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Press Release: The Cecchetti film is OUT


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Re: Enrico CECCHETTI – The Film is OUT !

"BALLET'S SECRET CODE"

 

A message from the Chairman of Société Auguste Vestris 

 

Many of you will recall – including of course those who contributed to the HellloAsso crowdfunding campaign - that in late 2014, VESTRIS launched a project, led by Prof. J. Cronshaw (Enrico Cecchetti Diploma, FISTD), for a film that would set out the principles underlying the Method of Enrico CECCHETTI (1850-1928).


Although Cecchetti, who for many years taught the Class of Perfection at Saint Petersburg, is constantly referred to as one of the great dancing masters of all times, few professionals outwith England, Australia and South Africa have any actual acquaintance with his Method.

On 21st January 2021, the film was uploaded to Youtube, along with the first round of "Tips from a Ballet Teacher", which Tips will be regularly updated. 

As VESTRIS lacked the budget to hire a team of film experts, Prof. Cronshaw worked alone on the technicalities for six years, seconded only by a former dancer, now a cineast, George Massey.

The film is dedicated to the New-Zealand born ballerina Yvonne Cartier (1928-2014),and to Prof. Roger Tully (1928-2020).

Cecchetti’s work is danced by Muriel Valtat, former First Soloist of the Royal Ballet, now professor at the Ecole supérieure de ballet du Québec

 

and by 

 

Salvo Nicolosi, who trained at the Scuola Hamlyn (Florence) and now dances with Pfalztheater-Kaiserslautern

The pianist throughout is Morta Grigaliunaite. 

Without the collaboration of the Scuola Hamlyn’s directors Nicoletta Santoro, Elisa Corsini and Alessandra Alberti, who lent VESTRIS the School’s extraordinary studios at Florence, this film could never have been made.

The recordings have been fine-tuned at British Grove Studios

One hour long, « Ballet’s Secret Code » can be offered free of charge thanks to donations from those dancers, teachers and balletomanes whose will it is that the teachings of Cecchetti, Bournonville and the « old  style» Agrippina Vaganova-Aleksander Pushkin school survive.

Here is the link to BALLET's SECRET CODE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGT4g7FHSvA

And the link to Prof. Cronshaw’s Website, where 150 further videos have been uploaded and can be purchased for £65 (roughly 80 Euro)

https://www.balletsecretcode.com/store-2/#/?playlistId=0&videoId=0

 

For further interviews, photographs and essays :

 

http://www.thececchetticonnection.com/ 

The Cecchetti Method also sets out a vast repertory of forgotten steps and enchaînements which will, one hopes, delight professors and choreographers.

Prof. Cronshaw would be most grateful for your remarks on what has been, in point of fact, something of a monumental labour.

Allow us to thank those who have sent in rare documents, and more particularly to thank Prof. Diane CARNEY, who forwarded films of Vincenzo CELLI made by Leonid Massine at New York circa 1941.

Celli is seen demonstrating some of Cecchetti’s most difficult enchaînements - in tennis shoes and at about age 46 – in a Ballets russes studio alongside a « mystery » ballerina of great technical ability.

Vincenzo Celli was Cecchetti’s last private student, before becoming maître de ballet at La Scala, a position from which he resigned when pressed to join Benito Mussolini’s ventures.

He thereupon fled to the USA incognito, and worked as a clandestine docker in the New York harbour until Massine found him.

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4 hours ago, alison said:

Isn't there also a Cecchetti DVD out, featuring dancers from the Royal Ballet?

Is there? We’d love to know about that if anyone has further info. 
 

My children are convinced  Fumi Kaneko is Cecchetti method trained. I think I read somewhere that she was but have never found that info again. They adore her. And Marcelino Sambé (though I don’t think he was but he definitely has the joy of dance first and foremost which definitely makes a difference when watching with zero ballet knowledge - he brings such happiness and fun). 

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The Enrico Cecchetti Diploma recording is a two DVD set which was issued by Opus Arte in November 2019. As I understand it the discs cover the Cecchetti syllabus. Dancers appearing on the recording include James Hay, Brandon Lawrence and Romany Pajdak. The teacher is Van Schoor. I trust this information is of assistance.

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1 hour ago, FLOSS said:

The Enrico Cecchetti Diploma recording is a two DVD set which was issued by Opus Arte in November 2019. As I understand it the discs cover the Cecchetti syllabus. Dancers appearing on the recording include James Hay, Brandon Lawrence and Romany Pajdak. The teacher is Van Schoor. I trust this information is of assistance.

Also taking part are Chisato Katsura from the RB, and Ruth Brill, Laura Day and Lachlan Monaghan from the BRB.

 

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  • 1 month later...

I just found this film on YouTube. What a fascinating and also infuriating piece of work. I suppose it's too much to hope that it'll herald the turning point in the way ballet has been morphing into soulless "artistic" gymnastics and destroying dancers' bodies in the process, but sooner or later something will have to or ballet will pretty much disappear. As she said, if Anna Pavlova turned up at an audition at a leading ballet school today, she'd be rejected out of hand - I have a feeling Margot Fonteyn wouldn't make the cut either. 

 

I suppose the companies have to cater to what audiences want, but do they really just want empty spectacle based on flashy production values and degree of difficulty? Do any of the major schools even attempt to teach the Cecchetti method any more?

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