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Irina Kolesnikova Paris tour 2014


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At the end of January and the beginning of February 2014, Irina Kolesnikova will be on tour in Paris with the Solists and Corps de Ballet of the St Petersburg Ballet Theater.

 

Theatre des Champs Elysees

Swan Lake (wed 29/01, thurs 30/01, tues 04/02, wed 05/02)

Romeo & Juliet (fri 31/01, sat 01/02, sun 02/02 mat)

Don Q (thurs 06/02)

La Bayadere (fri 07/02, sat 08/02)

 

I am a total novice when it comes to the St Petersburg Ballet Theater and Irina Kolesnikova's style of dancing, and their approach in these ballets productions.

If someone can enlighten me and make some positive/negative reviews on them from their own experience, I would be thrilled to read and listen.

 

M79

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Although most of the Russian touring companies are rubbish, this is one of the exceptions. The majority of the dancers are Vaganova graduates and a number of soloists have gone on to distinguished careers elsewhere: for example Glurdjidze to ENB, Kolegova to the Kirov, Yapparova and Yakhnyuk to the Mikhailovsky. The company’s productions are well produced and designed (with the exception of SB which they aren’t taking to Paris anyway) but the R & J will be new to me and I will be interested to find out which production they will be dancing.

 

Kolesnikova is in my view an utter gem and a throwback to the glories of the Kirov’s past, that the Kirov rejected her (likewise Glurdjidze) speaks volumes about the wrongheaded policies that prevail in that company today. She is a genuine prima, a superb technician and interpretative artist with Russian soul oozing from every pore, quite unique in fact. The company’s weak point is that they have never found a partner for Irina of equal quality and have often had to find guests to fill the gap, usually from the Kirov.

 

I am very grateful to you for alerting me to this as I would love to see what she will make of Juliet and as she dances it over a weekend I won’t have problems getting time off work, so again, thank you so much for the ‘heads up’.

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I don't suppose you know if this company is touring other places in France.....particularly Nantes....where a close friend of mine lives. She has only recently started going to the ballet and it would be great to see this company if they were going there.

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MAB, I couldn't agree more. Irina is truly a gem. The first time I saw her was at the Lyceum in Sheffield, on the SPBT annual tour. The production was Swan Lake and as is often the case with touring companies, the stage wasn't really big enough. There were some clearly talented dancers and the show rolled on passably. Until the arrival of Irina, at which point we entered another world. She was stunning in every way, beautiful, graceful and utterly compelling as Odette/Odile. The audience even stopped coughing. Since then, I have been lucky to see her on a number of occasions, last one being her Bayadere at the Coliseum, which is now a while ago. I have exchanged some emails with her in which she hinted at possible plans to return to England next year, but the best place to look for tour news is her own website. She and the company seem to tour France quite extensively. 

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Have discovered in Nantes for ONE day only....Swan Lake next march 26 th 2014.

 

I have seen this company and Irina a few years back in Brighton...thought the name rang a bell...They did Nutcracker and Swan Lake. I liked her very much and would love to see her do Bayadere the Nikiya role. However where a company only visits for a couple of days they just always do Swan Lake it can be very irritating!! Why won't they risk anything else....most people in brighton anyway, who go to Swan Lake, will have heard of Bayadere and Romeo and Juliet!!

 

Here in Brighton ballet is very much neglected.....I suppose it's thought we can all just pop up to London if need be. We do get Rambert once a year for about 5 days in March otherwise the dance here is more on Fringe edge with the occasional visiting companies like St. Petersburg.

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SPBT don't seem to tour in the UK much any more, more's the pity.  They were a good company when I last saw them, but that was a few years ago.

 

As for Brighton, does it have any good venues for ballet?  The only two I've been to, the Dome and whatever the theatre is called, both leave much to be desired as dance venues.

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The Dome is the larger venue and where I saw the SPBT last. The Rambert often go to The Theatre Royal which I don't think is good for larger scale productions but may be okay for a smaller company.

 

A few years back the Dome closed down for 18months with promises of much improved facilities etc and I thought goodie more chance of ballet.....but no such luck....nothing has changed that much as far as I can see.

 

Both the other main theatres....The Corn Exchange and The Pavilion are smaller but small dance companies do go there from time to time.

Another grouch with any theatre here is that any production is for a week at most and sometimes just a day or two so easy to miss.

 

But back to theme I wish this company would do more performing UK too. They seem to go regularly to France..... And over a huge area there. Do they sell more tickets there do you think? When I saw them at the Dome that time there was a good turnout then.

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My guess is that this company is more expensive to tour because of its live orchestra. The new breed of impresarios are out to make a fast buck and will tour any old crud that makes them a profit; they have no regard for the quality of their product at all.

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I assume that Vadim was referring to this tour when he tweeted that next year he would be dancing with Irina K in Swan Lake on 4 and 5 February and in La Bayadere on 7 and 8 February at Le Palais des Congres in Paris.

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Lots of restricted view seats at the sides, so make sure you have a full facing view, a bit small for ballet in my view but nevertheless quite famous as a dance house. Actual building rather beautiful especially if you like the Art Deco style. In Avenue Montaign (sp?) a really posh street with haute couture shops and the Plaza Athenee hotel where Fonteyn held her wedding reception. View of the Eiffel Tower from the corner is spectacular, but avoid the cafe on the corner - horribly over-priced. The cafe on the opposite corner that doesn't have a view of the tower is far more reasonable and has some dance related pictures on the walls.

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  • 7 months later...

Latest news is that Kolesnikova will no longer be dancing with the company in Paris.

 

However, Vadim Muntagirov is still scheduled to dance in Swan Lake (4th and 5th February) and La Bayadere (7th, 8th and 9th February) - both at the Palais de Congres.

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Latest news is that Kolesnikova will no longer be dancing with the company in Paris.

Do you know if this is because she is ill or there are other reasons? Her website makes no mention of her not appearing but the site is not known for its regular updates, although this one might be considered to be quite relevant!! Thank you for any info in advance. 

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Juliet will now be danced by Anna Samostrelova on 31st Jan & 1st Feb.

 

Ms K. is indisposed, but it is a happy indisposition. ;)

Oh,I see! Best wishes to the lovely Irina! I gather from another post you are going to see her replacement. Hope you enjoy. Let us know.

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  • 3 weeks later...

It was remiss of me not to write a couple of lines concerning the StPBT performances of Romeo & Juliet.  It turned out that Paris  was seeing the company premiere of the ballet, and if the ensemble dancing on the first night seemed to lack something, probably due to a lack of familiarity, but by the second night all the dancers were performing with their customary verve.

 

Anna Samostrelova, the replacement for Irina Kolesnikova was a revelation, quite simply the best Juliet I've seen in the Lavrovsky production for some years, all the more remarkable when you consider she learnt the role in a mere ten days; her teacher however was Maya Dumchenko, an exceptional Juliet herself who was in turn coached by Galina Ulanova, the role's creator.  Anna Samostrelova, bears a slight resemblance to Kolesnikova being of a similar height and build and with honey blonde hair.  She danced exquisitely with a romantic candour that brought Juliet to vibrant life; truly a 'star is born' moment.  Her partner Ivanchenko had everything except fire in his belly and couldn't match Samostrelova's passion.

 

I look forward to seeing the company dance the ballet again, they haven't danced in the UK for some time now, it would be very good to see them again and a special treat if they could bring R&J with them.

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Thank you for this review. I can't believe it is almost five years since I last saw Irina at the Coliseum and it looks as though it will be a while before I see her again. I am interested to hear her replacement for the time being - Miss Samostrelova - is another 'star'. It seems the company cannot find male partners to match the calibre of their female leads. 

As you say Mab, it would be good to see this company in the UK again. They seemed at one time to be a fixture in the winter touring season, perhaps they had enough. They did tend to stick to the bums on seats standard repertoire though, presumably for financial reasons. I recall they did five nights in Norwich on one tour and it was Swan Lake every night. 

I would love them to return with a more varied programme.

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  • 4 months later...

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