Jump to content
This Site Uses Cookies. If You Want to Disable Cookies, Please See Your Browser Documentation. ×

The Battle

Amy Reusch

Recommended Posts

We don't seem to have a topic about the battle in Nutcracker (please correct me if I missed it)

Specifically, I'm wondering about the bugle calls... I imagine there was some authenticity to the bugle calls in the original score that members of the audience would have recognized... Is anyone aware of a guide that might let one recognize the calls?

Do we know who choreographed (or helped choreograph) the original battle?

Link to comment

flowers.gifGreetings, Amy,

Are you referring to the first production in 1892? If so, I consulted two books and both indicate that Lev Ivanov staged the battle. In the production chronology in The Memoirs of Marius Petipa, under the Nutcracker entry, it states 'staging and dances by L.Ivanov'. In Jennifer Fisher's book, Nutcracker Nation, the battle is discussed in pages 15 and 16 and she refers to Ivanov as the choreographer responsible for the battle scene that 'he couldn't whip into shape' (paraphrasing here). I hope this is helpful. I don't know anything about the bugles, but I think I will watch that scene in my 1993 Balanchine DVD version to see what you are referencing. ~Karen

Link to comment

Thank you. Sometimes there seem to be uncredited sub-choreographers... Such as Shiryaev in Petipa character dance... And I wondered if a scene like that battle scene might be such a thing. I thought since fight choreography is its own specialized field in modern theater, perhaps it was also a specialty back then.

I can well understand how it might have been a difficult scene for a choreographer famous for needing to hear the music before choreographing what with how chaotic the music in the battle scene gets. Tchaikovsky is such a good storyteller, he even gives us a sense of the chaos of the battlefield.

Trying [unsuccessfully] to find where I read about Ivanov abandoning rehearsal when the music wasn't ready, I did find some nice notes on Ivanov..



Link to comment

Thank you, Amy, for the links. I couldn't access the first but the mini-bio of Ivanov, whom I have always intuited to be, through the beauty of his choreography, esp. Swan Lake, an extremely sensitive artist fully in the service of ballet, helps to confirm my intuition. Regarding your topic, I figured you were probably drilling down deeper, but I felt it was worth mentioning the general info and sources, anyway.

The battle scene is delightfully chaotic, isn't it? Tchaikovsky is a terrific storyteller - his music is intensely dramatic, including his symphonic works. Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Delibes and Gershwin are my very earliest musical memories, and my love admiration and appreciation for this great composer and tender heart has only grown and blossomed as I move through my life. I quite adore him. - Karen

PS:I also adore the other great composers mentioned in my post - these four gave me the foundation for loving and appreciating all the splendid genres and forms of classical music growing up.

Oh dear, my 'Chiff just presented me with a gift, poor little mouse. Now I really need to sign off! Mischief is well-named.

Link to comment
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...