CriticalDance Forum

San Francisco Ballet in Paris
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Author:  Azlan [ Wed May 09, 2001 5:13 pm ]
Post subject:  San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Image <BR>Kristin Long and Vadim Solomkha<BR>in Helgi Tomasson's "Prism"<BR>Photo Marty Sohl<P><BR>A quote from SFB's press release on their upcoming European tour:<P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>San Francisco Ballet's tour begins in Paris, France, May 12-19, as previously announced, performing one mixed repertory program including Helgi Tomasson's <I>Prism</I>, Mark Morris' <I>Sandpaper Ballet</I>, Helgi Tomasson's <I>Chaconne for Piano and Two Dancers</I>, Julia Adam's <I>Night</I> and one full-length program featuring Lar Lubovitch's <I>Othello</I>. <A HREF="" TARGET=_blank><B>more</B></A><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P><BR>Cathy, I hope you will give us your impressions of SFB's performances in Paris.<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited May 09, 2001).]

Author:  Cathy [ Wed May 09, 2001 8:50 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

No problem for my impression even it's difficult for me to make an english cumment but how I go see it six times on seven. I'll make you my cumment.<BR>Sandpaper is it a ballet for soloist or for corps ?

Author:  Azlan [ Wed May 09, 2001 9:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Cathy, Sandpaper Ballet is an ensemble work for a large group of dancers. In typical Mark Morris fashion, there are really no individuals who stand out; principals, soloists and corps members are almost all equal in this ballet.<P>I think Stuart fell in love with this ballet when SFB performed it in London last summer.<P>And keep your eyes open for Mr Morris; I suspect he'll probably be there to take in the French premier of this whimsical work.<P>And, Cathy, we would love to hear your comments. Your on-line English "accent" is adorable. Image<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited May 09, 2001).]

Author:  Belinda [ Thu May 10, 2001 11:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Cathy, I'm so glad you'll be able to report on this for us Bay Area folk--the next best thing to being there myself! I wonder if Terry will also be able to comment?

Author:  Azlan [ Thu May 10, 2001 4:33 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

The programs for Paris:<P>OPÉRA DE PARIS-PALAIS GARNIER <BR>Paris, France<BR>May 12-19, 2001<P><B>Program I (May 12, 13 & 14)</B><BR><I>Prism</I>, Beethoven/Tomasson<BR><I>Night</I>, Pierce/Adam<BR><I>Chaconne For Piano and Two Dancers</I>, Handel/Tomasson<BR><I>Sandpaper Ballet</I>, Anderson/Morris<P><BR><B>Program II (May 17, 18 & 19 mat & eve)</B><BR><I>Othello</I>, Goldenthal/Lubovitch

Author:  Azlan [ Thu May 10, 2001 4:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Here's the casting for opening night, Saturday, May 12, 7:30pm at the Opéra de Paris.<P><I>Prism</I><BR>Conductor: Emil de Cou <BR>Piano: Roy Bogas<BR>1st Movement: Kristin Long, Gonzalo Garcia, Guennadi Nedviguine <BR>2nd Movement: Lucia Lacarra, Cyril Pierre <BR>3rd Movement: Joan Boada <P>- - INTERMISSION - -<P><I>Night</I><BR>Conductor: Scott Speck<BR>Tina LeBlanc, Benjamin Pierce, Peter Brandenhoff, Damian Smith, Leslie Young, Julie Diana, Catherine Baker<BR>Erik Wagner, David Arce, Moises Martin, Pablo Piantino<BR> <BR><I>Chaconne for Piano and Two Dancers</I><BR>Piano: Roy Bogas<BR>Joanna Berman, Yuri Possokhov<P>- - INTERMISSION - -<P><I>Sandpaper Ballet</I><BR>Conductor: Emil de Cou<BR>Guennadi Nedviguine, Jason Davis, Steven Norman, Christopher Stowell, Ikolo Griffin, Damian Smith, Benjamin Pierce, Michael Eaton, Erik Wagner, Vanessa Zahorian, Muriel Maffre, Lorena Feijoo, Julia Adam, Julie Diana, Joanna Berman, Caroline Loyola, Alice LuAn Lewitzke, Megan Low, Catherine Baker, Lindy Mandradjieff, Nicole Starbuck, Eliane Munier, Pauli Magierek, Dalene Bramer, Brook Broughton

Author:  Azlan [ Thu May 10, 2001 4:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Cathy, based on the above casting and if you are going opening night, watch Joanna Berman and let us know what you think.

Author:  Terry [ Thu May 10, 2001 6:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Belinda -- I wish I could go!!! But I can't...however, I know that Cathy and others will provide us with a wonderful report and I look forward to reading them! This tour is making me excited!! Isn't SFB the only American classical company that has ever performed at l'Opera de Paris Garnier this decade? (And the Covent Garden Royal Opera House as well?) What a great honor -- that just tells us how wonderful this company is. Image

Author:  Cathy [ Thu May 10, 2001 8:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Azlan I must go to all the performance of first programm and three of four Othello. Perhaps if I love really Possokhow and Tan must I take one place more. I must see the premiere and Berman too. <BR>Terry, Abt has also performed on POB Garnier stage, as well as Taylor Company, Twyla Tharp Company and Kirov or Bolchoi. It was during Dupond leading where he invits the guest companies on Garnier stage. Now they just invite Flamenco troup or modern troup as Decouflé. Against Royal Ballet came in théâtre des Champs Elysées. <BR>I know Joanna berman she's dancing in Rodeo, the cowgirl role last time SFB came to POB.<BR>I know she mus retire next season, but which is the reason, is she too "old" or does she want make other thing as teaching ?<P><p>[This message has been edited by Cathy (edited May 10, 2001).]

Author:  Azlan [ Thu May 10, 2001 8:58 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Cathy, good for you for seeing so much of SFB!<P>Joanna is retiring (I think it's safe to say that now) of her own choice for personal reasons. The company and most of us would like her to continue but ultimately one's personal goals are more important -- one can't dance forever. I'll post more once I get the okay to say more. Image

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Thu May 10, 2001 9:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

I agree with Azlan about Joanne Berman. Also look out for Lucia Lacarra, who many of us here in the UK (and elsewhere) would place in the top half dozen ballerinas worldwide.

Author:  Cathy [ Sat May 12, 2001 2:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Today was the first performance of the 1st programm presented by SFB at Paris. For the opening night, the audience was more exclusive american, it's strange that french audience are not curious to discover a so good troup. Even his name is not so well known than ABT or NYCB, his level is really excellent.<BR>The programm began with Prism by Thomasson, I found particularly good Kristin Long beside of Guennadi Nedviguine and Gonzalo Garcia. In the second movement, Lucia Lacarra was absolutely wonderful, so lyrical, she looks at Guillem but she is more lyrical, what beautiful arabesques and ports de bras. In the last movement Joan Boada is really deceiving just jumping and not really good. I particularly enjoy the three soloist men in 1st movement Eaton, Morris and Davis. Corps de ballet is perfect and don't seem to be disturb by the rake.<BR>In second part we have Night by Julia Adam, it's a wonderful choreography, it's a really good idea to present this work in France. We can see the difference between the level of the contemporary creation in USA and in France. It's true that all the best choregrapher of XX century are american as Balanchine, Robbins, Neumeier or Forsythe. Julia Adam seems to be inspirated also by Martha Graham. The three women entry remain her work especially Lamentation and they have the same look, hair up, and long "skirt". The men are really good. And the differents pictures of the ballet are interesting. It's a true choregraph that you discover. The music is also interesting beginning as classical work, it ends as Steve Reich or Philip Glass musics. And it's good to discover her work. Tina Le Blanc is absolutely fine for this work, she has the fragility of the character. After we can see Chaconne for deux danseurs. It were Joanna Berman and Yuri Possokhov, they were absolutely wonderful. She dance so fine, quick foot steps, elegance, style, something of "french chic", Possokhov was really impressive at her side. His solo remain also a few some classical variation as Acteon but dancer in jean and tee shirt.<BR>To finish, we can see Sandpaper ballet by Morris. it's a little humoristic jewel where all the principals, and soloists dance, solos, duos, ensemble on typical american music as sleigh ride or the tipe writer. We can see Christopher Stowell in first solo or also Julie Diana in an inventive pdd perhaps with Damian Smith ? I'm not sure. Some ensemble seem to be inspirated by Balanchine himself as the movement for all the girls.<BR>I'm sure against that the troup level is really excellent, the principal are really good and the evening was a great evening showing all the style of dance without usual american choreographs as Balanchine or Robbins. This modern programm shows the variety of choreography and style danced in US.<BR>You had the luck to see POB, we have the luck to see your wonderful troup. I think the level is again better than their last visit.<BR><p>[This message has been edited by Cathy (edited May 12, 2001).]

Author:  Kevin Ng [ Sat May 12, 2001 2:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Thanks for your most interesting report, Cathy. I envy you seeing SFB. I hope that after the European tour this year, SFB will consider an Asian tour in future!

Author:  Azlan [ Sat May 12, 2001 6:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

Thank you so much for this, Cathy. I appreciate your enthusiasm of SFB. That's the way I feel whenever I come home from a performance.<P>I have to say that besides the virtuosic principal roles, I didn't quite like "Prism" when SFB performed it here, even if the NYC critics raved about it.<P>"Sandpaper Ballet" is a cute work. I was wondering how Parisians would take to it. Being that opening night crowd was mostly American, perhaps you can report later when there is more of French audience.<P>Julia Adam is one of a few bright spots on the choreographic front in the world of ballet. She has had my attention for some time now and I am glad SFB finally gave her a chance on the big stage. We have discussed her many time before. Here are a couple of threads you might enjoy:<P>- <A HREF="" TARGET=_blank></A> <P>- <A HREF="" TARGET=_blank></A> <P>Lucia Lacarra is indeed beautiful to watch. It's interesting you say she looks like Guillem. I am sure Lucia would be thrilled by that comparison! I knew of course she would be a hit; with her star quality, it's hard not to miss her.<P>The reason I had asked you to watch Joanna Berman is that she's more of a choreographer's dancer, one who interprets the spirit of the choreographer's intent better than anyone else. David Bintley once said of her, <I>Can't she do no wrong!</I> She absorbs her roles and conveys every intent of it through every fibre of her body, sometimes too subtly for critics.

Author:  DavidH [ Sat May 12, 2001 8:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: San Francisco Ballet in Paris

>>David Bintley once said of her, Can't she do no wrong! <<<P>I am certain Mr. Bintley's grammar is better then that. :-) <P>To quote Azlan-"She absorbs her roles and conveys every intent of it through every fibre of her body, sometimes too subtly for critics."<BR>I don't agree with that at all. Not that I care what the critics think about Joanna, but her artistry and talent have been most appreciated by them (the critics.) In my opinion, due to some serious injuries she has endured which caused her to take a lot of time away from the stage, she has not received the national and international press attention she deserves (why hasn't she been on the cover of Dance Mag?) and should have become a household name (at least in the dance world) just the way Bussell, Guillem, Herrera, Nichols are.And in a many cases even more so. The news of Joanna retiring saddens me deeply. But she's an extremely talented teacher and I'm sure could tackle the demands of ballet mistress/rehearsal coach with no problem if she choses to.<BR>D

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