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  1. I think that it's the Royal Ballet ?
  2. It's possible. Mostly it's Galas along with special and new works, if I recall correctly. She might perform at the final night Gala. Marguerite and Armand is a possibility.
  3. The first person that I ever heard use the expression ""A Force of Nature" was a member of Balletco in regard to Natalia Osipova. It's now commonly used on the ballet internet. Does anyone remember who this was ? And.... I saw two exceptional performances of her Don Quixote years ago in Washington DC when apparently she had a fever.
  4. I try never to say anything that isn't true, even as a joke, which my above comment about Natalia Osipova was. I know that this would be obvious to anyone who is familiar with her, but there are folks who aren't, so this is a clarification. She's probably one of the best Kitris (the heroine from Don Quixote) ever ! I saw some of her first performances with Ivan Vasiliev and they were outstanding. She sailed unbelievably through the air. They both did. As another joke I referred to the Bolshoi as "The Osipova" during one of these performances. At that time she was the epitome of what I thought that the Bolshoi should be. This was around ten years ago. To maintain that kind of physicality would be quite a feat and I have seen her do some rather impressive things recently. Ballet dancers usually develop their artistry. This is certainly the case with Natalia Osipova. Not only does she radiate, probably more than ever, but she can also accomplish great depth. I definitely look forward to her Kitri at this year's Festival and whatever else she might perform. These Festivals are where I've seen artists really try their best.
  5. Seats are now available. This is probably the best place to get them. Usually there's no rush. https://www.mariinsky.ru/en/playbill/festivals/fest2018_2019/ballet_fest_236 Because the ruble is down, these are the best prices that I've seen. Also, being offseason, hotel prices can be very reasonable. This might be a nice chance for those who've never been to the Festival, or to Russia, to plan a visit.
  6. I forgot to mention another debut from London. Natalia Osipova (with Vladimir Shkylarov) in Don Quixote. Who's going to catch me at this one? 🙂
  7. Thanks, Now Voyager. Apparently you are quite correct. According to the Bolshoi site she debuted this in 2017. Still, it's something that I greatly look forward to seeing.
  8. XVIII Mariinsky International Ballet Festival 2019 https://www.mariinsky.ru/en/playbill/festivals/fest2018_2019/ballet_fest_236 The Sleeping Beauty Lauren Cuthbertson and Xander Parish Second to this in order of universal significance will be Olga Smirnova’s debut as Giselle. 😊
  9. Quite Sillily this occurred to me right after posting this at Dansomanie (France) and here. Thanks, Jan.
  10. "An exploration of Picasso’s work in relation to the art of dance is on display until mid-September at the Bibliothèque-Musée de l'Opéra National de Paris. Sketches converse with photographs and extracts from ballets, delving into Picasso’s representation of movement." https://en.vogue.fr/fashion-culture/fashion-exhibitions/story/paris-exhibition-picasso-and-dance-palais-garnier-bibliotheque-musee-opera-national-de-paris-ballet-movement-art-culture/3632#3-1 Maybe someone will attend this and can tell us about it. I'd love to be there but it probably won't be possible. Or maybe someone has some ideas without actually attending. I've often felt that dancers could learn something valuable from Michelangelo, Picasso, etc. Added: In the case of Picasso it might have something to do with how to represent so many views and realities with one image, etc. With Michelangelo, it might be how to change meaning with every different view of a single pose as shown in his sculpture.
  11. Richard, as somewhat of an aside, could I suggest something. All ballets that I’ve seen can be interpreted differently. For instance, the Mariinsky’s Swan Lake has a happy ending for Odette and the Prince anyway. Rothbart’s ending not so, though. I watch something else during that part, which is also how I handle certain sections of otherwise very beautiful works such as Giselle. I try to go for the loveliness of many works if the rest will allow this. You aren’t bound to the ’script’ especially in an art form such as ballet. Also I’ve seen artists put their own uplifting interpretations on things. Maria Alexandrova, for one, performed what I considered to be a delightful Odile (Black Swan). Svetlana Zakharova, I believe, in an interview said that the Bolshoi tries to play down the heaviness of the Odile character. Many other artists that I’ve seen have done the same with other works. And things can get subtle as well. Many artistic interpretations of ‘heavy’ characters have been multidimensional and even sympathetic.
  12. Hi, Richard. Yes, that word did creep into both our posts, but I have to say for completely different reasons. My choice of the word was that I find the plot to be somewhat on the less than happy side. But, I saw the Mariinsky perform this and I've watched occasional Mariinsky video clips, and I found this performance to be handled somewhat more poetically, more sensitively, making it easier for me to focus on what I continue to feel is the brilliance of the choreography and the structure. One thing that comes to mind in regard to Yuri Grigorovich is that a lot of his 'filler material', the stuff that goes on while the leads are resting, has much interest because of his exceptional choreographic ability. In his Swan Lake, for instance, the character dances are performed by ballet dancers, not by character dancers. In Legend of Love, I find his choreography throughout to be highly inventive, interesting and entertaining. While the video remains I could maybe mention some of my favorite parts. Yekaterina *Garbo* 's (Kondaurova) wonderful theatricality starting at 13:00 and her excellent dancing starting at 15:00. Renata Shakirova's usual, vibrantly embracing self, appearing amidst the above at 18:40 Kristina Shapran and her wonderful arms at 2:50:25 surrounded by the dramatically fine appearance of Andrei Yermakov. Viktoria Tereshkina as Mekhmeneh Bahnu sitting above the stage at 1:29:30. Yes, seriously. No matter what excitement is going on below, she manages to grab my attention -- The silent "sovereignty" of women. (See my post here (mid-page), if you want to know what I'm getting at.) http://www.balletcoforum.com/topic/16965-grace-on-ice/?page=6&tab=comments#comment-241366 The conductor sympathetically discussing the music with Anastasia Matvienko at. 2:44:20. Yes, this is in response to whether Valery Gergiev pays any attention to the dancers or not. In my viewing experience, he doesn't during a performance....But!....at the Festival Gala this year, when the critical moments of dancing arrived it all seemed to come together beautifully including the wonderful music. So I'm trying to keep an open mind on this one. I would hope that BeauxArt's comment above represents how things might be, overall. (And how Olga Smirnova was ever allowed to slip away to another company is another huge question. But, I hardly know anything about this one.) I do love watching this video. I've looked at my favorite sections over and over during the week.
  13. Thanks, Richard. You are being very kind in your response and I appreciate it. The rerun can still be seen here. https://mariinsky.tv If you catch the audience reaction at the end of Act II, you’ll find it to be about as enthusiastic as I’ve seen at the Mariinsky. I will say again that I did love it. I find it to be one of the most inventive works of ballet that I’ve ever seen, even if the theme is somewhat ‘ponderous’ for my sensitivities. But I certainly respect your right to disagree although I totally disagree. Cheers ! Added: MAB, Yekaterina Kondaurova's main dancing starts at 15:00. It was one of the absolute highlights for me.
  14. I loved it, Richard. My comments can be seen here. http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/topic/42914-2017-2018-season/?tab=comments#comment-398154 What you say about the curtain calls is interesting. Folks seem to stream out of even the best performances as soon as possible. It’s late in the evening and they want to catch the buses. But…usually about a 100 or more devoted fans will stay on and have actually brought back the best in the world for several more curtain calls. I’ve often joined them. It can start with only one or two spectators and then it builds. Folks leaving will stop and join in. I remember when Diana Vishneva returned appreciatively numerous times with only about 50 folks left in the audience. I can’t imagine that happening somewhere else.