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Adjectives applied to ballets

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As a former advertising copywriter, I sympathize, to an extent, with whoever wrote the blurbs in the NYCB winter season brochure. But there is an over-fondness for adjectives that gets a little silly.

"sublime" Concerto Barocco and Valse-Fantasie

"dazzling" the Diamond Project as a whole

"delightful" Western Symphony and Steadfast Tin Soldier

"ebullient" Piano Pieces

"intriguing" Sinfonia

"captivating" Bach Concerto V

"exquisite" Serenade

"saucy" Slaughter on Tenth Avenue

"arresting" Vespro

"delectable" Soiree

"entrancing" Morphoses

"stunning" Reliquary

"enchanting" Coppelia

"astonishing" Square Dance

"haunting" In the Night

"witty" Fancy Free

"dynamic" The Infernal Machine

"romantic" I'm Old Fashioned

"stirring" Pavane

"rowdy" Western Symphony (again)

"luminous" Vienna Waltzes

"lively" Tarantella and Interplay

"masterful" Chaconne

"awesome" Haiku

"incomparable" Symphony in Three Movements

"fanciful" Coppelia (again)

"astounding" Reliquary (again)

While "awesome" is applied to just one ballet, "incredible" is used to characterize the whole of subscription series number 10.

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I have to say I sympathize, having written reviews of galas, where you have to say SOMETHING about 25 dancers in 400 words. One adjective has to do it -- who gets "charming?" which new excerpt is "interesting" and which "fascinating?" I found once, to my horror, as I was about to phone in a piece -- this was before email -- that I had given the "melting" adjective to Kirkland and Dowell in The Nutcracker. Which would have been almost ok, except it was the snow pas de deux from Nutcracker.

It is am impressive list. One of the reasons we print the press releases in Ballet Alert's preview issue is so that people can see how ballet is presented in different places. One regional company, which shall remain nameless, billed "Chaconne" and "Slaughter on 10th Avenue" as "Murder and Mayhem." I never could figure out which was which. Eurydice is, in fact, dead......

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