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 Post subject: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2003 12:35 am 
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Edinburgh Festival 2003
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Surviving Picasso

With original sets and costumes by Picasso, the Bordeaux Opera Ballet’s vibrant performance this year is like watching one of the great Cubist’s canvases come to life, writes Ellie Carr for The Sunday Herald.


A figure with a giant cubist skyscraper on its head strides on stage. A shabby burlesque horse trots by. A Lolita-ish little American girl‚ in cartoon pigtails does chirrupy dances to blousy ragtime tunes. This is Parade: the 1917 Léonide Massine ballet that just happens to have been dressed by Pablo Picasso. And thanks to painstaking reconstructions it is centrepiece to Bordeaux Opera Ballet’s Picasso and Dance season, celebrating the incomparable legacy of Russian impresario Serge Diaghilev’s legendary Les Ballets Russes.

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<small>[ 28 July 2003, 02:37 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2003 4:01 am 
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Review from The Scotsman.

Quote:
WITHIN seconds of the curtain rising, it became patently clear who the star of the show would be. Rarely does a backcloth receive a round of applause, but, when faced with a rarely seen Picasso design, it’s easy to forget the dancers backstage waiting to perform. Parade, the opening number in Bordeaux Opera Ballet’s four-part show, afforded the performers little opportunity to redress the balance.
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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2003 12:47 am 
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Picasso's brush with the theatre
Bordeaux Opera Ballet's revival of the artist's collaborations shows up flaws in his vision. By Jann Parry for The Observer.

Although Picasso takes the title honour in Bordeaux Opera Ballet's programme, it is just as much a homage to Diaghilev. He launched the choreographers whose works make up the mixed bill - Léonide Massine, Serge Lifar and George Balanchine - enabling them to collaborate with the painters and composers of their day.

Thanks to Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, ballet at the start of the twentieth century was optimistically avant-garde.

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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2003 1:36 am 
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Picasso's parade is a long haul
Festival Dance: Picasso And Dance. Edinburgh Playhouse, run ended. By Ellie Carr for The Sunday Herald:


He may be one of the world’s most celebrated painters, but as a stage designer, Picasso – whose intermittent contribution to ballet is portrayed by Bordeaux Opera Ballet – was nothing if not overbearing.
As the curtain rises on this over-long evening, there are gasps at the dramatic front-cloth for Leonide Massine’s 15-minute Parade (1917), with its swirl of cubist figures. It is unmistakably Picasso. So are the costumes. The towering 3D sculptures create the sense you are seeing a Picasso canvas get up and walk . But this is as far as it goes, and Parade is a weak ballet with a feeble plot.

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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2003 6:14 am 
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Bordeaux Opera Ballet
By Judith Mackrell for The Guardian


Serge Diaghilev famously recruited the great artists of his era to collaborate on the repertory of his Ballets Russes, establishing a principle of genius brainstorming that set the standard for modern ballet. One of the first celebrity painters he commissioned was Picasso, and while only three of the four works presented by Bordeaux are actually designed by him this programme proves how spectacularly Picasso's hot colours, infallible line and unstoppable imagination extended the possibilities of the ballet stage.

His first work, Parade, still looks the most extraordinary. Created with Cocteau (libretto), Satie (music) and Massine (choreography) this 1917 cubist ballet revolves around the deliberately banal scenario of a group of fairground acts and their managers advertising the attractions of their show.

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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2003 6:15 am 
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Picasso and Dance Playhouse
By Clement Crisp for The Financial Times


It is more than unfortunate that a ballet performance, whose purpose to show off three works having design by Picasso, and a fourth with decoration by Georges Rouault, should fall victim to the inadequacies of the stage on which these pieces are to be seen. But so it proved on Thursday at Edinburgh's frightful Playhouse when the Bordeaux Opera Ballet brought a most intelligent programme featuring Picasso's decorations for Massine'sTricorne and Parade and his 1962 setting for Lifar's Icare, plus the Balanchine/Rouault Prodigal Son.

The productions were decently mounted. The company performances were enthusiastic if not especially stylish, but the account of the scores by the Royal Ballet under Thomas Rösner had momentum, rhythmic life, grand sonority.

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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2003 1:02 am 
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Review from The Times.

Quote:
PICASSO designed some of the most striking ballets of the 20th century, yet we rarely have the chance to see them. Which is why Bordeaux Opera Ballet was particularly canny in presenting a Picasso trio at the Edinburgh Festival. The artist brought such tremendous energy and robust colour to the stage that watching the Bordeaux programme was like being transfixed by a succession of huge dazzling canvases
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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2003 1:31 am 
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Review from the Independent.

Quote:
The programme for the Bordeaux Opera Ballet's British debut began in France as an evening with decors all by Picasso, but one of them, Cuadro Flamenco, didn't arrive here, perhaps because Edinburgh couldn't afford the extra Spanish-dance company needed. Instead, we got The Prodigal Son, quite outside the original theme. But who is going to complain about hearing Prokofiev's best ballet score and seeing one of Balanchine's earliest existing ballets?

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 Post subject: Re: Bordeaux Opera Ballet at Edinburgh Festival 2003
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 6:48 am 
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Dressed for success
Picasso’s costume designs were the main draw at the Edinburgh ballet — with good reason, says David Dougill for The Sunday Times


A woman in front of me in the crush to get into the Edinburgh Playhouse, for the programme by Bordeaux Opera Ballet, turned to her (I presume) husband and asked: “What are we seeing?” He consulted his ticket and replied: “Oh, Picasso and Dance.”

The Playhouse is a large-capacity theatre and it was packed. I imagine that most of the audience knew what they were coming to, attracted by the catchy title and the prospect of seeing, restored to the stage, Picasso’s vibrant designs for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, which are better known these days from museums and art books than from theatrical performance.

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