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miliosr

2015-2016 Season

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Stephane Lissner, director of the Opera, gave an interview to Le Monde:

http://www.lemonde.fr/festival/article/2014/09/03/stephane-lissner-il-faut-provoquer-intellectuellement_4481344_4415198.html

At the the end of the interview, he states the following:

"Et puis je vous donne un scoop : Forsythe reviendra à l’Opéra de Paris avec une création mondiale durant la première saison du directeur de la danse, Benjamin Millepied, en 2015-2016."

Which translates (roughly) as follows:

"I give you a 'scoop': [William] Forsythe returns to the Paris Opera with a world premiere during the first season of dance director, Benjamin Millepied, in 2015-2016."

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From Robert Gottlieb's 01/29 review of the Mariinsky in New York:

Who can explain why Benjamin Millepied has been given so many choice opportunities to choreograph? And why he’s been given the Paris Opéra Ballet to run?

http://observer.com/2015/01/a-season-of-the-mariinsky-conjures-more-questions-than-answers/#ixzz3QJ1wvWmX

We'll find out next week what the 2015-16 season will look like!

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Via an article in today's Paris Match, Édouard Lock's coming back next season as part of an all Tchaikovsky programme. :-/

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Is the work Edouard Lock made for the POB (and which is part of the quad bill debuting next week) held in high regard?

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Is the work Edouard Lock made for the POB (and which is part of the quad bill debuting next week) held in high regard?

Yes. It was highly praised when created in 2002 and also when it returned in 2006.

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Via the POB's Twitter account, Charmatz, Robbins, Balanchine, Millepied, Keersmaeker, Wheeldon, McGregor, Bel, Ratmansky, Peck, Marin, Forsythe...

The only 3 classics are Nureyev's La Bayadere and Romeo and Juliet, as well as Giselle... That's it. Please, please, please tell me the Paris Opera's dancers have the sense to strike.

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Via the POB's Twitter account, Charmatz, Robbins, Balanchine, Millepied, Keersmaeker, Wheeldon, McGregor, Bel, Ratmansky, Peck, Marin, Forsythe...

The only 3 classics are Nureyev's La Bayadere and Romeo and Juliet, as well as Giselle... That's it. Please, please, please tell me the Paris Opera's dancers have the sense to strike.

"They have taken something unique in all the world and destroyed it to build something you can find in any city."

Charles V of Spain upon seeing how Christian architects had disfigured the great Cordoba Mosque with "improvements".

My first reaction upon reading the 2015-16 programming was that they might as well close the school and just hire dancers from the School of American Ballet. Here's a sampler of various programs:

  • Opus 19/The Dreamer (Robbins)/new Benjamin Millepied/Theme and Variations (Balanchine)
  • Polyphonia (Wheeldon)/new Wayne McGregor/Le Sacre du Printemps (Bausch)
  • new work (Jerome Bel)/Goldberg Variations (Robbins)
  • Seven Sonatas (Ratmansky)/Duo Concertant (Balanchine)/Other Dances (Robbins)/In Creases (Peck)
  • new Justin Peck/Brahms-Schonberg Quartet (Balanchine)

With the exception of the Bausch and Bel works, you can see any of this on any night at the New York City Ballet. The purge has begun -- no Lifar, no Petit, no Bejart, no Lacotte reconstructions, no opportunities for true, classically-minded choreographers like Jean-Guillaume Bart.

I guess my only meager hope now is that Elisabeth Platel stands firm against Millepied and Lissner!

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you can see any of this on any night at the New York City Ballet.

well,not if you live in Paris, you can't.

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you can see any of this on any night at the New York City Ballet.

well,not if you live in Paris, you can't.

yes but admittedly, there is no point of having a Paris City Ballet happy.png . What I find interesting and not only as a traveller, is to see different cultures in my own discipline around the world and not having a transposition of another culture in mine.

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I'll have more to say later but did we all notice that Millepied is replacing Berlioz's March from Les Troyens with music from Wagner's Tannhauser for the defile on September 24th?

Maybe Millepied can invite Frau Merkel for the occasion!

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well, not if you live in Paris, you can't

I can't see the works of Lifar, Petit and Bejart in New York but I would never want the New York City Ballet to program a Lifar/Petit/Bejart theme night (let alone program 5 separate bills that duplicate typical Paris Opera Ballet bills.)

Regarding switching out Berlioz for Wagner -- why the change after 70 years? What wasn't working with the current Berlioz music?

Some choice quotes from the New York Times article about the POB 2015-16 season (bolded words are my emphasis):

"He [William Forsythe] is an incredibly important choreographer who is connected to an American and Balanchine legacy," Mr. Millepied said in an interview on Monday.

"There are just three full-length ballets."

"Mr.Millepied said his programming had been strongly influenced by the history of the Paris Opera Ballet (???) and his own experience as dancer with the New York City Ballet."

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I don't see how the program can be said to have been influenced by the company's history. They'll be performing Giselle, La Bayadère and Romeo and Juliet. Okay. They've danced Theme and Variations, Bausch's Rite, Other Dances and Approximate Sonata before. Everything else is either a world premiere or a new acquisition. It's a repertoire overhaul. I can't help wondering how much all those new ballets are going to cost.

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The dancers haven't said much on Twitter but the usual complacent critics have dubbed it ambitious and exciting. The Guardian's Judith Mackrell, who doesn't seem to know much about ballet outside of the RB and ENB, tries to justify the dearth of French neoclassical choreographers by claiming there aren't any, and that the new choreography course will change all that. Um, OK.

I'm not impressed. It's the stale, conventional programming seen more or lees anywhere and should be hailed as the textbook example of how static programming has become company to company. Where is the commitment to women? For somebody who claimed to care about people of colour, he certainly doesn't understand inclusive programming. I hope the dancers have the sense to just oust these two (in 2012 there were reports of friction towards Lefevre over the lack of classics, after all) but I think they may be mad enogh to accept it.

It seems the defile and public rehearsals are now AROP only in a disgraceful show of contempt for the public. Ticket prices are up and aside from the 10 tickets for under 28s and this 'digital stage' thing, accessibility doesn't seem to be much of a priority (just like inclusiveness). As for William Forsythe, who clearly shows no sign of loyalty to the Nureyev etoiles the company's trying to pretend never actually existed, well, I wish I could say I still found him interesting. Hopefully Sylvie Guillem's removing him from here farewell programme as we speak...

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I am so disappointed by this programming. I will go to see my favorite dancers, but I don't go to POB to see Balanchine or Peck.

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Well New York City Ballet will be performing in Paris in 2016

All the more reason not to load the POB's 2015-16 program with Balanchine, Robbins and Peck (and Wheeldon and Millepied). Unless New York City Ballet plans to show Parisians lots of Peter Martins. pinch.gif

Don't get me wrong. I've seen the POB dance Balanchine for myself, and it was not terrible by any means. But it wouldn't be my first choice for the company either.

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It's the stale, conventional programming seen more or lees anywhere and should be hailed as the textbook example of how static programming has become company to company.

I couldn't possibly agree more. The irony is that George Balanchine labored mightily for his repertory to get a fair hearing in the midst of the prevailing hegemony (which was Ballets Russe-derived.) If he were here with us today, I wonder what he would think of a New York City Ballet-derived aesthetic becoming even more of an airless orthodoxy than the one it displaced.

I hope the dancers have the sense to just oust these two . . . but I think they may be mad enough to accept it.

I doubt there will be any kind of revolt. I can only see three people commanding the kind of respect needed to lead a charge against Millepied -- Nicolas Le Riche, Aurelie Dupont and Marie-Agnes Gillot. Le Riche is retired, is very much at odds with the new management and is now on the outside looking in. Dupont is close to retirement and will be joining the artistic staff once she retires so she has no incentive to foment rebellion. (And her personality doesn't strike me as lending itself to revolution.) Gillot only has two years left before she retires, is friends with the new ballet master Sebastien Marcovicci and probably finds the new repertory congenial given that she now appears almost exclusively in contemporary works. So, she'll go with the flow.

No, the opposition will have to come from the school.

in 2012 there were reports of friction towards Lefevre over the lack of classics.

The number of full-length Romantic/Imperial Russian classics in Millepied's first year will be no worse than it was in the Lefevre era. But here's the thing. As much criticism as Madame Lefevre took for the paucity of 19th century classics, she also programmed many 20th century story ballets/full-lengths which gave the dancers opportunities to gain experience which they could transfer (ideally) to the classics (when programmed). By purging the repertory of all the ancilliary story ballets, where are the young dancers going to develop the skills needed for the classics?

If I were a young dancer at the Paris Opera Ballet and I was trying to determine how to advance, here would be my takeaways:

  • As a dancer, the artistic director never spent any meaningful time performing in the classics. As a choreographer, he has expressed no interest in them. So, the road to success won't be through the classics.
  • The new associate choreographer, William Forsythe, has never shown any interest in the classics. So, the road to success will be through his works and not the classics.
  • The artistic director (via his programming choices) has given a clear indication of the kind of dance he favors. At the promotional exams (to the extent they continue), I should pick variations from works by his favored choreographers as a means of impressing him and his votaries on the judging panel.

And that's how the classical dance will become sidelined at the Paris Opera Ballet.

Unless New York City Ballet plans to show Parisians lots of Peter Martins.

Even Millepied didn't have the stomach to program his old boss!

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I love the expression on Benjamin Pech's face between 1:34-1:39. It's as if even he can't believe what's happened to the POB!

Can anyone tell me who the three voices belong to in the clip?

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