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Everything posted by kabota

  1. Sounds rather like West Side Story by the sea....but I'm still hoping for the best. I will not be surprised if it, indeed, turns out to be one of those love it or loath it type productions.
  2. I've been to several performances in the last week and a half, and thought I'd share a few impressions while they're still fresh in my mind. Attendance looks to be good -- and considering the heat, that's relatively amazing. Last week was especially brutal, and I give the dancers huge props for getting out there and giving it their all. In the past few years, we've seen a lot of rain, but I can't remember heat like this in forever. There truly is something special about seeing Midsummer here. I was at the Wednesday evening show and enjoyed everything about it. Joaquin De Luz and Maria Kowroski were terrific -- Maria's one of my favorites, and I love how she's able to project majesty and comedy here. Tess Reichlen and Erica Pereira, along with Henry Seth, were also stand-outs, as were the assorted little creatures of the forest. What a wonderful opportunity for these young "bugs!" I also enjoyed the two new premiers on gala night. Having read reviews, etc., I was prepared for the length of Namouna and really quite loved it. (My husband, on the other hand, just hung his head when the stage turned still and blue leading up to the pas, and I told him "It's not over yet...!) I thought the score was beautiful and many combinations for the corps were absolutely breathtaking. It's been great to see Sara Mearns again, as she didn't perform here last year -- she and Robert Fairchild have such vibrant stage personalities. It's a real pleasure seeing what an assured partner he has become. The sections for Abi Stafford, Megan Fairchild and Daniel Ulbricht were intricate, difficult and exceedingly well-danced. Estancia was fun, concise and accessible. The two Ty(i)lers were perfectly cast as the leads, but those wild horses stole the show! Last night, there was an especially appreciative house. Marcia White, SPAC's president came before the curtain as she always does, but was shortly joined by Peter Martins to honor the retirees of the spring season. Albert Evans, Yvonne Borree, Philip Neal and Maurice Kaplow each received bouquets, and Martins comically conducted the orchestra in a "drumroll" for the maestro, who in turn led one for the dancers. A standing ovation ensued. Lovely performances of La Source, After the Rain, and Stravinsky Violin Concerto followed. Wendy Whelan and Craig Hall were stunning in the pas and completely deserving of the standing ovation which followed. The 6 dancers all came out for an extra curtain call -- something rarely seen at SPAC. Wendy truly is in her element in this choreography! I'm always so amazed at how current -- or perhaps I should say timeless -- Balanchine's black and whites can look. The Stravinsky was in top form and earned a standing ovation from the very satisfied audience. Has everything been perfect? Of course not, but with only 2 weeks of performances, we're a rather forgiving lot here and dwell mostly on the positive. Thankfully, there's plenty of that. I know that there is hard-core lobbying for a 3-week season next year. Fingers crossed we'll get there!
  3. I know the new Martins piece has not been well-received, but that cast in "Who Cares" is certainly going to be hard to pass up!
  4. How exciting -- and what a deserving group of dancers! Particularly thrilled for Tess, Robbie and Kathryn who I adore!
  5. I attended several performances at SPAC last week. There have been a few casting changes from that posted on the website – de Luz and Millepied did not perform. I saw both casts in Firebird, and it was so interesting to see the very different and both completely wonderful interpretations of the title character by Ashley Bouder and Maria K. I was quite close for Ashley’s, and her facial expressions and wonderful birdlike flutters and flicks were perfect. She seems to be completely back. (I saw her perform “Other Dances” another night and enjoyed seeing her in a more lyrical light.) I also loved Maria on Friday night. There’s nothing new to be said about her amazing extentions, but I’m thrilled anew nevertheless. She was elegant, vulnerable and completely captivating. The set, too, never fails to inspire. Other dancers who’ve stood out are Tess Reichlen in Concerto Barocco and Tiler Peck in Other Dances. (And while that ballet is not a favorite of mine, as far as Robbins goes, Peck truly lit up the stage in it. Her perfect technique was complemented by a gracious, feminine quality that was lovely to see in her.) The gala truly was festive, despite the rain. This was probably the most spirited Stars and Stripes I’ve seen. Bouder, again in full attack, and Andrew Veyette were terrific as Liberty Bell and El Capitan. (Veyette, along with Gonzalo Garcia, has been doing extra duty with the absences of de Luz and Millepied. I believe Millepied will be performing here this week, though.) Veyette, in particular, is dancing with such strength and assurance. He brought the house down in Donizetti on Friday. I’d never seen Hallelujah Junction before, but found the staging of the “floating” pianos and the Adams score quite intriguing. Sterling Hyltin and Robert Fairchild were striking and impressive in the difficult central pas. Slaughter is such a hoot, and everyone just put their all into it. Darci vamped it up, and with the wonderful support of Philip Neal, really seemed to have fun with the part. The standing ovation at the end was a community’s great thank you to a favorite ballerina. Looking forward to this week's repertory. Hoping for little rain and large crowds -- surely Coppelia will draw. And greatly missing Sara Mearns.
  6. Again, just echoing -- what a brave and determined young woman. I'm looking forward now, even more, to seeing her in "The Cage" Friday night!
  7. Again, no Bouder. Still recovering, I assume? I hope as the season progresses, we'll see more of Mearns and R. Fairchild than the first couple of weeks afford. Sara should be lovely in DSCH.
  8. Anyone see Mearns and Fairchild debut in "Slaughter" Tuesday?
  9. Yay! I'll be glad to learn more about the new Lee ballet.
  10. At a recent NYCB seminar, Jonathan Stafford said he would be out this season, as he was having an operation (don't recall on what part of the body, but the seminar is available in 3 parts on the NYCB website). -amanda Thanks for the info -- hopefully, he'll have a quick recovery.
  11. Yes, conspicuously absent are Bouder and Ulbricht. Janie Taylor missed several scheduled Nuts, and I see she's not listed first week. Outside of that, I think the only other principals and soloists not listed are J. Stafford, R. Fairchild and Craig Hall. I rather love the idea of Tiler Peck as Coppelia!
  12. Last year there were 4 pages of Nuts reviews! I'm hoping to catch a show between Christmas and New Years and would love to hear more about the specific casts. Thanks to all for sharing your experiences.
  13. At the risk of sounding ignorant, will casting for this tour be affected by the participation of several key dancers in Morphoses? Or is there no conflict?
  14. Mr. Hanna is listed in the cast of Billy Elliot. It is scheduled to open on Broadway November 17, with previews beginning September 17: http://www.broadwayworld.com/viewcolumn.cfm?colid=29983 (if you click on his name in the article, he is id'd as being from NYCB) Thank you for the link. (I do remember hearing something about this now.)
  15. I know this isn't exactly the right place to post this, but the thread seems the most active. Has anyone noticed that Stephen Hanna is not listed in the "dancers" section of the NYCB website? Not in the alphabetical or ranked lists. I know he wasn't scheduled to dance again in Saratoga, but.....??? Sorry, if I'm just missing something here.
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