Catherine Pawlick wrote:
Francis thanks for posting these reviews -- if only the film was shown on the West Coast! Interesting that this is a recording of Osipova guesting with the company before this spring, when Sarafanov was still with the company...Fantastic that those who haven't seen the Kirov (or those who have) can see in 3-D. Although I would bet nothing compares to live theatre performance, but this must come close.
I was in New York for this screening but it was scheduled to play in San Francisco on July 12 as well. You didn't miss much technically--the camera work (cut off feet and heads) couldn't compare with the live High Definition transmissions in 2-D that the Paris Opera Ballet, Royal Ballet, Bolshoi & the Mariinsky have been offering in movie houses throughout the world. It's possible that a major problem with this 3-D version was a local projection problem (New York reviewers all mentioned it, but Sarah Kaufman in Washington didn't seem to notice it). There were, however, a few images of dancing in this film, especially of the Mariinsky corps de ballet, that were extraordinary. The camera actually seemed to offer a dancer's perspective of the stage, not the usual view from the audience, or even from the wings. Natalia Osipova was an engaging, at times thrilling Giselle, but the Mariinsky does not need to import a GIselle from Moscow, even one with Osipova's gifts!
I'm in NYC for the Mariinsky at Lincoln Center. The Mariinsky A-Team (ballet and orchestra) is in New York. You don't see this many artists of the Mariinsky when the company tours the provinces, like the West Coast! I'll add a note about the performances at Lincoln Center on the appropriate page (I will say the company is getting a very warm reception in the Metropolitan Opera House). No recording, even a full 3-D virtual world immersion (which I'm sure is coming) will ever replace a live performance, but I welcome the technical experimenting European ballet companies (especially the Mariinsky) are doing to bring ballet to audiences around the world.
PS: The actual highlight of "Giselle in 3-D" for me was Yekaterina Kondaurova's Myrtha, one of the greatest performances of the role I have ever seen.