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If you could dance any part .....


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Behind most ballet fans there probably lurks a great fantasy dancer -- of, if he/she is a dancer, a wish list of the fantasy roles.

If you were offered (a) unparalleled talent, (b) the ballet company and theater of your choice, © any ballet they might plausibly perform, and (d) a dream partner and supporting cast -- which would you choose?

I wish I could say something esoteric, but my honest choice would be:

Romeo in the Nureyev version :blush: of Romeo and Juliet (Prokofiev) -- no question about who's the star there.

At the Paris Opera Ballet -- Garnier, not Bastille

Partner: Ferri or Guillem.

Tybalt: Gomes

Mercutio: ???

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This topic, or some variation thereof, is one of our hardy Ballet Talk perennials, oberon. I don't mind, there's plenty I'd like to dance. :blink:

Chaconne with Peter Martins. What an awesome part.

I second Mme. Hermine’s mention of Soloviev, only in The Sleeping Beauty, with his Bluebird, just to be onstage with him while he did it.

Nureyev, in Giselle. True, I might get him on the wrong night, but I could say I’d danced with him.

Juliet in MacMillan’s version, with Christopher Gable.

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When I was young I used to wish that I was Suzanne Farrell. She is only 2 years older than I am, and that dream seemed plausible when we were both hovering around the age of 20. Now, having read her autobiography a few times, and hearing her tell her side of the Balanchine/Farrell story in interviews and articles as well, I still uphold her life as an ideal and keep it on a permanent pedestal in my mind, even with all its ups and downs. (No one who reaches the age of 60 gets there without traveling over peaks and valleys!) I used to watch her (from my front row seat at the State Theater) in absolute awe.

Then, I'd get on the subway (being jarred back into the real world of jostling, busy people who had no idea of the magic I had just witnessed) and ruminate about her dancing, her charisma, her appearance -- oh, how I wanted to have pure porcelain skin like she had, which is just about my natural skin colour anyway, but not quite as lily-white as hers .....later in life I wanted to be more tanned looking, but's that's irrelevant here -- her expression (including the later-named over-the-shoulder "glinch") or lack of, which was more commanding than a manufactured face could be (but you had to be Suzanne to pull it off -- it just doesn't work for most other dancers) .....disembarking from my stream of consciousness.....

I only wanted to dance with the NYCB, dance for Balanchine, dance with Jacques d'Amboise, dance at the State Theater, and dance as uniquely as Suzanne Farrell in every ballet she danced! In the ensuing 3+ decades, I've admired many, many dancers and found many to be more accomplished technically and artistically than Farrell was, but she is still the one I daydream about. For one dancer to sustain such longevity in the mind of one balletgoer must mean something!

To those who have only seen her on video (and especially to those who wonder what all the fuss was about when they compare tangibles such as contortionist flexibility, flawless technique, hip-splayed turnout and fierce fouettéability) I can only offer the time-hackneyed expression: you had to be there!

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It would be very difficult to choose between dancing Apollo, and dancing with Ib Andersen as one of the muses. If the latter, Polyhymnia or Calliope; then there's more to watch from backstage.

Of course, it wouldn't be so bad being flung around in Spartacus by Vladimir Vasiliev :), although Crassus would be more fun, except there wouldn't have been the chance to see Maris Liepa from backstage.

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Well, second choice would be as Ib Anderson partnering Suzanne Farrell in Mozartiana.

First choice would be as Suzanne in Mozartiana, but gender rules forbid. Although, as she said, she is playing Balanchine in this role...

In either case, the inability to execute even a waltz step... Oh, well.

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I'd choose dancing Aurora opposite Friedemann Vogel - I saw him perform in Sleeping Beauty in August last year and still haven't got over it!

Or else I'd like to be Altyani Assulmuratova - dancing anything, just so long as I can be her!!

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I'd never considered Medora among the most desirable roles (for me), but I just saw ABT's Trios brochure. Paloma Herrera (as Medora) is supported by Marcelo Gomes (Conrad), Jose Carreno (Ali) at her feet, I felt such envy I could have cried out, "That's for me!"

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My favorite role is almost always the last one I've seen. Or near to it.

La Source. Coached by Violette Verdy. Partnering Haiyan Wu of Miami City Ballet.

Western Symphony. The lonesome cowpoke (Adagio). My dream girl: Susanne Farrell. My four ponies: from Paris Opera Balelt. A bonus: I'd get to return at the end to join everyone else in those increadible multiple pirouettes. Only we'd never stop.

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Only we'd never stop.

You don't, as I recall. The curtain falls as you and your colleagues are still turning!

BTW, aren't they just fast singles from fifth?

Don't much care to do pirouettes, myself, which is why Concerto Barocco is so appealing. That long, stretchy adagio and just ONE pirouette in all of the first ballerina's choreography (with a couple of step-over pique turns, which are much easier)!

Valse Fantaisie (second version) is another nearly pirouette-free role -- just one for the lead girl, and if it doesn't go so well, at least it's supported!

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BTW, aren't they singles from fifth, one per count?

Right! I used the wrong word, forgetting what "multiple" means in this situation. I should have said: a series of pirouettes. Thanks. :)

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