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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sun Dec 19, 2004 11:34 am 
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Location: NYC
Balletalert.com has an entire thread on the Lopatkina affair; people had come from far and wide to see her return to the role after many years. Wasn't her name on the affiche outside? Lopatakina was listed in the on-line cast until the day after the performance.

<small>[ 19 December 2004, 01:05 PM: Message edited by: ripowam ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2004 8:49 am 
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Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
“Le Corsaire”
Kirov Ballet
Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg
19 December 2004
by Catherine Pawlick

“Le Corsaire”, a three-act ballet based on the poem by George Byron, is a bold, colorful, fantastic adventure that the Kirov pulls off with full theatricality. It is a two-and-a-half hour journey that remains fresh with its onstage shipwreck, a slave-trading bazaar, swashbuckling pirates, gunfire and beautiful women.

First performed by London’s Royal Ballet in 1837, the Russian premiere of “Le Corsaire” took place in St. Petersburg in January 1858, but the ballet was “edited” several times afterwards, first by Joseph Mazilla and then by Peter Guseva, based on Marius Petipa’s 1863 composition. The current version debuted in 1987 and continues to be performed by the Kirov at home and abroad. Two themes remain prevalent in both the libretto and the choreography: that of the storm, and the rescue.

The choreography echoes the storm theme well into the ballet: renverse’s are plentiful in Act Two, and the double line of dancers set on a diagonal with a swaying motion forward and back implies a rocky sea. As far as the libretto goes, Medora rescues Conrad after his shipwreck, and he rescues her back from the slave traders – twice.

In Sunday’s performance, Ilya Kuznetsov appeared as Conrad, the leading pirate, and danced superbly in his role. Recent performances reveal Kuznetsov as increasingly able to emote and act in tangible manner, and this performance was no exception. In the third act’s romantic pas de deux with Medora, danced by Sofia Gumerova, he shook his head in disbelief at her beauty, fully enraptured, the soulmate to this woman who saved him. His split jetes drew several “bravo”s from audience members, and his tall, muscular form lent itself well to the pirate role.

Ali, his sidekick-support buddy, was danced freshly by Dmitri Semionov. A relatively new face on the Kirov stage, his dancing was strong, if a bit on the shy side compared to others, such as Ruzimatov, who have claimed roles like this as their own. His variation included the airborne double-passe tour ending on one knee (rather than just a lunge), and his turns a la seconde were done to the left rather than to the right.

Gumerova came out of her shell in this performance, moreso than she has in others. Her variation had a softness and femininity to it, with a welcome sense of warmth. Her double pique turn (extending into developpe derriere) was expertly done.

Irina Zhelonkina danced a strong, if unimpressive Gulnara. Her talent lies in her ability to complete the choreography without visible effort. Nonetheless she isn’t this reviewers preference when it comes to the Kirov females, and one could say that Gumerova stood out, in comparison.

The Odalisque trio was danced with exuberance by Ekaterina Osmolkina, Daria Sukhorukova and Irina Golub. Sukhorukova towered over the other two ballerinas, her height making it somewhat difficult to transmit the appropriate pauses in the choreography. The result was a variation that, while beautifully done, was one long phrase instead of several short ones. Golub dances with a center that is rock-solid and her jumps and turns proved it. Osmolkina managed some triple assembles in her variation, displaying a light exuberance.

In sum, as with any ballet, while casting can influence the overall impression of “Le Corsaire”, there are enough other distractions in the plot and choreography to keep one delightfully entertained. It will be interesting to watch what other dancers have to offer these roles in the coming months.

Mikhail Agrest conducted.

<small>[ 25 December 2004, 02:21 PM: Message edited by: Catherine Pawlick ]</small>

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2004 1:14 pm 
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That's exciting news about Dmitri Simeonov, since I believe this is the first classical lead he's danced since sustaining a very bad knee injury three years ago.

<small>[ 22 December 2004, 02:15 PM: Message edited by: ripowam ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2004 1:22 pm 
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He did a fine job indeed. I wasn't aware of his injury and havent seen him in any other leading roles so far on this stage. (I've amended my review to read "relatively new").

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sun Jan 02, 2005 12:23 am 
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I just saw this link on another forum, and didn't see it referenced here:

http://www.ardani.com/clients.htm

It lists the Mariinsky Theatre Ballet's (AKA the Kirov) US schedule for the fall of 2005. Highlights for me include a visit to Los Angeles in October with Sleeping Beauty (hopefully the complete restoration), and Le Corsaire at Zellerbach for our Northern California fans.

Just as intriguing is a two-week opera/music/ballet festival at OCPAC in Orange County with a bunch of Wagner, Mussorgsky, and Romeo and Juliet and Raymonda for the ballet portions.

This is all noted as preliminary schedules on the site, but this sounds very exciting! I can't wait to get my Kirov fix!

--Andre


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sun Jan 30, 2005 6:09 am 
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Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
“The Sleeping Beauty”
Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg
29 January 2005
By Catherine Pawlick

On either side of the Mariinsky stage, one level up from the orchestra on the belle-etage, are two boxes, similar in size and appearance to the Tsar’s box at the back of the hall, each seating about ten people in two rows of chairs. The “director’s box” is supposedly the one to the right of the stage. Ballet Director Makharbek Vasiev, it is said, stands or sits here when he decides to watch a performance from the auditorium. The box to the left, at least to this viewer, remains mysteriously unnamed. And lest these coveted places be disturbed by those who are unwelcome, access to these stage-side boxes is provided at the orchestra level, through a back staircase and several connecting antechambers, each decorated in color-based themes. A room decorated in velvet Mariinsky green, the next in deep maroon silk with the signature Mariinsky harp carved into the dark wood backing of the chairs. These chambers are akin to rooms in the Hermitage or other historical buildings in this city, littered with antique furniture that should no doubt be in a musuem, and one feels the weight of history silently in the surrounding air when passing through them.

It was from this palatial vantage point in the left, unnamed stage-side box that I was able to view tonight’s stalwart “The Sleeping Beauty”, with a similar cast as before, only this time with one new addition. Suffice it to say that being able to see feet and eyelashes up close is even more exciting when those and other appendages belong to members of the Kirov Ballet.

The young Olga Esina debuted as the Lilac Fairy – perhaps the explanation for the long line waiting to file into the theatre at quarter to the hour. Her skeleton and musculature is similar to resident Lilac Fairy Ekaterina Kondaurova’s – that is, tall, long of line, but with supple feet and extraordinary flexibility. Although the line of sight so close to the stage and yet a good ten feet above the performers is somewhat skewed, it did offer a clear view of Esina’s 180-degree turnout, no matter what her position. If her emotional delivery was not quite connected throughout the evening – that will come with time – she has enough expression and grace to excel and mature in the role. . She was alternately the regal leader of her fairies, the serious, unsmiling guardian of princess Aurora, or the rosy-cheeked bestower of benevolence and good fortune. Her technique, meanwhile, was unquestionable and consistent. She met the grand music that introduces her variation with equal grandeur – each double pirouette finishing in tendu was faultless, and her extensions, while next to her ear, were somehow not overdone.

The fairies in the first act were a delight. Ksenia Ostreikovskaya danced the Fairy of Affection with a soft smile in the slow adagio. Tatiana Tkachenko was the Fairy of Playfulness, her variation filled with vigor and spark. Yana Selina impressed, as always, as the Fairy of Unconcern; her snappy allegro movements sparkled. Yana Serebriakova danced the Fairy of Boldness with strength, direction and self-certainty. Only Elena Vasiokovich disappointed as the Fairy of Generosity, her tiny arms and wrists stiff, and her movements angular.

The corps de ballet provided a suave to the eyes in the first act Waltz, their spring green costumes always managing to infuse the spectator with a breath of freshness and hope.

Freshness and hope were also the theme in Ekaterina Osmolkina’s performance of Aurora this evening. Her first entrance was airborne, offering soufflé-light jetes and solid balances. Her dream sequence pas de deux in Act II was adequately ethereal, aided by the strength of partner Leonid Sarafanov. And her delicate manner evoked youth and beauty, fresh in its newness and never stale.

Sarafanov, again as the brown-haired Prince Desir, drew applause for his split jetes and expert timing. He has the ability to suspend himself in the air when jumping – in double assembles, for example – and cushions everything with soundless, soft landings. His final act variation was delivered with almost over-certainty, as if to say to the audience, “watch this”, finishing nearly in the wing but right on time. He held himself coolly as the Prince in the second Act, nodding to his fellow royalty with aloofness. His Prince is regal and polite but strong and steadfast. At least for this reviewer, his rendition is believable.

Act Three brought the true fairytale entertainment of the evening, but in fact it was the Jewels’ pas de quatre that drew the most attention. Daria Sukhourova danced Silver, alongside Yana Serebriakova’s Sapphire and Tatiana Tkachenko’s Gold. The brilliant Diamond leading them all was Viktoria Tereshkina, razor sharp, dancing with all of the power of New York City in her bounding, regal steps. A better casting choice could not have been made, for Tereshkina’s maturity makes her a ballerina down to every cell in her body, and that comes through in her performances, especially something as technical and classical such as this.

Ksenia Ostreikovskaya reappeared as Princess Florina alongside Bluebird Maxim Chashegorov. Ostreikovskaya’s variation was a welcome relief from her struggles with partner Chashegorov. That she was visibly disturbed by his inattentive partnering was not as disappointing as her justification for being so – he seemed to decide on his own when her turns would stop or how long he might feel like lifting her. He too seemed happier in his solo work and perhaps the couple should be recast with different partners the next time around.

Valeria Martinkiok was the White Cat – an unexpected departure from the usual Yana Selina in the role – but nonetheless a pleasant interpreter of the playful feline next to Anton Lukovin’s Puss in Boots. And Elena Vasiokovich was a frightened little Red Riding Hood, more well cast here than as a Prologue fairy. The strong partnering of Andrei Yakovlev I helped.

Clocking in at four hours, the Kirov’s “The Sleeping Beauty” is not for early retirers, and the full house suggested that every moment of it is worth watching. Boris Gruzin conducted.

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 4:36 am 
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All-Forsythe Program
Mariinsky Theatre
St. Petersburg, Russia
05 February 2005
by Catherine Pawlick

It is impossible to leave an afternoon of Forsythe without a reaction. It might be shock, or distaste, awe, surprise, confusion or simple admiration, but some kind of impression is bound to remain. Today's Mariinsky matinee included their typical Forsythe bill: "Steptext", "In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated", and "The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude." Despite the fact that these works will reach their one-year mark on this stage next month, the Petersburg audiences are still reacting to them as if they were brand new.

The opening of the first ballet, "Steptext" always throws balletomanes for a loop. House lights on, no orchestra and no music, the first dancer appears downstage to the left, and begins a series of arm movements. Only some audience members realize the performance has begun. A woman two seats to my left was so intent on chatting with her seatmate, that it wasn't until the recorded violin music began that she decided to quiet down. And as those familiar with the ballet know, it is a good five minutes into the first dancer's arm movements before the violin chords are turned abruptly on and off over the speakers. It seems the audience assumes it's not a ballet without music, or that the performance doesn't begin until the music starts. A logical deduction that doesn't follow the open-minded artistic bent of Forsythe's approach to theatre. One can almost hear him saying to the lighting technicians, "no, the house lights stay ON when the first dancer begins." He challenges the very cornerstones of classical ballet, the small traditions of the theatre. It's thus understandable how those from the older generation would frown on his avant garde approach.

Two other obvious bucks against tradition are the musicality and the walking. This recorded music is turned on and off throughout "Steptext", and the dancers don't necessarily adhere to sound in order to complete their steps. The amount of intuition this must demand is assumedly on a par with counting a Stravinsky score. The second anti-traditional element is the walking. After completing a series of movements the dancers may walk a flex-footed, normal walk to another place on stage, or offstage. Granted, this is not classical ballet. And the walk underscores that, lest anyone think Forsythe is a classicist.

"StepText" has a small cast. Resident gumby-ist Natalia Sologub appeared in spare red unitard to the backdrop of Anton Lukovkin, Mikhail Lobuxin and Maxim Khrebtov, each in all black. Sologub's movement is Forsythe's choreographic hand; her body the pen he writes with, at least when she performs his work. She has the flexibility of a gymnast, feet and legs that most ballerinas should envy, and the musicality to accent her lines in a most befitting manner. Her three partners provided interesting arm movements, strong partnering and independent solo work.

Forsythe steps towards the classical in "The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude", aided by Schubert's Ninth Symphony and costumes that mimic tutus. Tatiana Tkachenko, Marina Zolotova and Svetlana Ivanova danced alongside Maxim Ziuzin and Alexander Kulikov. The patterns here echo the score, as the five dance in every combination possible, duets, trios, solos – now syncopated, now synchronized. Tkachenko has mastered Forsythe' vocabulary, dancing with verve and strength; Zolotova's arms did not escape classical confines, although she never missed a beat. Ivanova was sweet, but might also consider more abandon in her dancing. Zuizin, a strong newcomer, seemed slightly tense but danced and partnered well. Kulikov's delivery is joy-filled and boyish, a pleasure to watch.

The final work of the afternoon, "In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated" is a true entertainment piece – in the sense of dark nightclubs, pulsing electronic music, sparse costumes and unexplainable movements that, well, must mean something. The choreography here is fluid, but not lyrical, patterned, complex, mysterious. Billiard-table green is the garment theme, but again, in utmost simplicity – green leotards and black tights for all. Nothing to hide and no where to run to here. Of the nine dancers on stage, Ekaterina Kondaurova tended to draw one's focus. That she seems as comfortable as the Lilac Fairy as she does here is testament to her versatility. Forsythe's vocabulary seems instinctive to her, not artificial. Tkachenko danced a solo in this ballet as well, still strong and energetic. Kitty Papava, apparently one of the taller girls in the cast, impressed with her own solo work and long lines.

If all goes as planned, the Mariinsky is slated to premiere another Forsythe ballet next month. It will be interesting to see how it compares to these, and how quickly the dancers will adapt to another one of Forsythe's works.

<small>[ 07 February 2005, 12:04 PM: Message edited by: Catherine Pawlick ]</small>

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 10:37 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Thanks for these insights regarding the Forsythe experience in St.P. "Steptext" at the Royal Opera House ia always intriguing, not least for the puzzled reactions from some of the audience. My impression is that the dancers love to perform Forsythe's work, not least, because of the opportunity of working with one of the most inventive choreographers working today.

Catherine, you write: "Tkachenko danced a solo in this ballet as well["In the middle, Somewhat elevated"], still strong and energetic, but not feminine [subsequently amended by Catherine - see below]." I'm thinking back to this ballet and, while a wide range of interpretations can work in any performance, I see "In the Middle.." as primarily a unisex ballet, with femininity not having much of a look-in. "Strong and energetic" sounds just right.

<img src="http://www.ballet-dance.com/200406/imagegallery/images/image08.jpg" alt="" />

Very interesting that the Kirov are importing another Forsythe work. Marc Haegemann's elegant and informative website "For Ballet Lovers Only" shows the listings for the Vth Mariinsky International Ballet Festival and opening the festival on 24/25 March is a Balanchine-Dawson-Forsythe Programme:

I. Apollo (Stravinsky – Balanchine)
II. Grey Area (Lanc - Dawson) – world premiere
III. Forsythe "Two Ballets in the Late 20th Century Manner":
Approximate Sonata (Willems - Forsythe)
The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude (Schubert - Forsythe)

"Approximate Sonata", originally created as part of the "Two Ballets..." piece for Ballett Frankfurt" was performed in a revised version by George Piper Dances in 2004. The GPD version has a very strange introduction with the male lead walking forward pulling faces and asking for and receiving corrections from an unseen Forsythe. It has some fine moments, but received less praise than their earlier Forsythe, "Steptext".

It will be interesting to see whether the complete work, ""Two Ballets in the Late 20th Century Manner", provides new perspectives on "Approximate Sonata".

Full details of the work with a number of images used to appear on the Ballett frankfurt website -no more, alas.

Also intriguing is the David Dawson work, "Grey Area", but as this was first performed by Dutch National Ballet in 2002, I guess we should read "Russian premiere" for "world premiere". I wonder when the Kirov will have a work created on them by a leading international choreographer.

<small>[ 08 February 2005, 10:54 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 6:28 pm 
Stuart, the programme and cast list for this year's Mariinsky Festival have not been finalised, according to the official Kirov/Mariinsky website.
http://www.mariinsky.ru/en/playbill/balfest

There is no mention of a ballet by David Dawson.

Catherine, interesting that you saw Natalia Sologub as the lead ballerina in Steptext. Last summer I saw two other casts - Diana Vishneva and Daria Pavlenko.

<small>[ 05 February 2005, 09:46 PM: Message edited by: Kevin Ng ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Sun Feb 06, 2005 4:12 am 
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Thanks Kevin - some further digging indicates that a "state of flux" exists and, in particular, a question mark hangs over the Dawson piece. But hey, there's a clear 6 weeks before the opening.

<small>[ 06 February 2005, 07:18 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2005 2:16 am 
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David Dawson was working with the Kirov dancers in Baden Baden over the Christmas period and was spotted going in and out of the Festspielhaus. I wasn't able to get any details of when his work is to be premiered though.


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2005 10:59 am 
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Hi all,
Loving the activity on this thread!

Stuart - good point. I totally agree about the unisex nature of the work; i was trying to comment that Tkachenko's dancing was more -- how can i say this -- strong. I wasn't suggesting the ballet required femininity, but I was stating that she didn't offer it. I dont' know that i'm expressing myself very well here! It must be the Russian/English thing back and forth.
At any rate, I'm going to edit my review, to keep it clear.

As to the Forsythe work, Approximate Sonata was actually slated to premiere last summer. I got to see a few of their rehearsals. It didn't premiere then, due to..administrative reasons. So I'm glad it's finally happening.

Kevin: I believe I saw Pavlenko in Steptext as well, (also last summer) but I've not seen Vishneva in the role. I bet she would be amazing to watch in that piece. I never did hear how Pavlenko was in Manon? Unfortunately I was in California for that performance.

Speaking of which, my heart went out to her on Sunday night... nothing seemed to go right, as you'll see in my review...

<small>[ 07 February 2005, 12:05 PM: Message edited by: Catherine Pawlick ]</small>

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2005 11:06 am 
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“La Bayadere”
Kirov Ballet
Mariinsky Theatre
St. Petersburg, Russia
06 February 2005
by Catherine Pawlick

Not even the exalted halls of the Mariinsky theatre are immune to the minor onstage mishap, the technical faux-pas suggesting that the gods of fortune have decided to have a little bit of fun. As Chance would –and did-- have it, to the horror of some, and even the surprising laughter of others, such was the case in Sunday night’s performance of “La Bayadere.”

To a sold-out house, the casting was superb, a list that would draw any ballet-goer’s eye: Daria Pavlenko dancing the role of Nikiya; Leonid Sarafanov as Solor, and Ekaterina Osmolkina slated to dance Gamzatti. What could be better? Unfortunately, much could have been better, but, depending on the incident, it is arguable whether the dancers were to blame.

In her opening sequence Pavlenko appeared onstage, a vision of strength, courage and poise. As her veil was removed from her face, revealing her recognizable high cheekbones, wide, consuming eyes, and long slim neck, she displayed a feminine self-awareness in her struggles with Vladimir Ponomarev, the Great Brahmin, who tried to win her over. He wants her, she refuses him. Everything seemed in order.

It was with surprise and sympathy, then, that one noticed Pavlenko’s shoe. The ribbons on her left foot were completely untied only moments after her entrance. There ensued the silent guessing game: does she know they’re untied? Will she stumble on them while dancing? Will she change the choreography to avoid that happening? When is her first chance to leave the stage and correct the problem? Will she have time to tie them? Did she forget, or did they come undone? Snickers from some audience members, evil glares from others. Luckily after her first sequence, the problem was corrected and, at least costume-wise, things remained calm for the remainder of the evening.

However, logistically, Sarafanov’s turn was next. In the lover’s first garden encounter, Sarafanov lifts her overhead with both arms and walks upstage. Upstage happens to also be where the rock “fireplace” is. One watches – how far will he walk? Has he forgotten the fireplace is there? Is he going to put her in it? Unfortunately, the fireplace found his foot before he found it – as he was looking up at Pavlenko, which is what any male dancer should be doing in such a lift. His foot hit the fireplace, in surprise he stopped moving, starting to set Pavlenko down, and the result was a quick but awkward stagger over the bump in the road. Mishap number two went injury-less, to the best of my knowledge.

The final, albeit minor, mishap was a mere choreographic falter during the pas de deux with the veil in the Shades scene, Act III. On the first pirouette Pavlenko stumbled; but Vishneva has done far worse at the same moment in the ballet. During the last of the arabesque turns, Sarafanov had the good sense to snatch the veil away seconds earlier this time, saving Pavlenko, one assumes, from a similar fate.

What came before, after and in between these small annoyances (for they must have been so to the dancers, if they weren’t so to adoring fans) was in fact a rather even performance. One might wonder if this sort of beginning will lead to an unraveling of the Terpsichorean thread throughout the evening, or if the incidents will remain well enough isolated so as not to effect the overall outcome of the performance. This viewer would argue that the latter was the case on Sunday night.

Sarafanov was unaffected, pulling off his signature split jetes, tour jetes, cabrioles – anything with a French name, he did it and the audience loved it. Osmolkina remained poised, Solor’s jealous vengeful bride. It was surprising to see her Aurora-persona turn so black so quickly, and so believably. Only Pavlenko appeared somewhat uneasy later in the evening. While her temple dance during the wedding celebration was visibly wrought with despair, she seemed slightly nervous in the Shades scene, her shoulder rising a bit in her turns, her port de bras before the pas-de-bouree-fouette-to-attitude-let-Solor-step-in section a bit haphazard, and her shoes clapping the floor in the landings from tour-jetes. Nonetheless the length and shape of her feet alone make her legs an essay in beauty, and even an off-night for Pavlenko is a taste of heaven.

The Kirov corps de ballet is of course, the crème de la crème, and this performance was no exception. The Shades scene drew applause; only one of the 24 was seen to have wobbled at one moment. Leading Shades Evgenia Obratsova , Tatiana Tkachenko and Alina Somova danced the trio. Obratsova’s variation was danced at lightening speed until the fourth measure; she finished her variation en releve, like steel. It was impressive. Tkachenko is reliable, if not overly feminine as a Shade, but her cabrioles were strong. Of them only Somova seemed miscast. That her legs can pop up past her ear in a split-second does not impress. Her initial sissone, the very first step in the variation, was delivered with several hops; her footwork was sloppy and her neck jutted out inappropriately. The casting directors would do well to take heed to technical capability, not just gymnastics, when planning for a ballet such as this.

After all of the excitement, it is with relief that one can say in conclusion that, void of any orchestral mishap, the three-hour evening was conducted by Mikhail Sinkevich.

<small>[ 07 February 2005, 12:21 PM: Message edited by: Catherine Pawlick ]</small>

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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2005 1:05 pm 
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Quote:
The ribbons on her left foot were completely untied only moments after her entrance.
Absolutely NO excuse for that. NONE! :mad:


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 Post subject: Re: Kirov Ballet: 2004-2005 Season
PostPosted: Mon Feb 07, 2005 2:05 pm 
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Catherine I know what you mean about Tkachenko; you'd hardly call her gentle onstage, ever, and it's a little wearying. While the few performances of Samova's that I've seen have been lacking in finesse and decorum.

Now for something much more important: the time has come for us Kirov lovers to do what the Russian critics may have been coerced not to do [let's not imagine this doesn't happen]: tell the truth about Sarafanov's partnering. Perhaps the furniture was at fault in the latest mishap, but I have seen him dance almost his entire repertory and his partnering has ranged from just adequate to horrendous. I have seen him push ballerinas off pointe, let ballerinas slip out of overhead lifts, fail to be able to lift ballerinas off the ground at all. The Kirov is putting his limbs and those of his ballerinas at actual risk by making him dance these very onerous partnering assignments. If they had planned his career more sanely he would have started out with many Swan Lake pas de trois and gradually built up strength. I have done interviews with Kirov ballerinas who relate their rage at being forced to dance with him, or their relief at not having to go through with a Sarafanov performance after being threatened with a partnership. This is not just foolish of the Kirov administration, it is irresponsible, and really rather immoral.

<small>[ 07 February 2005, 08:52 PM: Message edited by: ripowam ]</small>


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