Jump to content
PeggyR

ABT's Giselle in SoCal November 3 through 8

Recommended Posts

This information doesn't appear to be posted; please delete if this is a duplicate.

ABT will be performing Giselle at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, Segerstrom Hall, November 3 through 8, 2009.

I could use some advice from ballet goers in the area. Looking at the Segerstrom Hall 'Seat Buddy' (views of the stage from various areas), it's hard to decide where to sit. Usually, I prefer to stay out of the orchestra and sit up higher, but the Tier 1, 2 and 3 seats seem far away and frequently with partial views. Are there any good seats in the tiers? If not, what's the best part of the orchestra (e.g., how close can you sit before the dancers' feet are cut off)?

(Of course, this is all dependent on my 'enablers' actually getting me into an airplane in the first place :) ...)

Share this post


Link to post

Don't be put off by the shape of the tiers or the fact that tiers 2 and up are hanging. They have great sightlines despite their odd shape. I don't remember them being particularly far from the stage--but compared to Lincoln Center, or the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in LA maybe. I usually try to get Tier2 or 3 as close to the edges they meet at. I've also sat in Tier1 and the orchestra there and didn't have a problem. It's such an interesting space, and surprisingly not a problem for viewing, that I enjoy going there--even when I didn't enjoy the dancing I saw. Hope this helps.

PS. It's also within walking distance of many venues for eating, shopping etc.etc.

Share this post


Link to post

4mrdncr: Thanks for your very useful comments; I was very concerned about spending that much money for one weekend and then not being able to see anything. :)

Peggy

Share this post


Link to post

I've sat everywhere at OCPAC and almost every place has decent sightlines, save anywhere behind the first few rows of tier 3. I like midway back orchestra for ballet, personally (though I have sat as close as orchestra C and not killed my neck) as I do like to be close, but will do front of Tier 1 or Tier 2 also. The Tiers all slope down very far in the front so they aren't as high up as other venue's upper levels. I agree that it's a very interestingly designed space, well-thought out for seating.

Note: if you're in town for the weekend and want to catch several shows, almost all performances get a large amount of tix for student/senior rush avail. 1 hour before showtime. $20 for orch seats, and $10 for the tiers. This is of course dependent on availability (but for ballet...read: almost always avail), but that's usually how I play it and I have rarely been disappointed!

Share this post


Link to post

I just noticed the casting for the SoCal engagement on the ABT website. Most interesting is that Gillian Murphy is scheduled to dance Giselle with Hallberg. Here in NY, she has only danced the secondary role of Myrta, if my memory is correct. If any balletTalkers attend, please provide a report.

Share this post


Link to post

I think that has to be a mistake, no? Maria Riccetto is scheduled to dance Myrtha at that performance and she just started doing Giselle. It looks like someone swapped their roles...I hope anyway.

Since there was a week long engagement I was hoping for Stella Abrera to finally debut in Giselle...there are certainly enough shows. It's too bad.

Well it looks like I'll be at opening night for sure for JM Carreno and V.Part. Possibly the Reyes/Cornejo/Abrera show, and if the roles get worked out I'd like to see Riccetto as Giselle with David Hallberg, since I always end up missing him when they are in town.

Share this post


Link to post
I just noticed the casting for the SoCal engagement on the ABT website. Most interesting is that Gillian Murphy is scheduled to dance Giselle with Hallberg. Here in NY, she has only danced the secondary role of Myrta, if my memory is correct. If any balletTalkers attend, please provide a report.

Can't really visualize Murphy as Giselle... :wink:

Share this post


Link to post

Here's the complete casting in Orange County as posted here:

11/3 7:30 pm

Kent/Carreno/Part/Saveliev

11/4 7:30 pm

Herrera/Gomes/Wiles/Stappas

11/5 7:30 pm

Kent/Carreno/Messmer/Saveliev

11/6 7:30 pm

Reyes/Cornejo/Abrera/Matthews

11/7 2:00 pm

Murphy/Hallberg/Riccetto/Saveliev

11/7 7:30 pm

Herrera/Gomes/Wiles/Stappas

11/8 2:00 pm

Dvorovenko/Beloserkovsky/Part/Matthew

Share this post


Link to post
I just noticed the casting for the SoCal engagement on the ABT website. Most interesting is that Gillian Murphy is scheduled to dance Giselle with Hallberg. Here in NY, she has only danced the secondary role of Myrta, if my memory is correct. If any balletTalkers attend, please provide a report.

Can't really visualize Murphy as Giselle... :thanks:

Or Maria Ricetto as Myrta. Surely, it's a typo error, i hope. I'm disappointed that Stella is not cast as Giselle. Maybe, at the Met season?

Share this post


Link to post
...and why is that Part still doesn't get a Giselle...?

I can't imagine Part as Giselle because she is too tall.

Share this post


Link to post
...and why is that Part still doesn't get a Giselle...?

I can't imagine Part as Giselle because she is too tall.

I can't see Part as Giselle either. It's not a height thing. For me it's a rightness for a role. Part did not prove to be as a good Aurora as she was a Lilac Fairy.

I'm still hoping for Lane/Simkin in some major partnership. Maybe Giselle is too much to hope for.

Share this post


Link to post
I just noticed the casting for the SoCal engagement on the ABT website. Most interesting is that Gillian Murphy is scheduled to dance Giselle with Hallberg. Here in NY, she has only danced the secondary role of Myrta, if my memory is correct. If any balletTalkers attend, please provide a report.

Can't really visualize Murphy as Giselle... :bow:

...and why is that Part still doesn't get a Giselle...?

I can't imagine Part as Giselle because she is too tall.

I can't see Part as Giselle either. It's not a height thing. For me it's a rightness for a role. Part did not prove to be as a good Aurora as she was a Lilac Fairy...

I cannot see either Murphy or Part as Giselle. Much as I love Part, I do not feel that she is suited for the first act of Giselle, mostly because of her looks and personality - she's too tall, too glamorous and womanly looking. But I'd bet she'd be a dream in act 2. With Murphy it's more a question of her style of dancing - although she's a killer technician her romantic style leaves much to be desired, and she has real trouble projecting fragility.

Share this post


Link to post

ABT updated its website. The listing re Murphy was a mistake, which has now been corrected. Maria Ricetto is Giselle, and Murphy is Myrta.

Share this post


Link to post

Went to opening night last night...have to report it was very sadly under attended. Swaths of rows in the orchestra and tier 1 (those were the sections I could see from my seat) were completely empty. Quite unusual for an ABT showing here, and it appears that it will be that way for the rest of the week if the seat selection box office on their website is to be believed.

I went to this cast mostly for Carreno and Part. I usually don't go to see Julie Kent as she's not a particular favorite, but people on here often write she seems better suited to Romantic roles. She seemed very hesitant out of the gate (understandable as this is her first full length ballet back from having a baby) and it seemed her jump really lagged through most of the first act, however she was creating beautiful and beautifully held arabesques and balances throughout. Jose for his part also was quite reserved, though seemingly ardent in his affections for Giselle.

Maria Riccetto and Jared Matthews did the peasant pas, and, for me, she lit up the stage and he seemed much more in control than I have seen him in the past. The divine Maria Bystrova was Bathilde and when she arrived onstage, it was hard to take your eyes off of her. In the second act, Gennadi Saveliev really burst out as Hilarion...I rarely get to see him truly dance - he is usually limited to strutting about onstage as the bad guy, and he was quite lovely (got a big holler at the bows).

Veronika Part was spectacular as Myrtha, icy and strong. The highlight of the entire night, truly. It has been...a very long time since I have seen her ontage and she was fantastic. The entire corps of Willis actually looked very nice together and very well rehearsed. Boylston and Kajiya were Moyna and Zulme.

For me...the second act really didn't take off between Kent and Carreno. Julie struggled heavily with the developpe and penche opening of the pas de deux (she actually didn't penche at all and kinda just stood there). During the variation section immediately after the grand pas, they sparked and both of them seemed to get a big burst of energy, but it didn't last long.

All in all a decent night. I know I will be back on Sunday for the Dvorovenko/Belotserkovsky/Part cast, and I am going to try to squeeze in the Sat mat with Riccetto/Hallberg as well, but we will see.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm going to the Saturday matinee at 2:00. I want to see Gillian do Myrtha.

This will be my first live ballet! I'm going to be in tier 1.

My buddy is going to be right up front in the orchestra...maybe I could sneak down and join him. He decided to come with me at the last minute.

He's a newbie like myself...but thanks to YouTube ( BalletForYou...you're great!)...I know what's in store!

I hope Gillian gets to move around like Marianela in the Royal Ballet Version.....

I hope whoever plays Giselle's mother shoves Mr. Halberg halfway across the stage when Giselle collaspses...along with a

glare of conpempt and disgust..

I hope " The Death of Hilarion" part is not truncated....

Boy...I'm not ask'in for much ...huh..... :clapping:

Share this post


Link to post
I'm going to the Saturday matinee at 2:00. I want to see Gillian do Myrtha.

This will be my first live ballet! I'm going to be in tier 1.

My buddy is going to be right up front in the orchestra...maybe I could sneak down and join him. He decided to come with me at the last minute.

He's a newbie like myself...but thanks to YouTube ( BalletForYou...you're great!)...I know what's in store!

I hope Gillian gets to move around like Marianela in the Royal Ballet Version.....

I hope whoever plays Giselle's mother shoves Mr. Halberg halfway across the stage when Giselle collaspses...along with a

glare of conpempt and disgust..

I hope " The Death of Hilarion" part is not truncated....

Boy...I'm not ask'in for much ...huh..... :P

:clapping: You certainly don't sound like a 'newbie' to me; you sound like an opinionated ballet lover...which is exactly what you should be!

Unfortunately, some remodeling I'm having done on my condo went into 'estimate creep' and the money put aside for ABT's LA visit is now comfortably residing in the pocket of my contractor. :( Please keep up the reports (I too was looking forward to seeing Murphy as Myrtha).

Edited to ask: Are the seats selling better?

ksk04 wrote:

Went to opening night last night...have to report it was very sadly under attended. Swaths of rows in the orchestra and tier 1 (those were the sections I could see from my seat) were completely empty.

Share this post


Link to post
Edited to ask: Are the seats selling better?

ksk04 wrote:

Went to opening night last night...have to report it was very sadly under attended. Swaths of rows in the orchestra and tier 1 (those were the sections I could see from my seat) were completely empty.

Just going from the online ticketing (where you can see which seats remain unsold)...no. There are four seating sections and all of them show 100+ tickets available in EACH section, for the rest of the week. OCPAC does tend to do a big rush business though, but I don't know if it's that big. I'm sure the matinees this wknd will be the most full.

Share this post


Link to post

Got back from today's matinee...Ricetto/Hallberg/Murphy/Saveliev cast. Still pretty undersold, imo, but a bit better than opening night.

Maria Riccetto and David Hallberg got off to a good start...their acting meshed together very well, but in their opening scene, unlike others I've seen, this wasn't the first meeting between them, or so it came off. Maria was more teasing than shy, and they were very easy with other where other couples drag out the uncertainty a little more. Also, again I don't know if this was intentional, but Maria's Giselle clearly saw when Albrecht reaches for his sword in his first altercation with Hilarion. Does she know? Does she not know? This wasn't really answered, though in her mad scene she definitely brushed off Hilarion's big sword reveal much quicker than other Giselles. Gennadi's Hilarion was different here than on opening night...he was much more aggressive with David's Albrecht and at the end of the mad scene, I felt for him more than any other characters as he threw back his head and arms for Albrecht to kill him, and when Albrecht did not he fell to the floor sobbing for everything that went wrong (I don't think he did any of those things before).

I have to say the peasant pas was just okay. Hee Seo was beautiful on her own (seemed a bit gunshy though during her turns) but Blaine Hoven did her absolutely no favors with his partnering. Every time they did a supported pirouette or a lift she tensed and grimaced the entire way through (with reason too, she almost slipped off his shoulder and he knocked her leg way off balance in her pirouettes). I don't know what was going on, and I don't know if they dance together that much but it did not come off well.

Riccetto had a few stumbles, literally, however it is to her credit that neither broke her confidence or character. In her act one solo she slipped in the diagonal toe hops but recovered very quickly (probably imperceptibly if you didn't know what was supposed to be there) by finishing them out with fondu releves moving on the diagonal. Then in act two during the big overhead lifts where Giselle first appears to Albrecht...it looked like she caught her foot and slipped on her tutu and fell in a big heap on the floor. Again she recovered quickly and luckily got to immediately make her exit.

I will admit I am not a big Murphy fan, but she really owns the role of Myrtha, and won me over with this one. Every expression and every move is so totally thought out...I could list the little things that knocked me over but that will be boring and long. However I will give her amazing props for timing one of her runs across the front of the stage with a glare and flick of her finger at the audience (completely in character) when a baby started wailing his head off in one of the tiers to silence the dissension in her forest. It was great.

Maria and David were fantastic in the second act. David was amazing to watch...his entrechat sixs were so that you could count each individual beat. Maria was light and she and David really moved as one during the grand pas. She kept her poses and extensions very traditional (which is much appreciated) and the simplicity of it all created a great mood.

Overall, a much more engaging and emotionally stirring outing all around for me.

I hope someone else (anyone?!?!) will add their thoughts about the shows this week. I'm still down for one more tomorrow, and am hoping to see a different Moyna/Zulme set.

Share this post


Link to post

I am a fan of Julie Kent and had been considering going down to OCPAC to see a Giselle, knowing she hasn't danced a full length since the MET in 2008( given her pregnancy and the birth of her daughter in June). So, after reading reviews in the Times and the Register that were diametrically opposed, I flew down to OCPAC for Thursday night's performance. Jose Manuel Carreno was out for a reason not given and Marcelo Gomes was Albrecht to Julie's Giselle. I learned that this was the first time they had danced these roles together. Marcelo had just danced Albrecht the night before.

When I arrived at the box office, there was a line of at least 100 for rush tickets. I picked up three tickets in the center of the orchestra at the last minute...they may have been house seats as Kevin McKenzie and his staff/guests were two rows back.

It was a very professional performance, Julie appeared to me to be over her "return to full length" jitters and was playful with Marcelo - her dancing looked light and other than one balance where there was some strain she was again a young girl. Second act was better as the Kent/Gomes partnership brought out the best in them. Would not mind seeing them in this in the future.

Cheers to Gennadi Saveliev - he has the makings of a great Hilarion. He uses his whole body to convey the story (when he finds that Giselle has not taken the flowers he left, his shoulders slump and his pacing changes)... his first entrance was played more to the audience that to the flow of the story. ABT should be able to coach a bit more and make his interpretation stronger.

Weakest point for me was the peasant pas de deux (Lopez and Kajiya): it was boring and took the air out of the moment. Lopez seemed to be having all sorts of problems.

On the box office, I noted the number of rushers and how easy it was to obtain really good seats; the back few rows of the orchestra were clearly empty; there looked to be empty seats in all levels.

ABT keeps going and I wish the company well. I'm glad I flew down from Berkeley for the performance.

Share this post


Link to post
On the box office, I noted the number of rushers and how easy it was to obtain really good seats; the back few rows of the orchestra were clearly empty; there looked to be empty seats in all levels.

Indeed, the rush is a great OCPAC tradition, even when tickets are selling better than this week...I did rush today and got 6th row orchestra dead center seats. With the row in front of me empty in my little sightline. What luck!

I have to say when I saw the Kent/Carreno cast I thought I would prefer to see her with Gomes (since it has been said he brings the best out of her) and Carreno with Reyes (they usually seem paired for Giselle). Too bad I didn't know about the cast change, as I wanted to see Marcelo this time around but try to actively avoid Paloma Herrera in classical roles.

Share this post


Link to post

Comments from a newbie's first live ballet performance.....Saturday 2:00 matinee...

I should have exchanged my seat for one closer....I could've seen Gillian's expressions better.

I blame any mistakes or gaffes of the dancers on the venue. While quite posh and nice...the stage was WOEFULLY MUCH MUCH TO SMALL!!!!! The dancers were running out of room. Hee Seo almost smacked Bathilde in the kisser when she was done with one of her variations. Gillian could not "let it fly"..she would have ended up in the orchestra pit.

Speaking of the orchestra...I felt they lacked drive and fire. From where I was sitting I could see Mr. Wilkins trying to get something going..but the energy just was'nt there.

I did like the way Bathilde faced down Giselle..almost willi-like in backing Giselle " in a corner"...you had to be there to know what I mean. And then leaving in a huff when Giselle started her mad scene.

The Corps of Willis was fine..it would have been great if they had more room.

I liked the ending at "sunrise"..the stage bathed with the first light of dawn....I also liked this effect with ABT's Swan Lake.

I think Gillian was the best dancer out there...but I am SOOOOOOOOOOO prejudiced...she is my first love when it comes to ballerinas ya' know....

Share this post


Link to post

Addendum to my previous post.

After reading ksko4's postings again..sleeping on it..and also considering that ksko4 was alot closer front and center...I was on Tier 1...

Ms. Riccetto's stumble and recovery were indeed imperceptible.....being a newbie I thought it was a serious omission...my buddy who is newbie er er than I did'nt notice anything until we

got to his house and I showed him what was supposed to happen.

My compliments to Ms. Riccetto....

Share this post


Link to post

I was there Thurs. and Sat. nights. Gomes danced both nights and I thought he was the STAR of both evenings. He's big, dances like a dream, handsome, and strong; his strength did much to make the Act II Giselles light as a feather.

Kent danced Thurs. night. I read that negative review in the Los Angeles Times before the performance and wish I hadn't because it tainted my view of her performance. I found none of the errors mentioned in the Times. Act I was a bit boring for many reasons. Check that: it was very boring. Act II was wonderful, as was Kent. Not only did Gomes make her seem light but her own dancing did much to create the illusion. Dimone Messmer was Myrta; she's a member of the corps forcryingoutloud! She did quite well in spite of knocking herself over during an early leaning/swooping motion.

Herrera danced Sat. night. Quite good. Act I was better this time but Act II belonged to the memory of Kent. Sarah Lane and Danil Simkin danced the Peasant pdd. Nice to get a chance to see him; wonderful dancer but so small and young. Wiles was Myrta and danced extremely well. She was one of the scariest Myrta I've seen; to me there was something about her that was deadly.

The orchestra was terrible, especially Sat. night. The audience applauded everything including the rising curtain.

Giannina

Share this post


Link to post

Sunday matinee…Dvorovenko/Beloserkovsky/Part/Matthews

Act one at this outing was pretty boring…none of the supporting characters livened the stage with the exception of the peasant pas danced by Isabella Boylston and Mikhail Ilyin. I think they were my favorite of the three pairs I saw, mostly because they looked like they actually enjoyed dancing together. Melissa Thomas as Bathilde added nothing to the story, and Karin Ellis-Wentz as Giselle’s mother didn’t quite live up to the presence of Susan Jones or Nancy Raffa. As mostly expected Beloserkovsky was pretty bland throughout, though nothing he did was bad…just nothing particularly interesting. On a random note, I would like to point out Roman Zhurbin (I think?) who on the opening night and during this performance looked like he would rather do nothing else than cart the respective Giselles around on his shoulder for the rest of the show with the biggest smile on his face. It’s a small but appreciated touch.

The first act was only enlivened because of Irina’s Giselle…thankfully she has enough personality for her husband and the whole village, really. Her dancing was beautiful throughout the show; she kept giving these lingering balances and wonderfully secure turns at every chance, though it was never overdone or tasteless. Her second act was very nice; she was just like a wisp floating around the stage, thanks, of course, to Beloserkovsky, whose partnering was great throughout. For me, she gave a great and thoughtful performance--she is capable of delivering drama coupled with an easy, expressive technique that never makes you worry about her getting through the choreography.

Veronika Part looked more secure in this show than the opening night. Her leaps seemed to have an extra punch in them to make them hang in the air for a second longer. Her Myrtha is a very tragic figure (not as frigid as Gillian Murphy), and though she is quite tall and womanly I would love to see her Giselle (if Lopatkina can do it at her height, I don’t see why it would be so verboten for Veronika to get a go at it, considering the lack of truly great Giselles in ABT’s permanent ranks). Kristi Boone and Simone Messmer were Moyna and Zulme.

Share this post


Link to post
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...