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 Post subject: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:30 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Forsythe steps out with mariinsky
By Matthew Brown for The St Petersburg Times

Groundbreaking choreographer William Forsythe says he was like "a reluctant bride" before the marriage of his contemporary aesthetic with the well-honed classicism of the Mariinsky Theater's ballet company.

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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:31 pm 
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Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
For the lucky few in close proximity to the lovely city of St Petersburg, here is some performance information from the Mariinsky:

THE RUSSIAN PREMIERE OF BALLETS BY WILLIAM FORSYTHE

3rd March 2004,5th and 7th March as part of the IV International Ballet Festival MARIINSKY
The Mariinsky Theatre is staging an unprecedented premiere - for the first time ever, a Russian ballet company will be performing ballets by WILLIAM FORSYTHE.

WILLIAM FORSYTHE can justly be called the true heir of George Balanchine, the 20th century's greatest choreographer, and, via Balanchine, of Marius Petipa - and thus of the great dance traditions of the Mariinsky Theatre. Forsythe, who set the course for the development of ballet at the close of the 20th and start of the 21st centuries, had previously never been to Russia. A planned installation by the Kremlin walls was forbidden by the authorities in Moscow. In 2002, he came to St Petersburg for the first time where he and four dancers from the Frankfurter Ballett amazed the public at the MARIINSKY ballet festival with the work Artifact-II. One year later, a group of Mariinsky Theatre dancers travelled to Forsythe's studio in Frankfurt. At last, the Mariinsky Theatre and Forsythe came to an agreement to stage three of his famous ballets at the Mariinsky Theatre.

STEPTEXT
Choreography: William Forsythe
Music: J. S. Bach, Partita No. 2 BWV1004 in D minor, Chaconne
Set, costume and lighting design: William Forsythe
William Forsythe's Assistant: Aaron Watkin

THE VERTIGINOUS THRILL OF EXACTITUDE
Choreography: William Forsythe
Music: Franz Schubert, Symphony Op. 31 in C major
Staging and lighting design: William Forsythe
Costume design: Stephen Galloway
William Forsythe's Assistant: Noah D. Gelber

IN THE MIDDLE, SOMEWHAT ELEVATED
Choreography: William Forsythe
Music: Thom Willems in collaboration with Lesley Schtuk
Set, costume and lighting design: William Forsythe
William Forsythe's Assistant: Katryn Bennets

At the Mariinsky Theatre, William Forsythe's ballets are being rehearsed by Ulyana Lopatkina, Diana Vishneva, Irma Nioradze, Darya Pavlenko, Elvira Tarasova, Natalia Sologub, Sofia Gumerova, Nadezhda Gonchar, Tatiana Tkachenko, Andrian Fadeyev, Igor Kolb, Andrei Merkuriev, Leonid Sarafanov, Anton Korsakov and many young dancers of the Mariinsky Ballet Company.

The name of the ballet In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated came about by absolute chance. Katryn Bennets, head coach of the Frankfurter Ballett and Forsythe's assistant for the staging of In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated at the Mariinsky Theatre, recalls &uqot;The scene-painters were to have made a large number of golden objects for the world premiere in Paris. However, they only managed to make a few small 'trifles'. As a result, the enraged Forsythe hung two golden cherries in the middle of the totally empty stage - not very high up, just off the floor. And hence the name of the ballet: In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated. By the way, the staging at the Mariinsky Theatre will be using those very same cherries:" William Forsythe has slightly altered the name of the ballet In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated for the Mariinsky Theatre premiere: the Russian title of the work is Where the Golden Cherries are Hanging.

WILLIAM FORSYTHE was born in New York in 1949, and studied dance at the University of Jacksonville in Florida and later at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York. He began his dance career with the Joffrey Ballet before he moved to Europe in 1973, joining the Stuttgarter Ballett, first as a dancer and later (1976-1981) as a choreographer.

In 1976, Forsythe staged his first ballet - Urlicht - a duet to music by Mahler, which was a resounding success for the choreographer. Forsythe began to create works for the Stuttgarter Ballett, the Basel Ballet, the Bayerisches Staatsballett, the ballet company of the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, the Joffrey Ballet and the Nederlands Dans Theater.

A defining moment in Forsythe's creative life came with his collaboration (at the invitation of Rudolf Nureyev) with the ballet company of the Opйra de Paris, where he staged his famous In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated for rising star Sylvie Guillem.

In 1984, Forsythe was appointed Artistic Director of the Frankfurter Ballett. The twenty years his career has spun have seen the creation of such important works as Gänge (1982), Artifact (1984), Impressing the Czar (1988), Limb's Theorem (1991), The Loss of Small Detail (1991), Eidos:Telos (1995), Endless House (1999) and Kammer/Kammer (2000).

Forsythe's ballets are in the repertoires of the world's leading dance companies, among them the New York City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, the National Ballet of Canada, London's Royal Ballet and the ballet company of the Opйra de Paris.

The production is being staged
with the support of KULTUR-STIFTUNG DER DEUTSCHEN BANK

<small>[ 05 March 2004, 01:35 PM: Message edited by: Catherine Pawlick ]</small>

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Author, "Vaganova Today: The Preservation of Pedagogical Tradition" (available on amazon.com)


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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:34 pm 
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Posts: 1746
Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
The month of March 2004 at the Mariinsky (ballet only):

3, Wed *PREMIERE*
evening The Ballets of William Forsythe

5, Fri
evening The Ballets of William Forsythe

6, Sat
evening Swan Lake
fantasty ballet in three acts, four scenes
Music: Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Choreography: Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov (1895)
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

7, Sun
evening The Ballets of William Forsythe

8, Mon
morning Chopiniana. The Prodigal Son. Le Sacre du Printemps.

9, Tue
evening Les Noces. Chopiniana. Etudes.
Conductor: Mikhail Agrest

10, Wed
evening Manon
ballet in three acts
Music: Jules Massenet
Choreography: Kenneth MacMillan (1974)
Conductor: Mikhail Agrest

11, Thu
evening The Sleeping Beauty
Ballet-féerie in three acts with a prologue and an apotheosis (revival of the 1890 production)
Music: Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Choreography: Marius Petipa
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

12, Fri
evening Don Quixote
grand ballet in four acts, seven scenes with Prologue
Music: Ludwig Minkus
Choreography: Alexander Gorsky (1902)
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

13, Sat
evening La Baydère
Grand ballet in four acts (seven scenes) with an apotheosis (revival of the 1900 production)
Music: Ludwig Minkus
Choreography: Marius Petipa
Conductor: Mikhail Sinkevich

14, Sun
evening Gala Perfomance

17, Wed
evening Don Quixote
grand ballet in four acts, seven scenes with Prologue
Music: Ludwig Minkus
Choreography: Alexander Gorsky (1902)
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

19, Fri
evening Swan Lake
fantasty ballet in three acts, four scenes
Music: Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Choreography: Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov (1895)
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

24, Wed
evening The Legend of Love
Ballet in three acts
Conductor: Boris Gruzin

31, Wed
evening Giselle
fantastic ballet in two acts
Music: Adolphe Adam
Choreography: Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot, Marius Petipa (1884 version)
Conductor: Mikhail Agrest

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Author, "Vaganova Today: The Preservation of Pedagogical Tradition" (available on amazon.com)


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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2004 2:02 am 
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Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Organic Gestures
The Mariinsky Theater's dancers pull off William Forsythe's experimental steps as if they've been steeped in modern ballet for years. By Raymond Stults for The Moscow Times


St. Petersburg's Mariinsky Theater could hardly have provided audiences with a greater contrast in dance than it did last Friday and Saturday at the opening performances of the Fourth International Mariinsky Ballet Festival.

Friday showcased a brilliantly conceived trio of plotless episodes by William Forsythe in the American choreographer's first work with a Russian company.

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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2004 2:08 am 
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Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
I'm pleased that Forsythe's choreography was such a hit with the Moscow Times' ballet correspondent.

He makes an intriguing statement about "The Vertigenous Thrill of Exactitude":

Quote:
However long Forsythe may have spent devising his steps, it hardly showed. They, like Schubert's music, seemed the result of a single unbroken flow of inspiration.
At a lecture demonstration at the Royal Opera House, Antony Rizzi from Ballett Frankfurt told us that Forsythe created the 1000's of steps in the 11-minute whirlwind that is "The Vertigenous Thrill of Exactitude" in a single day.

<small>[ 12 March 2004, 03:09 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Tue Mar 30, 2004 8:50 am 
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Posts: 6778
Location: Estonia
Quote:
Dance: Historic Mariinsky troupe claims its modern credentials

By Clement Crisp
Financial Times
March 30, 2004

Let no-one now think that the Mariinsky (Kirov outside Russia) Ballet is a prisoner of its past.

...

In newspaper reports, the dancers spoke of aches in adapting to the Forsythe manner (with its unusual balances, its off-centre tensions, its vicious slice and slash of limb) but they showed in performance the most dazzling assurance and what I found was a delight in the challenges and rewards of the choreography.
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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2004 7:21 am 
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Posts: 1640
Location: London UK
An interesting piece from today's Moscow Times about Forsythe's experiences with the Kirov Ballet.

Reading between the lines it seems the audience was less than thrilled.

http://english.mn.ru/english/issue.php?2004-13-24


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 Post subject: Re: Mariinsky Ballet Festival 2004
PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2004 11:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 12:01 am
Posts: 64
Location: Paris
Max Delany writes in that piece

"it will take a course of cultural shock (even shocking) therapy before they acclimatize to Forsythe's genre. Luckily, that is almost exactly what he's all about."

What sort of ghoul would gloat over Shock Therapy I wonder ? How many million dead was that in Russia since 1989 ?

And wonder how Forsythe swung a five-year "agreement" ?

Perhaps someone feels the urge to early-retire dancers they don't like.


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