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ENB at Glastonbury


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Ooh, I don't envy the dancers staying in a tent in a muddy field. But I'm not much of an outdoors person. I hate camping (uncomfortable, and horrid washing blocks), barbeques (burnt or undercooked food) and picnics (sitting on the ground and tepid food unless you lug a big cool box along). I prefer a bed and a bathroom, a table and a chair, and why not cook the food in an oven! You may be surprised to hear that I have done a couple of overland camping trips, but that was 20 years ago.

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I've just watched the broadcast.

 

What a powerful piece Dust is - it worked just as well on the open stage at Glasto as it did at the Barbican earlier in the year.  Goodness me Erina Takahashi and James Streeter were awesome in the duet.

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The sun shone on ENB today for this extraordinary performance thankfully broadcast by the BBC.  It must have been disconcerting to have the cameras circling around them on stage but it gave some incredibly powerful images, particularly of faces, every one of them totally involved in the work. Some changes of cast from the Barbican, most notably Erina Takahashi in the main pas de deux, made even more poignant by dancing with her husband, James Streeter.  Delighted to see Fabian Reimair repeat his breathtaking opening 'solo'.  Although it was disconcerting to cut away to the audience, it was good to see how rapt almost all of them were with what was happening on stage and what a fantastic response they gave at the end!  If anyone was wondering who the wellies done up with pointe shoe ribbons belonged to in the introducion, they were Amber Hunt's.  I did think this was one time the girls needn't have taped up their wedding rings! My favourite moment was Takahashi and Streeter framed against the open sky - just perfect! 

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Agree with Janet, thought it was fantastic. Good to see such a big crowd watching ballet too - silent throughout and such a great reaction at the end (you don't often see people in ballet audiences jumping up and down in appreciation :D )

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Yes, a very special performance well captured by the BBC. Important, I feel, to stop watching the recording before the BBCs Glasto Hosts break the atmosphere afterwards..

 

BTW, Erina Takahashi did perform (very movingly) in Dust once at the Barbican but her partner there was Fernando Bufala. I caught her by chance as other dancers were named for her date on the ENB website.

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The Glastonbury footage makes me appreciate the skills required for capturing ballet on camera - the constantly changing camera angles, off-kilter perspectives and shots from behind didn't do the piece any favours IMO.

 

Though hopefully the ENB will keep popping up at so many slightly unexpected events that the BBC feels the need to send their festival film crews on a How to film dance course

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The Glastonbury footage makes me appreciate the skills required for capturing ballet on camera - the constantly changing camera angles, off-kilter perspectives and shots from behind didn't do the piece any favours IMO.

 

Though hopefully the ENB will keep popping up at so many slightly unexpected events that the BBC feels the need to send their festival film crews on a How to film dance course

 

Vision mixers and directors really! They're the ones who decide which camera is 'live' at any given moment. I thought they did pretty well on the whole, capturing the essence of the festival atmosphere as well as the marvellous dancing.

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Yes, especially given that it *was* a festival, and that's what they were trying to get over, I thought the filming was okay.  At least they didn't succumb to "our audience only has a short attention span so let's change views every 3 seconds" syndrome :)

 

 

Sadly I was out, so must do a watch-again.  So glad it went down well with the Glasto crowd.  

 

It's about 10 minutes into the programme, and lasts about 30 in all.

 

Particular congratulations to Takahashi and Streeter for i) a very moving performance and ii) managing to keep their focus so well.  Given that dancers aren't used to seeing the audience because they're in a darkened theatre anyway and aren't used to seeing crowds of (tens of?) thousands, moving farm vehicles, waving flags and other distractions in their eyeline, when the choreography appeared to have them looking out and forward for much of the time, I thought that they seemed to cope with it incredibly well. 

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I think its on iPlayer til Sunday.

 

I too thought the camera work was pretty good. It captured the 'feel' of the company dancing, from some interesting angles - I liked the ones from above from the boom camera, and the ones with the sky and audience in the background. It also captured that they really were dancing at Glastonbury, on the Pyramid Stage, and not just any old theatre. So I find it easy to forgive the (relatively) frequent angle changes which occasionally missed a bit - but as Alison says, at least it wasn't pop video standard of a change every 3 seconds!

The audience (which must have topped 10,000 at a guess) certainly gave it an enthusiastic, and very respectful, response I thought.

 

Well done ENB!!

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Yeah I don't think it's that new. Latitude has had ballet for ages. I remember Alex Whitley did a piece there a few years ago, and they did a Swan lake thing last year. I'm sure i've seen ballet at the big chill as well, and bestival often has different dance groups. It's great that they managed to get on the main stage, but it's not exactly groundbreaking.

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This was the perfect ballet to show at Glastonbury, a classical piece would have been completely wrong, also the day and time in the morning was as near to 100 years ago as you could get to the Sarayevo assassination that started the war! 

 

I was pleasantly surprised at how good it looked in the open, though I think the TV audience had the best view, have watched it twice already and will do so again tonight, very well done ENB!

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chrischris, I think that Glastonbury is the iconic music festival of the summer though and performing on the Pyramid stage and being filmed on the BBC brings the company to a the attention of a very wide audience which includes many people who have not watched ballet in the theatre. However, in the light of your previously expressed view that you do not see the point of ENB, I doubt that you would be impressed by anything that the company did.

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At Latitude, they tried to do Swan Lake, on an 'island' in the middle of a lake - in the rain! I wasn't there, but from reading online reports, I don't think it was anywhere near as successful as 'Dust' was on Sunday. Think they got it dead right this time - the piece was striking and a real audience attention grabber, and very timely in its theme being almost 100 years to that fateful day in Sarajevo.

 

Whoever dreamed of linking up this way with Glastonbury - 10/10!!

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chrischris, I think that Glastonbury is the iconic music festival of the summer though and performing on the Pyramid stage and being filmed on the BBC brings the company to a the attention of a very wide audience which includes many people who have not watched ballet in the theatre. However, in the light of your previously expressed view that you do not see the point of ENB, I doubt that you would be impressed by anything that the company did.

 

Ha ha that made me laugh, like I have some vendetta against the ENB.

 

Yeah Glastonbury is the most iconic and I wish I could afford to go. My comment was in response to Alison's about Latitude, and I was just pointing out that all festivals have dance companies performing, often ballet, so it isn't exactly unusual for a classical company to be performing at a festival. Good for them to be on the pyramid stage and I hope it brings them to a wider audience.

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At Latitude, they tried to do Swan Lake, on an 'island' in the middle of a lake - in the rain! I wasn't there, but from reading online reports, I don't think it was anywhere near as successful as 'Dust' was on Sunday. Think they got it dead right this time - the piece was striking and a real audience attention grabber, and very timely in its theme being almost 100 years to that fateful day in Sarajevo.

 

Whoever dreamed of linking up this way with Glastonbury - 10/10!!

 

It was beautiful actually. Beautiful setting. It may have helped that pretty much everyone watching seemed to be stoned! I think that performing at festivals is a great way of introducing people to ballet.

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wasn't the stage very slippery though (in the rain/after it rained, as it wasn't covered)? I should imagine it would have been idyllic, under optimal conditions and worth having a go at it, for sure. Had there been more bands performing that I liked I would have been very tempted to have gone that year!  :-)

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wasn't the stage very slippery though (in the rain/after it rained, as it wasn't covered)? I should imagine it would have been idyllic, under optimal conditions and worth having a go at it, for sure. Had there been more bands performing that I liked I would have been very tempted to have gone that year!  :-)

 

I can't remember to be honest.

 

When I was younger I used to love festivals like Reading, Leeds, V, isle of Wight, but when you get to about 22 you are too old for them. I love glasto and used to work there when I was younger, which got me free tickets. The idea of working there now doesn't appeal,and I can't afford the tickets and cost of traveling, so I skip it. I find that smaller festivals like latitude, bestival, lunar etc offer the best in terms of experience and value for money, and you can see really interesting bands and dance companies there. They are also less crowded so you can get a closer look.

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too old at 22!!!??? I last went to Reading in 2005, and I was what, 46 at the time! However, I do agree with you about the smaller stages, where you can actually see the musicians playing - rather than on a 40ft TV.

 

But that's another conversation though....

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