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Could someone please help me to choose?

Guest Bronxfan

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Guest Bronxfan

I am planning on attending a night of the Ashton Festival, because I can't pass an opportunity to see Cojocaru, Bussell, and Guillem on the same night. But what night to go?

Tuseday, July 13:

Bussell in Awakening

Cojocaru in Voices of Spring

Guillem in Marguerite and Armand


Wednesday, July 14:

Cojocaru in Scenes de Ballet

Bussell in Birthday Offering

Guillem in Marguerite and Armand.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!

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I'd be happy with either of them and I wish I could be there. If this helps:

The Awakening is a lyrical pas de deux from music usually cut from Sleeping Beauty (it's very beautiful, long violin solo, the entra'cte music)

Birthday Offering is a classical party piece done for the Royal Ballet's 25th birthday. The full ballet was for 7 couples, with 7 variations, one each for each ballerina.

I think I'd rather see Bussell in Birthday Offering, so that's what I"d pick.

If you want more information about the ballets, we have a special section on the Celebration on our sister site, danceviewtimes, here:


Edited by Alexandra
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Guest Bronxfan

First of all, thank you for all the help. Due to a visit from a family member tonight (Wednesday) I ended up going last night (Tuesday). Now, I am no expert on ballet, but here is what I can tell you about last night's pefromance.

The Met was not sold out, but it was pretty crowded. When I called ahead to find out about ticket availability, I was told that tickets were available for every section. I ended up in Dress Circle - not quite nosebleed territory.

The night began with Scenes de Ballet with Miyako Yoshida and Ivan Putrov, 4 men and 12 women. The Stravinsky music was - well - Stravinsky. A couple of times it sounded like the orchestra was hitting wrong notes, but it was just - Stravinsky. However, the dancing somehow fit the music. The dancing was very good, especially from the two leads. Yoshida seemed to just float around the stage and she received a huge ovation when she came out for her curtain call. Putrov's leaps were very high and he showed off Yoshida very well. During this ballet, it was interesting to see the different shapes that the dancers made on the floor together.

After the first intermission, there were four Pas de Deux:

The first was Awakening from The Sleeping Beauty with Darcey Bussell and Roberto Bolle. Bussell got a huge round of applause by just stepping out onstage. My only complaint was that this was way too short, but maybe it was one of those things where one is enjoying something so much, the time just flies. I have seen Bussell dance before on video, but this was the first time that I have ever seen her dance live and she was just beautiful. Bolle was the perfect partner to her.

The second was from Ondine with Tamara Rojo and Inaki Urlezaga. This was the weakest of the four Pas de Deux. The music by Henze was very dark and blah and it was a real downer. They kiss and embrace each other and he dies. The choreography seemed to be more posing than actual dancing.

But all that was forgotten with the next - Thais with Leanne Benjamin and Thiago Soares. Everything just came together perfectly - the music, the lighting, the costumes (Benjamin began and ended with a veil covering her face), and especially the dancers. It was almost like Benjamin stepped out of Soares's dream and then floated back into a dream world. Of the four, this got the loudest and longest ovation.

The last of the four was Voices of Spring by Strauss, with Alina Cojocaru and Johan Kobborg. The audience just fell in love with Cojocaru and she was delightful. She radiated joy with every step that she took and Kobborg presented her beautifully. Of the four, this was the most playful and the audience responded by even laughing at certain parts.

There was a half hour intermission. Why? Well, when I was leaving the Met later that night, I saw three guys in black t-shirts with "Stage Crew" written on them and they were complaing how "everything got f****d up tonight". It was ovious that there were technical problems during Marguerite and Armand in terms of changing the scenery.

BUT, there were no problems with the dancing. Like Bussell, this was the first time that I saw Sylvie Guillem dance live. Wow! She was just incredible - her command of the stage, her acting, her dancing, etc. She was just heartbreaking as the Lady of the Camellias. She received 5 curtain calls at the end and the audience just went nuts every time she came out. Massimo Murru as Armand was again, the perfect partner to her, holding his own, but presenting Guillem beautifully. And who else got a huge ovation? Anthony Dowell as Armand's father.

All in all - a great night. Thanks again for the help and the advice. Honestly, if it weren't for the company coming tonight - I'd go back again! :)

Edited by Bronxfan
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