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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 12:51 pm 
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Did anyone see Zahorian's Beauty on Sun.?


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 2:18 pm 
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Hi Tomoka,<P>I saw Vanessa on Sunday and I'm happy to tell you my own impressions. I was truly happy for her; I thought it was a strong debut overall. I hadn't seen this dancer much before and the main thing that impressed me was her crisp petit allegro. She was really quite charming in the Rose Adagio, slightly nervous maybe towards the beginning--small wobbles on penchee arabesques. Also she has a conservative arabesque line (which isn't a complaint, it's clean and pleasing) and she doesn't stretch it a whole lot further in penchee.<P>On the attitude balances, she grabbed the suitors hands rather quickly on the first two, then took a LONG balance on the third--impressive. Then rushed through the final balance before lengthening into arabesque.<P>I liked her acting in the Rose Adagio. It was subtle, but she has such a natural innocence and likeability.<P>Her Act III could have used a slightly stronger presence, but her dancing was a treat.<P>The vision scene, Act II: it goes on an awful long time. Vanessa had the right quality of remoteness, a la ghostly Giselle. Towards the end of the act, there was a run-in with an exiting corps member. I guess the cross just didn't work out--impossible to say whose fault it was, just a small bump. It didn't seem to faze Vanessa when she next appeared on stage.<P>These are just my quick impressions. I'd love to hear from others who saw her. I found Vanessa very charming and a treat to watch.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 5:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 17498
Location: SF Bay Area
Thanks, Belinda, for that impression of Vanessa's performance. I didn't see her dance Sunday but my impression of her from when she was still a corps dancer (she was the lead in Theme and Variations while still in the corps) was that she had amazing confidence but lacked somewhat in acting and musicality. She has steadily improved since then and, at age 21, we can expect to see much more from her. I've missed her pdd's with Guennadi Nevdviguine; I hope to see more of that.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 5:12 pm 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Ah, finally, an honest review:<P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><B>S.F. Ballet reawakens a 'Beaut'</B><P>Rachel Howard, SF Examiner<P> When the curtain rises on the Prologue to San Francisco Ballet's "The Sleeping Beauty," the time is Imperial Russia, 17th century. You can tell from the fur-trimmed unisex capes, the onion-shaped cupolas glimpsed through court windows, the funny little folk-inspired figures inscribed on the gold gilt walls -- and oh, yes, from the program notes. When the curtain rises for Act 2, we are post-Peter the Great: platinum Marie Antoinette wigs, fussy water fountains, gold gilt fleurs de lis on baby blue walls.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P><A HREF="http://63.78.169.150/style/default.jsp?story=X0319SFBFIVE0" TARGET=_blank><B>More</B></A>


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 10:26 pm 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Rachel's review is carefully considered, detailed and readable. But I'm surprised that you feel it is more 'honest' than the others, Azlan.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 10:39 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area
Good comment, Stuart. Seeing the same opening night performance that three of the critics did, I was surprised that two of them gave the leads glowing reviews. I saw the same problems (and probably more) that Rachel cited in the Examiner. For example, in her review, she quotes an audience member commenting on Cyril Pierre not being a good turner. Well, I saw this exact problem during the performance. In my opinion as an enthusiast, if you don't have "star" quality, than you had better get all your basics right.<P>Lacarra, on the other hand, even with the technical problems she had, has a glamorous presence that makes most people forgive and forget her faults. Nevertheless, she did have faults during the opening night performance.<P>Therefore it was interesting to read the first two reviews and finding each glamourizing the leads. The Examiner review, while still in awe of the dancers and the ballet, is not afraid of pointing out the flaws.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2001 10:45 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area
And, oh, let me add that more than a few people found it hard to conceal their puzzlement over the lead casting for opening night when it was first announced.<P>But, having seen these dancers for awhile, I have to say that they exceeded my expectations.<P>The production was of course glorious, which is typical of the high standard employed for most SFB full-length productions.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2001 12:11 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
I approach dance criticism in a different way. I have seen perfectly valid professional reviews for the same performance that range from 'I wish it had gone on all night,' to 'I left at the interval.'<P>The new Ashley Page work for the RB has raised intense dislike in many critics, but a very knowledgable dance friend found it the best piece on a programme which included works by MacMillan and Robbins. <P>I expect a wide range of views on dance, in particular. Perhaps the visual arts is the other form that has a similarly wide spectrum of views.<P>On individual performances, it depends what weight one gives to particular aspects. There are those who focus entirely on technique to the extent that reviews read like an ice skating report and those who give great empahasis to the soul and personality that the dancer brings to the part. This will make a big difference to a review.<P>I'm surprised that some were surprised at the choice of leads. From the way that audiences reacted to her in London and the reviews of her Gala performances with the best around, I'd say that Lacarra is seen as one of the leading dance artists currently performing anywhere. <P>I remember Derek Deane of ENB once choosing an opening night couple that surprised some people until they saw them in these particular roles, when it became clear that they were outstanding. That's one aspect of what being a good AD is about I guess.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2001 6:29 am 
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Thanks Belinda for the wonderful review!


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2001 10:53 am 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Oh, don't get me wrong, Stuart. Both Lucia Lacarra and Cyril Pierre are fine dancers and I'm not saying that just because I know the SFB folks read (and sometimes participate in) this forum.<P>As you are aware, SFB is full of incredible but eclectic talents, which serves them well as they challenge wildly different works very convincingly. The issue here is whether Lucia has enough strength and stamina for such a demanding full-length classical ballet. And also how Cyril can carry himself off in the lead role. Both danced well and the audience loved them, but for a company the calibre of SFB, other dancers may have been better suited for opening night.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2001 11:52 am 
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Location: SF Bay Area
In a pre-show Pointes of View lecture last night, guest Bruce Sansom spoke of how different each of the seven Auroras is, making each performance unique. This comment alone must have encouraged the fans in the audience to purchase a ticket to each show. Sansom also commented on the depth of the company to be able to field so many Auroras and cast the various roles.<P>See also the <a href=../../../ubb/Forum15/HTML/000017.html><B>Training Administrators</B></a> thread for Sansom's role as Staff Associate at SFB.<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited March 22, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2001 2:06 pm 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Very interesting to read about Sansom's Comments. He is clearly impressed with SFB and understandably so. In general terms a number of us who saw them here in London 2 years ago would say that they are in the same category as the Royal Ballet, but with more interesting new work.


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2001 6:19 am 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Flexing muscles indeed:<P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><B>Ballet Flexes Muscle in 'Beauty' <BR>Rotating casts excel in revival of Tomasson classic</B><P>Allan Ulrich, SF Chronicle<P>You can't tell the players without a program, and even then you can't be sure with the San Francisco Ballet's current revival of artistic director Helgi Tomasson's "Sleeping Beauty." The experience of seeing four casts in three long days at the War Memorial Opera House leaves even this veteran in a besotted state.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P><A HREF="http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2001/03/23/DD133378.DTL" TARGET=_blank><B>More</B></A>


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2001 7:08 am 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Rounding up the casting:<P><BR><B>Thursday, March 22, 8:00 PM</B> <BR><I>Aurora Lorena</I> Feijoo <BR><I>Prince</I> Roman Rykine <BR><I>Enchanted</I> Princess Kristin Long <BR><I>Blue Bird</I> Joan Boada <BR><I>Lilac Fairy</I> Muriel Maffre<P><BR><B>Friday, March 23, 8:00 PM</B><BR><I>Aurora</I> Joanna Berman <BR><I>Prince</I> Stephen Legate <BR><I>Enchanted Princess</I> Tina LeBlanc <BR><I>Bluebird</I> Guennadi Nedviguine <BR><I>Lilac Fairy</I> Yuan Yuan Tan<P><BR><B>Saturday, March 24, 2:00 PM</B><BR><I>Aurora</I> Tina LeBlanc <BR><I>Prince</I> Parrish Maynard <BR><I>Enchanted Princess</I> Vanessa Zahorian <BR><I>Bluebird</I> Gonzalo Garcia <BR><I>Lilac Fairy</I> Leslie Young<P><BR><B>Saturday, March 24, 8:00 PM</B><BR><I>Aurora</I> Lucia Lacarra <BR><I>Prince</I> Cyril Pierre <BR><I>Enchanted Princess</I> Katita Waldo <BR><I>Bluebird</I> Roman Rykine <BR><I>Lilac Fairy</I> Muriel Maffre<P><BR><B>Sunday, March 25, 2:00 PM</B><BR><I>Aurora</I> Yuan Yuan Tan <BR><I>Prince</I> Vadim Solomakha <BR><I>Enchanted Princess</I> Kristin Long <BR><I>Bluebird</I> Joan Boada <BR><I>Lilac Fairy</I> Julie Diana


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 Post subject: Re: SFB Program 5 - "Sleeping Beauty"
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2001 9:56 am 
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Location: California
Ulrich's remark about Julie Diana's "hips locking in the first act, maybe it was nerves" is incredibly offensive to me. Actually I was going to say stupid, but don't want this to be delted due to "flaming" hahaha. <BR>Can you imagine, having nerves on your first Aurora and the daunting task of getting through the Rose Adagio alive?? Imagine? :-) <P>Tongue cheek as always,<BR>D


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