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As 2019 has just got underway and next seasons programme is due to be announced in three or four months perhaps now may be a good time to discuss what we'd like to see in Kevin O'Hares announcement. You never know, there may be a gap in his schedule that may benefit from a few suggestions. 

My main wish list is very brief and consists of Onegin, Onegin and Onegin! Not just because Onegin is one of my favourite ballets but of the horrible prospect of possibly losing it from the RB rep. If it isn't performed then as it hasn't been performed for several years. I keep thinking of all the potential new Onegins and Tatianas there are currently in the RB (not to mention Olgas and Lenskys) and imagine whom I'd like to see. It's a very long list! 

After Onegin I'd like to see more Ashton and possibly see the reinstatement of the Ashton double/triple bill. Also Sylvia filmed for the cinema with Vadim (and preferably Naghdi) as it should have been last time. This would also boost what seems to be the rather paltry, half hearted Fonteyn celebrations. Also If more obscure Ashton could be revived that would be a real bonus as there is a very real danger of losing more obscure works as time goes by. I sometimes feel our founder choreographer isn't appreciated by current management in his old company as much as he should be.

Finally, though I have been concentrating on the Royal Ballet company as they are the company I see the most of and have the largest rep. and the most opportunity for choice there is no reason to limit the wish list to one particular company or indeed, country. Nothing to stop it being an international wish list. 

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Well my wish list is (just to prove that there are other companies in the UK!):

 

1.  BRB to have a settled and stable future with a new AD who respects the heritage but introduces new works/choreographers too.  I'm not commenting on the rep I would specifically like to see as I want to see what direction the new AD would like to take the company in.

 

2.  Northern Ballet to revive Madame Butterfly and Dangerous Liaisons - it's too long since we've seen either of these.  Northern Ballet to continue to give choreographic opportunities to young choreographers.  A new work from Kenneth Tindall.  The revival of Casanova.

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RB:

Woolf Works

Cinderella

Sylvia

Sleeping Beauty 

Onegin

Ashton as many from: Symphonic/Scènes/Daphnis/Jazz Calendar/Illuminations

MacMillan as many from:

My Brother, My Sisters/Requiem/Diversions/Fin du Jour/Song of the Earth

 

....and a new Crystal Pite , Cathy Marston (full-length?), plus DeValois - Checkmate? - triple bill!

 

 

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Posted (edited)

For years on such pages vis a vis the Royal Ballet I have been desiring them to revive Balanchine's Liebesleider Waltzer.  I now have a sincere wish that they NOT do so - PLEASE NO - as the Hamburg Ballett are doing that in a double bill with the Grand Master's Brahms Schoenberg Quartet - two of my all time favourites.  I get to see two performances of that double bill this month and then again in June just before the Nijinsky Gala so I - for one - being privileged to travel for such via work - will at least be well and truly sated, e.g., happy - [and consequently not feel the need to mention it here again - especially as I know there are members who struggled with the former when it was performed in the only season the RB did it].  Still - for me - that double bill is a gift - and because it is new in the Hamburg rep you know it will be repeated for at least a few scattered performances over the next few years, e.g., kept alive.  Bless them. 

 

I would suspect that next season at the Royal Ballet they will revive Swan Lake (surely they must start to recapture the costs) ... and I conjecture Sleeping Beauty and a new (re-designed) production of Ashton's Cinderella.  I too would love to see more Ashton - such as those suggested above - [although we know that Daphnis is now considered too expensive] - and it would be grand if they might acquire a new Balanchine.  There are SO many STILL to choose from and the company seems genuinely eager and refreshed when they dance his works.  Perhaps they might delight us with a revival of Ballet Imperial.  How glorious Naghdi and Takada would be in that.  

 

I would love it too if they were to bring in another major Robbins work but the year to do that would have been this one and since The Concert was chosen as the anniversary celebration focal point any new acquisition will surely have been forfeited.  The time for British born Tudor too has now, I fear, simply passed.  I feel so privileged to have known those works but know that their memory must now stand on its own.  With the completion of so many significant anniversaries recently surely it is time to simply move on leaving more fodder to celebrate in the future.  

 

Too I would love it if they would bring in just one of the very late 20th Century or early 21st Century masterworks now established in other major companies to help grow both the audience and the Company but we are, after all, getting Ratmansky's pungent Shostakovitch Trilogy courtesy of SFB this year (a Company who were in stunning shape during the City Center Balanchine Celebrations at NYC in 2018) and KO'H has admittedly said this is not a key priority for him.  [Can't blame a man for not not achieving what he didn't hold as a goal in the first place.]  Fair enough - we can go otherwheres for that - and - who knows - perhaps BRB will, in part, pick up that baton in the UK in the future.  That is part of the excitement of the anticipation we all can now hold. 

 

I, too, would like to see Oneign, knowing that if we don't see it this season, it's time with the RB rep will most definitely have passed.  Cinder's proverbial midnight gong will have well and truly sounded in its regard.  That said I'm not too fused on that score either as you can see it - and see it done very well indeed - in so, SO many places around the world.  MUCH more important will be exciting and vital new works from the fantastically talented home team of McGregor, Wheeldon and Scarlett who we have and continue to watch grow.  [This is KO'H's stated priority - and a good one it is too.]  Also it would be lovely to see other choreographers brought in for whom the balletic idiom has proven inspirational - a category which Cathy Marston MOST DEFINITELY falls into.  I SO look forward to NB's Victoria.  

 

So, so much rich fruit to pick.  

 

Edited by Bruce Wall
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Actually, as someone has mentioned the company in the Fonteyn celebration thread ... I would love for some enterprising organisation to bring Sarasota Ballet over here!

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Don't get outside London or even the ROH much  so my choices are somewhat limited. But Onegin yes,yes, yes tops the list. Sleeping  Beauty (although probably unaffordable), Daphnis, Les Noces, Les Biches, Woolf Works, Petrouchka ( I know what the problems are but it's too good a ballet to fall foul of political correctness), Song of the Earth. That'll do for a start.

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First and foremost, more Ashton (and I DON'T mean Marguerite & Armand!):  Daphnis, Enigma (I can just imagine Hayward's Dorabella and Muntagirov's Troyte...), Symphonic, Scenes de Ballet and a new and more tasteful production of Cinderella.

I, too, would like more Balanchine.  With the current wealth of female talent, I'd love to see the RB do Divertimento No 15, but would also be thrilled to see them do the sublime Concerto Barocco.

And I'd like to see Les Biches return.

 

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Onegin definitely! I’d really hate not  to see it in London again. 

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A mix of works that I’d like to see again and a few others -

Woolf Works, Song of the Earth, Requiem, Voluntaries, The Four Temperaments, Sinfonietta

Works that I haven’t seen yet: Xenos, My Brother My Sisters, Tetley’s version of The Rite of Spring

Marco Goecke – anything, anywhere within reasonable travel distance

Crystal Pite’s new work for Paris Opera Ballet in autumn 2019, mentioned as part of the 17/18 season announcement

Visiting companies in the region that I wouldn’t be able to see otherwise

2019/20 will be the first season for Bridget Breiner in Karlsruhe and for Marco Goecke in Hanover. I look forward to their season announcements and how they will shape their companies

 

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Dances at a Gathering

A bit more Balanchine- Agon, maybe Prodigal Son as not seen in UK before

Ashton’s Cinderella as an alternative to Nutcracker at Christmas

Coppelia - it’s been over a decade according to the roh archive and want to take my girls

Sylvia

La Sylphide

 

I imagine they will also bring Swan Lake back to recoup some of the  investment in the new production.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Jan McNulty said:

Actually, as someone has mentioned the company in the Fonteyn celebration thread ... I would love for some enterprising organisation to bring Sarasota Ballet over here!

Yes....then at least we would see some Ashton!  

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23 minutes ago, Blossom said:

maybe Prodigal Son as not seen in UK before

 

???!!!  Not seen at the ROH for as long as Daphnis, maybe, but certainly seen in the UK: Acosta and Putrov danced it, I think - and one O'Hare brother, probably Michael, with BRB?  Unless I'm imagining things ...

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I think it's been mentioned elsewhere (perhaps by KO'H himself?) that the Linbury would suit the early RB repertoire: fingers crossed from me for some of that.

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6 minutes ago, alison said:

 

???!!!  Not seen at the ROH for as long as Daphnis, maybe, but certainly seen in the UK: Acosta and Putrov danced it, I think - and one O'Hare brother, probably Michael, with BRB?  Unless I'm imagining things ...

You’re not. I saw Acosta in Prodigal Son with the RB. 

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13 minutes ago, Sim said:

You’re not. I saw Acosta in Prodigal Son with the RB. 

 

And I saw Putrov as well - who was, by the way, AMAZING!

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Posted (edited)

Here's a more general hope: that more ADs and dancers discover that breathing new life into neglected works can be just as rewarding as commissioning new ones which are too often discarded as soon as is decent.

 

I wasn't around for the big revival in early music and the associated reconsideration of how to perform it, but people talk about how it rejuvenated the whole classical music scene. I'm not suggesting something on that scale is possible with dance, but I wish we could learn from it that reconstructions and revivals aren't just a dry academic exercise.

 

Oh, and more works from women choreographers please Mr O'Hare, both past and present.

 

p.s. I can guess that re-staging an almost lost work is probably more expensive than creating a new one, but the former's success would I imagine be a better bet.

Edited by Lizbie1
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41 minutes ago, alison said:

 

???!!!  Not seen at the ROH for as long as Daphnis, maybe, but certainly seen in the UK: Acosta and Putrov danced it, I think - and one O'Hare brother, probably Michael, with BRB?  Unless I'm imagining things ...

 

I haven’t seen in the uk - my shorthand not clear! I saw in New York and felt positively bruised afterwards...

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Totally agree Lizbie. Sometimes I feel as if some modern dance has gone up a blind alley-  in the case of some styles/choreographers: there is now much repetition, but no more to say; an over-use of non-dance elements such as film;  a failure or refusal to work with live music as integral to the dance with dancer and musician mutually responsive; or even a disintegration into something that is no longer satisfyingly identifiable as  'ballet' or even dance.

 

What I love about ballet is the use of its own specific language, the way live music is the heart of it, not an exterior add-on, and the fact that the dance speaks for itself without need for any subtitles or notes ( at its best).

Looking back at what ballet can be, taking stock, learning from the past, reinterpreting it, is a very worthwhile exercise in itself, a useful strategy and can provide a new way forward for ballet.

That is one reason RB and BRB cherish their Ashton and Fonteyn heritage -as I hope they do. So I really hope to see celebration of that heritage  this year done with pride and joy and a lot of forward-looking excitement, not as an exercise in dutiful nostalgia.

 

I am sure that some of the bright dancing  talents in the current ballet scene will have new things to say as choreographers, using the language of ballet and inspired by their  heritage,- if they get the chance - especially, I do hope, some of the amazingly talented, bright and confident young women - surely their turn has come.

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If I may add to my list, I would love to see Four Schumann Pieces revived, or any Van Manen works that the RB hasn't done before. And choreographers like Anthony Tudor and Glen Tetley now seem to have been lost to their repertoire forever. Some of these would seem to be eminently suitable for the smaller stage of the Linbury.

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The first thing that popped into my head when I saw the title of this thread was 'Onegin'.  And Onegin is what is still there at the forefront.  PLEASE BRING IT BACK!!!

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Posted (edited)

Yes, Sim!! It's been too long ...... ! And so many possibilities for casting in the company .... 

Edited by J_New
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Possibilities enough yes and the AD can suggest dancers but ultimately it is the Cranko Estate who has the final say on who can dance Tatiana, Olga,... I read somewhere (sorry I don't remember where) that they select their Tatiana's out of those dancers who have danced Olga in the past. 

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Yes, I've read that too - but there must be a time when new Tatianas have to emerge ..... also I saw it in Amsterdam with every role being a debut. I just hope that we can keep it in London! 

 

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3 minutes ago, Xandra Newman said:

Possibilities enough yes and the AD can suggest dancers but ultimately it is the Cranko Estate who has the final say on who can dance Tatiana, Olga,... I read somewhere (sorry I don't remember where) that they select their Tatiana's out of those dancers who have danced Olga in the past. 

 

It looks that way in Germany. For example, this season will see both Ksenia Ovsyanick (Berlin) and Laurretta Summerscales (Munich) follow their Olgas with Tatianas.

However, when Onegin was first danced at The Royal Ballet, most of the Tatianas had not previously danced Olga and Alina Cojocaru was dancing both roles in the same run.

 

BTW, the last time Onegin was danced here was 4 years ago, so bringing it back next season would make it a 5 year gap. I have cast it already if Mr O'Hare needs any assistance!

 

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12 minutes ago, Xandra Newman said:

Possibilities enough yes and the AD can suggest dancers but ultimately it is the Cranko Estate who has the final say on who can dance Tatiana, Olga,... I read somewhere (sorry I don't remember where) that they select their Tatiana's out of those dancers who have danced Olga in the past. 

Well hopefully that would mean Miss Naghdi will get a go at Tatiana, if this selection method is correct!!  

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4 minutes ago, Sim said:

Well hopefully that would mean Miss Naghdi will get a go at Tatiana, if this selection method is correct!!  

I'd hope that she would in any case, but I can think of instances where (company premieres, where most if not all candidates would not have danced Olga previously, aside) new Tatianas had never danced Olga.

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It never seems logical to me that a good Olga will make a good Tatiana - they're so different - but then what do I know??

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January 2015 was the last year the RB danced Onegin, before that it was in 2013. Who were the Olgas in 2015? I remember Naghdi and Choe; maybe Takada also danced Olga? 

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