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Casting for Giselle (2013 version)

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According to an email from the Washington Ballet, the dancers in the featured roles for Giselle will be:

Giselle Albrecht Hilarion Myrtha

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Oct. 30 Maki Onuki Brooklyn Mack Jared Nelson Aurora Dickie

Oct. 31 Maki Onuki Brooklyn Mack Jared Nelson Aurora Dickie

Nov. 1 Ayano Kimuri Jonathan Jordan Corey Landolt Sona Kharatian

Nov. 2 (mat) Aurora Dickie Tamas Krizsa Jared Nelson Kateryna Derechyna

Nov. 2 (eve) Maki Onuki Brooklyn Mack Jared Nelson Aurora Dickie

Nov. 3 (mat) Ekaterina Oleynik Hyun-Woong Kim Jared Nelson Morgann Rose

Nov. 3 (eve) Ayano Kimuri Jonathan Jordan Corey Landolt Sona Kharatian

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The casting schedule highlights a difference between D.C. and Colorado that I'm having trouble adjusting to: the preference for weeknight performances over Sunday performances. The WB has scheduled their best dancers for both the Wednesday and Thursday evening performances but only has them in 1 of the 5 weekend performances - Saturday evening - while the Sunday matinee has dancers who don't usually dance featured roles. Similarly, the Baltimore Symphony and National Symphony normally play Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and rarely have Sunday concerts. With the Colorado Ballet, the 'A' cast generally dances on both Friday and Saturday evenings and almost never in the few weeknight performances, and either the 'A' or 'B' cast dances in the Sunday matinees. The Colorado Symphony almost never has a weeknight concert unless it's a special, one night-only event.

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I attended the sold-out Saturday evening performance (which caused me to be stuck with the worst seat in the house: the back corner of the balcony). I was a little disappointed. While Maki Onuki did a fine job as Giselle (I didn't see the flaws that the Washington Post reviewer mentioned), the other 2 featured dancers left me a little flat. Perhaps this was due to my distance from and elevation above the stage. They both seemed to me to be somewhat wooden, Brooklyn Mack (Albrecht) more than Aurora Dickie (Myrtha). Albrecht came across as neither princely (in the opening scene) nor like a man who's just fallen in love.

It didn't help that it was next to my seat (on the outside aisle) that the ushers let latecomers stand so that I had a crowd of people standing next to me for the last 30 minutes of the first act (there must have been some people who thought that the show started at 8:00 rather than 7:30).

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I made my second trip on Sunday evening. I enjoyed this performance much more (was it just because my seat was on the main floor?). Jonathan Jordan was a much more convincing Albrecht. Kateryna Derechyna, subbing as Myrtha, was almost frightening as a cold-blooded, remorseless Queen of the Wilis (I suppose that it's hard to feel remorse when you're dead).

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