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Naomi M

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  1. There were many comments on the FB feed saying that the streaming was frozen at the National Ballet of Japan section (included in the Australian Ballet part). I was watching on my home computer, not wi-fi. But the Bolshoi section had no issues, and most of the RB streaming was okay (except for of course the BRB part with no sound)
  2. I was also watching from Japan, and during the stream of Australian Ballet, in our own National Ballet of Japan section, the streaming was frozen for quite a while and when it was back the section was finished. (well the Australian Ballet part full video is already on YouTube) It seems it was not only me but the majority who were watching. Also sometimes the quality of the streaming was not good during the Unknown Soldier segment.
  3. I did see Melissa Hamilton dance with Roberto Bolle in the R&J balcony scene at the World Ballet Festival, but unfortunately she failed to impress me. She did have beautiful lines making lovely shapes and her technique was good but there was simply no passion or emotions felt in her performance. At another program at WBF, Sarah Lamb danced with Marcelo Gomes in the same pas de deux, and I was amazed what difference Lamb could make, so delicate, touching, sheer joy, although it might have been her first Juliet with Gomes. I also saw Hamilton as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling a few years ago (with Pennefather) and then I was not moved by her, I thought her interpretation rather dull. (as I was overwhelmed by Galeazzi in the same role the day before) On another program at the WBF, Hamilton danced a duet from Bigonzetti's Caravaggio (with Bolle again) and she was brilliant, gorgeous with that, so I guess her strength lies in contemporary works.
  4. It is announced that Paris Opera Ballet will tour to Japan Feb-March 2020 and they will bring Nureyev's Raymonda, which has not been revived for 10 years. https://www.nbs.or.jp/saiten/ (in Japanese, also announcements of the RB Japan tour July 2019)
  5. I am not really sure whether it is Kobborg's version or Bournonville. The ling above mentions Bournonville but the program says the Royal Ballet premiere of the version by Kobborg, though among the photos of the choreographers there is not a pic of Kobborg but there is one of Bournonville. Sissens needs a little refinement of his solo (a little rough) but he did have good leaps and battements, nice feet. I think the repertoire of this gala was enchanting, most of the pieces are rarely seen here. Royal Ballet's Japan tour next summer is expected to be Don Quixote and a gala, so we are looking forward what pieces they will bring to the gala, hopefully those very RB repertoire.
  6. I went to the 1st performance and it certainly showed the wonderful talent of the RB dancers. One pleasant surprise was the presence of two young brilliant dancers Joseph Sissens and Calvin Richardson. Especially enjoyed two unique pieces choreographed by Richardson, Dying Swan which was danced by himself and Credo (a world premiere) danced by Sissens and young dancers chosen by audition. They are so talented and have unique quality, I am looking forward how they will mature in the coming years. All the dancers were fabulous, and it was lovely to see Ricardo Cervera back on stage still dancing brilliantly. Laura Morera danced 5 pieces, showing her strength, expressiveness and versatility, and the tango from Facade was playful and enjoyable. Naghdi/Campbell in the Two Pigeons pdd was of course heartwarming and beautiful. Cuthbertson and Muntagirov were shimmering and glowing in Diamonds and Sylvia, pure beauty and musicality. Also loved the light, airy Sylphide danced by Takada. Also it was nice to see Mcgregor's Raven girl with Takada and Hirano as we in Japan have almost no opportunity to see McGregor, and especially Takada's strength and expression was memorable long with her gothic character. Another rare treat was Dangerous Liaisons choreographed by Adam Cooper and danced by Morera and Ball. Ball's dangerous appeal was so enchanting and he would indeed make a perfect The Stranger in Bourne's Swan Lake. It was such a lovely, intimate evening and the only downside was that there were some empty seats due to lack of publicity as the promoters seemed not used to marketing in the Japanese market. But there are still two more performances, and what a fabulous treat it was.
  7. I agree all the performances you mentioned were superb and I enjoyed them. And I have to agree that some of the performances were less than great, having too much artistic directors and not active dancers included. I think this gala would be more enjoyable if the program was one hour shorter, especially given the severe heat this summer. Today was the final gala and Olesya Novikova in Swan Lake was such a stunner with beautiful lyrical lines. It is a pity she is not coming to the Mariinsky Ballet Japan tour this November-December. Other highlights were Lamb and Gomes in Romeo and Juliet Balcony, Eichwald and Bolle in Petit's Thais, Gilbert and Heymann in Grand Pas Clasique and Ganio and Bolle in Proust, Alexandrova and Lantratov in Laurencia, Ferri and Bonelli in Woolf Works. Legends Ananiashivili and Lopatkina were in the audience. And of course the Funny gala was hilarious and worth the price of the ticket. (you can see glimpses of that in the instagrams of the participating dancers)
  8. It was broadcasted in Japan in 2012. But it might be very difficult to broadcast a gala to the international market because of copyright issues. This time there were many Balanchine and Cranko works which are difficult to broadcast (the 2012 broadcast omitted all works by those two choreographers as well as Ratmansky) There are official curtain call videos here on the channel of NBS. https://www.youtube.com/user/2009NBS such as
  9. I don't have enough time to report about the World Ballet Festival at the moment, but I did see 2 performances each of the programs A and B and tomorrow I will go to the final gala. Each gala is about 4 and a half hours long, performed every day from Wednesday to Sunday, very short intermissions (10 or 15 minutes) and people rushing to the bathroom. It is even exhausting to the audience given the current extreme heat in Tokyo. But it is of course enjoyable with such stars gathered together, and there is no gala like this I think. For me the highlight of the performances was a heartbreaking dramatic performance of Onegin with Alseesandra Ferri and Marcelo Gomes, and the performances given by Alexandre Riabko, Silvia Azzoni and Maria Eichwald. (I hope to report more later when I have time) NBS the impresario for this event also started their own Instagram account so you can see glimpses of the gala and its backstage. https://www.instagram.com/nbs_japan/
  10. The official press release from Boston Ballet https://p.widencdn.net/eewsjb/Press_Release_Boston_Ballet_2018-19_Roster-Announcement?
  11. I love this Greame Murphy version on Nutcracker, the story of Clara, they brought it to Japan several years ago. A touching epic story of old Clara who was a dancer at the Ballet Russes in her youth. There is also a DVD of this lovely production.
  12. Naomi M

    Vaganova Academy Graduates 2018

    The source of the above information is from here I believe. http://melmoth.blog/post/175587494998/whos-going-where-update-2
  13. Please don't hesitate to ask me if you have any questions. I write press releases for those cinema relays. If you can watch NHK BS (satellite TV), there is a broadcast of Batsheva Dance Company's Last Work and Royal Ballet's Frankenstein next Sunday late night. http://www4.nhk.or.jp/premium/
  14. We do have the ROH cinema relay here in Japan, and it usually runs for a week! Although it arrives late (Swan Lake will be in cinemas from August 24th) better than nothing. http://tohotowa.co.jp/roh/ (in Japanese) And we also have some broadcasts of ballet such as Woolf Works, Akram Khan's Giselle occasionally.
  15. And information of the program of World Ballet Festival in English. Some more dancers are added. https://www.nbs.or.jp/english/stages/2018/wbf/program.html Tokyo does have a lot of ballet performances in the summer indeed, and the program for A Night of Royal Elegance is fabulous too. But please note it is really so hot and humid here if you plan a visit!