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Thanks for your point about Osmolkina's fouettes on Weds.  I was pretty certain she made a hash of it but as my technical knowlege is still at amateur level, I didn't post it on here, even though it was noticeable to the audience.  I am surprised and would have thought that we deserved to see artistes at the top of their game on this tour.  As you say, mistakes can be overlooked if the performance has caught fire, but...

 

This makes it even more annoying that having booked for Tereshkina, I now won't be seeing her on Friday but have got Osmolkina again.  I think the Hochhauser's may find selling the Marinsky rather uphill next time around.

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In Osmolkina's defence, I thought her fouettes on Saturday afternoon were pretty special.

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It's surprising to read that the Russian dancers have technical weaknesses. British audiences have always been rather in awe of the 'big two' Russian companies. I saw an embarrassingly wobbly performance by a male principal (I think that he was from the Bolshoi) a few years ago. More generally, principal dancers from various other companies haven't impressed me as much as I had expected. I don't think that I'm being partisan when I say that there are plenty of dancers dancing in the UK companies who compare very favourably with dancers from other (overseas) companies which I have seen. As someone said above, you can forgive some technical weaknesses if the dancer really inhabits the role and brings the story to life but if s/he can't do that then the dancing needs to be pristine technically otherwise you feel short changed.

Edited by aileen

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I was really sad on Wednesday night when I was looking forward to seeing what Osmolkina would do with the fouettes, having read such lovely things about her performance on Saturday. Poor lamb; I knew things were going badly when she started travelling side to side (I normally have a very good view of travelling fouettes from the Upper Slips). Even the best dancers normally travel forwards and backwards quite a lot, but side to side is usually a bad sign. It is important to remember that fouettes are a bit of a party trick and that they come very naturally to some people and not at all to others. But they are now rather a crucial party trick for certain classical ballets, so it was unfortunate to see things fall apart like that from such a well-respected company on tour.

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Oh dear poor Osmolkina perhaps she has developed an injury ....however strong you are doing 32 fouetté S on one foot does take its toll sometimes and she has done them really well on another day apparently so something must have been up. Personally I hate the things!! 

And especially in Swan Lake.

I saw Monday's performance with Tereshkina and Shykylov and really enjoyed it inspite of standing after a day on the adult ballet summer school was attending....though that 75 mins or so before an interval was tough at times!

I really like Shykylov he has a lovely stage presence and acting ability just right to be believable ...great ballon in his jumps and a very good partner. I'd like to see more of him.

Tereshkina I thought had a good balance in her Odette role ....expressing the sorrow of not being free to be in her human form but retained the coolness to remind she is still under that spell. I did think her Odile was terrific and she did seem slightly more at home here eyes flashing ...the knowing looks ...the complete temptress..so in all very well contrasted roles and great dancing from her and definitely no problems with the fouettés ......must have feet of steel!! 

The pas de trois was one of the best I've seen in a while from any company so that was a treat.

I loved the animated swans swimming across the lake a nice touch.

I suppose I don't mind the happier ending battling with evil and winning etc but am rather fond of the more dramatic leap to the death into the lake and the pair then going off to the afterlife together forever on a swan! 

I agree with others about the constant stopping for applause ....though I know is more traditional in Russia it really is out of place in some ballets and especially Swan Lake in my view and can spoil the dramatic effect. Do they do this in Romeo and Juliet as well?

Just to add I was very happy with the Company on Monday myself but  I know occasionally one does see a disappointing performance ( with any company) and it's okay to express that of course but am not that happy about this general dismissing of "the Russians" For me that's far too much of a generalisation. 

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17 hours ago, penelopesimpson said:

 

...  I think the Hochhauser's may find selling the Marinsky rather uphill next time around.

 

I doubt that very much

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Sorry I didn't bump into you on Monday, I enjoyed meeting up with you once before LinMM. I agree with all your comments, loved Tereshkinas evil Odile and liked the backdrop swans and like you prefer the dramatic end of the jump into the lake. Overall as a rather aged balletgoer I enjoy the sort of dated production, there is an Imperial feel about it. It is ballet as I remember it from my childhood. However I love our dramatic approach, like life ballet is full of contrasts. Wish I had seats for Maryinsky Contrasts!

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Funny how fuzzy the reflection of the moon on the water is, and how sharp the reflections - near mirror-images - of the swans are :)

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I so wish that I could have been to this series. My preference would have been the Swan Lakes, but La Bayadere and Don Quixote would have been great second choices.

 

Monday, Yekaterina Osmolkina will be replacing Oksana Skorik in Swan Lake. No matter what challenges Oksana Skorik faces as a performer, I still feel that she is basically  the most beautiful ballerina in the world in terms of pure beauty of motion. Especially, look at those hands ! 

 

Yet the more I see of Yekaterina Osmolkina, the more I consider her a serious contender. Plus her artistry is exceptional and keeps growing.

 

(The Bolshoi’s 18 year old Alena Kovaleva (Vaganova graduate) may soon be their equal. Keep an eye on her. Even though she’s at the Bolshoi I still see her as a Mariinsky masterpiece.)

 

Yekaterina Kondaurova in London a few years back also performed one of the finest Swan Lakes that I’ve ever seen.

 

I think that London is so fortunate to have the Mariinsky once again. Yekaterina Osmolkina’s Swan Lake Monday will hopefully leave no doubt.

Edited by Buddy
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Osmolkina/Stepin told a love story  yesterday in a beautifully crafted performance to finish the run on a high. They danced in a soft lyrical style (no flashy extensions from her), just fine accurate dancing from both and careful generous partnering from Stepin, without calling attention to himself. 

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Lyrical is the perfect description, Anna. And Buddy, I feel the same, she has a lot of dramatic ability. I'm very glad I got to see her, on advice from a friend (and here I believe!) Her Odette was especially fine, a real kind of "cantabile", with narrative clear and moving. Just a few moments took my breath away. I already said on Twitter how I loved some details she placed in there - shaking dewdrops from her head on landing (a touch which some dancers don't delineate) and how she reached out to Siegfried for protection and close embrace. The final Act felt like a true ballet of love over power/Rothbart. Despite any reservations I have about the happy ending, I think it came off very well. (The two ladies in front of me evidently felt the same, judging by their running commentary on events :angry:  )

 

I hope Osmolkina has more time with Mariinsky to perform these leading roles.

 

Buddy, the same friend who recommended Osmolkina, has seen Chebykina in this run, and thinks she will also go far too.

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2 hours ago, annamk said:

Osmolkina/Stepin told a love story  yesterday in a beautifully crafted performance to finish the run on a high. They danced in a soft lyrical style (no flashy extensions from her), just fine accurate dancing from both and careful generous partnering from Stepin, without calling attention to himself. 

I agree. And I'm glad the closed curtains opened right at the end to allow Osmolkina and Stepin to take a well-deserved call by themselves. The more muted applause at last Tuesday's Don Q meant that Stepin and Batoeva didn't get one, so at least that was remedied for him. I thought he seemed more in his element as Siegfried.

Osmolkina gave a rose from her bouquet not only to Stepin but also to Zverev (Rothbart) and Repnikov (the conductor): a nice touch.

Glad Repnikov got a rose: from the first bars of the Act 1 Introduction you could tell he had a different approach to the score from Boris Gruzin.

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I adore Osmolkina and I deeply regret that The Awakening of Flora has never been brought to London, a ballet that evokes the past but provides such a magnificent showcase for Osmolkina's exquisite talent.  I sincerely hope that now there is a gap in the top rank she will be promoted at last.

 

It would be wonderful too if she could guest with the Royal Ballet again.  In style she is the ballerina that most closely resembles Margot Fonteyn, for those too young to have seen Margot, watching Osmolkina will give you a good idea of how she danced.  I hope the company brings her next time, though with no Russian season next year it maybe a wait, time methinks to check the airmiles account. 

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5 hours ago, nickwellings said:

Lyrical is the perfect description, Anna. And Buddy, I feel the same, she has a lot of dramatic ability. I'm very glad I got to see her, on advice from a friend (and here I believe!) Her Odette was especially fine, a real kind of "cantabile", with narrative clear and moving. Just a few moments took my breath away. I already said on Twitter how I loved some details she placed in there - shaking dewdrops from her head on landing (a touch which some dancers don't delineate) and how she reached out to Siegfried for protection and close embrace. The final Act felt like a true ballet of love over power/Rothbart. Despite any reservations I have about the happy ending, I think it came off very well. (The two ladies in front of me evidently felt the same, judging by their running commentary on events :angry:  )

 

I hope Osmolkina has more time with Mariinsky to perform these leading roles.

 

Buddy, the same friend who recommended Osmolkina, has seen Chebykina in this run, and thinks she will also go far too.

 

I'm very glad that everyone has liked Yekaterina Osmolkina as much has they have. Nick, I saw her perform two Giselles years ago and was wowed.  Last year she was even better. She had an almost transcendental approach to her character, which I thought worked very well in harmony with her absolutely lovely dancing and the dreaminess of the work. She also added slight nuances that I thought were very effective. I can imagine that her Swan Lake would be equally beautiful. I would wish her as much continued recognition by the company as possible. She just seems to get more beautiful and more artistically mature and compelling each time that I see her.

 

Yekaterina Chebykina performed Diamonds with Xander Parish at this year's Mariinsky Festival and I thought that it was the best that I've seen her do and one of the several best performances of the entire Festival. In the same manner as Yekaterina Osmolkina she danced like a Mariinsky dream, so lyrically beautiful and graceful. I've  seen a video clip since that confirms this progress. The Mariinsky casts her a lot. As your friend suggests, she will probably go far and quite justifiably. 

Edited by Buddy
Xander's name added
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