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Poll: La Sylphide Favorite Version?

Poll: La Sylphide - French or Danish version?  

13 members have voted

  1. 1. What's your favorite version of LA SYLPHIDE and why?

    • French version, 1832: Pierre Lacotte-after-F. Taglioni/music Schneitzhoeffer
    • Danish version, 1836: Bournonville/music Lovenskjold
  2. 2. If you selected the Bournonville, which staging do you prefer and why?

    • "Royal Danish Ballet orig"...Any of their traditional stagings in last 40 years
    • Royal Danish Ballet most recent, 2014 (N. Hubbe's rethinking, with "new twist" on Madge)
    • Rambert 1960, by Elsa M. Von Rosen (performed @ Kirov & elsewhere)
    • Engl. Nat'l Ballet 1979, by Peter Schaufuss (televised starring divine Evdokimova)
    • Other (please specify in your post)

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So which version of the iconic Romantic ballet, LA SYLPHIDE, do you prefer & why?

LACOTTE-AFTER-TAGLIONI, to the Schneitzhoffer score, seen almost exclusively in Paris...although it will soon enter the repertoire of Rio de Janeiro's Teatro Municipal this June (just before the Olympics take place there!)


BOURNONVILLE, to the Lovenskjold score, seen most often, in multiple stagings

If you prefer the Bournonville, is there a particular staging that you prefer?

A YouTube link for the Lacotte-Taglioni, starring Thesmar (you can also buy a more recent DVD starring Aurelie Dupont):


...and a link to a traditional staging of the Bournonville, starring Lis Jeppesen & N. Hubbe:


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Bournonville because of the stylistic consistency and the music. Performance: Fracci-Bruhn movie from late 60's ABT production. In spite of the film-makers intrusiveness and brevity of the ensemble dancing, Bruhn's acting and development of relationship with Fracci makes it better theatre than any other I have seen.

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Thanks, Daniel! Was the ABT 1960s version with Fracci & Bruhn ever made available commercially? I know about their wonderful GISELLE film but have seen Fracci's Sylphide only in excerpts, such as the lovely A2 scene with Nureyev's James, within the documentary I AM A DANCER.

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I am sorry- Referring to Fracci-Bruhn I was thinking of Giselle, not La Sylhpide (I have Giselle on my mind these days, watching many versions in preparation to give a course on 19th century ballet). I have seen only a few versions of La Sylphide but prefer the traditional RDB DVD with Jeppeson, Hubbe and Englund. Along those lines, I appreciate Peter Martins' traditional staging also, seen a few weeks ago in NYC.

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I find it difficult to watch Lacotte's use of pointe shoes in Act 1---it's all WRONG! If that was all that bothered me, I could just skip to Act 2 and the beautiful ending......but at some point the mild mannered sylphs in the corps morph into Wilis. I'll take the Danes......

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I really love Hübbe's new black and white version and would watch it any day, but I do also enjoy the original Danish production as it's traditionally staged by the RDB. Ideally, I'd love to see both versions in the active repertory, but can see why this is probably impossible.

My even more impossible nerd wish would be to see both versions on one bill, side by side and while I'm wishing... I'd love to see Ida Praetorius make her debut as the Sylph in the original version with either Andreas Kaas or Sebastian Haynes (I'd personally prefer Sebastian, I'm biased) as James. Stephanie Chen as Effy. Tobias Praetorius could be an interesting Gurn! Maybe with Hilary Guswiler as 1. Sylph!

For the new version, I'd love to see Susanne, of course, shine as the Sylph. Either Marcin Kupinski or maybe Sebastian Kloborg as James? Sebastian Haynes as Madge, always!! Kizzy Matiakis as Effy, Jon Axel Fransson as Gurn and Mette Bødtcher as Anna. Stephanie Chen as 1. Sylph!

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I voted for the Bournonville-traditional but, in defense of the French, I love the generous use of flying sylphs, as apparently happened back in 1832. The only "flight" on wires in the Bournonville is by the corpse of the leading Sylphide as she floats away, her sister sylphs bourreeing beneath her in a long slow line across the stage (or, in the case of NYCB, they walk on flat feet...not even demi pointe...for me, not so poetic).

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I adore the Bournonville and Lacotte versions of "La Sylphide" for RDB and POB respectively.

For me, Henning Kronstam's version for RDB is definitive. I also love the fact that Lacotte's

Sylph is markedly different in temperament and personality from Bournonville's Sylph.

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Kronstam's production [with Hubbe, Englund, and Jeppesen] has the advantage of Kronstam's powerful mind organizing the whole production; it is magnificently integrated in its psychology, and in the tempi, tone -- and then there are those performances!

Evdokimova and Thesmar are both superior to Jeppesen in lightness, mystique, and silken execution.... truly amazing performances; but Jeppesen's tenderness makes the whole drama seem plausible, she's lovable like neither of the other two are. I couldn't say no to her....

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