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 Post subject: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2003 5:28 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Swan Lake
Unsigned from the Manchester Evening News


SWAN Lake - the moral of which is that you can't beat the little black dress for a party - has become the archetypal romantic ballet.

And for companies in the eastern European tradition, such as the Chisinau National Ballet, from Moldova, it is really a definition of their existence.

If they could not field a team capable of its virtuosic solos, its varied ensembles and national dances, and its stageful of fluttering white swans, then they would probably rather lie down and die.

So the production which they tour to this country may use lightweight cloths for scenery (and who wouldn't if they had to adapt to the variety of British provincial theatres they do?), but it puts its trust in its dancers and the sense of style which has been theirs since they learned their first steps.

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Swan Lake @ Opera House
By Liliana Ashton for manchester online

THIS enchanting fairytale accompanied by one of Tchaikovsky’s masterpieces was superbly performed by the Chisinau National Ballet. The Ballet is from the former USSR country, Moldova, a country which, despite being reported as one of the poorest countries in Europe, has a priceless talent in classical dancing.

By following Petipa’s very authentic and colourful choreography, this performance has a feeling of the pure form of classical dancing.

The first act, despite not being the most exciting, was stolen by the energetic performance of Egor Schepachoiv, as the Court Jester. It was a good introduction to the whole fairytale where the queen mother presents the Prince with a cross bow which leads him to meet the Swan Queen.

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<small>[ 14 January 2004, 03:28 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2003 4:43 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Gentle readers, prepare yourself for eye-catching shock tactics at the start of this review. Also I disagree with his insistence on the ballet needing to be "step perfect". Give me emotional content any day.

Drowning in lake of tradition
By ERIN MCELHINNEY for The Evening News (Edinburgh)

Swan Lake ***
The Playhouse

BALLET is like porn - no, really. There is a simple yet unrealistic plot, which serves as a stage for the performers to display and demonstrate their particular talents. The problem being, you need to make sure your artistes are up to the job.

Swan Lake is the "purist’s" ballet: heavy on the dreamy, sumptuous images, but thin on story and slow moving. Which means you cannot hope to impress the audience with plenty of attention-grabbing action or engaging diversity; technical prowess is what is needed, and every single dancer must be step perfect. And while the Chisinau National Ballet contains excellent dancers, they didn’t quite make the grade last night.

Nadezhda Schepachiova alone stood out, with her almost flawless performance as doomed swan Odette and her doppelganger, the seductive Odile. But while Andrei Litvinov, as Prince Siegfried, and the other company members were satisfactory, there was no spark in their delivery.

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<small>[ 05 February 2003, 05:45 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2003 3:47 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Nutcracker was a suite success
Short letter from the Edinburgh Evening News

HAVING read Thom Dibdin’s review on the ballet (Reviews, February 7), it was with trepidation that my friends and I took up our seats at the Playhouse for a matinee performance of The Nutcracker.

The only conclusion we can come to is that he was watching a different performance to ourselves. We enjoy ballet enormously and have seen The Nutcracker several times over the years and last Saturday’s performance ranked among the best we have seen. There were three curtain calls and the theatre was full.

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 Post subject: Re: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2003 6:58 pm 
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Location: New Orleans, LA
Thin on story? Hmm. I wonder why it once took me 20 minutes to explain the plot to a group of children.


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 Post subject: Re: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Thu Feb 20, 2003 4:16 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Carmen
By Philip Key, Daily Post (Liverpool)

DOES a live horse add anything to an opera? Surprisingly, the answer is yes.

The Chisinau National Opera from Moldova added one to the cast of Bizet's Carmen last night and the result was rather jolly.

The Spanish stallion by the name of Rodrigo, was saved for the final act with the Spanish dance and the bull-fight parade.

Rodrigo managed to tap his hooves vaguely in time to the music and for the parade he emerged bearing the substantial figure of Escamillo, the bullfighter.

Both scenes were enhanced rather than marred by the white horse, a happy element which added some fun to what was to be a dark ending to the opera. And this was a real production, not a gimmick-laden one with some excellent perform-ances from the company.

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 Post subject: Re: Chisinau Ballet in the UK - 2003/2004
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2004 2:28 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Ballet by numbers
by Kelly Apter for The Independent


After all the Christmas excess, the last thing we needed was another turkey. The theatrical impresario Ellen Kent has been bussing Chisinau’s national opera and ballet troupes into Britain for almost a decade, much to the chagrin of our home-grown companies. They claim she’s exploiting the poor Moldavians and putting on sub-standard productions. Kent denies both counts, and points to the packed houses that the companies attract as proof of their merit.

Either way, there’s no denying that Kent provides a much needed service. Classical ballet fans face slim pickings in Scotland, with only occasional visits from Birmingham Royal Ballet and the odd Russian company. And with our own Scottish Ballet focusing its attention on a more modern idiom, “big whites” such as Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty are hard to find.

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