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I love 'Faun', and much prefer it to the Nijinski version, where goat-boy does the unmentionables on the nymph's blanket. I really like the way the atmosphere of a hot, humid studio stirs the blood of the dancers before they go to class. The steps are glorious, and the almost slow motion builds the tension, until 'the kiss' all but breaks the spell. Mesmerising!

Not so keen on 'Night'. Like the first pdd, but for me, goes downhill after that. Bit too 'wafty' for my taste. Love the music though

'Song' was a ballet I wasn't ery keen on first couple of times I saw it, but it really grew on me. Anyone who knows me will know how much I dislike opera, and 'operatic' style singing, so that made me really struggle at first. Still not hugely keen on being shouted at by some dude in the wings, but have come around a little to the soprano - especially in song 6. Of the castings, each had their moments, but perhaps Lauren was the stand-out for me - perhaps the more so as she's been away for SO long! Also, I really enjed seeing Lara Turk in a lead soloist role (song 4) - she has such melting elegance to the way she dances, always baffles me why she isn't cast more

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In reply to an earlier poster I would like to point out that Das Lied von der Erde is not a song cycle it is a symphony for voices.  I also found the comment about the tenor offensive as in my forty nine years of watching this ballet he is one of the very best I've heard.

 

If people are so averse to vocal music, I don't understand why they go.

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In reply to an earlier poster I would like to point out that Das Lied von der Erde is not a song cycle it is a symphony for voices.  I also found the comment about the tenor offensive as in my forty nine years of watching this ballet he is one of the very best I've heard.

 

If people are so averse to vocal music, I don't understand why they go.

 

In reply to an earlier poster I would like to point out that Das Lied von der Erde is not a song cycle it is a symphony for voices.  I also found the comment about the tenor offensive as in my forty nine years of watching this ballet he is one of the very best I've heard.

 

If people are so averse to vocal music, I don't understand why they go.

I think they go expecting a ballet!   I'm with you, thought the vocals were superb.  BUT for my taste, I just don't like singers on stage whilst there is dancing.  It is not a combination I enjoy.

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I think they go expecting a ballet!   I'm with you, thought the vocals were superb.  BUT for my taste, I just don't like singers on stage whilst there is dancing.  It is not a combination I enjoy.

 

I would normally find singers on stage with dancing a bit distracting. But in Song of the Earth I think the singing is so integral to the performance. If the singers were relegated to the orchestra pit, I'd feel their importance would be diminished.

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Song was one of the first ballets I ever saw as well - having only ever seen R&J, Giselle and The Dream before it and being without programme notes, I remember finding the music and meaning of it all quite baffling and seat numbing at the time :-)

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That reminds me: I must actually try and remember to read the libretto before the last performance.  I'm sure it'll help.

 

Incidentally, I can recommend the somewhat restricted-view seats I've had so far if anyone finds the singers' physical presence distracting.  I've been able to exclude them largely from my view, or at least the part of it that I've been concentrating on.

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I almost went home during the interval last night as I wasn't feeling too well, but in the end I decided if nothing else I wanted to HEAR Song of the Earth (particularly as I really like the mezzo, Katharine Goeldner, more than Catherine Wyn-Rogers who did it a couple of months ago in the other mixed bill)... so I sat on the floor behind my standing place for much of the performance and just stood up for my favourite bits of the ballet...

 

I'm sure the singers in Song of the Earth have been a significant few inches closer in towards the centre of the stage this time round than in the 2012(?) revival, which would obstruct the view of the dancers a bit more for those in side seats.  I also recall seeing Scottish Ballet do it at Sadler's Wells, perhaps just before the last RB revival? and am sure the singers were pretty much in front of the proscenium there, rather than being out onto the stage.

 

As for Faun, it was my first time seeing it and I can't say I was gripped by it... not my taste.  Though I did think that lift where Vadim had Melissa lying horizontally at waist height made her look notably light, given that she's pretty athletically-built compared with how long and thin he is!  In the Night... meh. Saw it last time they did it and it's very pretty, but I wouldn't go out of my way for it.  Good to see Hikaru Kobayashi dancing so well on return from maternity leave, however.

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Song was one of the first ballets I ever saw as well - having only ever seen R&J, Giselle and The Dream before it and being without programme notes, I remember finding the music and meaning of it all quite baffling and seat numbing at the time :-)

I SO get that.  I took somebody who was a relative ballet novice but just beginning to get into it and they didn't like it at all.  I think you either do or you don't.  I found the combination of the ballets last night baffling.  Not much light and dark, and no what I would call meat.  Really regret buying the ticket and I can't remember the last time I said that.

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I took somebody who was a relative ballet novice but just beginning to get into it and they didn't like it at all.  I think you either do or you don't.  

 

I think there's an alternative: you don't, but you keep at it and eventually you might :)  That's what it's been in my experience, anyway.  It *is* a very austere work, of course, and with the singing as well there's a lot to take in at a first viewing, especially if you don't know the music, as I'm sure I didn't when I first went.

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I think there's an alternative: you don't, but you keep at it and eventually you might :)  That's what it's been in my experience, anyway.  It *is* a very austere work, of course, and with the singing as well there's a lot to take in at a first viewing, especially if you don't know the music, as I'm sure I didn't when I first went.

Yes, I';d agree with you.  I didn't like it that much first time but would now say I enjoy it but wouldn't rush to sign up for another performance. I think I am being especially critical because, for me, the first half was just nothing.  I know it's a big ask but I live right out in the sticks and my trips to ROH are highlights for me which I save up for, spend far too much on and usually relish.  Last night it was just a big wet nothing.  Talking of which, nearly got blown off Waterloo Bridge walking to the station.  The perfect end to the day!

 

Oh, take me back to the nights I saw Ed Watson on the first night of Mayerling.  Then booked to see him again and Kobborg and Cojocaru.  I know you can't expect that level of emotional engagement all the time, but for me last night felt like end of term filler.

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........but for me last night felt like end of term filler.

 

Yes, I like it better too when the RB finishes its season with a bang as that helps to make the last night special. However, I suppose one of the problems they have at this time of year is the need to prepare for their tour - hence, perhaps, the inclusion of 'Song' in the current programme. And maybe having so few dancers engaged in 'Faun' and 'Night' was helpful in that respect also.

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I SO get that.  I took somebody who was a relative ballet novice but just beginning to get into it and they didn't like it at all.  I think you either do or you don't.  I found the combination of the ballets last night baffling.  Not much light and dark, and no what I would call meat.  Really regret buying the ticket and I can't remember the last time I said that.

 

I'd agree with Alison too, that the ballet and the music is something I grew to love. I dare not take my partner though, not at this stage of his ballet-going and not unless there was a guaranteed sure-fire hit of a ballet or two beforehand. I'd probably make him read the programme notes, warn him about how long the last song is and give him my watch too, so he can keep a check on how more of the interminable racket is left. ;-)

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Yes, I like it better too when the RB finishes its season with a bang as that helps to make the last night special. However, I suppose one of the problems they have at this time of year is the need to prepare for their tour - hence, perhaps, the inclusion of 'Song' in the current programme. And maybe having so few dancers engaged in 'Faun' and 'Night' was helpful in that respect also.

 

I think finishing with Song might be considered as finishing with a bang though. I think Anthony Dowell's last season as a director finished with Song, as did Darcey Bussell's last performance as a dancer. It has themes that make it feel quite appropriate for the end of a season.

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Thank you penelopesimpson on three counts.

 

I agree the singers were a distraction. Maybe if they were at the back of the stage instead of the front they would not obscure the view of the dancers. The only time I have really enjoyed watching the singers as much as the dancers was in Carbon Life. This has to be an exception because the singers were integrated into the action, not merely supplying vocal accompaniment. I could have done with a bit of that kind of excitement last night!

 

I'm also relieved I wasn't the only one to leave feeling vaguely cheated last night. In some ways I wish I hadn't bothered to make the long trip from Bristol. After the joy of Fille and the excitement of Woolf Works I felt the entire evening was something of a damp squib. I wasn't impressed with either of the first two pieces and, for me, Song of the Earth is such a depressing piece.... beautifully performed last night, but depressing all the same.

 

It has been a wonderful season and it seemed such a shame to end on such an emotional low. Next season promises to be mainly death and doom as well. Thank heavens we will have the Trocks and ENB's Corsaire to lighten the gloom.

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We all see things differently.For me there is nothing wrong with this programme on paper although I have some quibbles about some of the casting. But then what we see in the performance of any ballet is the result of decisions made by artistic directors, rights owners, the representatives of trusts protecting the ballets of dead choreographers and the availability of dancers as a result of rehearsal commitments and injury, Any ballet, even a  near perfect one like Fille can be undermined in performance by bad casting you just try to make sure  that you're not there when it is.

 

Jerome Robbin's Faun is a brilliantly subtle ballet.When  Robbins made it in 1953 there can have been few ballet goers in the US who were not familiar with a version of the Nijinsky Faun which was set in Bakst's vision of ancient Greece, as it was a staple part of the repertory of the various Ballets Russes companies that toured there.Robbin's ballet is set in a sunny dance studio about as far away from the world of ancient Greece, nymphs and fauns as you can imagine. It is said that Robbins decided on its setting after seeing a young dancer asleep in a sunny dance studio.The ballet is set in a dance studio with the audience as the mirror into which the dancers spend a great deal of their time staring. At one level it is a ballet about the preoccupation of dancers with their bodies but  Robbin's also captures something of the sensuality of the original ballet and even includes a couple of poses in which his Faun echoes  iconic images of the original. It is an understated ballet of mood and I felt that it was far better served by  Bonelli and Lamb than by Muntagirov and Hamilton. There should be very little "chemistry" between the couple. Their relationship is virtually non existent, each is a self absorbed dancer, far more involved with their reflection than with the other dancer in the room.When they look out at the audience they are looking at themselves. Both Bonelli and Muntagirov are very good, if anything Muntagirov has the edge over Bonelli but he is let down by Hamilton, his nymph, who is far too knowing. Lamb plays the girl/nymph as cool, detached, enigmatic,self absorbed who just happens to be in the same studio as Bonelli. For Lamb the kiss breaks the spell of the encounter in the studio. Hamilton enters the studio as if she is going to meet her boyfriend and as a result the action makes little sense and reduces the ballet to eleven minutes in which nothing happens at great length.

 

In the Night needs a good cast to make it work as it should. It also requires a better lit stage. As there were only four performances O'Hare should have chanced his arm and given us one good cast rather than two of variable quality.He could still have given Maguire and Campbell some performances. It may help to give you an idea of the sort of casting required if I say that the company's original cast was Sibley, Dowell, Mason,Macleary, Park and Wall dancers with strong personalities, great stage presence, musicality and wit,and with the ability to dance as if their movements were a spontaneous response to the music rather than something that they had taken great pains to learn. With the right dancers this ballet fills the stage and does not look remotely like a chamber work.Both casts had couples who were good in the first section. Yanowsky and Kish brought wit and glamour to the second section  while Kobayashi and Hristov were dull and dutiful.The third section's first cast were Nunez and Soares who whipped through it as a Nunez, Soares showpiece but there is more to the choreography.Marquez and Pennefather are an ill suited couple. It would have been interesting to see Pennefather with Nunez or even better with Lamb then we might have seen what the choreography contains

 

As for Song of the Earth. It is MacMillans's masterpiece his perfect ballet. it does not contain an ounce of excess choreographic fat and in its austerity it is a wonderful evocation of the text which is about the transitory nature of life. Personally I would be happy if they danced it every year and we only got to see Romeo and Juliet with the frequency that we usually see Song programmed. We are only being allowed to see it again this season because it forms part of the company's New York season and the corps in particular needed to do a lot of work to get it up to scratch. In the first run of performances some of the male corps struggled and frequently looked surprised by what they were being required to do. I don't find the performance of a masterpiece at the end of the season anything remotely resembling a low note on which to end the season. I also think that this mixed bill far from being flung together as an after thought is far better constructed than the programme in which Song appeared earlier in the season. 

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I agree the singers were a distraction. Maybe if they were at the back of the stage instead of the front they would not obscure the view of the dancers. The only time I have really enjoyed watching the singers as much as the dancers was in Carbon Life. This has to be an exception because the singers were integrated into the action, not merely supplying vocal accompaniment. I could have done with a bit of that kind of excitement last night!

 

As I said in my earlier post, all you would have to do to have the view of dancers not obstructed by the singers (without compromising the sound) is stand them in front of the proscenium arch rather than next to it.  In the position where you would have the sign-language interpreter for an opera, or a stand-in for a sick singer who was miming their role.

 

I personally wish they would provide surtitles as well, but then I'm the sort of person who will quite unashamedly go to a ballet like Song of the Earth specifically to hear the singers ;)

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We all see things differently.For me there is nothing wrong with this programme on paper although I have some quibbles about some of the casting. But then what we see in the performance of any ballet is the result of decisions made by artistic directors, rights owners, the representatives of trusts protecting the ballets of dead choreographers and the availability of dancers as a result of rehearsal commitments and injury, Any ballet, even a  near perfect one like Fille can be undermined in performance by bad casting you just try to make sure  that you're not there when it is.

 

Jerome Robbin's Faun is a brilliantly subtle ballet.When  Robbins made it in 1953 there can have been few ballet goers in the US who were not familiar with a version of the Nijinsky Faun which was set in Bakst's vision of ancient Greece, as it was a staple part of the repertory of the various Ballets Russes companies that toured there.Robbin's ballet is set in a sunny dance studio about as far away from the world of ancient Greece, nymphs and fauns as you can imagine. It is said that Robbins decided on its setting after seeing a young dancer asleep in a sunny dance studio.The ballet is set in a dance studio with the audience as the mirror into which the dancers spend a great deal of their time staring. At one level it is a ballet about the preoccupation of dancers with their bodies but  Robbin's also captures something of the sensuality of the original ballet and even includes a couple of poses in which his Faun echoes  iconic images of the original. It is an understated ballet of mood and I felt that it was far better served by  Bonelli and Lamb than by Muntagirov and Hamilton. There should be very little "chemistry" between the couple. Their relationship is virtually non existent, each is a self absorbed dancer, far more involved with their reflection than with the other dancer in the room.When they look out at the audience they are looking at themselves. Both Bonelli and Muntagirov are very good, if anything Muntagirov has the edge over Bonelli but he is let down by Hamilton, his nymph, who is far too knowing. Lamb plays the girl/nymph as cool, detached, enigmatic,self absorbed who just happens to be in the same studio as Bonelli. For Lamb the kiss breaks the spell of the encounter in the studio. Hamilton enters the studio as if she is going to meet her boyfriend and as a result the action makes little sense and reduces the ballet to eleven minutes in which nothing happens at great length.

 

In the Night needs a good cast to make it work as it should. It also requires a better lit stage. As there were only four performances O'Hare should have chanced his arm and given us one good cast rather than two of variable quality.He could still have given Maguire and Campbell some performances. It may help to give you an idea of the sort of casting required if I say that the company's original cast was Sibley, Dowell, Mason,Macleary, Park and Wall dancers with strong personalities, great stage presence, musicality and wit,and with the ability to dance as if their movements were a spontaneous response to the music rather than something that they had taken great pains to learn. With the right dancers this ballet fills the stage and does not look remotely like a chamber work.Both casts had couples who were good in the first section. Yanowsky and Kish brought wit and glamour to the second section  while Kobayashi and Hristov were dull and dutiful.The third section's first cast were Nunez and Soares who whipped through it as a Nunez, Soares showpiece but there is more to the choreography.Marquez and Pennefather are an ill suited couple. It would have been interesting to see Pennefather with Nunez or even better with Lamb then we might have seen what the choreography contains

 

As for Song of the Earth. It is MacMillans's masterpiece his perfect ballet. it does not contain an ounce of excess choreographic fat and in its austerity it is a wonderful evocation of the text which is about the transitory nature of life. Personally I would be happy if they danced it every year and we only got to see Romeo and Juliet with the frequency that we usually see Song programmed. We are only being allowed to see it again this season because it forms part of the company's New York season and the corps in particular needed to do a lot of work to get it up to scratch. In the first run of performances some of the male corps struggled and frequently looked surprised by what they were being required to do. I don't find the performance of a masterpiece at the end of the season anything remotely resembling a low note on which to end the season. I also think that this mixed bill far from being flung together as an after thought is far better constructed than the programme in which Song appeared earlier in the season. 

Thank you for your post, much of which I found educational and very useful for my future choices.

 

However, I detect a note of censure, a feeling that the audience were somehow not up to the performance.  You may be right, but this is the real world and many of us balletgoers will often be 'the wrong type of audience.'  I am no expert but a real ballet fan who spends a disproportionate amount of their disposable income on trips to ROH.  I am eclectic in my preferences but like most human beings, have likes and dislikes.  Do I want wall to wall Romeo and Juliet?  Absolutely not.  I saw one performance of the Nutcracker and vowed never again.  I could see Mayerling every night and never tire of it, loved A Winter's Tale, Woolf Works and the Schechter, left Don Quixote in the interval when they started yet another folk dance.

 

Song of the Earth may be Macmillan's masterpiece.  Certainly I like it and believe I will grow to like it more.  But I stand by my point that, taken as a whole, last night's programme was limp, unfilling and ended the season on a low note.

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Thank you penelopesimpson on three counts.

 

I agree the singers were a distraction. Maybe if they were at the back of the stage instead of the front they would not obscure the view of the dancers. The only time I have really enjoyed watching the singers as much as the dancers was in Carbon Life. This has to be an exception because the singers were integrated into the action, not merely supplying vocal accompaniment. I could have done with a bit of that kind of excitement last night!

 

I'm also relieved I wasn't the only one to leave feeling vaguely cheated last night. In some ways I wish I hadn't bothered to make the long trip from Bristol. After the joy of Fille and the excitement of Woolf Works I felt the entire evening was something of a damp squib. I wasn't impressed with either of the first two pieces and, for me, Song of the Earth is such a depressing piece.... beautifully performed last night, but depressing all the same.

 

It has been a wonderful season and it seemed such a shame to end on such an emotional low. Next season promises to be mainly death and doom as well. Thank heavens we will have the Trocks and ENB's Corsaire to lighten the gloom.

Thank you for agreeing with me!  It can be hard going on here, sometimes!

 

I see your comments about next season - is the programme out yet?

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Song is a long and demanding ballet to finish a programme on (I didn't stay for it when it was performed in the recent triple bill). I think that the programme needed a far greater contrast in mood between the first and second halves. Faun has an enigmatic feel to it and Night doesn't lift the mood; I don't know how I would describe it: slightly melancholic and wistful perhaps. I think that something much more upbeat would have worked better. As others have said, there was a bit of an end of term feel to the programme as Song has already appeared in a very recent programme and Faun is returning next year.

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Song is a long and demanding ballet to finish a programme on (I didn't stay for it when it was performed in the recent triple bill). I think that the programme needed a far greater contrast in mood between the first and second halves. Faun has an enigmatic feel to it and Night doesn't lift the mood; I don't know how I would describe it: slightly melancholic and wistful perhaps. I think that something much more upbeat would have worked better. As others have said, there was a bit of an end of term feel to the programme as Song has already appeared in a very recent programme and Faun is returning next year.

 

Song is a long and demanding ballet to finish a programme on (I didn't stay for it when it was performed in the recent triple bill). I think that the programme needed a far greater contrast in mood between the first and second halves. Faun has an enigmatic feel to it and Night doesn't lift the mood; I don't know how I would describe it: slightly melancholic and wistful perhaps. I think that something much more upbeat would have worked better. As others have said, there was a bit of an end of term feel to the programme as Song has already appeared in a very recent programme and Faun is returning next year.

Surprised they're bringing Faun back so soon.  I will give it a miss.

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I went last night and felt the audience response was a little underwhelming in comparison to the quality of the ballet we saw.  I particularly liked Roberta Marquez and Rupert Pennefather "In the Night" - they had fun and brought energy to the proceedings. I find "Song of the Earth" incredibly moving and all dancers contributed beautifully last night.  Carlos, Marianela and Thiago were sublime and  the final movement was stunning. The music and the dance combine to produce this emotional conclusion.

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Balancing Song is difficult. The best programme with it was actually in Munich a couple of years ago: Ashton's Scenes de Ballet followed by a variety of PDD (Voices of Spring, Thais plus Isadora Waltzes ) then Song. It really worked.

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I really love Faun. I saw the whole thing on YouTube a while ago now (I think it was with Herve Moreau). Sadly it seems to have been taken down a few months ago, more's the pity. But it made me really want to see it live, and I wasn't disappointed. I love the almost dreamlike quality of it, and the building tension and undercurrent of passion. Personally I enjoyed Hamilton's performance very much, and thought she and Muntagirov captured those undercurrents of physical attraction extremely well.

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I went last night and felt the audience response was a little underwhelming in comparison to the quality of the ballet we saw.  I particularly liked Roberta Marquez and Rupert Pennefather "In the Night" - they had fun and brought energy to the proceedings. I find "Song of the Earth" incredibly moving and all dancers contributed beautifully last night.  Carlos, Marianela and Thiago were sublime and  the final movement was stunning. The music and the dance combine to produce this emotional conclusion.

Oh dear.  'Wrong kind of audience, again?!'

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Song of the Earth works best for me when the other pieces in the mixed programme are also about different atmospheric stages of relationships between female and male dancers (as in the current mixed programme at the ROH), or alternatively if the preceding ballets have a similar topic of loss and departure (as in the mixed programme with Stuttgart Ballet at the end of last year/ earlier this year). Both scenarios create a special atmosphere for me that is built up throughout the evening and then culminates with Song of the Earth.

 

I actually quite like it when a ballet is brought back the same season as, if I like it the first time, it will entice me to watch it again, and possibly with a different cast and/ or not all performances that I go to squeezed into a timeframe of two weeks (and if I don't like it the first time, I'll be saving money by not attending a second performance later on). Additionally, the repeated rehearsals of Song of the Earth within a relatively short period of time have certainly not hindered increased precision among the corps.

 

Song of the Earth as the final ballet of the season before the Royal Ballet goes on tour works for me in the sense that the topic of "loss and renewal" that the ballet depicts comes at a time when the current season comes to an end, coupled with the knowledge that the next season will start inevitably (eternally).

 

 

(edited for typos)

Edited by Duck
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Decided to start posting here again (I tend to just lurk!)...

 

I saw the matinee last Saturday. It was my first time seeing Afternoon of a Faun & In the Night, but my second viewing of Song of the Earth.

 

I actually preferred these mix of ballets compared to the last 2 that accompanied Song. I found this time it didn't drag at all; it seemed like a more logical mix, to me anyway. So I felt it was a great way to end the season even if it was bittersweet to think I'm not seeing anything until October (!).

 

The last Song I saw looked a little under rehearsed; this time I was blown away. I think the overall performance flowed better. Ed Watson was truly amazing as the messenger of death. Really powerful & moving. It's definitely grown on me - on my first viewing I wasn't so sure. There's so much to take in & I wasn't even sure what to expect first time around. I still find it very long. There are a few sections towards the end where I start losing interest slightly, especially if I'm in an uncomfortable seat, but then that final section comes along & I'm fully absorbed again. I suppose I can't help but draw comparisons between the two casts I've seen in this ballet and I definitely favoured Marianela Nunez as the female lead. I still liked Laura Morera, & it was nice to finally see her perform, but I felt her portrayal wasn't as emotional. Also nice to finally see Nehemiah Kish dance, even if this particular role doesn't leave a lasting impression on me until the finale.

 

In the Night was perfect for me, if only for the music. I liked the backdrop & costumes, but really the music was the main attraction, & I thought it was beautifully played (makes me want to start practising again). I agree that it was nice to see Hikaru Koboyashi back, but nobody really stood out in this for me. I wouldn't necessarily rush back again to see it.

 

Afternoon of a Faun was entirely the reason I booked this ballet. Not that long ago there was a documentary about Tanaquil Le Clercq on TV (sky arts maybe?). It showed a good snippet of her performing this ballet with Jacques D'Amboise, & it was just so mesmerising. I have to say, perhaps it's just a case of sitting further away, but I didn't particularly like Melissa Hamilton, and perhaps to a lesser extent Vadim Muntagirov, in this. It was still very mysterious feeling but something just seemed off for me. I can't really put my finger on what I felt was lacking performance wise. Just the intensity in the recording I saw I suppose.

 

Anyway I hope this wasn't all a rambling mess. :lol: I'm definitely rusty at writing up my thoughts on ballets. 

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Decided to start posting here again (I tend to just lurk!)...

 

I saw the matinee last Saturday. It was my first time seeing Afternoon of a Faun & In the Night, but my second viewing of Song of the Earth.

 

I actually preferred these mix of ballets compared to the last 2 that accompanied Song. I found this time it didn't drag at all; it seemed like a more logical mix, to me anyway. So I felt it was a great way to end the season even if it was bittersweet to think I'm not seeing anything until October (!).

 

The last Song I saw looked a little under rehearsed; this time I was blown away. I think the overall performance flowed better. Ed Watson was truly amazing as the messenger of death. Really powerful & moving. It's definitely grown on me - on my first viewing I wasn't so sure. There's so much to take in & I wasn't even sure what to expect first time around. I still find it very long. There are a few sections towards the end where I start losing interest slightly, especially if I'm in an uncomfortable seat, but then that final section comes along & I'm fully absorbed again. I suppose I can't help but draw comparisons between the two casts I've seen in this ballet and I definitely favoured Marianela Nunez as the female lead. I still liked Laura Morera, & it was nice to finally see her perform, but I felt her portrayal wasn't as emotional. Also nice to finally see Nehemiah Kish dance, even if this particular role doesn't leave a lasting impression on me until the finale.

 

In the Night was perfect for me, if only for the music. I liked the backdrop & costumes, but really the music was the main attraction, & I thought it was beautifully played (makes me want to start practising again). I agree that it was nice to see Hikaru Koboyashi back, but nobody really stood out in this for me. I wouldn't necessarily rush back again to see it.

 

Afternoon of a Faun was entirely the reason I booked this ballet. Not that long ago there was a documentary about Tanaquil Le Clercq on TV (sky arts maybe?). It showed a good snippet of her performing this ballet with Jacques D'Amboise, & it was just so mesmerising. I have to say, perhaps it's just a case of sitting further away, but I didn't particularly like Melissa Hamilton, and perhaps to a lesser extent Vadim Muntagirov, in this. It was still very mysterious feeling but something just seemed off for me. I can't really put my finger on what I felt was lacking performance wise. Just the intensity in the recording I saw I suppose.

 

Anyway I hope this wasn't all a rambling mess. :lol: I'm definitely rusty at writing up my thoughts on ballets. 

Not rambling, really interesting.  I only wish I could have enjoyed my evening as much as you did.  I am afraid Faun does nothing for me and Melissa Hamilton (in this) even less.  In the Night was just flat.  Okay, Song I did enjoy but overall the evening was a big rien.

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