, I agree with you about Veronika's performance last night in Lilac Garden. Every gesture and expression was meaningful and nuanced. The prior night, Kristi Boone's performance made little or no impact. I also found that M. Thomas' youth made the ballet much more tragic and moving than when Kent performed it. I enjoyed Kent's performance as well, but it was very different from M. Thomas.

    Wiles and Hallberg looked better last night than on Tues.

    I had never seen the Tudor R&J. I thought Genadi's interpretation was bland.

  4. Additional casting info. re smaller/soloist parts would be wonderful, but I'm very happy that we are getting advance information re principal casting. For full length ballets, which are the bread and butter of the ABT Met season, casting info is crucial to my decisions regarding which subscriptions to purchase. I think ABT's management realized that they could make a lot more income through early subscription sales if they publish the casting months in advance. Of course, there are always some changes, as we all know too well!

  5. Siren would be an interesting role for Dvorovenko. She actually did this role a few years ago (with Jose Carreno, I think) when ABT did Prodigal at City Center, but I missed it. The cast I saw had Paloma as the Siren (and Angel as a very good Prodigal Son). In my opinion, that role did not suit Paloma. Siren would also be a good role for Stella.

  6. Hi. I attended the Career Transition For Dancers gala last night at City Center. This year's program focused on Broadway. In prior years, the galas have highlighted more ballet and modern dance. I found this year's gala less satisfying than usual because a lot of the Broadway show excerpts, devoid of costuming and scenery, looked out of context and underwhelming. There was only one ballet offering. Herman Cornejo and Xiomara Reyes of ABT brought the house down with Le Corsaire PDD. For me, it was definitely the highlight of the evening. Another highlight offering was an excerpt of Pippin (which I have never seen). Bebe Neuwirth was one of the three dancers in the piece. This was great Fosse dancing.

  7. I noticed that in Giselle this year, Julie Kent is dancing with Marcelo Gomes. I'm looking forward to this one. Last year Marcelo was partnered w. Paloma, which was less than ideal. I guess Swan Lake must be a real cash cow, since ABT has performed it every year at the MET for at least the last 10 years.

  8. I was there last night. I had never before seen Overgrown Path. It was very moving. I'm looking forward to seeing it again. This was absolutely LUXURY casting. As for Leaves, Xiomara just didn't do a thing for me. Kent's rhapsodic, lyrical performance the night before was dramatic and touching. I didn't feel that way at all about Xiomara. However, the big revelation for me last night in Leaves was Melissa Thomas. I'm now looking forward to seeing her next week in the lead of Jardin. Herman looked very good in Theme, and effortlessly tossed off all of his jumps and turns. His only major mistake was in the lift at the very end. Sarah Lane did a wonderful job too. All in all, a wonderful night of dance. Did anyone else in the rear mez notice that someone was fumbling with a noisy plastic bag throughout Leaves. Some audience members are CLUELESS.

  9. Hi. I was at last night's performance. I was in the Rear Mez and I could hear the laughter coming from off stage left. The laughter was incredibly loud. I enjoyed Baker's Dozen more this year than when I initially saw it last year. I thought Citizen was terrible. As FauxPas noted above, it was a bad imitation of Forsythe. The choreography was repetitive and tedious. Was there some big point we were supposed to derive when all the people dressed in street clothes came on stage? If so, I guess I missed it. Glitter falling to the stage floor is not an adequate substitute for interesting choreography. Yes, I agree Paloma looked great. Poor David Hallberg. His costume looked like an early Halloween costume. Men in bustiers and silver pants is a VERY BAD IDEA!!! One post above noted that Citizen will probably not remain in the future repertory. My question is how and why it got to the City Center stage at all in the first place. In Leaves, I thought the whole cast was terrific, and that Julie Kent was sublime. Her performance, in particular, was gorgeous. As for Theme, Wiles was pretty good. I also thought Stearns was mis-cast. There were times that Stearns could barely lift Wiles off the ground. Also, in his big solo, he ran out of gas in his jumps and started fudging the steps. Since many of ABT's heavy hitters are not around for this engagement (Steifel, Corella), I guess they worked with the team they had available.

  10. I made a return visit to City Center yesterday to see Program B for the second time. What lured me back was the Four Ts. Taras Domitro once again was absolutely incredible in the Melancholic section. The flexibility in his back is remarkable. I thought he was breathtaking in every detail. Unfortunately, I didn't particularly care for Lorena Fejoo's interpretation of Sanguanic. I thought Sarah Van Patten was much better in the role. It was good to see Sofiane Sylve one more time in Choleric, although I think she might have been better used in the Sanguine section.

  11. I attended Program A on Fri evening, Program B on Sat evening and Program C last night. Of all the new premieres, I liked the Wheeldon "Within the Golden Hour" the best. All of Helgi's new ballets were pleasant and well danced, but not particularly memorable. My favorite performance of the run was the Four T's, and in particular the Melancholic performance of Taras Domitro. He was mesmerizing. As to Elo's Double Evil, the audience seemed to love it. It was not to my taste. It seemed like a pointless aerobics exercise, without any beauty or depth.

  12. Angel Corella and Letizia Giuiliani will be performing the Dance of the Hours (choreographed by Christoper Wheeldon) in La Gioconda at the Metropolitan Opera House. You can go to the Met's website for the dates of La Gioconda. However, the website does not list the dancers. This information is contained in the casting list available in the lobby of the Opera House. Since the MET only gives casting lists for two weeks at a time, there is presently no info re whether Corella and Giuliani will be performing in all of the Gioconda performances. (Corella did this same role at the MET two years ago, and the audience went nuts.) See you at the Opera!

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