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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2002 9:02 am 
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Joined: Thu May 31, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 267
Location: UK
Finally got round to seeing it for myself. Yes, Swan Lake 'in the round' definitely has it's flaws. The 64 swans boureeing together in place is not so stunning close up as it is from above and they don't pack the emotional whallop that conventional stagings do. Regardless of where you sit, you're going to get a bad angle or blocked view of the dancers at some point. It's a terrible pity that the mime from Act II has been cut - I think it's one of the most beautiful sections of mime there is in ballet. The Neopolitan dance, the only national dance I look forward to in Act III was very poor, both choreographically and in spirit. And the happy ending is a big gyp - it isn't much of a battle against Rothbart and it's unclear what exactly breaks the curse (the power of love? - yawn!)<P>Gripes over. I found the whole experience extremely enjoyable. The whole company is superbly rehearsed. The fact that so many dancers are needed means that you get a huge amount of pleasure from seeing most of the company on stage any given night and some favourite soloists like Yat Seng Chang and Shi Ning Liu in at least 2 different roles. Added to that, the quality of sound in the Royal Albert Hall is incredible, the way the music fills the auditorium. <P>The Swan Queen and Prince of the night were esteemed dancers Agnes Oaks and Thomas Edur. Agnes was absolutely luminous as Odette. She's the most beautiful ballerina I've ever seen. Her dancing perhaps is not a crisp as one would like but her interpretation of Odette was full of terrible sorrow and suffering. I always saw Edur as the stronger actor but on Monday night Oaks delivered the best performance of Odette I've ever seen. Not to take anything away from Edur - he was perfect as Siegfried, such beautiful immaculate dancing! He looks younger than his years on stage and projects boyishness, a little impulsiveness, without losing his princely air. <P>Together husband and wife Edur and Oaks have one of the most romantic on-stage partnerships. Funnily enough until now I had never been particularly moved by the Act II pdd, even after seeing some really quality dancers like Rojo and Acosta. I've always waited impatiently for the Big Swans duet right after which I really love. But this time I really saw Siegfreid and Odette fall in love in the pdd. It was extraordinarily beautiful, definitely worth sitting up close for. Act III was something else altogether - I couldn't take my eyes of Agnes. Her Odile was postively wicked, I've never seen such pure evil!<P>More of a spectacle than intensely moving experience. I think it's great fun for all if you can manage to put aside your preconceptions of what ballet is supposed to be and just sit back and enjoy. Highly recommended! And do sit up close for Thomas and Agnes!


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2002 9:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 11:01 pm
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Emma I agree with you. Watching a production in the round takes some getting used to.<BR>Although Zakharova on Filin were wonderful and the ENB ensemble danced superbly I was less moved than usual. Under normal circumstances the beautiful score gets me every time provided that the ballet is danced well. Maybe this production is just a little bit too big for its own good?<P>Judging by the conversations going on around me there were a lot of non-ballet regulars in the audience and I think for a first time introduction they could do a lot worth than that. Hopefully the enjoyable evening will inspire them to come back for more.<P>Is anyone else going to see SFB's Kristin Long on Thursday?<BR>


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2002 9:46 am 
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Saw it earlier this week it was really fun review in The Stage today sums it up well - though different cast.


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2002 12:58 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2001 12:01 am
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Location: London
What did the Stage have to say?


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2002 1:43 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Your wish is my command, Oh Mighty One:<P><B>Swan Lake</B><BR>By Gavin Roebuck for The Stage<P><BR>Derek Deane's in the round version of this classic ballet suits the spacious arena of the Royal Albert Hall, which forbids much artistic subtlety. This, the biggest production in the world with more than 120 performers – including 60 swans – is an accessible entertainment by the English National Ballet, which sadly seems to have no British-born principal artists.<P>The production is well rehearsed, polished and cleanly executed by all the performers with good dancing throughout, including the children from Elmhurst. Guest artist Svetlana Zakharova makes her debut in the dual role of Odette/Odile with spectacular success, exciting the audience with her 32 fouettes. She is well partnered by Sergei Filin as Siegfried, whose moody prince with high jumps created a good ambience in the arena.<P><A HREF="http://www.thestage.co.uk/paper/0225/0206.shtml" TARGET=_blank><B>click for more</B></A><P>


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2002 3:54 am 
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Just for the record: Svetlana Zakharova made her debut in the role with ENB. She has already been dancing Odette/Odile at home in St. Petersburg and on tour with the Kirov Ballet.


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2002 12:16 am 
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Location: London
And Filin was not moody. (Maybe a bit cross, though - too many wretched swans lying around - very difficult to find the one you're after. Perhaps the expression - 'like finding a needle in a haystack' should be altered to 'like finding a swan queen in a pile of swans'. Is 'pile' the collective for swans?)


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2002 10:55 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 3000
Location: San Francisco
Emma, the Glasgow Zoo website provided these terms for a group of swans: bevy, game, herd and wedge. "Wedge" is used when they're in flight. My theory is that "bevy" is used when they're standing around onstage looking pretty, "game" is used when the prince first enters, intending to shoot them, and "herd" is used if they're wearing clunky pointe shoes.<P>For more from the Glasgow Zoo...<P><A HREF="http://glasgowzoo.inyourcity.com/zoolista.htm" TARGET=_blank><B>Terms for Animals</B></A><P>On another site, I found verification of a very appropriate term I thought I'd heard long ago: a lamentation of swans.<P>This site also provides the official words to describe how animals vocalize:<P><A HREF="http://elmtree.members.beeb.net/htmldb/collectivenouns.htm" TARGET=_blank><B>Collective Nouns, Terms of Venery, Nouns of Assemblage</B></A><p>[This message has been edited by djb (edited June 22, 2002).]


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2002 12:35 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
A New Zealand angle on the current controversy about the future direction of ENB<P><B>Ballet 'dumbed down' says boss</B> <BR>By SARAH CATHERALL for Stuff (NZ)<P><BR>A former Royal New Zealand Ballet artistic director now heading the English National Ballet is throwing Britain into a whirl, accusing English ballerinas of performing "dumbed down" classics. <BR>Matz Skoog led New Zealand's ballet company for five years before departing for Britain, where he is artistic director of the 70-year-old ballet company that performs regularly at the prestigious Royal Albert Hall.<P>Skoog, whose time at the Royal New Zealand Ballet was described as "a vintage period", has publicly accused the English National Ballet (ENB) of dumbing down for a decade to the point where dancers "just have to kick up their legs and look cute".<P>"We need to raise our intellectual game," he said.<P>But he admitted he had to persuade the ballet board - which favours popular classics - to be more adventurous. "We need to let go a little bit of our security to step into the unknown."<P><A HREF="http://www.stuff.co.nz/inl/index/0,1008,1245075a11,FF.html" TARGET=_blank><B>click for more</B></A>


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2002 5:44 pm 
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I just got back from a month-long trip. Did anyone catch Kristin Long's performance? I'm interested to hear your thoughts and comments.


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2002 12:45 pm 
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Hi Rubies, I managed to see Kristin Long's performance in ENB's Swan Lake. I will try to post my impressions soon. Due to work commitments and most recently PNB visit to London I have fallen behind with my postings.


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 Post subject: Re: ENB's Swan Lake at The Royal Albert Hall
PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2002 5:32 am 
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Location: London
Derek Deane's production of "Swan Lake" (designs by Peter Farmer premiered Autumn 2000 - ie NOT in the round) is to be hosted by the Liverpool Empire from 22-26 October with Daria Klimentova and Dmitri Gruzdyev dancing the roles of Odette-Odile and Prince Siegfried, resepctively, on the opening night.

Quote:
22-26 October at 7.30pm & 24 October at 2pm (school's matinee) & 26 October at 2.30pm

Box Office of Liverpool Empire Theatre:
0870 606 3536


<small>[ 09-23-2002, 07:33: Message edited by: Emma Pegler ]</small>


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