CriticalDance Forum

Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016
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Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

I just found out today by special request that the XVI International Ballet Festival Mariinsky will be held beginning March 31st (luckily a later start than this year's March 13th beginning) and running through April 10th, 2016. The highlight will be the

*drumroll please*

long-awaited return of the famous ballet, "Bronze Horseman" to the Mariinsky stage.

Can't wait!

Author:  PenneallaNorma [ Sun Aug 16, 2015 6:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

That is great news. I wondered what happened to that.....

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

An update concerning "Bronze Horseman" - it will be recreated by Yuri Smekalov.

Another ballet by Radu Politkaru is set for the spring portion of the season and Wheeldon's Alice is back in the plans for summer.

Author:  Buddy [ Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:16 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

It’s Santa Claus time and I’m sending in my first Mariinsky Festival dream wish.

I just made a special trip from Switzerland to Paris to see Myriam Ould-Braham (Paris Opera Ballet) for the very first time. She danced Nikiya in La Bayadere.

What A Precious Gem She Is !

Since last year’s Festival indicated a definite interest by the Mariinsky and The Paris Opera Ballet to have a closer relationship (Kristina Shapran and Kimin Kim will be in Paris this week performing in La Bayadere)….

What a Joy it would be to see Myriam Ould-Braham at this year’s Festival !

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Sun Jan 10, 2016 1:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

Press release for the XVI Mariinsky Festival arrived last week but I've not had time to post this since. In addition to the revised "Bronze Horseman", the Perm Ballet troupe will present one Ashton and one Macmillan work, and Benjamin Millipied will present another premiere at the final gala. A cornucopia of delights! )

Also I realize I didn't clarify before -- Smekalov is redoing only *part* of Bronze, other portions will adhere to the original version, from what I'm told. So it's going to be a mix of "revival" and "new version".

The Ashton work is Les Patineurs; Macmillan is Winter Dreams. There will also be a one-act ballet called "When the snow fell" by Perm choreographer Douglas Lee.

Author:  Buddy [ Tue Jan 19, 2016 7:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

According to her Facebook, Héloise Bourdon from the Paris Opera Ballet will dance Swan Lake with Timur Askerov. This young dancer has received some very enthusiastic praise on the french speaking ballet internet.

“Invitée du prestigieux théâtre du Mariinsky le 5 avril prochain, j'aurai l'immense privilège ["I will have the immense privilege"] d'y danser le mythique ballet du Lac des Cygnes aux côtés du danseur étoile Timur Askerov.

“I will dance Swan Lake in the prestigious Mariinsky's theater on april 5th with the principal dancer Timur Askerov.”
(thanks to Ornella at Dansomanie for finding this)
That leaves La Bayadere, Giselle and Sleeping Beauty still possible for the Paris Opera Ballet’s remarkable Myriam Ould-Braham.

List of performances: ... _fest_233/

Author:  Buddy [ Sat Jan 23, 2016 8:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

More wish list.


She has been number one for as long as I’ve been posting about the Festival.

Veronika Part

Each year I wish for Swan Lake. This year that’s been given to the Paris Opera Ballet's Héloise Bourdon. This leaves Giselle (which I believe she debuted at the Mariinsky) and Sleeping Beauty.

She is one of a handful of ballerinas that carries the art into another dimension, in this case by way of High Theater.

Other ballerinas that I would put in this grouping are Alina Cojocaru, Diana Vishneva and Olga Smirnova. There are more that have done this such as Alina Somova and Yekaterina Kondaurova, but the first group has been there perhaps always. And of all of them I would have to say that Veronika Part is perhaps the standard simply because she consistently and magnificently goes one step beyond.

I would like to add one more name, which I mentioned last year.

Simone Messmer

Last year she was a real long shot for somewhere way into the future. She didn’t even have a company. This year she was made a Principal at the Miami City Ballet. She is perhaps the one ballerina who Fascinates me as much as Veronika Part. Why fascinates? Because she is so multidimensional. She also carries things a step beyond as does Veronika Part, but in a slightly different way. Both have amazing presence, in dance and portrayal. Where as Veronika Part is perhaps more noteworthy in portrayal, Simone Messmer is perhaps more so in her totality They are both among the most Interesting ballet artists that I’ve ever seen. Two others that I would put at the very top of this list are Anna Pavlova and Galina Ulanova, not unworthy company.

Author:  PenneallaNorma [ Sun Jan 24, 2016 8:13 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

I think Part and Messmer are good and work well in the companies they currently work in, but I find both lacking in the Vaganova/Mariinsky style and don't think their upper bodies work well at the Mariinsky. Part is actually Vaganova trained (if I remember correctly) and worked at the Mariinsky for a while and has guested there several times since leaving, but I find her arms so stiff compared to the rest of the Mariinsky dancers, and am surprised she originated in St. Petersburg, so for me she sticks out like a sore thumb. She has spent a lot of time dancing in America where stiff arms are apparently the style. I saw Messmer this season in Balanchine's Swan Lake with Miami City Ballet, and she did attempt fluid arms, but somehow she struck me as "imitating" the Russian style even in her curtain calls. It somehow did not seem like it came naturally the way Mariinsky ballerinas carry themselves even during curtain calls. It seemed like Messmer was trying too hard to come off as a Russian ballerina and not quite getting it right, in my personal opinion.

I am not saying these are not good dancers. They are in their own way, but I have to admit I do not want to see them at the Mariinsky Theatre.

Author:  Buddy [ Fri Jan 29, 2016 3:33 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

I’m hoping to see Simone Messmer perform in Florida just before I get to Saint Petersburg. (I'm routing my flights back to Europe through Florida primarily for this reason). Like Evgenia Obraztsova’s Swan Lake last year in London, several days after the Festival, tied in with and became perhaps the highlight of my entire Festival related experience, I’m hoping that Simone Messmer’s performance will be one the highlights this year. If it is I’ll continue to wish for the day when she appears at the actual Festival.

I mentioned one group of ballerinas that I would like to see at this year’s Festival. This is represented by Veronika Part and Simone Messmer. I might call them Expressionists. Now I’d like to mention another. This group is from the company and seems to fall into my ‘Swan’ category, tall and ethereal.

One ballerina from this group who perhaps interests and excites me the most at the moment is Alina Somova. I’ve always liked her, appreciated her highly for her most graceful moments and found her awesome two years ago as Fokine’s Swan. I think that she is capable of doing similar wonders once again at this year’s Festival.

Yekaterina Kondaurova is another lady that I think is capable of a surprising and exceptionally beautiful performance. She did it a few years ago with her dancing of all the leads in George Balanchine’s Emeralds, Rubies and Diamonds.

Ulyana Lopatkina probably sets the standard for this group in performance quality. I’m sure that she’ll continue this tradition once again.

I see Oksana Skorik as having many similarly fine qualities. I feel that she is perhaps the closest to her at the Mariinsky and certainly one of its most beautifully graceful dancers.

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Wed Feb 03, 2016 7:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

It will be interesting to see how Mr Millipied's departure form Paris Opera affects (or doesn't) his works scheduled for the festival:

Benjamin Millipied is leaving the Paris Opera Ballet post, it was announced today. The change is effective immediately and was just announced in the European media on Feb. 3. He will not stay for the Feb. 10 pre-season preview.

A press conference is planned for tomorrow, Feb. 4th at 3 p.m. in Paris.

Author:  Buddy [ Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:20 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

Catherine, since Aurelie Dupont will apparently be the new Director of the Paris Opera Ballet and she is also Myriam Ould-Braham's coach, perhaps my dream of seeing her appear at a Festival may someday happen. I regretted not seeing Aurelie Dupont, herself, last year as was originally scheduled.

I'm sure you recall Benjamin's Millepied's enthusiastic public statements at last year's Festival reception about having closer relationships with the Mariinsky. I'm also very interested to see how this plays out in regard to the appearance of several POB invitees (not yet officially announced, but reported on the artists' websites or other responsible sources), one as Odette-Odile (Swan Lake). I would hope that Aurelie Dupont would want this relationship to continue. She seems very committed to high artistic standards as well as new directions.

I always recall Mikhail Baryshnikov's comment that if you combined the upper body of a Russian classical dancer with the feet of a French one that you would have the perfect ballet dancer.

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:24 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

Well Certainly it would only be a positive development if Dupont continues a relationship with Fateyev and the Mariinsky. I see no reason why that should not be the case.

Baryshnikov's statement is not only insightful, but today it seems a commonly shared view as well, since the footwork training in the Russian school (system) differs greatly from that in Paris. However, even back in 2008 Asylmuratova told me that the Academy had taken steps to improve the details in the footwork training. It won't be the same as Paris, as the styles are different, and the concept of "roll through" is not shared to the same extent as it is in Paris, BUT I think that today there is some overlap between the two.

I look forward to Dupont's "reign", as I'm sure as a lifelong insider she can do great things with Paris Opera, and I congratulate her on the post.

Author:  Buddy [ Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

Thanks, Catherine, for your comments on the Mariinsky and Paris styles. I join you in hoping that the interaction between the two great and historic companies will be a fine one.

The Creative Workshop of Young Choreographers was posted about a week ago. ... /7/2_1900/
(much thanks to ElenaK at Dansomanie for gathering information about this)

Quite happily Maxim Petrov will be presenting his third work. His previous two, “Cinema” and “Ballet No. 2 to A. Tsfasman's Score” (now part of the Mariinsky repertoire) were Workshop highlights for me. Also of particular interest, Andrei Merkuriev (Bolshoi, formerly Mariinsky) will be choreographing a work.

Not included so far this year is the young Vaganova student, Maxim Sevagin, whose two works were presented at the previous Workshops. His first, “Hungarian Rhapsody,” was perhaps the most enjoyable and interesting piece by a young Russian choreographer that I’ve seen at any of the Festivals. I would also include the two works by Maxim Petrov as being favorites.

I’ve not been able to find Maxim Sevagin’s “Hungarian Rhapsody” on the internet but this is apparently the first larger piece that he ever did from 2012 at the Vaganova. I think that it’s charming and very finely done.

“Summer” from “The Four Seasons” by Vivaldi
(posted at his site)

He seems to work only in the classical style, but his efforts are fresh and timely. From looking at his personal page on the internet he has a broad scope of interest, including break-dancing, so we may be seeing some very interesting things. He will probably always have a Vaganova/Mariinsky sensitivity, whether using purely classical style or not, which should make him very special.

Added comment:

This is another video from Maxim Sevagin’s personal page. Although the work is attributed to Olga Lobovkina, whom I believe is also a Vaganova student, it would seem to be a duel effort. It’s modern but it has Maxim Sevagin’s use of structure. He also dances in it (blond dancer in the middle). It shows that Vaganova students can handle contemporary quite well. It also shows their fineness, which shines through in many Mariinsky modern takes, such as those from George Balanchine or Angelin Preljocaj’s “Le Parc.” ... _146098119
(you may have to try several times to get it to work)

Author:  Buddy [ Thu Feb 25, 2016 12:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

So far in the Young Choreogapher program the Vaganova’s very talented Maxim Sevagin will not present anything, but another Vaganova student(?)*, Ksenia Zvereva, will offer two works. I’ve looked at some of her videos and I do enjoy them. She mixes classical and contemporary maintaining a feeling of classical loveliness, restraint and flow. Her themes are abstract of a pleasant nature. She uses classical music.

This is one of her works from 2013 that she has posted at her site. Her more recent works seem more classically relaxed and flowing.

In a list from her site are also videos from David Dawson, Nacho Duato and Jiri Kylian. I can see their influence. The most recent entries are from David Dawson, whom her style resembles, except that she doesn’t use pointe shoes. I, being a person who prizes natural beauty and lyrical, natural dance styles, do like this.

Here is something from David Dawson posted by the performance site.

Here is a very enjoyable dance from Nacho Duato posted by the performer. ... Q&index=14

Added comment:

Posted by Maxim Sevagin is an art-abstract performance by another young Vaganova related choreographer. Sitting in the middle of the very small audience is Yuri Fateyev, Acting Director of the Mariinsky Ballet. Apparently he does pay attention to this sort of thing.

*She is listed at the Mariinsky site as a Choreographer and created two works for last year's Young Choreographers program (that I didn't attend but hope to this year) "Remember the future" and "Second I".

Author:  Buddy [ Sat Mar 12, 2016 11:24 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival: 31 March - 10 April 2016

Some of the casting has been posted.

See ElenaK’s March 11 post in french. ... 5&start=15

Alina Somova will dance “Giselle” for the second year in a row and Hee Seo (ABT), who will dance “The Sleeping Beauty” this year with Vladimir Shklyarov, danced “Giselle” the year before. I thought that both were excellent.

Oxana Skorik will dance “La Bayadère” with Kimin Kim and Héloïse Bourdon (Opéra de Paris) will dance “Swan Lake” with Timur Askerov.

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