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If you were a great ballet dancer ....

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My new experience of ballet classes (at an advanced age) has pushed a Walter Mitty button. I find myself imagining what it might be like actually to dance one of the great (or not so great) ballet roles. In my case, I wished myself into the fantasy of performing one of the men's roles in the leaping, jumping, joyfully balletic Arden Court (Paul Taylor) with the Miami City Ballet. :yahoo:

In a more broody mood, I would do Albrecht to Carla Fracci's Giselle, with Martine Van Hamel as Myrtha. I'd need a personality transplant for this, but it would be worth it.

What role would you like to perform if you had all the resources of technique and personality? Why? What qualities would you bring to it? With whom would you like to work (partner, company, choreography, coach, whatever)?

Conversely, what role would you detest having to do? Etc.

P.S. Of course it's possible that you ARE a great ballet dancer. In that case, what's on your performance wish list?

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If I had known as a teenager what Balanchine ballets actually looked like, I probably would have taken my ballet lessons a lot more seriously. Classical story ballets bored me back then (and they're still not my favorite) I would LOVE to do any corps role in 4T's, Agon, Stravinsky Violin Concerto, or Concerto Barocco. It kills me that I'll probably never get to learn any of those amazing ballets.

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I would choose Apollo's last solo and the male solo in Square Dance. The only female role that I would have coveted is the "jumping" women in the last movement of Paul Taylor's Espalande, but my knees hurt just thinking about the falls and slides.

Square Dance with NYCB and Merrill Ashley, with guest appearances by some of the demis in last year's San Francisco Ballet production, whose names, unfortunately, I don't know. Coaching would be by Bart Cook.

Apollo, with coaching from Henning Kronstam, Lew Christensen, and Ib Andersen. The muses would be Gloria Govrin, Stephanie Saland, and Suzanne Farrell. It would be the complete version.

I would also want to dance the male lead in Agon, just to be able to partner Diana Adams in the pas de deux.

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Firebird! But because of the music, not because of any choreography I've seen... it's just difficult to not to want to fly...

Ballet I'd deteste doing? Any of those which I'd be required to smile throughout for no apparent reason... even if I'd been graced with an easy Hollywood starlet smile...

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What fun!

This is cheating a bit, since I learned them at one point but never performed them, but I love Isadora Duncan's solos "Mother" and "Revolutionary." Also "Marble Halls" by Mark Morris.

Other than that, any part in Tudor's Dark Elegies, though the solo that Agnes de Mille originated is especially wrenching.

Any of the fairies in Sleeping Beauty (though I like Canary the least) And the Lilac Fairy, because she gets the best music.

Theme #1 or the Sanguinic woman from Four Temperaments.

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For Balanchine ballets, Russian in Serenade, and Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux

For everything else, Black Swan pas de deux and Aurora.

Hey Lampwick, my daughter (not a professional) is rehearsing a corps part in Concerto Barocco. She's having an amazing experience, but her feet are killing her -- she's the one with the most hops on pointe!

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Just did my 9th class, which ended with sautes from (and to) fifth -- chagements -- with toes pointed down during elevation. What a thrill -- felt like 12 years old. We even essayed entrechats, which so far seems to be a single heel click, for me. Made me want to be a LOT younger and able to dance the finale to Ballet Imperial (full costume) where everyone is jumping up and down and up and down, world without end.

Jacqueline, why those parts? Daniil, what makes the Bejart so "goregeous" and such a stand out for you?

Edited by bart
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In my fantasy, if Suzanne Farrell were to consider me suitable for coaching, I would gladly let her pick the role(s)!

And as for the roles I'd avoid: Most of Martins's, because there are so many events flowing by in the music that he doesn't reflect in his choreography.

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Bart, to answer your question - in general, it is the fusion of the music and the choreography!

However, I just got home from seeing Paloma Herrerra and Angel Corella perform "Blach Swan" and I may have changed my mind. Too many turns! But I still love the idea of playing the seductive temptress who is still elegant and unattainable!

Aurora, for the delicacy of the pointework.

Russian in Serenade for one particularly beautiful part when she travels the stage, landing in arabesque plie with arms and back curved and arched. It looks so beautfiul and fun to do ==sorry for the poor description!

Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux -- I just love the exuberance and the abandon and those fast passes!

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1) Phyrigia in SPARTACUS with Vladimir Vasiliev in the title role. The Act I pdd is beautiful and dancing in this ballet with Vasiliev would be an extraordinary experience.

2) The title role in Ashton's CINDERELLA because of the exquisite beauty and complexity of the pointe work. I'd like Anthony Dowell as my partner.

3) Any part in LIEBESLIEDER WALTZER partnered by Adam Luders.

4) The Violette Verdy role in EMERALDS partnered by Conrad Ludlow.

5) Nikiya in the Chabukiani/Ponomorev Kirov production of LA BAYADERE

with Vasiliev as my Solor. And I'd really enjoy the catfight with

Tatiana Terekhova as Gamzatti.

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I'd do these:

Adam Cooper - the Marquise de Merteuil and Madame de Torvel in his new 'Les Liaisons Dangerouses.' :)

Forsythe - Steptext & Middle Duet

Ashton - Symphonic Variations(3x this one), and Cinderella

Balanchine - Diamonds, Theme & Variations , 'T' in Apollo and Concerto Barocco

MacMillan - Manon, Juliet, and Mary Vetsera

Cranko - Tatiana in 'Onegin' and his Juliet too

Petipa - Raymonda (Sergueyev's version), Aurora w/Zelensky, Dowell, Fadeychev and Vasiliev, Odette/Odile w/Bujones, Tsisarkidze, Kuznetsov,

Kitri w/Vasiliev

Bournonville - the Sylph

Giselle w/Bruhn: He lifted Fracci like a toast and handled her like a souffle.

^^BTW Makarova Fan, ditto on your casting: I'll take that for me too - Nikiya vs. Terekhova's Gamzatti :)!

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Makarova Fan, you reminded me about the adagio in Spartacus. Such compelling music and (as you say) truly incredible lifts. A wonderful expression of yearning. I'd be glad to try to partner you as Phrygia, but would base my peformance on, and work out in a gym for 5-10 years to achieve the body type of, Irek Mukhamedov. Could we leave town before the end? Maybe jete off to the Greeke isles? What happens to us otherwise is extremely depressing.

I wonder whether dancers, concentrating so intently on achieving the illusion of ease, feel anything llieke the emotions that we in the audience are experiencing as we watch them.

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Another fun topic I missed while I was away. I have always wanted to do:

James in La Sylphide

Albrecht in Giselle (I've done the Paysan pdd and the music still makes me grit my teeth)

Prince Désiré in Sleeping Beauty

The Spirit in Le Spectre de la Rose (lots of jumping, no lifts!)

To each of the roles, I would bring grace, nobility, restraint, and killer petit batterie. :devil: Unfortunately, I'm pretty much unsuited for all of them. :(

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Ha, I did the solo waltz in Les Sylphides! Me, at 5'8''!!! It must have been awful... No, it was awful and I am truly ashamed although I really tri :devil: ed very hard, but it was not my style.

Well, we will forget about that.

But really, I think I could have been a real good Giselle. Never got the chance, though.

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The Faun, in both the Nijinsky & Robbins versions.

In the Robbins, my Nymph will be either Pauline Golbin, Rebecca Krohn, Wendy Whelan, Amanda Edge, or all of the above.

Actually, I don't want to dance the role but I want to have the BODY to dance it!!

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I would love to dance Theme and Variations with Damian Woetzel. I saw him perform this ballet a while back and he was just magical. The music and choreography are just brilliant. I love ballets with high energy levels.

I would also like to dance in Apollo and Serenade from Balanchine.

In the classical sense, I would want to dance Swan Lake with Mikhail Baryshnikov. He is just the right height for me. Who wouldn't mind being his partner? I think it would be fun to portray the good swan vs. the evil swan.

I also would like to dance Les Sylphides from the classical repetoire.

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