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Elisabeth Maurin's farewell


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As I had written in a thread about Laurent Hilaire, it is now known that Elisabeth Maurin, who is now 42, will retire next June, performing Juliet in Nureyev's "Romeo and Juliet" (her partner will be Manuel Legris). She joined the POB in 1979, and was promoted to étoile in 1988. She had been on maternity leave for most of the last season, but came back this season, and recently performed in Laura Scozzi's "Les sept péchés capitaux".

Here's the official biography of Elisabeth Maurin on the POB web site:


and also here's a link to an interview of her in "Dance View" in 2002, by Marc Haegeman:


and a few photographs of her:



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No doubt Mlle Maurin's adieu performance will be the highest point of 04/05 season.... the question is: How can I secure a ticket for the special event? You can rarely access casting info. well in advance, and it's not unusual tickets are completely sold out by the time the official distribution is out......

Another question is whether or not Hilaire will dance Tybolt in the ballet with Maurin and Legris - if that happens it will surely be a very special performance for all......

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Naoko: I haven't seen any official announcement about the date yet. From Manuel Legris' site, it seems that Maurin's farewell will be his only performance of the season as Romeo (and I wonder whether it will be in fact his last Romeo ?) but the date is not announced there.

Jane: I didn't know the POB will tour to London next season... Are they supposed to perform only "Le Parc", or also other works ? Maybe she will perform it as a guest dancer... Besides the initial two casts (Guérin- Hilaire and Maurin- Legris), I remember that "Le Parc" also was performed by Aurélie Dupont and Yann Bridard, but I don't remember if there were other casts yet...

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One of the newspapers had a preview of 2005 which mentioned that POB would be making a 'brief' visit to Sadler's Wells in October, and that they'd be doing Le Parc - and so far as I know that's all they're doing. I hope Legris at least will still be there, and it would be lovely if Hilaire and/or Maurin came too. (And maybe Guillem will be a guest artist too?)

I saw Maurin do Le Parc with Legris in Paris - the first time I've seen her since she danced Aurora with the Royal Ballet, years ago - and liked her very much.

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Thanks for the explanation, Jane. It really seems that "Le Parc" has become one of the ballets the POB always brings on tour... But as far as I know, Guillem has never performed it, so I don't know how likely she'd be to perform in it.

I saw Maurin and Legris in "Le Parc" (I never saw Hilaire and Guérin in it) and, though I didn't like that much the ballet itself, they were very good. Actually I regret not having seen Maurin more often, for example I'd have liked to see her as Giselle.

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About POB's visit to SW this autumn - after having read the snippet of the info. I enquired with the theatre for a confirmation, in January. At the time they apparently were not in a position to discuss Autumn/Winter Season, which was still being finalised - yet they didn't deny the possibility either. A full season announcement is likely to be released around May.

If they ever stage Le Parc in London - I can't think of anyone other than Hilaire who could do justice to the role..... after all it's his role, and Guérin's - together they created the roles for POB back in 1994. In the reprise of the work in POB's 01/02 season Hilaire danced with Dupont, then last summer in Tokyo the pair again danced the excerpt from the work - I'd lay my bet on Hilaire & Dupont taking the first night! (But first of all let's just hope their coming to London becomes a reality....)

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Thanks for the casting update, sophia. It's a pity that Manuel Legris won't be able to perform, as I guess many people were looking forward to seeing him as Romeo (his only performance in this role this season) and he has already partnered Elisabeth Maurin so often. Anyway, her farewell performance will be a moving event- I regret not being able to go to Paris for it !

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An article in "Le Figaro" (in French) about Ms Maurin's retirement:


She says that it was important for her to come back after the birth of her daughter Hortense 13 months ago to make her farewell performance, and recalls some memories (her first dance classes at 4, her first "Giselle" with Nureyev in Vienna, the day when she was promoted to étoile in 1988...)

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Just a few words to say it was a wonderful night. Miss Maurin was into the part so much. I saw Aurelie Dupont too and I thought her Juliette was just too clean.

I will never forget this day. An exceptional dancer said goodbye to the POB tonight ! What a musicality and what an actress! I had some tears in my eyes.

During the last few years, as far I'm concerned, I think her dance was smaller than when she was younger but it was really big tonight and she let herself go into her part.

A lot of her fellows were in the audience, including Aurelie Dupont (who by the way wasn't wearing any jewellery :) ), Laetita Pujol, Marie-Agnes Gillot, Agnes Letestu and some others. I was seated near Ghislaine Thesmar and she was very nice.

The "etoiles" who were in the audience came on stage at the end to take some bows with Miss Maurin and congratulate her.

And the conductor, the american Kevin Rhodes, was a very pleasant surprise. The POB orchestra usually is quite bad, but he's doing a very good job with our damned musicians!

And finally, if Miss Maurin ever read this: thank you so much for everything !

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Thanks for sharing your impressions with us, cygneblanc. It must have been a very moving evening !

Did Manuel Legris also attend the program (he's injured but could have been in the audience) ? And also, what was the audience's reaction ?

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Yes, he was there and gave her some flowers. :P Jose Martinez, Wilfried Romoli, , Kader Belarbi were alo on stage too.

Miss Maurin was very well received and got a 30 minutes standing ovation! She looked completely overwhemed and was crying, taking some bows with pain. She also got a lot of flowers, which is very rare in Paris!

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I was there too for Elisabeth Maurin's farewell preformance. I couldn't have missed that... A great and unique performance full of emotion during and after. Elisabeth Maurin is a marvellous actress and she really plays the character, so that you can feel something. I was really, really impressed and touched, as I had never seen her as Juliet (I agree, cygneblanc, Aurélie Dupont was just much too clean and I got bored the other night). So many details in the way she dances and plays... I also loved Benjamin Pech as Romeo: an excellent dancer and also a convincing actor. The other parts were also exceptional: Laurent Hilaire as Tybalt (even if I personally prefered Wilfried Romoli in the other cast), Emmanuel Thibault as Mercutio (unbelievable!) and Christophe Duquenne as Benvolio. A great corps de ballet, very enthusiastic and dancing in order (which is not always the case :) ).

And afterwards, a shower of confettis coming from heaven onto the stage and 22 minutes of standing ovation. To see all the other "étoiles" in their simple way and dayclothes on the stage around her, kissing her, congratulating her and all those flovers thrown from the audience (it never happens in Paris) was really emotional...

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Now both of you are making me feel jealous ! :grinning-smiley-001:

But I'm happy to read that Elisabeth Maurin had the great farewell performance that she deserved. I remember that a few years ago poor Carole Arbo had such a poor farewell performance, dancing only a short work in the middle of a mixed bill (while in general farewell performances are in full-length works with big roles, like Juliet, Giselle, La Sylphide...) At least this time it was a great moment for the dancer and tje aidoe,ce/

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