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ABT 2018 Fall season

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Just now, Fleurfairy said:

Sarah Lane just posted Instagram stories of her rehearsing Nutcracker Pas de Deux with Aran Bell. I wonder if she's replacing Misty on Saturday.

Just saw that myself. I would think so, since they were rehearsing in full costume. No casting update on ABT's site yet (not a surprise).

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38 minutes ago, Fleurfairy said:

Sarah Lane just posted Instagram stories of her rehearsing Nutcracker Pas de Deux with Aran Bell. I wonder if she's replacing Misty on Saturday.

I think there will be many, many disappointed Misty fans if she is replaced.

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8 minutes ago, abatt said:

I think there will be many, many disappointed Misty fans if she is replaced.

It might be that Sarah is replacing Stella since I have family who have tickets for their CA performance on Dec. 16th as it was Stella and Aran, either would make them happy, but wishing Stella well.

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Misty was replaced in AFTERITE by Brandt last night, so it's possible she's injured. How demanding is her part in AFTERITE? (I left after Songs of Bukovina last night, as I had no interest in AFTERITE.)

The theater was woefully empty last night. I came because I wanted to see Symphonie Concertante, and it was danced decently, although one corps member fell (on bourrees...) and others wobbled or were not in synch. ABT just doesn't do Balanchine well, although Shenchenko and, especially, Hoven looked great.

I will add to the general consensus that Songs of Bukovina is competent but not terribly impactful. It was nice to see Calvin Royal looking so great, and kudos to Shevchenko for looking wonderful in two ballets in a row! It was also striking how good the corps dancers looked in Songs compared to the Balanchine. Ratmansky really knows how to bring out the best in his dancers. Now if only he could make works for ABT that are as wonderful as his best for City Ballet, like Russian Seasons and Concerto DSCH.

That's it for my ABT fall season this year. Hopefully they can figure out a strategy that will work for them in future years, because the poor attendance this season is disheartening. Is it normally like this? This is my first ABT fall season so I have no basis for comparison.

Edited by mille-feuille

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6 minutes ago, mille-feuille said:

I will add to the general consensus that Songs of Bukovina is competent but not terribly impactful. It was nice to see Calvin Royal looking so great, and kudos to Shevchenko for looking wonderful in two ballets in a row! It was also striking how good the corps dancers looked in Songs compared to the Balanchine. Ratmansky really knows how to bring out the best in his dancers. Now if only he could make works for ABT that are as wonderful as his best for City Ballet, like Russian Seasons and Concerto DSCH.

 

I thought Songs was much more than just competent.  Although it's not as good as some of his other works, I thought the choreography was engaging and musical.  It showed a much higher level of craft, polish and choreographic skill than than the new Jessica Lang or Dorrance works.

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1 hour ago, ABT Fan said:

Just saw that myself. I would think so, since they were rehearsing in full costume. No casting update on ABT's site yet (not a surprise).

And they pull off the torch lift wonderfully! 

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1 hour ago, abatt said:

It showed a much higher level of craft, polish and choreographic skill than than the new Jessica Lang or Dorrance works.

I haven't seen the Lang, but I agree so so much about the Dorrance. 

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Songs of Bukovina was my favorite part of last night's performance -- I'm officially a Shevchenko fan now. I actually didn't notice the apparent fall in Symphonie Concertante, which I thought was danced overall well, if not nearly up to par with NYCB's Balanchine dancing. Boylston, Shevchenko and Hoven certainly pulled off the difficult technical elements. The first two pieces were well worth the ticket. Afterrite was just alright; I enjoyed it more in the spring, and I think the dancers probably did too, because I remember them looking more vibrant. The piece also felt more lackluster this time following Balanchine and (not-Firebird) Ratmansky. I definitely don't need to see it for a third time. 

The theater wasn't TERRIBLY empty -- the orchestra section looked rather full -- but it seemed like everyone sitting near me was there with a comped ticket because they knew someone in the orchestra or otherwise involved with the performance. The company must have been giving away free tickets left and right to fill the empty seats. 

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It's official. Lane has replaced Copeland in tomorrow's Nutcracker pas with Bell.

https://www.abt.org/event_dates/fall-family-matinee-10-27-2018-200pm/

Copeland and Seo have also been replaced in AfterRite tonight with Boylston and Brandt.

And, Lane has replaced Seo in Other Dances on Sunday w/ Stearns.

https://www.abt.org/performances/master-calendar/

Edited by ABT Fan

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6 minutes ago, ABT Fan said:

It's official. Lane has replaced Copeland in tomorrow's Nutcracker pas with Bell.

...

And, Lane has replaced Seo in Other Dances on Sunday w/ Stearns.

Nice to see that Lane finally gets more opportunities when "the favorites" aren't able to dance, but it's too bad that's what it takes!

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1 hour ago, ABT Fan said:

It's official. Lane has replaced Copeland in tomorrow's Nutcracker pas with Bell.

https://www.abt.org/event_dates/fall-family-matinee-10-27-2018-200pm/

Copeland and Seo have also been replaced in AfterRite tonight with Boylston and Brandt.

And, Lane has replaced Seo in Other Dances on Sunday w/ Stearns.

https://www.abt.org/performances/master-calendar/

I think Copeland has also been replaced in Garden Blue on 10/28, though Seo is still listed for that one. I think this means Copeland only performed once this season, in the 10/19 Garden Blue, right? I guess there have been/will be a lot of disappointed Copeland fans...

Edited by fondoffouettes

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2 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

I think Copeland has also been replaced in Garden Blue on 10/28, though Seo is still listed for that one. I think this means Copeland only performed once this season, in the 10/19 Garden Blue, right? I guess there have been a lot of disappointed Copeland fans...

Yes, you're right. I didn't notice that one. 

For a short fall season, there have unfortunately been a lot of injuries/illnesses.

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I looked on Misty's twitter page.  After a number of people complained on her twitter account that they had bought tickets to see her at ABT but she did not show up, she replied that she was sorry and had a family emergency. 

She was able to attend some promotional gigs earlier this week for the film Nutcracker and the Four Realms, including appearances on GMA and Live with Kelly and whoever (is it Ryan?). 

Edited by abatt

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23 minutes ago, abatt said:

She was able to attend some promotional gigs earlier this week for the film Nutcracker Princess and the Four Realms.

It looks like most of that was from 10/22 and earlier. I think this was the first casting change that involved Copeland (if you don't count that entire Upper Room cast being nixed):

On 10/23/2018 at 4:00 PM, ABT Fan said:

That casting has changed; they swapped the entire cast for the Lang piece w/ the other. Seo was also injured, so it's possible either or both of them warranted the change.

It's also possible ABT is more sensitive to these sorts of issues than Disney. 

Edited by fondoffouettes

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Very sorry to hear about Copeland's family situation.

Tonight was a good night. I was pleasantly surprised.

Symphonie Concertante was overall excellent. Shevchenko and Teuscher were gorgeous, each demonstrating superb technique and some impressive balances. Shevchenko though projects so much more - she has grandeur, elegance, command. Teuscher's presentation tends to fall flat; she's rather one note. Forster was an ardent partner and rallied his long limbs to keep up with the fast footwork. His pirouettes were clean and beautiful. The demi-soloists were very good and strong (Post not so much). Standouts were the new soloists Hurlin (especially) and Williams. It was nice to see Paris back on stage following her maternity leave. I've always liked her. But, her pointe shoes were a disaster. It looked like she removed nearly the entire shank from both shoes to accentuate her arches to the extreme and softened the toes into mush. At the beginning of the ballet, she rolled off of her right pointe and stumbled slightly (that shoe looked the worst). When she bourreed you could tell she had virtually no support in her shoes. It was distracting and I was worried she was going to really hurt herself. 

Other Dances with Lane and Cornejo was ballet heaven. They were technique-wise outstanding, plus soulful, charming, witty, gracious. Perfect casting. What more can I say? 

AFTERITE. I was prepared to hate it or be offended by it given what some people have said about it. But, I actually want to see it again so I can hopefully better understand what was going on. Why was that room set up like a greenhouse? Did it signify "nature" per the program? What were  the diagrams on the floor, train tracks? Why did the group let one girl run away? I really liked the choreography; it was different, challenging, interesting. Stravinsky's score - what else is there to say about that stroke of genius. Cornejo, Royal, Boylston, Hoven were standouts. Corps dancer, Garegin Pogossian, whom I've never noticed before, was an exceptional dancer. He held his own partnering with Cornejo. Ferri was stronger than I was expecting. I can't imagine Teuscher in that role with her lack of flexibility. Obviously this is a dark, intense piece, but I liked it, as strange as it was to see ABT doing it and right after tutus and sweet Other Dances. I understand why so many of the dancers have posted on social media their appreciation to McGregor and how grateful they are for the challenge and sense of community they've gotten from the process. If I was still dancing, I think I'd feel the same. I will say that the audience was completely silent, after non-stop coughing throughout the theatre during the first two pieces. Maybe the coughers left before AFTERITE. Maybe people were shocked into silence. I can definitely understand why some people don't like this piece, and it's very un-ABT, so no surprise it's not selling well. The orchestra looked reasonably full, but there were a lot of empty seats in the first ring where I was, and further up. 

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Lane and Cornejo were outstanding in Other Dances last night, giving virtuosic performances and improving on what I thought was perfection when I saw them perform this at the Kennedy Center in January.  They have deepened and shaded their artistic interpretations and emotional responses to the choreography, and to one another, and it struck me that this is the closest I might ever come to seeing Baryshnikov and Makarova in this piece.  I was awestruck.  This is why I've always loved ballet, and in particular these two dancers, together.  They are the main reason I keep coming back to ABT.  Hoping to see Lane's added performance with Stearns on Sunday. 

Did anyone see the woman seated at the back of the orchestra, holding the dog on her lap?  That was not a seeing eye dog.  Is there some sort of rule regarding comfort animals at Lincoln Center which I've missed??

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10 minutes ago, laurel said:

Did anyone see the woman seated at the back of the orchestra, holding the dog on her lap?  That was not a seeing eye dog.  Is there some sort of rule regarding comfort animals at Lincoln Center which I've missed??

According to Lincoln Center's "Accessibility" page, "Service animals are welcome at Lincoln Center."

(So-called "seeing eye dogs" are not the only type of service animals.)

I can't imagine she'd have gotten the dog through the front doors or avoided the interference of the Koch's rather officious ushers (who won't even let one walk five feet toward one's seat, ticket in hand, without intervention) if the dog weren't cleared to be there. But then, I suppose, in New York anything is possible.

Edited by nanushka

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I went to tonight's performance, and I'm sad to report it was one of the most ,to me, boring programs I've ever seen done by any company. I don't have the program right now, but I'm sure other will identify the works. First one was a colorful unitard thing with a couple of wooden props that the dancers kept pushing and turning. Totally forgettable. Them came a hybrid in between tap, rock and roll, swing and tablao, which was even MORE boring than the first one. And finally the much overdone, overrated "In the Upper Room" closed the night. I think I even dozed off a bit. 😶

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I loved last night's performance... the Lang and Dorrance pieces were nothing special choreography-wise, but they were very well danced and had great energy -- especially the Dorrance piece, which got a ton of applause. The ballet-tap fusion doesn't really work well and the dancers don't quite have the versatility to pull it off, but I still found the performance enjoyable. 

In the Upper Room was literally epic and I love seeing ABT dance this well outside of their normal element, mixing so many styles. I can see why it might not be for everyone but I thought it was a real masterpiece. It had me in a trance from start to finish. I live for dancing like this. 

The house was packed last night, which was nice to see considering the poor performance in ticket sales this season.

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I was at the Saturday night performance and enjoyed it quite a bit! Lang seems to bring something new out of the dancers — a freedom in the upper body that we don’t always see from the dancers cast. The Dorrance is forgettable, but pleasant enough. Gillian Murphy, subbing in at the last minute, seemed to be having a ball. And while not all of the cast members seemed to “get” Tharp’s movement style, In the Upper Room is so well-structured and inventive that it still worked. All in all, a pleasant night at the ballet.

 

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On 10/28/2018 at 1:35 AM, cubanmiamiboy said:

I went to tonight's performance, and I'm sad to report it was one of the most ,to me, boring programs I've ever seen done by any company. I don't have the program right now, but I'm sure other will identify the works. First one was a colorful unitard thing with a couple of wooden props that the dancers kept pushing and turning. Totally forgettable. Them came a hybrid in between tap, rock and roll, swing and tablao, which was even MORE boring than the first one. And finally the much overdone, overrated "In the Upper Room" closed the night. I think I even dozed off a bit. 😶

I was on the side in the third ring and looking down at the orchestra before the show started I thought I saw someone who looked like you! Hope you enjoyed your time in NY. Unfortunately you did choose a rather dull program. I think the Lang is pretty but no big deal and I do not like the Dorrance. I love In The Upper Room (I saw MCB do it several years ago, did you?) but think ABT did not do it justice this time around

4 hours ago, tutu said:

 And while not all of the cast members seemed to “get” Tharp’s movement style, In the Upper Room is so well-structured and inventive that it still worked. All in all, a pleasant night at the ballet.

 

I agree that even a less than great performance of ITUR can't kill it, but it saddens me that ABT didn't do it justice this time. I hope they re-think the casting and get better coaching for the Met spring season. In particular I thought pairing a very tall dancer with a very short one as the 2 main stompers threw things off. I can't recall this ever being done before and I saw all the casts ABT fielded the last 2 times they did this, plus Miami City Ballet once. I also recall that while those 2 stompers went thru their marathon, in the past they really radiated joy and ecstasy. I saw no joy from Teuscher, to me she looked like she was just determined to get thru it. I know that she is fully capable of executing all of the steps, and assume that she wasn't actually having a hard time with it but I just didn't like her presentation. Also Boylston didn't have the authority necessary for the ballerina role. In the past with Dvorovenko or Herrera in the role it was clear that she was the leader and the other ladies on pointe were secondary. This time they all looked like equals.

Edited by nysusan
edited to correct typos

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26 minutes ago, nysusan said:

IAlso Boylston didn't have the authority necessary for the ballerina role. In the past whit Dvorovenko or Herrera in the role it was clear that she was the leader and they other ladies on pointe were secondary. This time they all looked like equals.

I saw Symphonie Concertante several times, but only once with Boylston. When Boylston danced alongside Shevchenko in that ballet, all of Boylston's shortcomings came sharply into focus.  Whereas Shevshenko had a regal stage presence and beautiful upper body, I thought Boylston's upper body looked sloppy.   She could do all the steps, but Boylston's lack of classical epaulment  was very apparent.

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56 minutes ago, abatt said:

 She could do all the steps

I do think she's grown a lot as a dancer, but this sums up so many of her performances at ABT, sadly. 

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1 hour ago, abatt said:

When Boylston danced alongside Shevchenko in that ballet, all of Boylston's shortcomings came sharply into focus.  Whereas Shevshenko had a regal stage presence and beautiful upper body, I thought Boylston's upper body looked sloppy.   She could do all the steps, but Boylston's lack of classical epaulment  was very apparent.

... and this is why I avoid Boylston whenever possible. As someone said awhile back (maybe it was you, abatt?), she seems to regard her sloppiness, casual demeanor, and lack of grace as a feature, not a bug. 

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