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Hans

Which dead choreographer are you?

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Balanchine and Shostakovich, that's me. In his biography of Balanchine, Richard Buckle wrote about Mr. B and Solomon Volkov, who conducted the interviews that became "Balanchine's Tchaikovsky" -- "Balanchine did not like the music of Shostakovich, whose pupil and friend Volkov had been, so he never referred to him at all. Volkov thought this showed tact and good manners."

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Okay!!!! so I am Petipa and Stravinsky!!!! Bizarre by my account!!! I have very little aptitude or drive for choreography. However, l am greatly ispired by music. Shostikovich and Prokofiev, is more my taste and heart. I greatly respect Stravinsky and am quite enthralled by his relationship and collaboration with Balanchine. However, to come out as this mix gives me a little boost!!!

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I turned out to be Rimsky-Korsakov as well--the teacher of the group. I think it suits me :).

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We could do a fun mismatch -- Balanchine/Rachmaninoff

Wasn't there some incident where Balanchine approached Rachmaninoff and was rebuffed in some way insulting to choreography in general? Anyone have their Taper handy?

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This Spring I took a course on Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes followed by listening to a Teaching Company course on Stravinsky. My God, it had a greater impact than I thought. I've become Stravinsky.

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Taken one step further with this game, given that I'm Rimsky and Fokine, if I were a ballet I'd be "Scheherazade". Those who are Balanchine and Stravinsky may have multiple personality problems with this extension, though.

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Right you are, Roma. Both Rachmaninoff and Prokofiev were nasty to Balanchine.

Richard Buckle writes in his Balanchine biography that when Mr. B suggested he might make a ballet to Rachmaninoff's music, "Rachmaninoff exclaimed, 'A ballet! To my music! Are you crazy?' and threw them all out. Danilova later recalled that for the rest of his life, whenever the composer was mentioned, Balanchine would say, 'Lousy music,'"

In Bernard Taper's Balanchine biography, he says Prokofiev hated the Prodigal Son choreography. and when Balanchine asked for a share of the royalties, "Prokofiev shouted at him, 'Why should you get money? Who are you? You're nothing but a lousy ballet master. Get out!' Balanchine apologized for having broached the subject, and left. For the rest of his life, he never again used a Prokofiev score."

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Are we ready for the full list of possible choreographers, or are there more people who want to take the quiz before I divulge it?

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Oh, divulge, divulge! If you're really feeling generous, you might give us not just the names of the Dead, but include the answers for each one too.

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Okay :). Here are the possible answers and the responses that "point" to them:

George Balanchine

Your choreography is: sleek, modern and innovative

Your ballets: are fast and energetic

Your sets and costumes: are minimal, if any

You are from: Georgia. No, not THAT Georgia, though I do consider myself American...

Most interesting thing besides choreography: I marry my muses

Home co. mangle choreography? Yes, but who cares?

Change one aspect of current performance? Just make new ballets

Marius Petipa

Choreography is: Formal and perfect

Ballets: are the foundation of classicism

Sets/costumes: lavish and opulent

From: France, but I live in Russia

Interesting fact: I accidentally say obscene things in Russian

Choreography: It could be worse, at least they're trying

Change: I'd remove those acrobatic jesters, especially the ones wearing tutus.

Frederick Ashton

Choreography is: the epitome of restraint

Ballets: Are tricky and idiosyncratic to those unfamiliar with your style

Sets/Costumes: Always appropriate (sorry, couldn't think of anything better!)

From: England

Interesting Fact: Hang out w/ Dior & Fonteyn

Choreography: They don't even dance them anymore

Change: I'd put back the port de bras

Kenneth MacMillan

Choreography is: wild and melodramatic

Ballets: are dramatic and depressing

sets/costumes: nightgowns and poet shirts

From: England, but my last name is Scottish

Interesting Fact: I'm a KNIGHT!

Choreography: They're too restrained

Change: More emotion and big swoopy lifts

August Bournonville (I thought for sure Alexandra would be him!)

Choreography is: delicate and understated

Ballets: Are (were) perfectly preserved, at least in your hometown

Sets/costumes: prettily modest

From: Scandinavia, but father was French

Interesting Fact: I make my dancers sew their skirts to keep their legs down

Choreography: Hideously

Change: Put back the mime

Mikhail Fokine

Choreography is: eclectic and imaginative

Ballets: run the stylistic gamut (was thinking of sylphides, scheherazade, Pavilion, &c)

Sets/Costumes: colorful and detailed

From: Russia

Interesting Fact: Went to school with Pavlova (not quite accurate, but it sounds good :) I think he was actually teaching by the time Pavlova came through)

Choreography: Actually, I don't have a home company (ie, Ballet Russe no longer exists)

Change: I'd put them back in the repertoire

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I took the quiz before reading through the possible outcomes. I'm another Petipa/Tchaikovsky, though I can't figure out how. I think I only matched one of the Petipa answers!

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