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Fall Season


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1 hour ago, BalanchineFan said:

I thought Olivia MacKinnon was good in Piano Concerto #2.  She was very expansive and technically solid. If I hadn't known I'm not sure I would have guessed that it was a debut.

Thanks for the report. Glad to hear she looked good. Expansiveness in particular is such a great quality in a dancer. Hopefully I'll get to see her next time this piece comes back (in the spring, I believe). 

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55 minutes ago, cobweb said:

Thanks for the report. Glad to hear she looked good. Expansiveness in particular is such a great quality in a dancer. Hopefully I'll get to see her next time this piece comes back (in the spring, I believe). 

I had no idea it was a debut, and would have never guessed it. She seemed really at ease in the (not easy) role, and yes, I think "expansiveness" is an appropriate descriptor for her dancing. It's just a pity she wears the nearly the same (or is it exactly the same?) costume as the demi-soloist girls. She deserves to stand out visually. 

Edited by fondoffouettes
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12 hours ago, fondoffouettes said:

I had no idea it was a debut, and would have never guessed it. She seemed really at ease in the (not easy) role, and yes, I think "expansiveness" is an appropriate descriptor for her dancing. It's just a pity she wears the nearly the same (or is it exactly the same?) costume as the demi-soloist girls. She deserves to stand out visually. 

MacKinnon was great tonight — she’s got more than enough technique to handle the role, with lovely amplitude in her jumps, wonderful articulation in the quick sections (something that you don’t always see with tall dancers), and those long, long limbs. She projected joy throughout.

Gordon did end up performing in TCP2 tonight. While he’s not quite tall enough to work with this cast, and he’s not quite up to Angle’s level in partnering (I mean, who is?), he acquitted himself well and had thrilling solos. Bouder, meanwhile, was incredible, and clearly seasoned in the role.

Sarah Villwock was a shining star in one of the demi spots, and I rued, again, that she’ll be leaving us before we get to see her in a major role. Here’s hoping she gets many, many opportunities at PNB. I get the impression that Villwock may be a pretty special dancer, and that we in NYC may have only seen a fraction of what she’s capable of.

As for the rest of the program: 

Serenade looked fantastic. It’s always great to see City Ballet dancers so at home in the ballet, and Lauren Lovette, Emilie Gerrity, and Erica Peirera just keep getting better and better. All three seem happier and more relaxed onstage this season. The corps also looked excellent, and I was struck, as always, by the level of talent among the more experienced corps women. 

Summerspace was ... fine. I’m not a huge fan of Cunningham, and while ballet dancers are capable of performing the steps, they’re still ballet dancers, not modern dancers. It’s like they’re working in another physical language without fluency. Andrew Veyette and Lydia Wellington seemed closest to “getting it.”

All in all, a nice night at the ballet.

(I do have to note, though, that Alec Knight’s hair is truly distracting. I really thought it couldn’t be that bad, and then I saw it onstage and couldn’t look away. The man’s got talent and presence to spare — if only he could get a new dye job?)

Edited by tutu
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For yesterday's TPC#2, I see that Davide Riccardo was subbed in as one of the demisoloist men. Did anyone note how he did? He really stood out to me at the SAB workshop I think it was 2 years ago, and this seems to be one of his first featured roles. 

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2 hours ago, cobweb said:

For yesterday's TPC#2, I see that Davide Riccardo was subbed in as one of the demisoloist men. Did anyone note how he did? He really stood out to me at the SAB workshop I think it was 2 years ago, and this seems to be one of his first featured roles. 

If he is who I think he is (I’m not totally familiar with him), he had an absolutely princely demeanor and seemed like a sure and stable partner. Spartak Hoxha also was good.

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30 minutes ago, tutu said:

If he is who I think he is (I’m not totally familiar with him), he had an absolutely princely demeanor and seemed like a sure and stable partner. Spartak Hoxha also was good

Thanks for the report tutu! He is a very handsome dark-haired Italian. 

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Totally boffo performance of Symphony in C to close the season. Sterling Hyltin better than expected in the second movement. Megan le Crone appeared as an unannounced replacement for Ashley Hod in the first movement though. 
 

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2 hours ago, cobweb said:

Totally boffo performance of Symphony in C to close the season. Sterling Hyltin better than expected in the second movement. Megan le Crone appeared as an unannounced replacement for Ashley Hod in the first movement though. 
 

Yes !! And Clara Miller (Instagram) is injured so Ashley Hod moved into the third movement and LeCrone stepped in.  Great job to all!!!

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Well, in anticipation of possible promotions today, I decided to prepare "Principal Pork" for dinner tonight -- a recipe from Jock Soto and Heather Watts' "Our Meals" cookbook.  This was the dinner Jock prepared upon learning he had been promoted.  It's a delicious recipe I've made for years and I'm making it now...promotions or no promotions!

Even though there were no announcements today, and I can't presume to know why or why not, sounds like it was a beautiful fall season.  Thank you to everyone who kept this far away Texas fan informed with your eyewitness accounts and amazing insights which I truly appreciate.  I really live for your reviews since it is not very often that I can get there myself.  Until "Nutcracker!"

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8 hours ago, tutu said:

If he is who I think he is (I’m not totally familiar with him), he had an absolutely princely demeanor and seemed like a sure and stable partner. Spartak Hoxha also was good.

 

8 hours ago, cobweb said:

Thanks for the report tutu! He is a very handsome dark-haired Italian. 

I saw last night's performance and agree that both Riccardo and Hoxha were very good.  I've been noticing Hoxha for a while and he's a very strong dancer. He should be made soloist.  While Riccardo does look more princely, I thought he seemed a little hesitant at times.  He is also much younger than Hoxha.  Joe Gordon was absolutely wonderful in TPC2.  I do dislike the costumes very much.  The men's costumes were just plain ugly, and the women's Juliet skirts were a dishwatery color and wrong for this ballet.  All the movement of the skirts was quite distracting. Bring back the tutus.

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2 hours ago, Jacqueline said:

Thank you to everyone who kept this far away Texas fan informed with your eyewitness accounts and amazing insights which I truly appreciate.  I really live for your reviews since it is not very often that I can get there myself.  Until "Nutcracker!"

I agree!  Living in Utah, I know I'll never see NYCB live.  During Nutcracker, and the fall and springs seasons, I check in on this board at least twice a day.  Fortunately, Ballet West (I live very near Salt Lake City,) does perform Balanchine works from time to time.  Next month, they are performing an evening of early Balanchine works in honor of the 100th anniversary of Diaghilev's Ballet Russe.  Prodigal Son, Apollo, and Le Chant du Rossignal are on the bill.  I will  be there on November 2nd with bells on!  I don't, however, care for Ballet West's Nutcracker (William Christensen.)  I've seen it twice, and twice is enough for me.

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My partner and I attended the Friday evening performance of Dances at a Gathering / Everywhere We Go. My partner, a retired musician who had not seen these pieces before, was particularly impressed with how the Chopin pieces were cobbled together into an epic, coherent whole. I found DAAG beautiful overall, as always. Russell Janzen has impressed all season. He seems to have gotten taller over the past few years, if that's even possible, or maybe it's just that the span of his arms is breathtaking. Jovani Furlan also continues to impress after seeing him a few times now. I assume they hired him with the intent of sooner or later making him a principal, and it looks like that might not be too far off. After the poetic beauty of DAAG, at intermission I was dreading Everywere We Go, wishing they could just do DAAG all over again. But, it intrigued me more than I remembered. Yes, I find it overly busy and repetitious with too much frenetic running around, and if there's a point of view in there I missed it, but Peck does have a lot of interesting choreographic ideas. 

It's disappointing not to get the excitement of seeing our favorites promoted (I'm on Team Emilie), but I wonder if there's not room at the top now, especially for female principals. While it seems like one or two retirements could be coming within the next few years (or sooner?), that still leaves a whole cohort of robust, versatile female principals. 

 

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2 minutes ago, cobweb said:

It's disappointing not to get the excitement of seeing our favorites promoted (I'm on Team Emilie), but I wonder if there's not room at the top now, especially for female principals. While it seems like one or two retirements could be coming within the next few years (or sooner?), that still leaves a whole cohort of robust, versatile female principals.

Yeah, looking at the roster, I can't say I see a need for more female principals at this particular moment. There's a need for one or two more male principals, I think — especially given some of the diminishing (or at least inconsistent) abilities of some of the older men — but I don't think any of the male soloists is quite ready to move up. Harrison Ball is closest, I think, but it would seem odd to promote him right now, and I think he could use another few injury-free seasons to really show his depth and range.

I was much more impressed by Emilie Gerrity in Serenade and Summerspace on Saturday than I had been in Dances at a Gathering on Tuesday.

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47 minutes ago, nanushka said:

Yeah, looking at the roster, I can't say I see a need for more female principals at this particular moment. 

I’m not understanding. There are fewer female principals than male. Gerrity and Woodward have been dancing principal workloads, Phelan close to it as well. To me the inequity is obvious.

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1 minute ago, canbelto said:

Sounds like Ramasar is leaving:

 

 

He’s cast as Bernardo in the Broadway production of West Side Story which begins previews in December.  This was announced some time ago.  He could conceivably return after the run.

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1 hour ago, Leah said:

I’m not understanding. There are fewer female principals than male. Gerrity and Woodward have been dancing principal workloads, Phelan close to it as well. To me the inequity is obvious.

Fewer in total numbers, but the women who are principals are generally stronger, more versatile, and dance a much heavier load than their male counterparts. Now, perhaps that's a problem — but I'm not sure it is, given the quality we see from them.

There are a lot of men filling out the roster who don't dance nearly as much as the women. To my mind, there's more of a feeling of scarcity on the male side, even if the numbers seem to belie that.

I don't think Gerrity, Woodward or Phelan are dancing so many leads that it seems like an inequity not to promote them immediately — just that they'll most likely get there before too much longer.

38 minutes ago, Peg said:

He could conceivably return after the run.

Perhaps, though what he wrote in that IG post sends a pretty strong message that this may not just be a temporary leave.

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5 minutes ago, nanushka said:

Perhaps, though what he wrote in that IG post sends a pretty strong message that this may not just be a temporary leave.

I agree.  I'm looking forward to seeing him in West Side Story, but will certainly miss him at NYCB.

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1 hour ago, nanushka said:

Perhaps, though what he wrote in that IG post sends a pretty strong message that this may not just be a temporary leave.

Yes, I agree that the tone implies more than just a temporary leave. If that's the case, I look forward to seeing more of the up-and-coming men.

On 10/13/2019 at 1:25 AM, tutu said:

MacKinnon was great tonight — she’s got more than enough technique to handle the role, with lovely amplitude in her jumps, wonderful articulation in the quick sections (something that you don’t always see with tall dancers), and those long, long limbs. She projected joy throughout.

I enjoyed Olivia MacKinnon a lot in PC#2, too.

As for promotions—I was so rooting for Kikta and Hoxha. Sigh.

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9 hours ago, nanushka said:

Fewer in total numbers, but the women who are principals are generally stronger, more versatile, and dance a much heavier load than their male counterparts. Now, perhaps that's a problem — but I'm not sure it is, given the quality we see from them.

There are a lot of men filling out the roster who don't dance nearly as much as the women. To my mind, there's more of a feeling of scarcity on the male side, even if the numbers seem to belie that.

I don't think Gerrity, Woodward or Phelan are dancing so many leads that it seems like an inequity not to promote them immediately — just that they'll most likely get there before too much longer.

Perhaps, though what he wrote in that IG post sends a pretty strong message that this may not just be a temporary leave.

Regarding Ramasar, Broadway contracts are usually for one year. If WSS runs, which is expected given the material and Ivo Van Hove, Ramasar will not be available to NYCB until one year from WSS opening. 
 

Regarding Woodward, Phelan and Gerrity I don’t think any of them have danced the Balanchine/Tschaikovsky or Balanchine/Stravinsky masterworks (at least not with NYCB), which might be expected before a promotion. I love how the three of them dance and expect each might one day make principal. Unfortunately there is no rhyme or reason and certainly no SCHEDULE on which NYCB announces promotions. The timing is on a whim. In Balanchine’s day the dancers sometimes didn’t know until they got a bigger paycheck  

Joseph Gordon, meanwhile, is kicking it as a principal. And, in contrast to a query about his height, I think Russell Janzen has only grown artistically. His PC2 was great. 

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For Ramasar's sake I hope West Side Story has a decent run,  but I truly doubt that it will succeed.  With the Spielberg film version coming,  could be that the public is not in the mood for yet another WSS,  especially since there's nothing wrong with the original.  At any rate,  I doubt that Ramasar will dance with NYCB again.  I'm sure TPTB were determined to get rid of him by not renewing his contract after the humiliation of losing the AGMA arbitration.

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8 hours ago, On Pointe said:

For Ramasar's sake I hope West Side Story has a decent run,  but I truly doubt that it will succeed.  With the Spielberg film version coming,  could be that the public is not in the mood for yet another WSS,  especially since there's nothing wrong with the original.  At any rate,  I doubt that Ramasar will dance with NYCB again.  I'm sure TPTB were determined to get rid of him by not renewing his contract after the humiliation of losing the AGMA arbitration.

I agree with you.  I doubt that this stage version will last for a full year.  I don't interpret Ramasar's words as indicative of a permanent departure. He is merely expressing his thanks to people in the company, thereby demonstrating that his mandatory sensitivity training has paid off.

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