Nice to read this from Alastair Macaulay. Thanks, Francis.
About Gamzatti (in "La Bayadere")
"....Ms. Boylston, Ms. Copeland and Ms. Messmer showed adult complexity and worldly allure.
"When Ms. Boylston replaced Ms. Osipova on Monday, she, already an exciting jumper, danced on a yet larger scale and found a few moments of rubato that added touches of ballerina authority. There were two brief technical smudges, but nothing that experience should not fix. The big mime confrontation with Ms. Cojocaru’s Nikiya, in Act I, Scene 2, had unusual freshness, and her behavior to Mr. Cornejo’s Solor had sophistication, wit and need."
Back in January....
I loved Isabella Boylston performing this.
Simone Messmer -- was an absolute KnockOut! as Gamzatti. Hope to hear much more about her. Like very much to see her doing leads as well (Odette-Odile, Giselle, Nikiya, Aurora, all of Balanchine....)
Thought that Vadim Muntagirov, as Solor, was great.
Delighted to read that Polina Semionova will be joining the company.
Isabella Boylston -- here's some more.
Apollinaire Scherr in "The Financial Times"
"Only Boylston discovered where dancing might become drama. (Look out for her in the title role of Ratmansky’s Firebird next month.) Her Gamzatti may have cowed Solor into marrying but she also genuinely yearned for him. In the strictly classical pas de deux that follows Gamzatti’s discovery of his pledge to another, Boylston stepped on to pointe and planted her hands on his shoulders as if to shake him. Instead she simply perched there, demonstrating the sublimation of feeling for the sake of form."http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/4c479232 ... z1voMQHdJD
And some kind words for the plots of romantic ballets such as "Giselle" and "La Bayadere."
Robert Johnson/The Star-Ledger
"It might be tempting to dismiss their plots as seeking to complicate what, at bottom, are simple stories of amorous rivalry. Yet without the larger drama—the gulf that divides social classes and the conflict that sets wealth and power against the love flaming within a lowly individual’s heart—these works would not continue to be acclaimed as masterpieces. “Giselle” and “Bayadère” are both moral dramas, in which ballet’s concrete language dissolves into spirit during the course of an evening.http://www.nj.com/entertainment/arts/in ... balle.html
It looks like the ABT season is off to a fine start. It is certainly one of the most exciting companies in the world today with its mix of 'homegrown' talent and international celebrities. For those such as you, Jerry (balletomaniac), hopefully the success of dancers like Simone Messmer and Isabella Boylston will show what ABT can develop itself, while the addition of dancers like Polina Semionova will give many their best chance to experience some of the finest talent to be found anywhere.