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Vishneva To Bolshoi, Principal Guest

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The Bolshoi press office has announced the addition of Diana Vishneva to their roster as Principal Guest Artist. It is unclear at the moment if this means that the ballerina is breaking her ties with the Kirov. My guess is that she's just entered into a similar agreement as she has with ABT and Berlin Ballet.

She must continue with the Kirov and do the 'Ondine' DVD! We won't allow her to leave her roots just yet. :)

I'll pass on more info as I receive it.

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I now see that the Mariinsky website has removed Vishneva from next week's Jewels. Irina Golub will be dancing the lead in 'Rubies' for the filmings.

Nonetheless, Vishneva is still shown as dancing Juliet -- to Ilya Kuznetsov's Romeo -- in the Leonid Lavrovsky 100th-Birthday performance of Romeo & Juliet the following week. So it appears that Vishneva continues with the Mariinsky, as her home base.

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That's a disappointment. Rubies has sort of become a trademark piece for Vishneva. But I'm happy that Vishneva has not left the MT permanently, as Zakharova did. I think Vishneva would look out of place at the Bolshoi. Vishneva's dancing is very athletic, but it also has the elegance that's a trademark of MT dancers. However is she still listed to film Ondine?

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I'm happy that Vishneva has not left the MT permanently. . .
I wonder about the risk of dancers overextending themselves. While I understand the drive to appear on many stages and with many companies, learning different takes on the staples of the international repertoire, I've seen this practice overdone. Both Nina Ananiashvili and Fernando Bujones suffered from jetting from Swan Lake to Giselle to Sleeping Beauty -- squandering, rather than honing, their considerable gifts. Happily, Nina was able to recover -- very nicely -- before it was too late.

I did not see Fernando more than a couple of times after he started concentrating on his guest-artist career, and I don't know whether he managed to pull together the discipline which he seemed to have lost.

I wish Vishneva well, and I hope she takes care of herself.

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According to DV's website, she is indeed scheduled to perform R&J with the MT. At the end of the month she will (presumably) debut at the Bolshoi in Swan Lake. Then in June she is back with the ABT. I must say, when a ballerina is as universally in demand as Vishneva, it must be hard to turn down offers. Altynai Asylmuratova was another MT ballerina who also guested a lot although the MT remained her home theater.

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Thanks, canbelto.

It's a shame that her site's performance schedule -- which is quite trustworthy -- lists no Ondines at the Mariinsky, which makes me wonder the credibility of the talk about the DVD project? This is added to the fact that the July 18 Ondine at the MT -- the one which DV was to have danced & maybe filmed -- is now off the schedule but, instead, Ondine will be danced in early May (3 & 5) & early June (7th), while Vishneva will be in NY with ABT.

So - Vishneva's detailed three-month performance calendar shows no Ondines. However, Ondines will be performed in early May & early June. Are all of them to be performed by Obraztsova (who has danced the role) or Novikova (who rehearsed the role as 3rd-cast Ondine)? If there is a DVD project, will it now be either Obraztsova or Novikova, instead of the assumed Vishneva, in the lead?

I give up on trying to follow these scheduling shenanigans (by the theater...not Vishneva)!

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That is depressing indeed! I hope Vishneva will not become the Asylmuratova of the MT, meaning more appreciated worldwide than at home.

It's a totally-different situation, canbelto.

DV is most definitely appreciated at home by audiences and, I think, less so by the management. [Yet - the management has accorded many special galas in recent years...so????]

AA was appreciated by the pre-1996 management but not so much by local audiences. Appreciated, of course, but her curtain calls never were as long as were Makhalina's then or Lopatkina's and Vishneva's now. I didn't hold-up an applause meter but I was there to hear the cheers and compare.

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Today's issue of the Moscow newspaper, Independent News, contains an long interview with Diana Vishneva, conducted by Maya Krylova.



* DV is amused by all of the buzz surrounding the as-yet-to-be-finalized guest-contract with the Bolshoi. She explains that this should not be a surprise, as she has had a close working relationship with the director of the Boslhoi, Ratmansky, since he choreographed 'Cinderella' for the Kirov, in 2001/02.

* Although the longer-term contract has not been signed, she is busy preparing her debut in the Yuri Grigorovich version of 'Swan Lake.'

* She now maintains similar contracts with at least four other troupes: POB, ABT, Berlin, La Scala. She said that she has received invitation to dance as permanent guest with many, many other ballet troupes, most of which she regretably must turn down.

* She laments that, for various reasons, she has danced only two roles with the Kirov-Mariinsky during this season. However, she thanks Maestro Gergiev ("with whom I have good working relations") for being able to work everything out. "I work directly with him; this saves me time and nerves." [Natalia's comment: Note who is not mentioned - Vasiyev!]

* She hints that some of the young ballerinas selected by management to replace her in her old ballets cause her and the public some surprise..."it is incomprehensible..."

* She recently danced the roles of Frikka and Brunhilde in Bejart's 'Ring und der Ring' in Berlin, finding the four-hour ballet a tremendous challenge. "Four hours with barely a moment to catch one's breath."

* On dancing Forsythe: "It is very hard on the body, to switch from Petipa, to Forsythe, then back to Petipa....causing tremendous stress and depression for the body."

* On dancing Odette-Odile at the Kirov, after a long wait: "It is necessary to properly mature into the role." She considers the current version of 'Swan Lake' that's danced at the Kirov -- that of K. Sergeyev -- as "...overly naive...created for the Soviet era...Sergeyev himself would have done it differently, had the politics been different." She then adds: "It is time to re-examine & redo this ballet at the Mariinsky but, at present, there is NO ARTISTIC LEADER, NO BALLET MASTER, who could do this at the Mariinsky." [Natalia's note - my CAPS, for emphasis.]

* Uses meditation, yoga, respiratory exercises to prepare for performances.

* She does not wish a life in ballet to any future child that she may have. What's more, she would not return to ballet, in a second life. She accepts her talents & is basically happy but says that the physical & nervous strains, coupled with the short professional life of a dancer (compared with actor or singer), is not worth it.

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