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alison

POLL: Reviving ENB repertoire

Out of the works currently being shown excerpted at the Coliseum for ENB's 70th anniversary gala, which ones would you most like to see revived?  

34 members have voted

  1. 1. Out of the works currently being shown excerpted at the Coliseum for ENB's 70th anniversary gala, which ones would you like to see revived?

    • The Three-Cornered Hat
      8
    • Dust*
      13
    • Swansong
      13
    • Apollo
      15
    • Romeo and Juliet (Nureyev)*
      8
    • Giselle (Khan)*
      8
    • Broken Wings*
      5
    • Who Cares?
      6
    • La Sylphide
      25
    • Sleeping Beauty (MacMillan)*
      7
    • Three Preludes
      14
    • Carmen (Petit)
      7
    • Coppelia (Hynd)*
      11
    • Strictly Gershwin
      4
    • Playlist (Track 1, 2)
      15


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Following the cornucopia of goodies served up at ENB's current 70th Anniversary gala programme at the London Coliseum (I assume everyone's having a digestive pause, hence the lack of comments so far), which ones would you like to see revived?  Pick as many options as you like, and discuss below if you want to.  I've put asterisks by those ballets which arguably don't need revival as they are more or less current repertoire anyway.

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A very interesting list Alison. The first time I saw Tamara Rojo live was in Three Preludes many years ago, and I fell under her spell.  Swansong is one of my favourite pieces. Although I have seen it various times with different genders, I prefer the original with three men.

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I’d like to see them revive Onegin - it as a performance of that ballet that “converted “ me to being a devoted ballet-watcher.  I’d rather see ENB do it than RB.

 

Etudes too.

 

Christopher Bruce’s Symphony in 3 Movements

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As a relative newby to Ballet I haven't seen many of the works in full. I was most impacted by Swansong, I had not seen tapdancing performed in a menacing way, it was chilling. Apollo looked fascinating. I would watch Etudes again, anytime, as well as their classics. There is much to look forward to.

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I am going to this afternoon’s performance and I’m especially looking forward to Swansong, which I’ve seen a couple of times in the past, a long time ago now; Etudes, which I’ve never seen before and Playlist, which I saw last year. I’d like to see all of those revived, plus Apollo, Nureyev’s R and J (the first ballet I ever saw)and Three Preludes.

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Is Coppelia current ENB repertoire? I can't recall seeing it programmed recently.

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10 minutes ago, Lizbie1 said:

Is Coppelia current ENB repertoire? I can't recall seeing it programmed recently.

 

Depends what you mean by recently.  They did it at the Coliseum in July 2014.

 

Edited to add that I vaguely remembered that they'd toured it since so I've just googled it.  They took it to Japan in 2017.

https://www.ballet.org.uk/blog-detail/enb-tour-discovering-japan/

Edited by Bluebird
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More than Petit Carmen (a piece that I like and enjoyed also yesterdaynight), I'd love to see Cirio and Frola in his Le Jeune Homme et la Mort.

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I've got a very old recording (possibly introduced by Margot Fonteyn), of London Festival Ballet as they then were dancing Graduation Ball and The Sanguine Fan. Would be great to see them. Graduation Ball in particular used to be a fairly standard ballet for companies but now seems to have fallen out of favour along with many ballets that can't be easily pigeon holed into modern, classical or heritage ballets. 

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I may wish to add to it after I have been to the gala but at present my list is as follows:-

 

 Lander's Etudes, which was once the company's calling card.

Ashton's Romeo and Juliet.

Balanchine's Night Shadow.

Balanchine's Apollo.

Markova's staging of Les Sylphides.

Skeaping's Giselle which should be timetabled for regular revival.

Lifar's Suite en Blanc.

Massine's Parade for its Picasso designs and its sheer oddity.

Bejart's Song of a Wayfarer.

All of which I think bear repeated viewing.

 

Could you please move this to the reviving ENB repertoire thread ?

Edited by FLOSS
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2 hours ago, maryrosesatonapin said:

I'd love them to revive some Bournonville works - not just La Sylphide but Napoli and Conservatoire would be good to see too.

 

Oh yes ... Napoli please!

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I can hardly disagree with any of FLOSS's suggestions  - except possibly Parade, because I'm not sure what its artistic merit was (dance-wise, at least).  And I too have a very soft spot for Napoli, although it has to be said that it sold very poorly when it was put on, and it's even less well-known than La Sylphide, which also struggled.

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Les Sylohides/Scheherazade/Prince Igor 

 

Yes to Parade, just for the horse.

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Etudes is a must. Three Preludes was also gorgeous. 

 

I enjoyed the three cornered hat excerpt but not sure about reviving the whole ballet but I would like to see some of this earlier ‘Ballet Russes’ type work revived. 

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The Three Cornered Hat wasn't presented in its original choreography in this programme 

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For the title alone (maybe a touch anti pc), Switch Bitch. 

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The heritage of LFB/ENB - memories - where do I begin?

 

First of all three full-length ballets, which are probably lost, but all of which were so colourful and vivid

Vaslav Orlikowsky's Peer Gynt (Grieg)

Vladimir Bourmeister's The Snow Maiden (Tchaikovsky)

Barry Moreland's The Prodigal Son in Ragtime (Scott Joplin)

 

The Prodigal Son in Ragtime hit the Royal Festival Hall in the summer season of 1974 and was a popular success and a sell-out in New York  The Prodigal Son left home as a teenager, travelled through the first world war, the twenties, the thirties, the second world war and finally returned to his old dad.  Around the same time, we were booking for a triple bill at the Royal Opera House with a new MacMillan ballet, as yet unnamed.  This turned out to be Elite Syncopations and I am sure MacMillan took his cue from Barry Moreland's work.  The irony is that Prodigal Son in Ragtime was dropped from the repertoire in 1977, whereas Elite goes on from strength to strength.

 

There were Diaghilev ballets in the repertoire, long before the Kirov started bringing them to London - Scheherazade, Polovtsian Dances, Massine's Parade to Satie music and Picasso's cubist designs, Petrouchka with the original Alexander Benois designs (and with the melancholic performance of Alain Dubrueil) - and of course Massine's The Three-Cornered Hat, also with the original Picasso designs.  Samsova and Prokovsky even included the Soviet showstopper Spring Waters in Fokine programmes.

 

Other memorable one-act ballets, which I would love to see again -

Balanchine's Night Shadow, staged by John Taras - which ended with the sleepwalking ballerina remarkably carrying the dead poet (male principal) on stage in her arms

John Taras' Piege de Lumiere - another Samsova/Prokovsky performance - in which the butterflies flew to close to the flame and the male sacrificed himself to save the female

Denis Nahat's Mendelssohn Symphony - using the Italian Symphony - with the unforgettable sunny Patricia Merrin pirouetting across the stage in bright yellow

Antony Tudor's chilling Echoing of Trumpets (1963) - to Martinu's Sixth Symphony - the same music which MacMillan later used for his one-act Anastasia in Berlin, subsequently to become the Anastasia Act III we know today.  Tudor followed Martinu's programme closely and set the ballet to reflect the destruction of the village Lidice during World War II.  Anyone familiar with Anastasia Act III will recall instantly the echoing trumpets as the symphony begins.

In 1989 LFB mounted the one-act version of Anastasia and presented it in the same programme as Echoing of Trumpets !!

 

My number one priority, for revival and preservation, is Jack Carter's The Witch Boy, which clocked up 359 performances.  The great John Gilpin was unforgettable in this role, but I have memories of a much later revival in the 1980s with Koen Onzia.  Maybe my memory plays me false, because according to the listing it was last seen in 1976.  This dramatic ballet must be saved for posterity.

 

It was not possible for the Gala to celebrate all the wonderful dancers - but John Gilpin contributed so much to the success of the early years and was artistic director for six years.  He died at the tragically early age of 53.

 

Paul Clarke was a very talented dancer, who contributed so much in his short period with LFB and Barry Moreland created Prodigal Son in Ragtime for him.  He had a heart attack at the age of 28, whilst recovering from anaesthetic at the dentist.  His photo always caught my eye, when I climbed the stairs at Jay Mews to the studio.  I hope his photo is still on display in the new building.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, FLOSS said:

Lander's Etudes

Ashton's Romeo and Juliet.

Balanchine's Night Shadow.

Balanchine's Apollo.

Markova's staging of Les Sylphides.

Skeaping's Giselle which should be timetabled for regular revival.

Lifar's Suite en Blanc.

Massine's Parade for its Picasso designs and its sheer oddity.

Bejart's Song of a Wayfarer.

All of which I think bear repeated viewing.

 

The works which leap out for me are on FLOSS's list (above). But I have to admit that more recent airings (such as Jeune Homme, L' Arlesienne, The Cage, No Man's Land, Broken Wings and Playlist would be 'up there' for me too.

ENB does not have the kind of obligation to honour its 'heritage works' which the RB has nor 3 'in-house' choreographers and it can therefore continue to exploit that greater freedom in its choices from the past and in its commissions. Bring it on!

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16 hours ago, alison said:

I don't remember that one?

Switch Bitch was created by company member Trevor Wood, I believe for a tour to small theatres with a very small cast of dancers.  I remember it being entertaining enough but of its time and not really being worthy of revival.

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20 hours ago, li tai po said:

In 1989 LFB mounted the one-act version of Anastasia and presented it in the same programme as Echoing of Trumpets !!

 

 

Are you sure about that, li tai po?  I remember seeing a bill with Echoing of Trumpets, but not Anastasia, which I didn't think I'd seen until the Royal Ballet revived it.

 

And with regard to The Witch Boy, could you be thinking of London City Ballet?  Matz Skoog performed it with them, I seem to recall, so it ought to be retrievable.

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30 minutes ago, alison said:

 

Are you sure about that, li tai po?  I remember seeing a bill with Echoing of Trumpets, but not Anastasia, which I didn't think I'd seen until the Royal Ballet revived it.

 

And with regard to The Witch Boy, could you be thinking of London City Ballet?  Matz Skoog performed it with them, I seem to recall, so it ought to be retrievable.

Witch Boy has been notated so could be revived.  Anastasia (Act III) was done by ENB in 1989 (I think with Lynn Seymour guesting).  If it was done with Echoing, that would have been a very heavy programme! 

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8 minutes ago, Irmgard said:

Witch Boy has been notated so could be revived.  Anastasia (Act III) was done by ENB in 1989 (I think with Lynn Seymour guesting).  If it was done with Echoing, that would have been a very heavy programme! 

 

Anastasia Act III was in fact on a bill with Land (Christopher Bruce) in 1989 (finishing with Etudes!). (And the next week: Onegin!).

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Ah, that would be why I didn't see it, then :)  (Anastasia was on 2 bills, I think).  I didn't see Land until some considerable time later, at Sadler's Wells, and probably not by ENB, I think.

 

I definitely remember seeing Onegin, though.  That was one of my great ballet moments!

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8 hours ago, alison said:

 

Are you sure about that, li tai po?  I remember seeing a bill with Echoing of Trumpets, but not Anastasia, which I didn't think I'd seen until the Royal Ballet revived it.

 

And with regard to The Witch Boy, could you be thinking of London City Ballet?  Matz Skoog performed it with them, I seem to recall, so it ought to be retrievable.

 

8 hours ago, Irmgard said:

Witch Boy has been notated so could be revived.  Anastasia (Act III) was done by ENB in 1989 (I think with Lynn Seymour guesting).  If it was done with Echoing, that would have been a very heavy programme! 

 

I remember seeing London City Ballet performing The Witch Boy.

 

ENB performed Anastasia Act lll over 2 seasons.  The first season's performances were danced by Lynn Seymour.  The second time around she was injured (replaced in Oregon by Eva Evdokimova) and the role was danced by the always luminous Trinidad Sevillano.

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"Oregon"???  Predictive text malfunctioning again? :) 

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I remember seeing a triple at the Dominion ('89 or' 90?) of Anastasia/Land/Etudes.  Echoing (which I wish they would revive), may have replaced Land in the same line up in the same week? 

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11 minutes ago, alison said:

"Oregon"???  Predictive text malfunctioning again? :) 


Or that well known Martha Graham piece to an Aaron Copland score. 😉

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