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Romeo et Juliette Casting and Reviews


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The cast lists aren't up, but according to Alice Kaderlan, who spoke to Dave Beck on KUOW, one of the local Seattle public radio stations, Carla Korbes, who was cast in it last year but was injured, and Kaori Nakamura will dance Juliette. She said that Noelani Pantastico was in town to coach them. (I would have thought that Korbes, like Pantastico, was also coached by Maillot last year.) She also said that Korbes was supposed to dance only one performance in the last run, which doesn't make sense. I know Bernice Coppetiers, who originated the role and also coached, was supposed to dance one performance, the second Saturday matinee -- she was listed on casting page in the website -- but in a Q&A, Peter Boal said that there were visa issues.

According to Boal in a Q&A at the end of last season, Lucien Postlewaite and James Moore, who both danced the role last year.


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I will be excited to see Kaori in this role. Her technique is flawless, but in a crystaline sort of way. A strong exception to that overall impression was when I saw her performance in Tharp's "Afternoon Ball". There Kaori created a character of wild emotion with non-traditional dance vocabulary that made it hard for me to believe that who I was watching was really Kaori. I'd still like to see someone like Rachel Foster doing Juilette because of her natural affinity for more modern styles, but certainly not to the exclusion of Kaori -- assuming Kaori can marry her incredible technique to the emotionalism required to deliver Malliot's choreography. Watching Kaori in the last couple of years inject character and emotion into her dance gives me reason to be very excited indeed about the possibility of her Juilette in this version of R&J. I can't wait!

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Kaori seems to have the huge range of emotions required for Juliette, as well as the stamina to get through all the acts. I wonder how she'll approach the transition from teasing, impetuous teen to lovestruck, devoted young woman. It's neat to see that, even after all her years at PNB, she's still adding new challenges to her repertoire.

I'd be curious to see if anyone else is learning the roles of R & J...ie, Seth Orza, Rachel Foster, and Lesley Rausch. I'd be surprised if Seth wasn't an understudy, because the role of Romeo seems right up his alley. Also, who will be Nurse and Mercutio? I'm so excited to see the final cast list...

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I'd be surprised if Seth wasn't an understudy, because the role of Romeo seems right up his alley. Also, who will be Nurse and Mercutio? I'm so excited to see the final cast list...

And he's already done an R&J, at NYCB.

The company usually starts rehearsing a handful of dancers for major roles, thinking that some are learning the work for future seasons. Occasionally they've had to bring those dancers up to speed due to injuries in the current casts, but that's not always the case.

I'm wondering about Nurse and Mercutio, yes, and also wondering who might be dancing Lady Capulet.

Originally, I think Korbes and Pantastico would have split the performances a bit more equally, but there were a series of decision made fairly close to the opening that wound up with Noelani P doing a marathon job. As I understood the situation with Bernice C, she was asked to perform for an added matinee (the show was selling extraordinarily well) and when she said she was available they added the performance. Then they couldn't get her visa processed in time (she was coming to the states already, but needed to arrive earlier to do this show) despite intervention by several people, so Pantastico took a breath and said she'd do that one as well.

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Orza was scheduled to dance the pas de deux at Vail, with Carla Korbes. Boal didn't mention any more men in the role, but we may be surprised. I'd love to see Orza do it.

I thought I saw Korbes listed multiple times in the Week 1 cast list before she was injured and casting was updated, but I could be hallucinating again. I'm looking forward to seeing both women this year.

Countdown to the casting...

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I thought I saw Korbes listed multiple times in the Week 1 cast list before she was injured and casting was updated, but I could be hallucinating again. I'm looking forward to seeing both women this year.

Countdown to the casting...

I think you're right about Korbes being scheduled for a fair number of performances -- they really did take a major risk by having just one Juliette for the run of the show, and I know that was not the original intention.

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The Company is making it very difficult to do the detective work, but in some new rehearsal photos on the PNB Facebook site, Chalnessa Eames and Rachel Foster are seen rehearsing the Nurse -- I thought Eames was fantastic in the role last year -- and Carrie Imler is sitting on a bench in a photo rehearsing with Kaori Nakamura.

There are a number of photos of the men, with Jonathan Porretta, Josh Spell, Seth Orza, James Moore, Lucien Postlewaite, Batkhurel Bold, I think Tisserand and maybe Kyle Davis (in the red shirt) rehearsing the fight scene in various combinations.

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Chalnessa Eames and Rachel Foster are seen rehearsing the Nurse...

Glad to hear that (great detective work, BTW!). Rachel was my pick to replace Jodi Thomas as the nurse if Rachel didn't get the nod to do Juliette (low odds I know). I agree with you Helene, Chalnessa was a terrific nurse last year (such a great part!) so it is not surprising she will do it again. Hmmmmm....Carrie as Lady Capulet perhaps. I wish the men photo had Barry Kerollis in it since I was pulling for him to inherit the Tybalt role from Herd.

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Mara Vinson is also learning Juliette.

Looks like sandik called that one right!

Frankly, Mara didn't use to excite me, but something's changed....I am really getting into her dancing since she returned from maturity maternity leave. I loved her in Dances at a Gathering. If she does Juliette that will no doubt clinch it for me: one way or the other.

[later edit....OOPS :))

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Casting is up here for the first week.

(I like much of the new website, but this format for casting makes it very hard to compare performances)

Not many total surprises, but some interesting choices.

Carrie Imler gets a chance at the Nurse as well as Lady Capulet. Bakthurel Bold is Tybalt for all but one show. As is often the case, the Saturday matinee is full of 'first chance' performances: Barry Kerollis gets a go at Mercutio. Leslie Rausch gets to swan around in Rosaline's gown, Seth Orza is Tybalt, Josh Spell is Benvolio, and Mara Vinson does Lady C in the same performance. Olivier Wevers does most of the Friar Lawrences (with Karel Cruz on Saturday night).

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I guess I tried too early!

The new format is impossible to use without transcribing the choices to paper.

I think this casting is great. I wish I didn't have to miss Carrie Imler's Lady Capulet, but I'm looking forward to seeing her Nurse.

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There is an amazing 3+ minute video of Korbes and Postlewaite, and Nakamura and Moore speaking and rehearsing on the PNB Facebook fans page:


I don't see it on the PNB website itself yet, but if it appears, I think it would be listed here:


Just watch what Postlewaite does with his eyes. And Nakamura has an amazing haircut.

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I'm really glad that PNB is posting more of these videos. It reminds me of several years ago when NYCB dancer Kristin Sloan produced a podcast series for Peter Martins' Romeo + Juliet, with rehearsal footage and interviews with the dancers...really brings the audience down to a more personal level with the ballet.

I agree, Postlewaite's use of the eyes is just fantastic. Does anyone plan on going to see both casts perform? Last time, I had the opportunity to see it twice; I think that the second viewing forever changed my perspective on dancing. The ending (shown in the video, too) where Moore is dead on the ground and the music is building brought me to tears. I also thought that Karel Cruz did a particularly good job with his role in that cast. He and Wevers presented completely different Friars but both of them fit with the storyline.

PNB seems to have a great marketing strategy going with this ballet and I hope that it pays off.

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Does anyone plan on going to see both casts perform?

I'm sure many of us will. I saw 5 performances last year (yes, there is no hope for me :)).....and that's with only 1 Juliette. I can't imagine what I'm going to do with 2 (maybe 3???) to choose from. Does anyone think there will be a 3rd Juliette? It was mentioned in this thread that Mara Vinson was rehearsing the part.

It's going to be fun to post all our reactions here as these performances unfold. I feel like a little kid the night before Christmas when ballet season starts again!

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Just a note that on the "Director's Choice" section of the PNB website is an announcement that ticket buyers for "Romeo et Juliette", both online and by phone, are eligible for a 20% discount on "Director's Choice" tickets. This program, which runs 5-7 and 12-15 November, includes Kylian's "Petite Mort", Robbins' "West Side Story Suite", Goerke's "Mopey", and Caniparoli's "Four Seasons".

According to the website, "Online orders will be emailed a discount code; phone orders will have discount taken at the time of purchase."


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According to this preview in The Seattle Times,

Currently, five company dancers are rehearsing the role of Juliette and four for Roméo, but most of them likely will not perform; both roles are so massive in choreography and acting, Boal said, it's a challenge to have just one or two casts fully prepared.
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I'm going Thursday, and both performances on Saturday, and I'm still missing Carrie Imler as Lady C.

I just checked again, and the second week casting is up (same web address as above). No additions except for Rachel Foster as Nurse, Thursday night and Saturday matinee. (but it doesn't overlap with Imler as Lady C.... grumble)

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