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nanushka

ABT 2019 Swan Lake

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Intermission report:

Interesting performance tonight.  Act I was very good.  Herman a refined, introspective Siegfried.  The pas de trois featured Luis Ribagorda as Benno partnering Luciana Paris and Betsy McBride.  Paris danced with lots of animation though few match Erica Cornejo in the coda (she is on the DVD). McBride with her broad smile, gorgeous port de bras and crisp footwork was an unalloyed delight.  More please.  Ribagorda danced with dash and attack and brio.  

Act II:  Misty doesn’t look obviously injured.  However her entrance and solo as Odette require the ballerina to hold an arabesque and balance for a few seconds.  Misty didn’t hold the arabesque and got off it quickly.  There was one bobble on the developpes in her solo.  She is a good turner.  Otherwise, Misty is an attractive and pleasing but not profound or grand exponent of Odette.  The curves of her body create gorgeous lines.  Her toffee caramel complexion looks ravishing against her white tutu.  He is naturally a warm stage personality who is responsive and sympathetic.  She is not a doomed victim of fate.  She and Herman have a wonderful rapport and by the end of the pas de deux they were both lovely.  

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Just over:  Sarah Lane was a scintillating glittering Odile who completed the fouettés and brought down the house.  Herman caught fire.  

Fuller report to come soon.  

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Bless you, FauxPas for these updates! I am 3k miles away in San Jose, CA, and would give anything to see Lane perform SL.

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, FauxPas said:

Just over:  Sarah Lane was a scintillating glittering Odile who completed the fouettés and brought down the house.  Herman caught fire.  

Fuller report to come soon.  

Thank you! I think it’s safe to say that quite a few of us are waiting with bated breath! Appreciate all of your reports on tonight. 

Edited by ABT Fan
Typos

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3 minutes ago, FauxPas said:

Just over:  Sarah Lane was a scintillating glittering Odile who completed the fouettés and brought down the house.  Herman caught fire.  

Fuller report to come soon.  

So sad to have missed this!!

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4 minutes ago, FauxPas said:

Just over:  Sarah Lane was a scintillating glittering Odile who completed the fouettés and brought down the house.  Herman caught fire.  

So excited to read this!! Can't wait to see her Aurora again next week. After Manon and tonight, it should be a third triumph.

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20 minutes ago, FauxPas said:

Just over:  Sarah Lane was a scintillating glittering Odile who completed the fouettés and brought down the house.  Herman caught fire.  

Fuller report to come soon.  

HOORAY FOR SARAH LANE!!! 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, alexL said:

Seems like no one on this board is aware of this but Lane is replacing Copeland in the evening's performance. 

 I would have loved to see that.   So pissed I didn't look at ballet alert this evening until now. 

Do we think Sarah will be filling in again on Sat evening?  If so, I will move heaven and earth to get a ticket for Sat evening.  Was the info on the cast change posted anywhere in advance of the show, because the ABT calendar only lists Copeland for tonight.

SL was MIsty's only difficult classical role of the season.  The Tharp Brahms work is a large ensemble piece, so Misty's role was relatively short. Jane Eyre and Manon are not heavy duty classical roles, and her role in Deuce Coupe was not classical.  Based on this development, the "scheduling conflict" excuse for her withdrawal from Ratmansky's Whipped Cream is looking even more flimsy.

Edited by abatt

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Posted (edited)
36 minutes ago, abatt said:

Do we think Sarah will be filling in again on Sat evening?

I'd be very surprised. It made sense tonight, since Cornejo was Siegfried, but there's a very different Siegfried scheduled for Friday Saturday.

Edited by nanushka

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I was referring to Sat evening, when Copeland is scheduled to dance with Hallberg.  

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, abatt said:

I was referring to Sat evening, when Copeland is scheduled to dance with Hallberg.  

Yes, sorry, I meant Saturday, as I was referring to Hallberg as well. Just mistyped.

Edited by nanushka

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Posted (edited)

FauxPas back for a fuller report on Acts III and IV:

So Calvin Royal III was the Purple Pimp and Roman Zhurbin is Swamp Thing.  Nancy Raffa is Queen Mama.

Act III is the usual affair with good work in the national dances by Arron Scott and Gabe Stone Shayer as the Neapolitan Boys.  Calvin Royal III is a flamboyant and enticing Purple Rothbart with sweeping turns and flashing eyes - not Marcelo Gomes or Vladimir Malakhov but damn good.  His solo to the Russian Dance is exciting.  Then there is that balance - that wasn't.  He kind of got halfway up into the arabesque and just quit and put the leg down.   Royal still got a huge hand at the end of his solo.

Now for Sarah as Odile.  Tapping into her dark side and sexuality as Manon has unleashed a certain power to Sarah's stage presence and dance authority.  As Odile, Sarah had a kind of dark, glittering beauty - the smile was commanding and just a bit contemptuous.  The black hair against her pale skin with her bright red lips gave her a combo Snow White/Evil Queen allure.  The pas de deux with Herman was danced with stunning authority including a long held balance that bodes well for Aurora next week.  Herman's solo was beautifully danced with buoyant jumps and turns.  Odile's solo pas begins with unsupported pirouettes that were impressively fast and secure and presaged well for her fouettés in the coda.  I noticed that Sarah was beginning to push a bit and some of the turns looked pressed - during one traveling pirouette downstage Lane momentarily went off toe.  It was a millisecond error and passed by in a blink of an eye.  In the coda, Herman took flight and tore off some whiplash tours à la seconde.  Then came the dreaded fouetté sequence:  Sarah started off strongly with single-single-double-repeat for nearly half the sequence.  But she was already positioned left of center stage and started to travel downstage left on her turns.  In order to regain control and finish the sequence, Lane switched to solid singles and continued those until the end of the music.  She traveled less and ended the sequence securely.   (Charles Barker conducted with no problems except for some flatting horns).  Sarah and Herman got a big ovation at the end from a Misty fan club audience.  On the way out I heard a young woman say:  "That black swan was just so perfect - she was like needlepoint."

Act IV:  Misty seems relaxed and in her element here.  The choreography puts less pressure on her feet and highlights Odette's emotions.  Misty has great chemistry with Herman and a more human character to represent - a suffering woman who has been betrayed but still needs to forgive.  Given Misty's difficulty in holding balances in arabesque and strained looking developpees in Act II, I think the problem was pain in her feet or a pulled muscle that was not enough to cancel but caused discomfort.  She looked limited in Act II as if she could not stretch the limbs more.  Misty has had many foot injuries and admitted in an ABT Talk that she dances in constant pain.  I suspect that in taking class or warming up the afternoon before the show, Copeland realized her feet were not in good shape and that discretion is the better part of valor.  To push through Act III with a bad foot was probably going to lead to accident and/or injury.  Better to work her way through Act II, take a long rest and come back for the shorter Act IV.

Anyway, at the final bows Herman brought out both Misty and Sarah and all three took ensemble bows.  Sarah Lane got to bring on Charles Barker for his bow.  At the final front of gold curtain solo bows, first Herman came out, then Sarah Lane and finally Misty to a huge fan ovation.

BTW: the production is starting to look tired with musty wrinkled backdrops.  With great casts like Nina Ananiashvili and Julio Bocca or Veronika Part and Marcelo Gomes, the oddities and missteps of McKenzie's production didn't matter much against the success of the evening.  With less authoritative superstar principals, the production looks trite, rushed and flat with silly details standing out more.  Given the current weak male roster, Purple Pimp Rothbart is a star turn that usually lacks a star - it was designed for the "Born to Be Wild" male dream team that has passed on into history.

Edited by FauxPas

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4 hours ago, canbelto said:

@FauxPas who is at the performance just texted me:

Misty for the white acts, Sarah for black swan.

How  very peculiar.  That's got to be a first for ABT.  I would love to see Lane with Cornejo in a full SL.

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9 minutes ago, Marta said:

How  very peculiar.  That's got to be a first for ABT.  I would love to see Lane with Cornejo in a full SL.

There was a performance I attended where Dvorovenko did the white act and Julie Kent did Odile.

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Thanks, FauxPas, for that exciting report.  Next week's two Lane-Cornejo Sleeping Beauty performances should be outstanding.

I hope Lane does not turn into Copeland's permanent Black Swan stand-in after tonight.  Lane must have her own pre-scheduled four-act Swan Lake; it's long overdue.  Copeland can't handle two complete performances?  Give one to Lane.  Please.  We need this!

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Bravo for Lane! 

This is all absolutely bizarre though. She was given a few hours notice, so this obviously was not something ABT planned out, yet FauxPas said Copeland clearly did not look injured... 

I wonder if this will be the case for the Wolf Trap performance? Does Misty have another go at SL this week? 

I for one find it kind of frustrating-- wonderful for Lane, however. We all know Odile has given Misty trouble in the past, so I am curious to know if this has something to do with that. 

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5 hours ago, annaewgn said:

This is all absolutely bizarre though. She was given a few hours notice, so this obviously was not something ABT planned out, yet FauxPas said Copeland clearly did not look injured... 

The third-to-last paragraph of @FauxPas's review suggests that Misty looked like she might be dancing under strain:

7 hours ago, FauxPas said:

Given Misty's difficulty in holding balances in arabesque and strained looking developpees in Act II, I think the problem was pain in her feet or a pulled muscle that was not enough to cancel but caused discomfort.  She looked limited in Act II as if she could not stretch the limbs more.  Misty has had many foot injuries and admitted in an ABT Talk that she dances in constant pain.  I suspect that in taking class or warming up the afternoon before the show, Copeland realized her feet were not in good shape and that discretion is the better part of valor.  To push through Act III with a bad foot was probably going to lead to accident and/or injury.  Better to work her way through Act II take a long rest and come back for the shorter Act IV.

That seems to me to be the most likely explanation for what happened and why, though of course we have no way of knowing. But I suspect Misty didn't want to pull out completely (given the inevitable disappointment of her many ardent fans), and so this was a compromise to avoid either a disastrous performance or further injury.

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8 hours ago, FauxPas said:

Then there is that balance - that wasn't.  He kind of got halfway up into the arabesque and just quit and put the leg down.

So far, Rothbart's arabesque balance has been for this year what the fouettés were last year. Forster didn't really manage it, Royal didn't manage it either Tuesday or Wednesday night — how did Sebastian do on Wednesday afternoon?

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Love reading these reports. So happy for Sarah!!   Anybody see Aran Bell's debut at the matinee yesterday?  

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8 hours ago, FauxPas said:

BTW: the production is starting to look tired with musty wrinkled backdrops.  With great casts like Nina Ananiashvili and Julio Bocca or Veronika Part and Marcelo Gomes, the oddities and missteps of McKenzie's production didn't matter much against the success of the evening.  With less authoritative superstar principals, the production looks trite, rushed and flat with silly details standing out more.  Given the current weak male roster, Purple Pimp Rothbart is a star turn that usually lacks a star - it was designed for the "Born to Be Wild" male dream team that has passed on into history.

I imagine it's only a matter of time before they bring in Ratmansky's Swan Lake..?

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10 minutes ago, Fleurfairy said:

I imagine it's only a matter of time before they bring in Ratmansky's Swan Lake..?

Several months ago we had a discussion of the Miami City Ballet's plans to stage Ratmansky's reconstruction of the original in the 2020-21 season. Lopes posted some things on her social media, although it's not yet on their web site. Currently, Miami does Balanchine's one-act Swan Lake. I assume they would want a North American exclusive on the reconstruction. Presumably McKenzie gets royalties for using his version at ABT, so until he retires, this seems like the version ABT will stay with. 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Fleurfairy said:

I imagine it's only a matter of time before they bring in Ratmansky's Swan Lake..?

Possibly. Though as long as McKenzie’s in charge he has a strong financial incentive to maintain the status quo (especially since it gets a minimum of 8 performances every single year in the Met season alone). We might get a cosmetic refreshment of the current production first.

Edited by nanushka

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2 minutes ago, California said:

Several months ago we had a discussion of the Miami City Ballet's plans to stage Ratmansky's reconstruction of the original in the 2020-21 season. Lopes posted some things on her social media, although it's not yet on their web site. Currently, Miami does Balanchine's one-act Swan Lake. I assume they would want a North American exclusive on the reconstruction.

Considering 2 companies in Europe staged it at virtually the same time, is there any reason to think only one company in North America would be able to?

I recognize they weren't in the same country, but distances in Europe are nowhere near what they are in the US.

Zurich to Milan is about a 4 hour drive. New York is obviously much further away than that from Miami.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, laurel said:

Thanks, FauxPas, for that exciting report.  Next week's two Lane-Cornejo Sleeping Beauty performances should be outstanding.

I hope Lane does not turn into Copeland's permanent Black Swan stand-in after tonight.  Lane must have her own pre-scheduled four-act Swan Lake; it's long overdue.  Copeland can't handle two complete performances?  Give one to Lane.  Please.  We need this!

Agree one hundred percent.  Lane is not Misty's back-up dancer.  Lane has earned the right to be cast in her own SL.

If you can't do the steps, you shouldn't be assigned the role.  It's very simple.

Edited by abatt

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