Catherine Pawlick wrote:
Backstage after the second night of Sylvia, Yuri Fateyev made a short speech to the entire cast. He introduced the British Consul General and pointed out that this, 2014, is the year of British-Russian Culture.
He then announced that as of that moment, Xander Parish had been promoted to soloist - and all applauded.
Xander had danced Romeo last fall, and debuted in Siegfried on March 6, 2014. He's been dancing principal roles such as these and others for some time -- congratulations to him for the promotion!
Fine news, Catherine. Thank you. My comments below about Xander's performance last night were written before reading this.
Sylvia — Night Two
Alina Somova — The highlight of her performance last night was the magnificent use of her beautiful long limbs and her flexibility in a manner that enhanced greatly, as does Oxana Skorik, the feeling of the work.
“He [Frederick Ashton] was renowned for…. creating characters out of steps….”http://www.theballetbag.com/2010/03/29/one-step-closer/
An extremely fine example of this was in Act I when Alina Somova, kicking her leg straight up several times in front of her, created an identity that almost took flight. Her magnificent gazelle like jumps, the front leg lifting again after takeoff, reinforced this. She was a creature of the air. Her motion defined her as being someone of mythological prowess and beauty.
Her lift sequence with Xander Parish in Act III was magically beautiful. Their long lined elegance established a picturesque grandeur in this apparently very demanding series of moves that was a true highlight.
Alina Somova was facially lovely and most believable in her more serious moments. Her look as a women fallen in love was natural and heart touching.
Xander Parish — He’s great !
As a teenager might say — “ He’s got the moves ! “
He’s also very believable and embracing in his presence and character. He was a rock solid partner as Aminta, the hero.
I thought that Sophia Gumerova was very compelling in her few minutes on stage as Diana. Oksana Marchuk appeared for the second night in the goat duet, similar to the two cats in Sleeping Beauty. Last night she was particularly captivating in her jumps because of their playful airiness and finely timed positioning. There was also another woman (in a polka dot dress and a golden crown), possibly Svetlana Ivanova, in a group of three ladies in Act III who was vibrant with beautiful long limbed dancing.