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 Post subject: Miami City Ballet--LA Oct., NYC Jan.
PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2008 6:48 am 
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Los Angeles October 24-26, 2008

Symphony in Three Movements (Stravinsky/Balanchine), Liturgy (Pärt/Wheeldon), Tarantella (Gottschalk/Balanchine), NIGHTSPOT (Costello/Tharp)

http://www.musiccenter.org/events/dance_0809_miami.html


New York City Jan 21-25, 2009

Program A
Balanchine and Tharp Classics
Symphony in Three Movements (Stravinsky/Balanchine), La Valse (Ravel/Balanchine), In The Upper Room (Glass/Tharp)

Program B
Balanchine Masterworks
Square Dance (Vivaldi, Corelli/Balanchine), “Rubies” (Stravinsky/Balanchine), Symphony in C (Bizet/Balanchine)

http://www.miamicityballet.org/


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 12:02 pm 
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I am hopefully going to be able to see the Miami City Ballet performances in LA the weekend after this and will try and write something about it when I get back. I saw the Miami City Ballet for the first time about a year ago in Detroit. I was very impressed.

Having just seen the Mariinsky performances in Costa Mesa I am still very sensitized to the wonderfully refined beauty of the dancing. I see the Miami City Ballet and the world of George Balanchine, that it often represents, as being a beautiful extension of the Mariinsky style as well as a thing of wonderful beauty in itself.

At the moment I view the Miami City Ballet style as being a somewhat gentler and slightly more refined style of dancing than I have seen in some other companies' interpretations of George Balanchine and Twyla Tharp. The dancers exhibit the expanded expression and high energy levels that George Balanchine and others have introduced to 'classical style' dancing, but they definitely retain the feeling of refined beauty at the same time. I have enjoyed this approach very much.

I feel that, from what I have seen so far, the Miami City Ballet dancers are extremely talented and extremely likable as well.

I hope that others in the LA area will be able to be there and that you enjoy the experience as much as I have and hope to once again.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 11:11 pm 
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In the "You Might Have Heard It Most Recently Here First" department, keep your eyes open for a new member at the Miami City Ballet....

Zherlin Ndudi

I saw him at the Lausanne dance competition several years ago and, like Steven McRae (now Royal Ballet) several years before, he ignited the competition. He didn't win for some reason (second place(?)) but, like Steven McRae (who did win), of the Lausanne competitions that I have seen, he stood out like a shooting star, quite spectacular! He was definitely most noticeable in the 'High-Bravura' category, like Steven McRae, but who knows in how many other areas he can shine as well.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 5:28 pm 
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In the Orange County Register, Paul Hodgins interviews Edward Villella as a preview to MCB's performances at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, October 24-26, 2008:

OC Register


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 11:46 pm 
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Two very quick comments from tonight's performance. Haiyan Wu in "Litergy"--Wonderful ! "Nightspot"--I enjoyed immensely !


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:01 am 
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Bliss !


The Miami City Ballet In Los Angeles


The performances built each day in quality of dance and enchantment of expression.


The final day, yesterday, Haiyan Wu, dancing "Liturgy", seemed to have had the audience absolutely mesmerized ! I certainly was !

The same day, and each day, Rolando Sarabia in "Nightspot" was Charisma Personified ! All the dancers, everyday, in this 'Masterwork' were 'right on' brilliant in their quality of dance and their total commitment !


As a child I grew up in the Los Angeles area. I am now visiting my father who lives outside of LA. Because of this, being here can elicit a feeling of warmth and happiness that is very special.

The Miami City Ballet also elicits this feeling along with a sense of family. You see them around the theater, alone or in friendly groups, and they are always relaxed and smiling. Edward Villella, former great Balanchine dancer and founder-director of the Miami City Ballet, in his regular pre-performance discussions with the audience, always expresses a feeling of love for his company, his dancers and the art form along with the way of life that the company represents.

In addition to the very high quality level of the company, this may also be the reason why dancers from all over the world, such as Haiyan Wu, a prima ballerina from China, and Rolando Sarabia, a primo dancer from Cuba, have joined the company.

This all shows in the dancing.


"Nightspot"

A Masterpiece !

A Mature And Sensitive Building By Twyla Tharp On All That She Has Done Before--Possibly Her Best Creation !

One very sympathetic internet regular, after several viewings of the first performances last April of "Nightspot", called it----"Charming!"----as well as giving it many other compliments.

It is a Twyla Tharp (choreographer) 'dance away' interpretation of the colorful Miami nightclub world. It also has a 'boy realizes what a good thing he has in his loving girlfriend' theme. This love theme, a committed, heartfelt effort by all the performers (dancers and musicians) and Twyla Tharp's absolute brilliance make "Nightspot" a warmly compelling and "Charming' experience as well as a Masterwork.

I have seen several of Twyla Tharp's best known works, "In The Upper Room" being a wonderful favorite, and I really feel that "Nightspot", being both a 'High Energy' and a 'Dreamy' creation, is possibly her best !

The music by Elvis Costello and the playing of this music are excellent ! A large orchestra and an onstage ten piece band interact and compliment each other wonderfully.

All the performances showed how talented, committed and heartwarming the Miami City Ballet really is.

I hope to be able to write some more at another time about all the excellent Miami City Ballet performances that I had the great pleasure of seeing this weekend.


[spelling corrections made]


Last edited by Buddy on Tue Oct 28, 2008 9:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 3:04 pm 
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"Nightspot"

A Gentle Whirlwind of Artistic Motion and Human Expression.


There is so much going on from so many different directions that it is a challenge to keep tract of it all. It is a world of spinning and dazzling couples. Wherever you look there is artistic fascination. There are star dancers (Jennifer Carlynn Kronenberg, Rolando Sarabia....) and central activity, but there is also a constant brilliance of activity by Everyone. Following the almost transcendental loveliness of "Liturgy", we are once again carried along, this time through an 'implied' world of hyper-human activity, as if we were riding the gentlest of of all possible waves.


"Liturgy"

A Poem Written on The Air

We are left floating and immersed in its graceful loveliness.


"Liturgy" begins as a somewhat angular modern abstraction and becomes an almost meditative voyage, as if entering into the floating world of a Chinese landscape painting.

Haiyan Wu in "Liturgy" is slightly different from any ballerina that I have seen before. She seems to express a 'Far Eastern' ideal of delicacy and motion. She combines this with a depth of human expression that is characteristic of the world of George Balanchine and the Miami City Ballet. As she continues to combine her amazingly delicate beauty with the Miami City Ballet's exploration of artistic frontiers she should just become more and more beautiful and more and more fascinating to watch.

Carlos Quenedit, a very young Corps de Ballet member, partnered and positioned Haiyan Wu in space as if gravity didn't exist.

Both "Liturgy" and "Nightspot" fit together so well. Yesterday, after delighting in seeing "Liturgy", a lady sitting next to me said that she wished that she could see all these works over and over again. I was in total agreement. Then, as an answer to our wish, we were treated to another forty minutes of wonderful brilliance--"Nightspot".


[spelling corrections made]


Last edited by Buddy on Tue Oct 28, 2008 12:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 3:11 pm 
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Paul Hodgins reviews the Friday, October 24 performance at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in the Orange County Register:

OC Register


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 3:16 pm 
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Here is the review from the Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/ne ... 4727.story


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 11:19 am 
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Thanks Francis and cahill for citing these two articles.


"Tarantella"

At each performance Jeanette Delgado and Renato Penteado hit the stage like a welcome burst of sunshine ! Jeanette Delgado was especially radiant.

This is a work created by George Balanchine to feature Edward Villella himself. It is supposed to be a real technical challenge and Edward Villella in his pre-performance discussions has some very interesting comments about this (in the 'now you can look back at it and smile' category). It only lasts for seven minutes, certainly for this reason. It is a nonstop seven minutes.

It is not a speed of light work, so it is possible to miss its demand for physical stamina and instant agility. When you start watching the legs and the feet it becomes much more apparent.

Renato Penteado performs the former Edward Villella role with apparent ease and delightful nonchalance.

As much as this is supposed to be a work created to showcase the 'bravura' abilities of the male dancer, in particular Edward Villella, the female part as performed by Jeanette Delgado is extremely exciting as well. She is an absolute delight ! Her dancing also looks plenty demanding and she breezed through it, welcoming us to her performance like a smiling sun and dancing away like a kid having the time of her life at the teenage hop.

A quick comment about the audience. The theater seemed quite full at all the performances. The audience response to every work was enthusiastically appreciative. I would say that "Liturgy" and "Nightspot" elicited a slightly more enthusiastic response with "Tarantella", showing perhaps an extra bit of spark that day, joining in at the final performance.

[a word added for clarity]


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 1:43 pm 
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I tend to view the creative world of George Balanchine


as an

Expression and Exploration

of the

Human Identity

of

Human Sensuality and Human Desire

of

Human Beauty

of

Humanness Itself

ultimately existing in a world of

Dignity

lovingly embraced by a world of

Joy, Reflection and the Soul



When presented by George Balanchine in an 'abstract' way, all this is seen in basic elements, in individual images.



"Symphony in Three Movements"

This creation by George Balanchine, to the music of Igor Stravinsky, is possibly the most determined attempt at 'clarity' of the four works presented this week. Each abstracted and individual element of this work deserves attention, reflection and appreciation.

The curtain goes up on a long, diagonal line of beautifully posed women in white, bare legged leotards. The audience always applauds.

Then Alex Wong bursts on stage with a series of huge, legs-tucked-under jumps.

There is one sequence after another of distinct and carefully designed elements, all responding with great interest and individuality to the music and all displaying their own visually distinct sculpture and motion.


The men, particularly, were extremely together and impressive in this work.

One favorite sequence for me is a duet, the 'Balinese' (as described by Edward Villella is his talks) dance, performed by Jennifer Carlynn Kronenberg and Jeremy Cox. It is a picture of heart touching gentleness as, several times, the lady leans inward, so lovingly, towards her partner.

This work is a continual source of beautiful moments and beautiful images.



I could watch all four of the works presented this week over and over.

There would be the continual enjoyment of all that has been found already.

New fascination and new expressions of beauty, I am sure, would always be there as well to be discovered.


[the 'Balinese' dance is a "duet" and addition "of Human Beauty"and a spelling correction]


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 12:39 pm 
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A few more thoughts.


Jennifer Carlynn Kronenberg

She seems to have a very natural, almost intuitive feeling, for the Miami City Ballet style of performing. In "Symphony in Three Pieces" she danced in a lovely, unforced manner, that added a gentle elegance to the entire performance. In "Nightspot", as the 'temptress', she moved and expressed herself like a sensual explosion along with a beautiful sense of nuance in her character. She has an essence of graceful surety that gives her performances an airy and highly beautiful aura.

Mary Carmen Catoya

Is a lovely example of elegance and refinement. As the 'ballet girl', she added a fine element of airy grace to "Nightspot"'s highly creative, multidimensional display of exceptional talent.

Haiyan Wu

A Dream of Loveliness.

Patricia Delgado

Dancing in one of the main couples in "Symphony in Three Movements" she had both an exciting vibrance and a sense of refinement in her dancing.

Jeanette Delgado

Besides being an "absolute delight" in "Tarantella", her exhilarating presence in the group dancing of "Nightspot" showed that she might also offer an exciting interpretation to the role of the 'temptress'.

Rolando Sarabia

I would partly describe him as "El Macho" with his heart always showing. He is a Phenomenon--a "Must See!".

Jeremy Cox

He is an excellent dancer, always adding consistent brilliance and interest to whatever he is performing.

Renato Penteado

He is another very talented dancer, who is consistently impressive with an unforced command and a very pleasing and friendly manner.


Once again could I say that there is a uniform level of high quality and professionalism in All the Dancers. This was the most evident for me in the excellent and committed dancing in "Nightspot". There is also a feeling of youthfulness, warmth and joy in all these dancers that makes them such a great pleasure to experience.


Another comment about the music of Elvis Costello in "Nightspot". I don't usually concentrate on the music when I watch a dance performance, but I felt that his music was very exciting and inventive and worked extremely well with the dancing.


All in all it was

A Most Wonderful Several Days Of Performances

that is still carrying me along on a current of air-light reverie, as are the wonderful Mariinsky performances of "Giselle" from two weeks earlier.


[correction made, having once called "Nightspot" "Nightwatch", first sentence about Rolando Sarabia added, and a spelling correction]


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 4:45 pm 
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I saw this program on Saturday night. I was a bit worried about seeing Symphony in 3 movements as the last time I'd seen it, it didn't appeal to me at all. But, wow, what a difference MCB makes in this piece. Dramatic, relevant, powerful --- the dancing above all was so physical in every gesture.

After such a grand, epic piece, it was hard for Tarantella to keep up, especially made smaller scaled with the music played on a piano, but it was fine, and the dancers acquited themselves well.

Wheeldon's Liturgy was next, and he has beautiful movements, but they don't add up to anything.

The Twyla Tharp piece was awful, and should be removed from their rep. Set in a nightclub, dancers strut around, and occasionally dance. And by dance, I mean do some tricks like lots of pirouettes, or some fancy jump. A completely pointless piece.

--Andre


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 8:40 pm 
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Hi Andre,

I have just seen four performances in West Palm Beach of Twyla Tharp's generally acknowleged Masterpiece, "In The Upper Room", and I still stand by all that I said above regarding "Nightspot". I thought it was Great !

Best wishes and good to hear from you.


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