Thanks Cassandra. I look forward to reading your impressions of R&J soon.
Ismene Brown wrote a rather accurate (initially at least) appraisal of Somova:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/thea ... -pony.html
She draws a conclusion regarding Terekhova's coaching that, from what I've seen, is not addressing the full issue. Terekhova is not one to focus on port de bras with her girls, and Somova's right hand and fingers are in dire need of help. Somova's issue is not just uber high extensions, it is the entire image at this point -- the arms almost worse than the legs in many respects, as they're often much more difficult to correct over the long term, especially if the training didn't set the proper positions in stone. Each student absorbs at different rates and depths.
I have to disagree though with Ms. Anderson's review. In Petersburg performances when other (always foreign in fact) critics have used the term "mannered" to describe Uliana Lopatkina, I've never had that impression during the same viewings.
I cannot speak to the performance of which she wrote, however, except to say that everyone has off nights. What is a too-slow tempo to some, is not so bad to others. And keeping in mind Lopatkina is at least 5'9", it would not make sense for her to deliver O/O at a fast tempo, needless to say. And, all tempi aside, one thing you will never see from Lopatkina is incorrect port de bras; her arms are classic Vaganova style. The same cannot be said of Ms. Somova.