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Paris Opera Ballet's La Bayadère (in cinemas, or out of them)


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I'd meant to post something about this a month or two back, but recent reports in Today's Links (http://www.balletcoforum.com/index.php?/topic/1602-dance-links-wb-sunday-august-5-2012/, entries 6 and 7 at the time of writing) have made the subject topical again.

 

The Paris Opera Ballet's March live relay of Rudolf Nureyev's production of La Bayadère has been shown in UK cinemas over the last couple of months, and also, I now see, in the USA. (It couldn't be shown live, because the date picked clashed with the Royal Ballet's live broadcast of Romeo and Juliet). It featured Aurélie Dupont as Nikiya, the newly-promoted étoile Josua Hoffalt as Solor and Ludmila Pagliero as Gamzatti. All the showings I could find seemed to be around lunchtime on a weekday, which will doubtless have reduced the possible audience, but did anyone else get to see it?

 

I loved seeing the opulence of this production again: it really is stunning. Among the secondary casting, I have to admit to being very taken with Charline Giezendanner in the Manu, and later on as whichever Shade she danced: she has a very vivacious stage personality, which came over well in the former. It was interesting seeing Pagliero being promoted to étoile on stage - she'd taken on the role at the very last minute due to multiple injuries, not having danced it since the previous production run, I believe - but I was rather sorry that it took the focus so much off Dupont at the curtain calls: Gamzatti is very much the secondary role in this production, unlike in the Makarova production for the Royal Ballet, where the ballerinas are rather more evenly cast.

 

I still wish Nureyev had been able to restore the final act, though - knowing that it might have been possible always leaves me with the feeling that this production is somehow incomplete.

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