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Treasure trove from Danish television

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Incredible! Danish television has just put up a page of information about various ballet topics and links to FIVE complete performances by the RDB:

La Sylphide from 1977

Napoli from 1985

The Lesson from 1975

Romeo and Juliet (Neumeier) from 1988

The Triumph of Death from 1973

Link: http://www.dr.dk/P2/tema/Ballettens+Verden/20101116164800.htm

Thank you Jane! I am a dane and havent seen it at all or heard about it!

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Treasure trove is right. I just looked at pieces of all five of these, and they're all exquisite. That is the DVD of 'Napoli', isn't it? I've only seen it once, but remembered it vividly, the girl in pink in the variation toward the end, and Villumsen is always superb, always one of my favourite male dancers. I even liked some of the two pieces based on Ionesco as far as I've watched them thus far, but mainly was struck by that opening of the Neumeier Romeo and Juliet--so sensual and elegant somehow at the same time with the opening music which is so distinctive in that it 'has no intro', it just delivers the whole package without making you wait through any polite little business (music anywhere, whether or not for ballet, usually builds up to the ravishing, instead of starting with it; I've always been struck by Prokofiev's genius in opening with such a kind of surrender to a total tenderness in its full opening, so that you cannot mistake what the story is all about). Perfect for sleeping Romeo and Brother Laurence in that sharp elegant set that seems Italian and Danish at the same time (I suppose it would, but it's truly beautiful, I haven't seen that many Romeo and Juliets, but I've never paid that much attention to the very opening. I then googled to see if I could compare with others right now, but none of them contained the very opening scene. I admit I had remembered the beginning music as being played, at least some of the first phrases, almost as an Overture, instead of the curtain coming up at the very beginning, I must be wrong on that.) I hope to have a chance to watch all of these all the way through, but I'll definitely watch all of this R & J. That 'Napoli' is marvelous, though, and I'm going to want to watch that some more too, because I don't own the DVD. Will they leave these up? I hope others at BT have been watching these. I like the score for 'The Lesson' too, by Georges Delarue.

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Will they leave these up?

I was a bit worried when I saw this described as a 'ballet week', but it's been a lot longer than a week now so maybe they'll stay there.

I have one problem with the films - The Lesson and R&J are properly framed but the other three look as if they were originally 4:3 and have been stretched to fit a 16:9 frame, so everyone is shorter and squashed - does this happen for everyone, and is there any way of fixing it?

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Jane--yes. Indeed I noticed this immediately, but didn't mention it because of our rather keen focus on weight this past week. Everybody looked squashed and 'wide' in La Sylphide and Napoli, but the Romeo in R & J didn't--unless I was just used to it by then.

{Edited to add: I see you said that already, but I'm glad I wasn't 'just used to it' by the time of R & J. If you have a chance, tell me if the curtain always goes up immediately with the beginning of the music in R & J. Maybe it does, and I just usually don't pay too much attention.)

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Yes indeed--and when Linda Hindberg and Lis Jeppesen , not to mention Sorella Englund, look squashed and 'wide', there's something wrong with the screen, LOL.

Haven't seen them all yet, but Napoli and La Sylphide--!! I had never seen Englund even on film and am enraptured. Having seen Jeppesen only once when I was far too young to appreciate her miraculous ballon and grace, I'm stunned. She passed captivating a universe or two back. Villumsen is superb as he apparently always was, and the very young Eva Kloborg is good as Effie (she was later one of RDB's ballerinas). I do hope this will stay up as well--seeing this much fancy footwork, not to mention whistle-clean beats and jumps, is addictive.

By the way, Patrick, the terrific girl in pink is Heidi Ryom, I believe, who danced a lot with Ib Andersen before he departed for NYCB. There needs to be much more of her. and how about the huge (even on squashed screen) jumps of the first guy (before James) who does a solo in Sylphide?

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You just click on Jane's link, get to the webpage and scroll down till you see a clip of 'La Sylphide' on it. You can click that one or the other four pieces are at the top of that one, if you'd rather watch one of those. It's a little wait for loading and you get these 7-8 bright coloured stripes and some old fashioned TV noise before it will come on. But it's not that long.

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