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ABT Fall 2015 season


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Monotones yahoo.gifyahoo.gifyahoo.gif May be Rhapsody won't be far behind.

The tradition of no performance on Halloween evening continues. Don't quite understand the logic, Halloween and ballet demographics don't exactly overlap.

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Oh no not Spectre de la Rose!! Why?

It's a lead role for Simkin for one (who had very little to do during the Met season). Not suggesting that's the reason or the only reason they're doing it. I can see Lane or one of the new soloists, Trenary or Brandt, doing the ballerina role. Maybe Scott or Shayer will also get a shot. But Cornejo has also done this role in the past.

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Spectre and Valse-Fantaisie are both gifts to the short nascent-partner-but-great-technician contingent: the partnering in the latter is comparatively light, although it has crazy batterie and jumps.

Monotones doesn't come off unless it's as smooth as glass, though: I wonder whether it will be cast taller or shorter. I'd love to see Part or Murphy in this.

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Interesting that Hallberg isn't participating. I was hoping he'd be ready to return. He was scheduled for last fall but had to pull out since he was just beginning to heal and might have even been pre-surgery. I wonder if he's still recovering or has commitments elsewhere. If he comes back for spring 2016 it will be 2 years since he's danced with the company, if I'm not mistaken.

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Why not?

Others might disagree but even back when ABT last did it was already eliciting giggles. It is no longer a show piece for the man and for the woman it is nothing. One reads about how wonderful and startling Nijinsky was in the piece. For me it's best left for the history books and the imagination.

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It's a lead role for Simkin for one (who had very little to do during the Met season). Not suggesting that's the reason or the only reason they're doing it. I can see Lane or one of the new soloists, Trenary or Brandt, doing the ballerina role. Maybe Scott or Shayer will also get a shot. But Cornejo has also done this role in the past.

I hope to see Cornejo dance it. I think he can also make the androgynous part come off (unlike Kimin Kim with the Mariinsky).

Monotones 1and 2 I would love to see live. But can ABT can dance Ashton well? Not so sure. I would have loved to see the RB bring those instead of The Dream.

As for Balanchine's Valse-Fantasie, why, why?? As time has shown, IMO ABT simply can not dance either Balanchine or Robbins well. The dancers don't have either the speed or the attack. Just because NYCB isn't dancing it this year (or next) doesn't mean we have forgotten how they dance it. I don't care who is staging it. ABT should just leave those choregraphers to NYCB.

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James Whiteside performed "Spectre" while in Boston. As for Valse-Fantasie, Cirio is very familiar with Balanchine work, having trained partially at CPYB and dancing in Boston (where they more frequently do Balanchine work). His first promotion from the corps came right after doing Ballo della Regina with Misa Kuranaga.

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As for Balanchine's Valse-Fantasie, why, why?? As time has shown, IMO ABT simply can not dance either Balanchine or Robbins well. The dancers don't have either the speed or the attack. Just because NYCB isn't dancing it this year (or next) doesn't mean we have forgotten how they dance it. I don't care who is staging it. ABT should just leave those choregraphers to NYCB.

Balanchine and Robbins both choreographed works for ABT (or Ballet Theater, as is was then known) -- Theme and Variations and Fancy Free, respectively. These ballets are part of the company's heritage; surely it has every right to perform them. Indeed, one might argue that there have been periods when ABT could field a better cast for either work than NYCB could: it wasn't so long ago that the conventional wisdom in certain circles was that NYCB itself lacked the speed and attack necessary to dance Balanchine well.

In any event, how is any company supposed to get better at anything if it doesn't perform it regularly?

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Monotones 1and 2 I would love to see live. But can ABT can dance Ashton well? Not so sure. I would have loved to see the RB bring those instead of The Dream.

They do The Dream wonderfully and Sylvia as well and have had great success with Cinderella the last two.

Obviously some dancers are more comfortable than others, but Macaulay has consistently said ABT was superior to the RB in The Dream in recent years.

So yes, ABT can dance Ashton well.

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Balanchine and Robbins both choreographed works for ABT (or Ballet Theater, as is was then known) -- Theme and Variations and Fancy Free, respectively. These ballets are part of the company's heritage; surely it has every right to perform them. Indeed, one might argue that there have been periods when ABT could field a better cast for either work than NYCB could: it wasn't so long ago that the conventional wisdom in certain circles was that NYCB itself lacked the speed and attack necessary to dance Balanchine well.

In any event, how is any company supposed to get better at anything if it doesn't perform it regularly?

Having just seen "Valse Fantasie" at the SAB Workshop in the Spring, I can't imagine anyone at ABT being able to dance this work at the speed and clarity witnessed at the Workshop. Possibly, Skylar Brandt. Who will be staging it? Suki Schorer did it for the Workshop. Hopefully, she will repeat her magic for ABT. On the other issue of "Spectre", I don't get that. So many other ballets to choose from. Still, as a vehicle for Simkin or Cornejo it's OK. But just OK. But am happy about "Monotones I&II. Would love to see Stella in this. "Company B" is being danced on quite a few programs. I happen to be in the "prefer Taylor's version" corner, but it is a vehicle for Misty. But Luciana Paris would also be fine in the 'rum and coca cola' section. Some oddities, for sure for this Fall Season.

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Having just seen "Valse Fantasie" at the SAB Workshop in the Spring, I can't imagine anyone at ABT being able to dance this work at the speed and clarity witnessed at the Workshop. Possibly, Skylar Brandt. Who will be staging it? Suki Schorer did it for the Workshop. Hopefully, she will repeat her magic for ABT. On the other issue of "Spectre", I don't get that. So many other ballets to choose from. Still, as a vehicle for Simkin or Cornejo it's OK. But just OK. But am happy about "Monotones I&II. Would love to see Stella in this. "Company B" is being danced on quite a few programs. I happen to be in the "prefer Taylor's version" corner, but it is a vehicle for Misty. But Luciana Paris would also be fine in the 'rum and coca cola' section. Some oddities, for sure for this Fall Season.

This article says, "Staged for ABT by Stacy Caddell..." The JKO pre-professional division just recently performed it.

http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/New-Work-by-Mark-Morris-Balanchines-VALSE-FANTAISIE-and-More-Highlight-ABTs-Fall-2015-Season-20150708#

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Herman Cornejo in Le Spectre la Rose was one of the greatest performances of this ballet, he really looked like what Nijinsky must have been.

I totally agree with this. I never understood what all the fuss was about Spectre until I saw Cornejo... and that was only on the YouTube video.

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ABT misses the dark undertones of Company B. When you see the PTDC do it you get how this is not just a perky dance with jukebox melodies. Not so much with ABT. I'd recommend seeing the PTDC do this.

As peppy as Tico Tico is as a song, I feel the dancers at ABT have been coached well in portraying a shell shocked young man. Dodging bullets, cringing from shadows - I saw nothing light in this piece when ABT performed it.

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I'm a little sad that Seminova isn't part of the Fall season. Seminova has been part of it for the last few, right? I know she was at City Center for the premiere of Symphony #9. I like to think of her as "real" ABT member who does both seasons. Perhaps she wasn't seduced by the rep this year.

So I guess Company B was created for Houston Ballet, not PTDC. Interesting that it was created for ballet trained dancers. I wonder if they danced it more like ABT or the Taylor dancers.

I think it's healthy and cool for ABT to dance a little Balanchine and Robbins here and there. Although NYCB dancers are perhaps more accustomed to these choreographers, they shouldn't have a monopoly on the choreography. A few years back certain critics were saying that Miami Ballet was producing Balanchine's style better than NYCB. Now the company is dancing much better, yet this is no reason other companies shouldn't dance Balanchine. I've never seen a finer Tchaikovsky Pas than Vishneva and Corella, and I've seen it performed several times at NYCB. And Balanchine didn't just choreograph fast, athletic pieces. Prodigal Son is another work that I preferred at ABT, (although it is not what people think of when they think of Balanchine). And remember when NYCB brought Julie Kent across the plaza to guest in Dances at a Gathering? I guess they thought she was capable of dancing Robbins. ABT has always had diverse rep, and that's a good thing, in my opinion, especially for the dancers. I think some of them probably could have danced at either company, and just like NYCB dancers probably get fulfillment occasionally dancing full-length narrative things like Swan Lake and Coppelia, there are ABT dancers who get fulfillment dancing Balanchine and Robbins. I hope to see Isabella Boylston in Valse Fantasie. I think she'll nail it.

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Regarding Balanchine, I always did find it a treat to see ABT dance Apollo, especially since they do the version that includes the prologue. ABT's dancers really brought a lot to those roles, even if they aren't Balanchine specialists.

I also have very fond memories of Hallberg and Abrera dancing Robbins' Afternoon of a Faun. I would be happy to see them do the piece again.

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