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Romeo & Juliet in October 03


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I understand the Joffrey will be opening its season with John Cranko's R & J,

also i know that the Lithuanain National Ballet performed its version (by

Vladimir Vasilev) in London this past spring played by the London Symphony

Orchastra under the baton of Lithanian's Mstislav Rostropovich. Also i have

a women friend who is a corps dancer for the Kremlin Theater of ballet and

they just did Yuri Grigorovich's version of R & J in Cypus and Lebanon last

month and of course she says the Grigorovich's version is better that the other

two versions.


I am planning on attending the Joffrey's opening night performance in Oct,

seeing i just became a member of their Golden Ring Patron Circle,and it will

be my first R & J performance ever, does anyelse know the other versions

so to enlighten me on the differences so if ask by a fellow Joffrey patron about

the performance i can reply in a educated manner. :wink:



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Hi, Kevin! There are, as you note, several versions of "Romeo and Juliet". The one that's currently the most popular is by Kenneth MacMillan for the Royal Ballet; American Ballet Theatre also performs it, as do many other companies. It's closest to the Cranko in its structure and approach.

The Vasiliev production was an experimental one, with the dancers and orchestra sharing the stage. It's not a standard version -- meaning it's not in many repertories. (We reviewed it in DanceView and our critic, who went to the performance skeptical, came away very enthusiastic about it.) The Grigorovitch production is MAMMOTH, lots and lots of dancers on stage. It was done for the Bolshoi, of course, which is a huge company. It emphasizes the dancing; in typical late 20th century fashion, there's little or no mime.

I'd describe the Cranko version as telling the story very clearly, and emphasizing the local color -- the street life and street fighting -- as well as the love story. Cranko was a very human choreographer -- he was known as a master storyteller, a man who cared about emotions (and his dancers), and a choreographer able to make his dancers look their best.

When you see it, I hope you'll report your impressions.

We have several people on this board very familiar with the production -- I hope they'll chime in.

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I understand what you saying regarding the Lithuanian-Vasiliev version,

with the dancers and Orchastra on stage. The people here in Vilnius:Lithuania

tell me that in the ending of Vasiliev version Mstislav Rostropovich, the

Lithuanian conductor, gently linked the arms of the two dead lovers as

he continues to direct the orchastra.


The Lith National Ballet is off in the summer so i could not see their

performance. :angry:



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