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On 11/08/2021 at 10:31, bangorballetboy said:

 

I would respectfully disagree with that.  At the Royal alone (nevermind elsewhere) there are a number of dancers who pass this test with flying colours (I'm thinking particularly, but not exhaustively, of Kaneko and Naghdi), without any need to overact.

I'd have thought Francesca Hayward would also have the right youthful, feminine appearance and joyfulness but I've never seen her in the role of Aurora. As Juliet she is perfect.

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2 hours ago, maryrosesatonapin said:

I'd have thought Francesca Hayward would also have the right youthful, feminine appearance and joyfulness but I've never seen her in the role of Aurora. As Juliet she is perfect.

 

Over the years I have noticed that young dancers are not necessarily able to dance young and sometimes it takes the benefit of experience to be able to dance young.

 

Not Aurora, but I have never forgotten the one performance I saw of Marion Tait dancing Juliet.  It was right at the end of her principal career so she would have been at least mid-40s and to this day she is the most convincing 14yo I have seen!

 

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1 hour ago, Jan McNulty said:

Over the years I have noticed that young dancers are not necessarily able to dance young and sometimes it takes the benefit of experience to be able to dance young.

 

Yes, I agree.  Something Lauren Cuthbertson can do extremely well as Juliet, I’ve noticed. 

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1 hour ago, Jan McNulty said:

 

Over the years I have noticed that young dancers are not necessarily able to dance young and sometimes it takes the benefit of experience to be able to dance young.

 

Not Aurora, but I have never forgotten the one performance I saw of Marion Tait dancing Juliet.  It was right at the end of her principal career so she would have been at least mid-40s and to this day she is the most convincing 14yo I have seen!

 

 

Ditto Leanne Benjamin. In her late 40's when she retired from the stage, but one of the most convincing teenagers I have seen, both as Juliet, and Mary Vetsera in 'Mayerling.'

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6 hours ago, Jan McNulty said:

 

Over the years I have noticed that young dancers are not necessarily able to dance young and sometimes it takes the benefit of experience to be able to dance young.

 

 

 

Couldn't agree more, Jan.  For me Marcia Haydee was an eternal teenager.  She was my first Juliet ... and I had the privilege to see her last performance in the role.  As fresh - if not more so - than the first.  

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I think it was said, of Peggy Ashcroft, that she was the most convincing Juliet even when she was well into her maturity. The explanation was that age and experience made her performance more credible. Fonteyn, of course, was a prime example. I saw both her Juliet and Aurora towards the end of her career and they were performances to treasure. It isn't always the youngest actors or dancers who have the experience to be able to portray youth on the stage. 

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In an interview with Barbara Newman in "Striking A Balance", Antoinette Sibley recalled how in 1956, as a new member of the Royal Ballet corps, she went with the rest of the company to watch the visiting Boshoi Ballet at Covent Garden in a rehearsal of "Romeo and Juliet". She noticed a middle-aged woman in the stalls, without make-up, wrapping herself in a coat:

"This little gray-haired person all covered in woolies came up onstage from the stalls, and started pointing to things.  We thought, Oh, she’s obviously the ballet mistress….and this little old woman with the gray hair went up to the balcony onstage and took off the woolies and was sixteen years old.  Just like that in front of us.  No makeup, no costume.  It was a miracle in front of our very eyes… I have never seen a similar reincarnation in my life.” 
The “little gray-haired person” whom Sibley observed was the great Galina Ulanova, who was almost 47 at that time...

Edited by Amelia
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Many thanks for that Amelia!! 
One of my treasured teachers who unfortunately died earlier this year was a great admirer of Ulanova and had a photo of her on the cover of a book he wrote....I’m pretty sure this was of her in the Juliet role. 

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  • 1 month later...

I know this is very late, but I'm going to write my thoughts anyway. I didn't watch the contemporaries. I thought Winter Dreams wasn't so desperate especially near the ending and that last kiss. Morera is great acting wise and Hirano was also pretty good, but his dancing was a bit wooden and not very desperate. I love Voices of Spring. O'Sullivan and Sambe are lovely pairing, really love their performance. So joyful and their chemistry is so on point. Unfortunately, I'm quite disappointed with Sleeping Beauty. It's probably because I'm spoiled with Nunez and Muntagirov's performance back in the 2017 stream. Their solos are great, but overall I love their previous performance more and it seems that Vadim has problems with his double cabrioles that day (?) It almost looks like single cabrioles. Also the orchestra was way too slow in Sleeping Beauty. The highlight for me in Sleeping Beauty however is Hinkis. Her Princess Florine's variation is so musical!

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