She offered visual relief from her predecessor in the First Movement, Alina Somova of the stiff, widespread fingers that marred classical and neoclassical lines alike. My heart went out to Andrian Fadeev who once again was given the responsibility of supporting this young thing. Nonetheless he managed a triple pirouette that paused en releve, closed in fifth and then finished with a perfect double tour. I laughed out loud when, intent on continuing to bow in front of the curtain, Fadeev had to pull her offstage with his arm. That moment epitomized the essence of Somova: lacking in grace and professionalism, and determined to be rewarded for both deficiencies, like it or not.
I'd like to add to this report, my own eye-ball witness/memories of her bent wrists, lack of epaulement, port de bras, musicality, phrasing and turnout. If this incident had happened at Le Garnier (oh God yes, there
), or La Scala or Covent Garden, etc. the management would have her pull up a chair with them to discuss her bad attitude and her future. And that, justifiably so, especially in view of the fact that her legitimate
international reviews on the whole are scathing at worst, and mediocre at best. Most recently she's was promoted to 1st Soloist, but at the same time, she failed to capture New York's imagination in April the way that Tereshkina and Kondaurova did. How can the management explain this paradox? Why did that happen? Because they, like Prima Ballerina Lopatkina, and other fellow soloists such as Obratzova, Novikova etc. are far superior dancers than she
. There's no just cause nor excuse for Somova's behavior. And even if she were a competent
dancer it's still tasteless and un-professional. Moreover, this is not her first 'hogging the footlights at curtain call' incident on the Maryinsky stage.
Amazingly, there are those who still think that she might be able to succeed in Balanchine, Forsythe and other modern choreography. It's a well documented fact that she can hardly
cope with the few Petipa
roles she's already been given
. Her inconsistencies, audacity, lack of stage etiquette and humility - especially with those who outrank her
by title and accomplishments needs to be addressed. Therefore, it's unfortunate that Fadeev felt he needed to take matters into his own hands on the spot, by 'hooking' her off the stage. It's come to that. This stuff should not be indulged or overlooked. Her overall inadequacy and actions do not become a 1st Soloist of the Maryinsky Ballet, about to begin her sixth season as a professional
Pavel Bubelnikov managed another uncharacteristically impressive evening, for the orchestra sounded magnificent under his baton.
I am very happy to hear that Pasha has improved and is going from strength to strength with his conducting!