CriticalDance Forum

Bolshoi: 2007 - 2008
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Author:  Buddy [ Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:24 am ]
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Cassandra, I have somewhat been under the impression that the Bolshoi infrastructure can stay essentially the same from director to director these days. I believe Ratmansky, himself, has credited his predecessors, Akimov and Vasiliev, for putting the performance level of the company in such good shape. Maria Alexandrova once stated that the teaching staff is the backbone of the company and this can carry the company along well at this time from one director to another.

Although a creative, sympathetic and perceptive director like Ratmansky is a definite virtue at the company, there is also reason to believe that the overall structure of the company is healthy and will continue that way.

Author:  ksneds [ Tue Feb 05, 2008 2:43 am ]
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Ratmansky confirms that he is in talks with NYCB about the possibility of becoming the new resident choreographer there: ... 5ball.html

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Tue Feb 05, 2008 11:14 am ]
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Kate, you beat me to it! :-)

I'm so glad something has finally been officially published about this in the West. It has been too long in the coming, and now speculation can end (or, officially begin until the decision is made). Wherever Ratmansky goes, they'll be lucky to have him.

Of equal interest is who his replacement will be in Moscow. I've heard the Tsiskaridze rumors but cannot imagine him not itching to run onstage himself. Esperanza posted (one page ago) the possibility of Ilze Liepa -- that certainly would be an interesting shift given her lineage and family name. It is the end of an era at the Bolshoi and a new one is just beginning!

Author:  ksneds [ Wed Feb 06, 2008 6:36 pm ]
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After re-reading the article, I found Ratmansky's comments about moving ever seven years interesting. I'm not sure he can really be such a free spirit anymore...

Whilst prior, he could probably pick up and move pretty quickly, he now has a young son who must be about the age to start primary school or a year or two into school. Once you have a kid in school, there's a lot more to consider when moving, especially from country to country - avoiding moves during the school year and having to consider the impact of making a child go through the trauma of leaving friends and adjusting to a new school (especially in a new country). And moving to Moscow had to be quite a change for a young kid who was born and raised in Copenhagen.

NY would be a pretty good homebase - lots of schooling options, plus possible employment opportunities for Ratmansky's wife (a former corps dancer at RDB) and an easy place for commuting to other jobs on the West Coast or in Europe. And a place where he could continue to work even after a contract with a company like NYCB.


Author:  ksneds [ Wed Feb 13, 2008 3:12 am ]
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Ratmansky is not going to NYCB...sounds like he'll be freelance... ... 3ball.html

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Tue Feb 19, 2008 7:04 pm ]
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Patricia Boccadoro is quite enthusiastic about the Bolshoi's performances of "Le Corsaire," "Spartacus," and a triple bill which included "La Pique de Dame" at the Palais Garnier in Paris in January. Here is her review in culturekiosque:


Author:  Buddy [ Sun Feb 24, 2008 5:27 pm ]
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February 20 the Bolshoi debuted it's new version of La Sylphide by Johan Kobborg (Royal Ballet). Natalia Osipova danced in this one. The following day Ekaterina Krysanova danced.

There are two reviews at the Bolshoi discussion forum. I have only quickly looked at the computer translated part about Natalia Osipova and Ekaterina Krysanova by Michail Alexandrova, forum moderator and a big fan of Natalia Osipova. This translation seems rather understandable using translator if anyone wants to give it a try.

In general Michail praises Natalia Osipova for the airiness of her performance and Ekaterina Krysanova for her fine interpretation.

Michail's review--scroll about halfway down page and look for name in Russian starting with "A" and second name starting with "M". It's a long review, you can't miss it. The discussion of Natalia Osipova and Ekaterina Krysanova is at beginning. There is also another review by Ella above. ... &start=105 translator

(Copy Russian text first and paste it here. Make sure that translator is set to "Russian to English". Also note that "it" in these translations can mean he, she or it.)

Author:  Buddy [ Thu Feb 28, 2008 3:21 pm ]
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According to Dansomanie....according to the Moscow newspaper "Independent"....according to Anatoly Iksanov, Bolshoi director, the ballet company will be run by three individuals. Yuri Grigorovich will be in charge of the classical repertoire starting March 1. Alexeï Ratmanski will be in charge of the modern repertoire and creating new works. The third individual from the dancers themselves*, who not yet been chosen, will be a general director. This seems like a very believable scenario from what I have been reading.

Here is the actual article in Russian. Start with the fifth paragraph.

To get a very approximate computer translation paste the fifth paragraph in Russian here, and click "translate".

*[from my rereading of the summary in French using the computer translator, the third person will not be 'from' the "troupe", but will be "in charge of the troupe"]

[if using translator make sure that it is set to "Russian to English"]

Author:  Cassandra [ Fri Feb 29, 2008 3:59 am ]
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The name of the new Bolshoi Artistic Director will be announced next week, probably on Monday.

Author:  Cassandra [ Mon Mar 03, 2008 5:40 am ]
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It's Yuri Burlaka.

The following is in Russian:

Will post more details as I get them.

Author:  Buddy [ Mon Mar 03, 2008 7:24 am ]
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Thank you, Cassandra, for this information.

With my very limited knowledge of Bolshoi infrastructure this all looks very good for the continuation of the direction established by Alexei Ratmansky, as Yuri Burlaka has colaborated recently with Ratmansky on the staging of the 'new-old' Le Corsaire. Ratmansky seems to support presenting the classics as much as presenting new works.

The inclusion of Yuri Grigorovich in the company is the most interesting occurrence here for me. Yuri Grigorovich from my understanding was a rather strong, dominant personality, to say the least, when he ran the company. I would also like to take a moment here to express my deepest sympathies for the passing away of his wonderfully talented wife, Natalia Bessmertnova.

I know that Ratmansky does encourage the conservation of Grigorovich's works, but he also is attempting to find alternative views of the classics as the recent Le Corsaire shows. I have read that Yuri Grigorovich is not surprisingly still regarded very highly at the Bolshoi by many. Perhaps this is an honorary sort of thing, perhaps a goodwill gesture to certain individuals in the company as well, perhaps more. Maybe someone would like to offer their opinions on this.

Author:  ksneds [ Tue Mar 04, 2008 3:18 am ]
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In English from the NY Times on Burlaka: ... l?ref=arts

Author:  Buddy [ Tue Mar 04, 2008 8:09 am ]
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Thanks very much, ksneds, for this article.

The statement that I really like here is....

"Highlighting the importance of the Bolshoi in the Russian consciousness, Moscow arts writers pointed out that the announcement almost coincided with the presidential elections...."

Also to get a feeling for the intended result of Yuri Burlaka's appointment....

"Mr. Iksanov ["the general director of the Bolshoi Theater"] said on Monday that he wanted the Bolshoi Ballet to stay the course set by Mr. Ratmansky, with whom Mr. Burlaka has worked.

“In making this decision I was guided by the principle that the new artistic director of the Bolshoi Theater’s ballet should be the heir of Ratmansky, preserving his vector of the ballet’s development,” the official news agency RIA Novosti quoted Mr. Iksanov as saying. He added that the artistic director “must support the idea of the search for young stars.”

Anatoly Iksanov, based on some of his statements, that I have read in the last year or so, seems like a very capable and 'determined' person. His stated support of Yuri Burlaka and Alexei Ratmansky may well be very important in the immediate future of the company. He also seems sensitive to the feelings of everyone in the company, which makes the inviting back to the company of Yuri Grigorovich a most interesting decision for many reasons, not the least of which is that for a long time (about 30 years?) Yuri Grigorovich ran the Bolshoi and his artistic legacy is very highly respected. I don't know very much about Yuri Grigorovich's current activities. Does he still have his own company?

Author:  Catherine Pawlick [ Tue Mar 04, 2008 12:57 pm ]
Post subject: ... hoi104.xml

Author:  Cassandra [ Thu Mar 06, 2008 8:19 am ]
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Anatoli Iksanov is a very capable administrator who presumably knows what he is doing. I went to a press reception for the Bolshoi at the Russian Embassy a couple of years ago and I have to say he made an excellent impression and he is highly thought of by people outside of Russia that have had dealings with him.

I suppose time will tell as to whether this will prove a wise decision or not, but we all know what too many cooks can do. Ratmansky is obviously company choreographer in all but name, even though his free-lance status means he doesn't want to be described as such.

Grigorovich can be said to have never really gone away as he has maintained his links with the company and overseen the performance of his ballets. He remains a very popular choreographer in Moscow with both the ballet going public and members of Bolshoi staff, but he is now in his eighties and with the recent tragic death of his wife I wonder if he would have continued with his Krasnodar Company much longer. I have to confess to a certain fondness for Mr G. who is possessed of great charm and old world courtesy; and I even like his ballets because for all their faults (they are killers to dance) they contain much that is inspired. His productions of the classics have varied in quality but his Raymonda is superb and deserves to be acknowledged as such whereas his Swan Lake............ Well, let’s just say it's time the Bolshoi replaced it.

It is rumoured that Grigorovich will be in charge of casting and touring and although the former shouldn't cause much concern I am a little worried about the latter as I can still remember his disastrous overseas tours of the 90's that ultimately damaged the company reputation. Let's hope he learned from those mistakes.

Yuri Burlaka is a dark horse for most of us who spent much of his career with Vyachaslav Gordeyev and his main interest seems to be the restoration of old ballets. He is someone about whom I know very little, but it takes someone with a very forceful personality to run the Bolshoi: I hope he has one.

Here is his official Bolshoi page: ... &id26=1007

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