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New York City Ballet Fall Season

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3 hours ago, cobweb said:

Wow, I'm not sure what happened, but does this mean she's out for tonight? And LaFreniere out too? Casting has not yet been updated. 

I’m going tonight. I’m curious who the Tall girl will be. 

The instagram post from NYCB with Kretschmar & LaFrenier from two days ago says that Claire was scheduled to debut on the 19th, so Im not sure why casting isn’t updated still. I’m hoping LaFreniere isn’t injured. 

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56 minutes ago, bluejean said:

I take that to mean that apprentices have a certain time-frame in which to prove themselves, and thus be promoted to the corps, or not?  It seems that promotions have stalled since Martins left, or is that only my perception? 

My understanding is that you cannot be an apprentice for more than 1 year, so that at the end of your year you are given a corps contract or let go. Also, apprentices are automatically in the corps if they are cast in a certain number of roles (I forget how many) even if they haven't served a full year of apprenticeship.

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5 minutes ago, vipa said:

My understanding is that you cannot be an apprentice for more than 1 year, so that at the end of your year you are given a corps contract or let go. Also, apprentices are automatically in the corps if they are cast in a certain number of roles (I forget how many) even if they haven't served a full year of apprenticeship.

I thought I remembered Martin's saying you could do a max of 2 years as an apprentice.

Edited by Balletwannabe

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3 minutes ago, Balletwannabe said:

I thought I remembered Martin's saying you could do a max of 2 years as an apprentice.

I think it's 1 year, but of course I could be wrong. I've never heard of anyone doing more than that. I know that AGMA frowns on long apprenticeships, because it would be considered taking advantage of cheap labor.

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Just now, vipa said:

I think it's 1 year, but of course I could be wrong. I've never heard of anyone doing more than that. I know that AGMA frowns on long apprenticeships, because it would be considered taking advantage of cheap labor.

I could be wrong.  I thought he said it in a dance video I was watching.. can't recall which one.

I wonder why they don't list apprentices on the "dancers" NYCB webpage?

Edited by Balletwannabe

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50 minutes ago, yukionna4869 said:

I’m going tonight. I’m curious who the Tall girl will be. 

The instagram post from NYCB with Kretschmar & LaFrenier from two days ago says that Claire was scheduled to debut on the 19th, so Im not sure why casting isn’t updated still. I’m hoping LaFreniere isn’t injured. 

NYCB casting page was updated. Claire is doing all Tall Girl performances for the rest of this week.

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Jewels - Wed 9/19/18 

This performance was really all about the debuts, so I'll take them in order of appearance.

Emeralds — Tiler Peck & Taylor Stanley (debut); Unity Phelan (debut) & Adrian Danchig-Waring; Sara Adams, Meagan Mann, & Sean Suozzi.

Probably one of the best all-around performances of Emeralds I've seen in a while. Both debuts (Stanley and Phelan) were all that might have been asked for and more, and the rest of the cast brought their A game. 

With regard to Stanley, I can only ask "what took them so long?" — his elegance, musicality, and beautiful pliancy, plus his ability to evoke reverie and an inward gaze while still being very much present (a quality he shares with Wendy Whelan) would seem to make him a natural for the world of Emeralds. He's not one of the company's demon pyrotechnicians, but I like his approach to bravura steps: rather than just punching them out, he folds them into the music and the contours of his line. He was an excellent foil for Tiler Peck: there's a passage in the opening section where the ballerina takes her partner by the hand and runs across the stage in front of the corps, swirls around him a few times, and skims off in the other direction with her danseur still in tow. Often enough it looks like a bit of running hither and thither to fill out the music and whip up a nice froth of tulle. Without any kind of undue fuss, Stanley made something more of it: it really looked like he was letting her lead him into some secret, magical realm, — a place where only she could take him. 

Unity Phelan's debut in Mimi Paul's role was just gorgeous, especially her Sicilienne solo, which was was hands down the best dancing I've seen from her yet: she was musical and focussed, with  a genuine perfume and an interpretive and stylistic throughline that I haven't seen from her before. If I hadn't known it was a debut I would have thought her solo was the product of more than a few seasons of thoughtful refinement. I cannot say enough good things about it, and frankly, I thought she pretty much walked off with what I had expected to be Tiler Peck's show. 

Phelan was also lovely in the "Walking" pas de deux (with Adrian Danchig-Waring), though I still prefer Ashley Laracey (again with Danchig-Waring) in that pas. Laracey and Danchig-Waring dance it like they are already halfway through the portal to the vanished world that Emeralds becomes in its final, elegiac moments; they are so other-worldy that they put me in mind of Ashton's Monotones, of all things. Phelan's approach had a bit more flesh-and-blood yearning to it, but was still a lovely interpretation.

My only reservation about last night's performance of Emeralds concerns Sean Suozzi. I have no complaints about his dancing per se, but his style is and always has been a bit brusque. It serves him very well in his best roles — e.g., Agon and the hat and boots guy in Cortège Hongrois — but seems out of place in the world of Balanchine's Emeralds. 

Rubies —  Sterling Hyltin, Andrew Veyette, and Claire Kretzschmar.

Sterling Hiltin was absolutely terrific: fast, funny, expansive, and endearing. Andrew Veyette did a decent job of emulating bravura. He seems to have recovered from whatever was so grievously amiss last season, but has lost some of the easy flair he brought to this role half a decade ago. 

As was noted further up-thread, Claire Kretzschmar debuted as a last-minute substitute for Isabella LaFreniere as the Tall Girl. (Fingers crossed that it's nothing serious! LaFreniere had to scrub her big debut in Firebird a few seasons ago; I hope she doesn't have to scrub this one too.) Simply by virtue of her dynamism, verve, and bold attack, Kretzschmar should be an ideal Tall Girl, but she's just not quite tall enough to be a natural fit for the role. Some uneasiness in the big, unsupported arabesques aside (which I will chalk up to Surprise! You're debuting tonight! nerves), she danced well, and was just as saucy and cheeky as I would have liked. She wasn't notably taller than some of the women in the corps, however, and sometimes got lost in the crowd. I'm not sure the choreography can really accommodate an Almost-Tall Girl who otherwise nails the steps, even if she does so as vividly as Kretzschmar surely can. I've seen her take center stage with authority, though, so I'm hoping she and the ballet masters can get this one sorted out.  

Diamonds - Cast: Sara Mearns & Joseph Gordon (debut).

Bravo, Joseph Gordon! He rightly brought the house down with his solos, which were more than a display of pyrotechnics: he danced his bravura jumps and turns like a poised and confident Prince rather than hurling himself through them like a circus showboat. Although Gordon did comport himself like a prince — albeit a young one — and certainly seemed to be a capable and gracious partner, I think he and Mearns are something of a mismatch: they looked a bit like the Marschallin and Octavian, and I was half expecting Sophie to put in an appearance. They nonetheless seemed to have a genuine rapport, and I think much credit is due to Mearns for making sure Gordon's debut was a success. I want to see them both in Diamonds again, but maybe with different partners. And of course, I'd like to see Gordon in about 50 other things, too!

So, last night it seemed like everything really is beautiful at the ballet.

 

Edited by Kathleen O'Connell

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I decided to go tonight at the last minute and glad I did. Another dose of Balanchine is just what the doctor ordered for my beleaguered mind. Kowroski and Tyler Angle delivered a seamless, majestic pas de deux in Diamonds. When the corps came on for the final promenade, led by Aaron Sanz with his stunning arabesque, all seemed right with the world. Beauty, hierarchy and geometry, chivalry, discipline and training, and the many beaming and eager faces of young dancers new to the company - all a balm to the soul. 

On a less exalted note, I was disappointed in Claire Kretzschmar’s Tall Girl. She’s not tall enough to give the choreography the intended impact. The arabesques penchee were tentative and not fully articulated (presumably that can be improved). And I found her too cheerleaderey, smiling and spunky. Emily Kikta the other night was totally badass. She glared at the audience and used her legs like deadly weapons. She was dangerous, and I loved it. 

In Emeralds, Ashley Laracey was a vision. Indiana Woodward’s phrasing was thrilling. She holds herself like a star. I was going to say that I love the pas de trois, then I was going to add I love the “walking solo” role, and then the solemn ending... I guess what I’m saying is that I love Emeralds. 

Get well soon Emily and Isabella!!

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1 hour ago, chicagoballetomane said:

Is Lexi Maxwell not performing this season? She posted a palm tree picture on her IG story. Shame if she’s not dancing to support Amar 

She has been out for some time. I don't know the nature of her injury.

 

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15 minutes ago, cobweb said:

Indiana Woodward’s phrasing was thrilling. She holds herself like a star.

I agree completely. She was the highlight of Emeralds for me. I hope she gets a shot at Violette role soon. 

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Being at NYCB this past week has been a balm for the soul. I'll merely echo the thoughts expressed above but I cannot help praising Unity Phelan for a stellar debut in the Sicilienne solo in Emeralds. Simply heavenly.

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NYT Speaking in Dance this week is Indiana Woodward with Sebastian Villarini-Velez rehearsing 3rd movement Symphony in C

 

Edited by FPF
Mistake

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I was there last evening (Thursday) and as manhattangal says, it was a balm for the soul. So transformative. Best: the 2 Ashley’s—Laracey and Bouder. Laracey, in Emeralds, was regal, majestic, her head held high, her inscrutable expression hiding mysteries of the character she played (even though this was a plotless ballet). Everything about her performance was perfection, just what I would expect of the best principals at NYCB. Please promote her.

Bouder, with her wonderful partner Joaquin De Luz, lit up not only the theater, but New York, in Rubies. The joy, the dizzyingly fast pace, the energy and precision—words fail me. This is the perfect vehicle for Bouder. And they had so much fun together! 

I also applaud the corps in each section. They were all wonderful. A special shoutout to Sterling Hoxha in Emeralds for his seemingly weightless jumps, one almost stopping in midair. 

What a relief from all the troubles the company has been having. 

Edited by CTballetfan
Date was a Thursday not Wednesday—sorry

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17 minutes ago, yukionna4869 said:

@FPF: That’s Indiana Woodward

Thank you! I fixed it. I keep mixing them up.

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On 9/15/2018 at 11:51 AM, fondoffouettes said:

Nor does she do the balance with the developpe a la seconde, which I admit, I find a little disappointing.

 

I actually prefer the dignified, languid quality of how Kent and Ludlow do the a la seconde to the man positively sprinting to get to the ballerina's other hand (e.g., how Reichlen and Angle do it in canbelto's video around 2:15). But I mean... this entire ballet is transcendent and spiritual nourishment, so I don't mind TOO much. 😉

I am finally going to NYCB tonight and I CANNOT WAIT YOU GUYS!!!

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What an exceptionally dignified, solemn role that originally danced by Mimi Paul in Emeralds is! This is the part in Jewels—especially in the ethereal choreography for her solo and the “walking pas de deux” (accompanied respectively by Fauré’s haunting “Sicilienne” and “Nocturne”)—that powerfully evokes intimations of another world, and thereby constitutes a coveted antidote to all the extraneous, incessant noise in this one. Wednesday evening's debut by Unity Phelan in this role was ineffably thrilling. This was the debut of the week I was most looking forward to and her performance, situated between two sublime renditions of the same part by a transcendent Ashley Laracey on Tuesday and Thursday evening, exceeded even my trustful expectations. It would be a salutary, gratifying experience for mere mortals to witness this at whatever occasion in this troubling world; however, in light of the chaos swirling around NYCB presently the sublimity and spirituality of the beauteous dancing with downcast eyes by both women could not have been timelier.

A unique and special ballerina at her peak, Tiler Peck performed the Violette Verdy role on Wednesday evening as touchingly as one can. So, even though—as reflected in the comments above—Rubies and Diamonds were graced by several excellent individual performances and were thoroughly enjoyable also, it was the Emeralds segment of Jewels on Wednesday that sparkled the brightest.

 

Edited by Royal Blue

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Did anyone else see La Freniere's most recent instagram post? Conspiracy theory:  pulled from Rubies because she'll be debuting in Diamonds instead? The comments from her colleagues don't have any "get well" "heal fast" etc. and she's wearing the Diamonds costume.

Edited by DC Export

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1 hour ago, DC Export said:

Did anyone else see La Freniere's most recent instagram post? Conspiracy theory:  pulled from Rubies because she'll be debuting in Diamonds instead? The comments from her colleagues don't have any "get well" "heal fast" etc. and she's wearing the Diamonds costume.

That's how I read it, as well, especially given this quote that she includes:

“Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in your mind.” David G. Allen

Edited by fondoffouettes

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If this is true, I count on alert Ballet Alert-ers to post the news the instant it becomes official.  

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Presumably the person she would be replacing is Reichlen (since both Kowroski and Mearns danced Diamonds after LaFreniere was pulled from Rubies). Any indication from Reichlen’s Instagram that she is injured? She is after all scheduled to dance in Concerto Barocco tonight. 

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The first and third week casting sheets seem to have been missing from the website all day — or, at least, the links on the "Casting" page haven't been working for me. (Week two has been there.) I get a page that says, "Sorry, the page you requested cannot be found."

Edited by nanushka

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11 minutes ago, nanushka said:

The first and third week casting sheets seem to have been missing from the website all day — or, at least, the links on the "Casting" page haven't been working for me. (Week two has been there.) I get a page that says, "Sorry, the page you requested cannot be found."

I get that now too. Strange as I was able to view it about an hour ago and also this morning. Perhaps they’re updating it.

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3 hours ago, Royal Blue said:

What an exceptionally dignified, solemn role that originally danced by Mimi Paul in Emeralds is! This is the part in Jewels—especially in the ethereal choreography for her solo and the “walking pas de deux” (accompanied respectively by Fauré’s haunting “Sicilienne” and “Nocturne”)—that powerfully evokes intimations of another world, and thereby constitutes a coveted antidote to all the extraneous, incessant noise in this one. Wednesday evening's debut by Unity Phelan in this role was ineffably thrilling. This was the debut of the week I was most looking forward to and her performance, situated between two sublime renditions of the same part by a transcendent Ashley Laracey on Tuesday and Thursday evening, exceeded even my trustful expectations. It would be a salutary, gratifying experience for mere mortals to witness this at whatever occasion in this troubling world; however, in light of the chaos swirling around NYCB presently the sublimity and spirituality of the beauteous dancing with downcast eyes by both women could not have been timelier.

The solo for the ‘second’ Emeralds ballerina is pretty much one of my favorite solos in all Balanchine and actually in all ballet. Love reading about Phelan’s debut and also Laracey in the role....

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