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Everything posted by Dawnstar

  1. I don't feel I can judge Hallberg on one out of context pdd but I agree that Tissi was a bit disappointing. I know he only had limited rehearsal time but so did Andrijashenko & I thought he was in another league compared to Tissi. Having two guest Des Grieuxs next season seems rather excessive. Hallberg seems at the moment to be dancing more principal roles with the RB than some of the actual principals are!
  2. Maybe it's because I'd never heard the music for Cinderella before, whereas R&J I knew already. Perhaps it's one of those ones that becomes more memorable on repeated listening. I doubt it's down to the conductor as I find I can rarely tell the difference between different conductors. Frankly I'm so uninterested in conductors that I not infrequently see a conductor entering the pit at the start of an ROH performance & realise I have no idea who he is, as I check all the cast but not the conductor!
  3. I ended up going for a £40 stalls seat block G row 7 seat 7 yesterday afternoon as it was the best the box office offered me about 15 mins before the performance. I was then highly annoyed when I got a text from my aunt, who had also come on spec, saying she had been able to buy a seat for £35 much nearer the centre of the stalls! Given there were only a other people in the entire row & block G I asked an usher if I could move round & was told I could at the first interval so at least I saw Acts 2 & 3 from only 3 seats in from the next aisle round, which was a much better angle. I thought the production was alright but no amazing. Compared to R&J, Prokofiev seemed to have less inspiration for Cinderella. I only found one melody really attractive. Wheeldon's choreography I likewise found decent rather than brilliant. This is the third ballet of his I've seen & I do dislike his habit of sometimes having the female dancers flex rather than point their feet, though at least that didn't feature too often here. I don't think I'll be rushing to see any ballet in the round again as I found the frequent movement of people or pieces of set on or off stage to be rather frenetic at times. The final scene in Act 1 with all the seasons & strangely-costumed groups baffled me. It didn't seem to do anything to contribute to the plot & felt like it was there purely to give the corps more to do. I wanted to see this cast in order to see Frola again, after being extremely impressed with his Des Grieux, and I really liked him again in this. I thought Emma Hawes was very good as Cinerella, though en pointe she seemed perhaps a little tall for Frola. I see they both dance for the National Ballet of Canada. Does anyone know if they are often partnered together there? The rest of the cast all seemed to give good performances, though some of the casting required a certain suspension of belief in order for the plot to work! I was pleased to spot Alison McWhinney as one of the Winter dancers. Long fingers seem to be in fashion in ballet: first Kostchei in Firebird & then both one of the Princesses & the Conkers in this!
  4. I've not seen the pay. I've looked up the plot but I think I'd rather go & see BRB without watching any filmed versions first & see what I think of it live. Just dithering between Friday evening & Saturday matinee!
  5. I was wondering if people would be doing end of season round-ups. I'm not sure I'm exactly to do so, as this is the first season I've seen a significant amount of ballet, but I'm going to give it a go. If anyone wants to criticise my very inexpert tastes feel free! Highlights (chronological) Mayerling - I'd never seen the RB live before but was interested in seeing this piece, after unexpectedly coming accross the tomb of the last Habsburg Emperor in Madeira a few years ago & subsequently reading up about late Habsburg history including the Mayerling incident, and I only wanted one opera in the autumn booking period so I though I'd give it a go. While Hirano as Rudolf wasn't to my taste, I was blown away by the rest of it. To the extent that I've seen 16 subsequent RB performances in the following 8 months! Les Patineurs/Winter Dreams/The Concert - only the second time I've ever seen a triple bill & I really enjoyed all 3 pieces. Manon - ENB, again blown away by MacMillan especially McWhinney & Frola, who I preferred to the more famous Cojacaru & Caley. Two Pigeons - yes, perhaps a little too much of the gypsies but I love a romantic comedy. Don Quixote - I know a lot of people aren't keen on the production but I, not having seen anything else to compare it to, really enjoyed it. Romeo & Juliet - especially the Hamilton/Andrijashenko & Hayward/Corrales casts. The first time I've seen a ballet enough times - five - to enjoy seeing dancers in multiple roles. The score, how I love the score. A Month in the Country/Symphony in C - I wasn't as keen on Firebird but really enjoyed the second & third parts of the triple bill. Fonteyn Celebration - first time I've been to a ballet gala. So impressed by the opportunity to see so many of the principals on stage in one performance. Lowlight Flight Pattern - I was wishing for it to end from about half a minute in. I will be avoiding all modern dance in the future as it's clearly not to my taste. I'm trying to do exceptional dancers but am having difficulties as I've been very impressed by the majority of the RB dancers in everything. I suppose Muntagirov, Campbell, Nunez, Lamb, Cutherbertson, Hayward, Avis, Saunders, Hamilton, Corrales, Magri, Mendizabel, Hay, Storm-Jensen & Mock have all particularly stood out for me in one or more roles but I'm sure I've missed some people out and with injuries etc. I've not seen all the dancers yet.
  6. Interesting then that there are so many principals/first soloists doing that when 3 of the 4 leads are soloists/first artists. Though not having seen the rest of the season I don't know how the workload has been shared out. Maybe the principals are glad to have an easy assignment for the end of the season!
  7. May I ask if you were on the far right side? I was in B28 & the two ladies sitting in front of me were from their conversations evidently very knowledgable regulars so I'm now wondering if you were one of them. While watching Muntagirov last night I was thinking about the comments on here as to whether the character is a womaniser or not & thought his in his interpretation definitely not. He comes over as far too nice! Which had me thinking: has he ever played any vilainous or unpleasant characters? I can't imagine him doing so.
  8. She did at least get a bouquet & the other dancers were applauding her after it was presented. Edit: pics removed after I found @bangorballetboyhad posted a better one on the triple bill thread. I should give up trying to share my curtain call pics as everyone else always gets much better ones.
  9. I'm amazed that there are two people in the first cast, Jonathan Payn & Marion Tait, who were in the cast of the Nutcracker the only time I've previously seen BRB way back in 1994! Do the Salvation Army have large roles in the ballet?
  10. I too was wondering who she was, so checked on here as I was sure some of the experts would know! I did see her as the Nurse in R&J but failed to recognise her in a different costume.
  11. There are dancers I'd like to see in most of the casts but with the high ticket prices I can only afford to go the once, so had to decide who was my priority. I'm on a train to London now. I should get to the RAH about 1.40pm so I'm just going to go to the box office & see what they've got. At least I'll save on the rather high booking fees.
  12. It is but it too does not include the Friday matinee, only Friday evening, Saturday evening & Sunday matinee. I particularly want to see the Hawes/Frola cast, after being so impressed by Frola's Des Grieux in January, and as I'm already in London tomorrow, for a second viewing of the RB triple bill, I don't want to go back down again on Sunday.
  13. I'm baffled that there do not seem to be discounts for this. I'm intending to go tomorrow afternoon but have held off booking as, with about half the seats for that performance still showing as available on the RAH website, I was sure there would be offers. However I can't find any, & that performance was not included in the now expired Telegraph & Time Out offers. I'm now trying to decide whether to go for a cheap set in the gods, from where I won't be able to see the acting & therefore probably won't enjoy it much, or to fork out considerably more money than I wanted to pay to be near enough to see properly.
  14. Thanks. I really liked the look of Downs & Monaghan in the trailer, but on the other hand the Saturday matinee would be easier for me to get to than the Friday evening. Hmm...
  15. I had it the other way round with Mayerling though: I was more moved by the cinecast of that than seeing it live, thanks to much prefering McRae to Hirano as Rudolf, so I'm not sure I can entirely blame my feelings about last night on it not being live. I don't think feeling sick throughout Act 1 helped, for sure. Yes, the Arts Picturehouse does generally have better audiences & not all the popcorn etc. but unfortunately there weren't any decent seats left there by the time I decided I wanted to go, so had to put up with the Light.
  16. I as wondering that too. She's been in the role all 5 performances I've seen & I don't recall any comments on here mentioning anyone else in the role so she's presumably done at least a pretty big proportion of the performances. Query for anyone who saw her Juliet: who did the role in that performance? Mine was less than half full but the other local cinema looked to be nearly sold out. Despite the fairly small audience I still found it annoying. I don't go to the cinema much (the last time I saw a film as opposed to a livestream at a cinema was in 2002) & when I do go I find the incessant eating drives me mad. Not only the rustling but the smells. Before it started there were a couple eating fast food, during the first act there was a pervasive sickly-sweet smell who origin I couldn't identify, & after each interval there was the smell of popcorn. I spent a large part of the evening feeling rather sick & thanking God that people don't eat during performances at the ROH. Reading all the comments, I seem to be in a very small minority in not being blown away by last night's performance. I'm now feeling guilty that I evidently missed or didn't get something that almost everyone else got.
  17. Would I be right in thinking that Samara Downs & Lachlan Monaghan are the couple in the trailer & publicity photos for this?
  18. I picked up on that too - which I guess shows how much ballet I've seen recently! Also the duel was pathetic in comparison to the R&J ones! I saw it a couple of weeks ago & thought it was an excellent production, very tradiotional which is absolutely my taste, & that all the cast were very good too. The only thing I felt was lacking was Puccini! While Giordano's music was never less that pleasant, and rose to the climaxes, I didn't feel it quite plumbed the emotional depths that it could have done & I couldn't remember a note of it afterwards.
  19. That's a shame. I was too late to see him at his peak but I've enjoyed seeing him in character roles this season & was hoping he'd continue with them. I'll be at his last performance so I hope they do something for him. Flower shower? Or would that take too long to clear up before the next ballet?
  20. Thanks for the explanation. I was trying to work out last night if Zuchetti was doing anything different to Sambe but am still not sure if it was an actual difference in steps or just a difference in excecution. I thought Nunez also played it as if she thought Romeo was alive at first. As she knelt down by him she was smiling & it was only after she bent over him that she realised. She's also the only Juliet I've seen who, after her silent scream, actually thumped the stage in frustration that he was dead - not necessarily an interpretation I entirely agreed with but it was certainly different. Yes. That was the biggest difference I found between the cinecast & seeing the production live. I'd also add that none of the characters were visible when entering/leaving either the Capulet ballroom or Juliet's bedroom by the rear entrance. Nor was Lord Capulet visible on the stairs at the end of Act 2 until after Lady Capulet had finished gesturing towards him. I was in Cambridge too but possibly not the same cinema as i was at the Light - which is rather ironic really! I knew where to look for Romeo but still couldn't see him through the gloom & he did appear to come out of no-where to stab Paris. Admittedly my concentration wasn't helped by some idiot deciding to enter the cinema just as the last scene was starting & walk right up the centre aisle so his head was in the way of the lower part of the screen. Who turns up only for the very last scene of a production? I thought last night was a very good performance but it didn't quite do it for me in the same way a couple of other performances in the run did. I think the problem is that, having seen 5 other performances, I was inevitably comparing and apart from a handful of dancers (McNally, Arestis, Stix-Brunnell, possibly Avis, all of whom I'd already seen live) most of last night's cast, including those I hadn't seen live, didn't manage to surpass others I had already seen in the various roles. I thought Ball was strong all round but I've seen others I've preferred in each aspect (Muntagirov better technical dancing, Corrales better passionate acting, Andrijashenko better looking - yes, I know that seems shallow but Juliet does have to fall in love with him at first sight!). Also I still think I might prefer him as Tybalt. I can't fault anything about Naghdi's performance, her lines were lovely, her acting was detailed, but somehow she didn't break my heart & I also never had the sense that I did with Hamilton & Hayward that the choreography was absolutely right (not sure if that's clear, I don't know the choreography well, it was just a feeling). I can't really fault Zuchetti, and I think he works better closer to, except that Sambe just managed to be better! I really liked Avis's Tybalt when I saw him at the first performance I saw & I still think he performs the role as ideally as he can but, having now seen other, younger, Tybalts, I'm not sure that the character doesn't work best when he's nearer the age of the Montague boys. Has anyone seen a dancer manage to make Benvolio's Harlot a memorable character? I think I've seen 4 or 5 different dancers in the role this run & none of them succeeded in making her at all interesting for me. She does as much dancing as Romeo's Harlot & Mercutio's Harlot but seems to get none of thier acting or characterisation opportunities. I just want to rave about the score once more. It was worth going to the cinema last night just to hear it yet again. While I've not heard all ballet scores I'd be very surprised if any others ever overtake it as the best ballet score in my opinion.
  21. That's interesting. I'd assumed that the cast would be the same as the Cuthbertson/Ball performance I saw, apart from Naghdi obviously, but actually there are a lot of differences. Amused by the note about casting subject to change & to visit roh.org.uk for full casting info!
  22. Yes, I've been getting it for months. Not just in the About section but in the Tickets area as well. Sometimes it requires 4 clicks & sometimes 8 clicks to go back. It's rather a pain.
  23. Definitely. I'm looking at them in awe wondering how people manage to take such brilliant pics (and very glad I haven't posted mine, as they look terrible by comparison).
  24. Morera was supposed to be dancing Daphnis and Chloe with Campbell but was replaced by O'Sullivan. I agree. That was the one where I now most want to see the full work based on the extract. I very much enjoyed the divertissements part of the evening. Almost all the pieces were new to me (not R&J or SB) so I think I'd better leave it to those more expert to say how well they were performed.
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