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NYCB in Edinburgh- Edinburgh Playhouse

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I'm considering going to Edingurgh around August 18, in order to see the NYCB at the Edinburgh Festival. They will perform at the Edinburgh Playhouse. Is anyone familiar with this theater? Is it a big theater? There are many categories of seats (circle, stalls, front balcony, back balcony), and I have no idea which ones are decent ones.

Also, is there any available information about the casts?

(The site of the Edinburgh Festival is at http://www.eif.co.uk/ ).

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Good questions, Estelle, and I hope some of our English posters can answer. I'm going to move this to News, Views because I think more people will see it there (and there may be general interest, even among people who won't be able to go, what the programs and the casts are).

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Here are the programs (as listed on the web site):

Program 1 (Aug 14, 17, 19 matinee):

Agon, Dances at a Gathering, Symphony in C

Program 2 (Aug 15, 18):

Concerto Barocco, Duo Concertant, The 4 Temperaments, Symphony in 3 movements

Program 3 (Aug 16, 19):

Serenade, Fearful Symmetries, Tchaikovsky pas de deux, Western Symphony

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All three programs are well worth seeing - the programming is extremely good, weighted heavily towards Balanchine, and towards Mr. B's more classical-looking incarnation at that, although you've also got Agon and the 4 Temperaments. The Robbins Ballet, Dances at a Gathering, is also very beautiful, try to sit close up if you can for that one. You could choose any of these three programs and not go wrong. It would be rare for them to pack an evening with three or four such meaty pieces in NY. They are really putting themselves out for this. I wish I could go.

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Well, I really hope to be able all three programs (one on Aug 18 and two on Aug 19, if possible).

I've already seen some of these pieces at the Paris Opera

(Agon, The 4 Temperaments, Serenade, Concerto Barocco, Palais de Cristal), and loved them very much, but they don't dance it often ("Symphony in 3 movements" and "Dances at a gathering" are in their repertory too, but they haven't danced

it in a while). All that sounds very exciting! Now I hope that it's still possible to find not too expensive hotels in Edinburgh for that period, the city must be quite crowded with such

a big festival...

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Hotels in Edinburgh during the Festival can be a real problem Estelle, but the French Ibis chain has a hotel located quite conveniently for the Playhouse and you should be able to book that quite easily from Marseille. It's also quite reasonably priced as Edinburgh hotels go, but you will need to move fairly quickly.

Although the stage at the Playhouse is big,I'm surprised to learn that it is the biggest stage in Britain, but I bow to Eugene's superior knowledge.

Anyway, my impression after several visits is that the sightlines in the theatre are generally quite good, so getting a reasonable view shouldn't be too difficult. I seem to recall the balcony is pretty good. But back balcony would be quite some way from the stage. Circle is excellent if you can manage it. Anyway, I hope you enjoy both NYCB and the city.


[This message has been edited by Alymer (edited June 23, 2000).]

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Thanks for the information, Alymer! However, I tried to have a look at the Ibis hotels

web site, and it seems that it's already full on those nights.

By the way, two things are missing on the Festival web site: a plan of the theaters (to know where the categories of seats are), and also a city map...

Actually I've already been to Edinburgh once, for one week in August 1998, for a math conference- the weather was absolutely awful (even my thesis supervisor, who is from Glasgow, agreed),

but the city really looked nice.

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Well, everything is OK: I've just booked some tickets for the performances of Aug 17, 18,

and 19 matinee (front balcony seats) (and we'll be staying at a youth hostel wink.gif ).

Thanks to all of you for your help. If some Ballet Talkers plan to attend these performances, I'd be glad to meet them!

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It's a lovely theatre...and the whole town is just plain exciting (and crowded!) during the festival. I had a ball. My one regret was that we didn't have more time to experience it while we were working there. I did sneak out one night of the load-in to listen to the Tattoo (See that - or hear it, if you can). We were staying in dorms at the university, which was a fair piece from a lot of the activity. But it was overwhelming the option of things to watch! If only we could have! The only show I did see (Nutcracker being somewhat short, we were out good season one evening) was HypnoDog. A black lab who hypnotized people at the pub across from the university. I hope to return someday as a spectator! I'm envious!

[This message has been edited by Barb (edited July 14, 2000).]

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Guest Bruce Wall

Dear Estelle and Ann,

I, too, will be at the performances on 18th August and the two on 19th August and would be happy to make your acquaintance. You can reach me through 'meunier@hotmail.com'.


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Some casting news for Edinburgh:

Kistler will dance Duo Concertante and 2nd movement of Symphony in C;

Van Kipnis is back and cast frequently;

Ringer is scheduled to debut in 2nd movement in Western Symphony;

Boal and Whelan are scheduled for Tsch. Pas.

Should be a good week.

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Estelle - regarding casting:

I know Peter Boal is doing four ballets while there (but I can't recall which!) I know he's doing first pas de trois in Agon and one of the men in Dances at a Gathering. From looking at the announced rep my guess is he'd be doing Melancholic in Four Temperaments and either Symphony in C (third movement is his usual) or Western Symphony.

He also mentioned to me that Kistler is doing Duo Concertant. She's given me a lump in my throat more than once in this role. I don't know her present state of health, but you ought to see this.


Leigh Witchel - dae@panix.com

Personal Page and Dance Writing

Dance as Ever

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Thanks to you all for the information about the castings! The casts are on the NYCB web site indeed, and also those for their Japanese tour later in August.

Kistler will dance the second movement of "Symphony in C" indeed. But I won't see her in that role, since she isn't cast on Aug 17 (or perhaps I'll convince my boyfriend to attend a fourth performance on Aug 19 evening! smile.gif ) She'll also dance in "Duo Concertant" (partnered by Nilas Martins) on

Aug 15 and 18, I'm loking forward to seeing her.

The casts for "Symphony in C" are:

Symphony in C:


2nd Mov.: KISTLER, ASKEGARD (14,19)



4th Mov.: *A. STAFFORD, EVANS (14, 19)


What is the order of the roles listed for "Agon"? Is it pas de deux- male soloist- female soloist- females of the pas de trois- males of the pas de trois?

Peter Boal is scheduled in "Agon" (14, 17), "The Four Temperaments" (18), "Tchaikovsky pas de deux" (19 matinee- with Whelan, as liebs wrote, the other cast is Whelan- Woetzel) and "Dances at a gathering" (19 evening). I'm so glad to be able to see him before he retires!

I'm also glad to see Kyra Nichols (she'll dance in "Serenade" and "Dances at a gathering"). Leigh, you'll probably be happy to notice that Miranda Weese will perform in "The Four Temperaments" and "Fearful symmetries" there.

Well, all that makes me feel very enthusiastic, I'm looking forward to being there!

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Estelle, I would love to see you in Edinburgh. I shall be there for the two Saturday peformances - front balconey for the afternoon performances and stalls for the evening performances.

Edinburgh is one of the most beautiful towns in Europe. I hope you get a chance to see some of it!

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