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I've finally finished the posts from episode 4, which can be found here:

http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.de/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-4-part-1.html

http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.de/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-4-part-2.html

My concerns about Kim and Shakirova remain the same - why aren't they performing something other than bravura Petipa duets (obviously, this week Vaganova in the Petipa style)? Even within the universe of Petipa, they are confining themselves to a very narrow aesthetic framework. They would have to perform very differently for Swan Lake or even Don Quixote. I am much more impressed with Terada/Okawa and Tsvirko/Khokhlova. I do hope that this competition does great things for Midori Terada and Koya Okawa's careers. I'd love to see them in person some day.

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Thank you Swanilda. I was especially interested to learn what Vasiliev was saying. Overall, of the ballerinas, I am enjoying Batoeva, Bilash, and Terada the most, though it is fun to see all the dancers -- and the range of choreography they are presenting.

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Swanilda8, I join Drew in thanking you very much for all these finely presented summaries. I appreciate very much your translations. Again this is very generous of you. Your range of description is also very impressive. Can I ask where you accumulated so much knowledge?

I do definitely have my own opinions on all this. I'm watching the show regularly as it's now one of the few chances to see current excerpts from these great companies on the internet. The comments from you and the judges add to the appreciation and enjoyment. Thanks again.

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Swanilda8, I join Drew in thanking you very much for all these finely presented summaries. I appreciate very much your translations. Again this is very generous of you. Your range of description is also very impressive. Can I ask where you accumulated so much knowledge?

Thanks, Buddy! I'm sorry I didn't answer sooner - I've been in Copenhagen this week, and I haven't been spending as much time online as a result. I'm a musicologist - I work on Soviet ballet, and I spend a lot of time in Moscow attending the ballet, so I find this competition very interesting.

I've finally finished episode 5. I haven't even seen the last two weeks, but I'll try to post summaries soon.

http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/02/bolshoi-balet-episode-5-part-2.html

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Episode 6 is now up:

http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/03/bolshoi-balet-episode-6-part-1.html

http://itinerantballetomane.blogspot.com/2016/03/bolshoi-balet-episode-6-part-2.html

I love the contemporary choreography week! It's harder to judge, because it's impossible to know if the problems that a couple is having is the result of bad choreography or bad performance. BUT I love seeing the range of pieces, and it's good to see some of the dancers - particularly Kim and Shakirova - pushed to try something new.

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Yes... And a congratulations, too, to the other winning pair Bilash and Chetverikov from the Perm ballet. (They had been favorites of mine so I was quite happy.)

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That was quite a turn around from the earlier voting. I'm delighted for Kim and Shakirova, even if they weren't my absolute favorites in the competition. But there's no way they would have won if Ruzimatov hadn't been replaced by Toomas Edur.

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