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Lizbie1

Alastair Marriott and Jonathan Howells to leave the Royal Ballet

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Best wishes to both of them for the future.

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I’m really going to miss both of them. Thank you Jon and Al and best wishes for the future.

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I see that both Marriott and Howells are both still shown on the website as appearing as Dr Coppelius.  (But then McRae is still listed on there for roles where a replacement has already been announced, so that isn't necessarily to be relied upon).  Should we expect to see them in a final farewell performance do you think or have they already left ? 

 

I will miss Marriott in character roles. His King in Beauty has impeccable manners. 

 

I wondered idly where the next generation of character dancers would come from,  but no names sprang to mind immediately.

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43 minutes ago, Lynette H said:

 

I wondered idly where the next generation of character dancers would come from,  but no names sprang to mind immediately.

 

Tomas Mock, Lukas Bjørneboe Brændsrød, Nathalie Harrison, Lara Turk and Hannah Grennell all spring to my mind.

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I was thinking maybe Erico Montes, having seen him as Friar Lawrence in R&J and one of the older Clients in Manon. Also he must be in his 30s so in a few years would be at the sort of age to maybe consider going down the character route. (My personal preference being for character roles to be done by performers who are approximately age-appropriate rather than 20-somethings under a ton of ageing make-up.)

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50 minutes ago, bangorballetboy said:

 

Tomas Mock, Lukas Bjørneboe Brændsrød, Nathalie Harrison, Lara Turk and Hannah Grennell all spring to my mind.

 

{{{ Shrieks in horror }}} Some of us (well, me) still think of Lukas BB as one of the little boys in the Norwegian ballet film. I'm not sure I've quite come to terms with the fact that he is an actual adult... The thought of him playing Kostchei !!!

Edited by Douglas Allen
Oiseau de Feu afterthought.
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4 minutes ago, Douglas Allen said:

 

{{{ Shrieks in horror }}} Some of us (well, me) still think of Lukas BB as one of the little boys in the Norwegian ballet film. I'm not sure I've quite come to terms with the fact that he is an actual adult... The thought of him playing Kostchei !!!

 

I was responding to a comment about "the next generation" [my emphasis].  There has, of course, just been a round of four promotions to Principal Character Artist, which to me is the current generation.

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Do dancers ever move from Principal to Principal Character Artist? All the current PCAs seem to have move across at Soloist/First Soloist level. I was just thinking that if Principals did ever become PCAs then I could imagine Morera doing so.

 

(Incidentally, having just looked at all the PCA's biographies on the ROH website, I see that Mariott's & Howells' are now in the past tense & say "He left the Company in 2019." which maybe would indicate they won't be doing Coppelia? Or maybe they'll both stick around to do it then properly leave? If they have both left then that must be a bit of a pain for the casting, losing one third of the scheduled Dr Coppeliuses!)

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2 hours ago, Lynette H said:

 

I wondered idly where the next generation of character dancers would come from,  but no names sprang to mind immediately.

 

To add to @bangorballetboy's list, I think Olivia Cowley and Claire Calvert have a sort of stage presence where I feel they would suit character roles (although of course they are still a while away from this step yet!). And dare I say Ed Watson - I know/hope his dancing days aren't over yet of course, but I think he could be very effective too! 

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1 hour ago, Dawnstar said:

Do dancers ever move from Principal to Principal Character Artist?

 

I don't think it's ever been done in all the time I've been watching the RB, and I'm not sure it ever will be.  (Didn't we have this conversation a few months ago?)  Quite a shame, in a way, as I'd loved to have seen Zenaida Yanowsky reprise her Carabosse.  Mind you, I suppose people like David Drew and Derek Rencher must have made that transition in the past?

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Quite possibly! And I guess Anthony Dowell did as well? One of my childhood watching ballet on TV memories is seeing him as Carabosse. (Does the RB still do that as a drag role or is it now ladies only?)

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I think the rank of Principal Character Artist was only introduced in the very late 1980s and all of the first people at that level were previously Principals - Coleman, Conley, Drew, Edwards and Rencher. Dowell was running the company by then.

 

Edited by Jane S
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15 minutes ago, alison said:

 

I don't think it's ever been done in all the time I've been watching the RB, and I'm not sure it ever will be.  (Didn't we have this conversation a few months ago?)  Quite a shame, in a way, as I'd loved to have seen Zenaida Yanowsky reprise her Carabosse.  Mind you, I suppose people like David Drew and Derek Rencher must have made that transition in the past?

 

David Drew and Derek Rencher's names occurred to me too as having made that transition. 

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45 minutes ago, Dawnstar said:

Quite possibly! And I guess Anthony Dowell did as well? One of my childhood watching ballet on TV memories is seeing him as Carabosse. (Does the RB still do that as a drag role or is it now ladies only?)

 

Women only at the moment, unfortunately, since the new production began.  It used to be mixed - I really liked Yanowsky, as I've mentioned, and Ed Watson, in the role.

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Romany Pajdak is already taking character roles.

Sitting in the ROH tonight has made me wonder about Morera too.

The sudden, somewhat suspicious, and very sad disappearance of Howells and Marriott has led to Saunders working every shift as an elderly gentleman in Manon  - and, actually, somwhat overacting.

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Just now, Ian Macmillan said:

Maybe Michael Coleman could come back from ENB?

 

Michael is, indeed, terrific - at aged 78, I think. But, despite appearances to the contrary as, for example, the Pasha in Le Corsaire, he is of a short and slight build which might not work in much of the RB's rep.

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On 31/10/2019 at 07:21, bangorballetboy said:

 

Tomas Mock, Lukas Bjørneboe Brændsrød, Nathalie Harrison, Lara Turk and Hannah Grennell all spring to my mind.

oh no, not Lukas Bjørneboe Brændsrød. he is a prince, belongs as a principle. not stuck in basically non-dancing roles.

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I take a special interest in Hannah Grennell, having met her on a couple of occasions, quite by chance at RB events. She's sparky and interesting and you can see that on stage (I now watch for her), most recently in Manon.  However, too young as yet to move onto purely character roles?  It also seems that most female character artists are very tall, which seems to be a prerequisite?  

 

Another question could also be - who are the best actor/ actress dancers?  Matthew Ball immediately springs to mind, but I think he has rather a different career trajectory still to come.

 

I don't think the RB have a shortage of excellent male character artists with Gary Avis, Tom Whitehead and Ben Gartside all in that category. 

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On 31/10/2019 at 13:34, Lynette H said:

I see that both Marriott and Howells are both still shown on the website as appearing as Dr Coppelius.  (But then McRae is still listed on there for roles where a replacement has already been announced, so that isn't necessarily to be relied upon).  Should we expect to see them in a final farewell performance do you think or have they already left ? 

 

 

I got an email today indicating a cast change for Dr Coppelius  for 23 and 28 Dec - now Bennet Gartside.  So it seems they have gone. 

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Just now, Jamesrhblack said:

One really shouldn't speculate but this all seems very sudden and strange ...

 

indeed - and quite a bit stinky in its suddenness! The quotes from them both on the 'News' page of the ROH site reads like they were written by committee, as both say almost identically odd things. It reads almost as part of a NDA they had to sign or something

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Further to the suggestions as to which dancers might occupy character roles, Erico Montes was cast as Catalabutte at today's General Rehearsal.

 

[I don't think that I'm breaking any golden rule by mentioning that as I'm not commenting on the rehearsal - tempting thought it is to do so (O'Sullivan/Hay!) ]

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