"Anna Pavlova" tag
Maria Alexandrova and Vladislav Lantratov in Nureyev.© Marc Haegeman. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2018 – London

★★★✰✰   This year’s Russian Ballet gala was ostensibly in honour of the 200th anniversary of Marius Petipa’s birth. Any choreography attributed to him was mostly a long way ‘after Petipa’, but it’s always fun to see excellent Russian dancers deliver pas de deux from Don Quixote, Swan Lake and Le Corsaire.

Sergei DiaghilevThe defining image for the "In Diaghilev’s Circle: The Phenomenon of Les Saisons Russes in the Context of European Culture" conference. ©/courtesy International Festival of Arts "Diaghilev. P.S."

Dipping in to the 8th International Festival of Arts ‘Diaghilev. P.S.’ in St. Petersburg

The aim of the annual festival is to celebrate Russian influence in international culture, thanks to Diaghilev’s productions in the first two decades of the 20th century… St Petersburg also wants to boost its reputation as ‘a great forum of the arts’, introducing contemporary creations from different nations to Russian audiences.

Uliana Lopatkina in The Dying Swan.© Jack Vartoogian. (Click image for larger version)

Mariinsky Ballet – A Tribute to Maya Plisetskaya, Program B – New York

★★✰✰✰ What’s going on in the head office at the Mariinsky Ballet?

Alexei Ratmansky.© Fabrizio Ferri. (Click image for larger version)

Alexei Ratmansky – Simple and Wise, a Q&A about Ratmansky’s Sleeping Beauty for ABT

Q: What have you learned about Petipa from the notations? Ans: Looking at the notations changed my taste. Honestly, I just can’t stand seeing productions of the classics any more, because I know how far it is from Petipa’s intentions…

Russian Ballet Icons Gala front cloth with Olesya Novikova.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala – Dedicated to the History of Russian Ballet – London

The gala opened with the Act III wedding pas de deux from The Sleeping Beauty, performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina and Guiseppe Picone. No fish-dives in this version – the Russians regard them as vulgar, and Osmolkina could never be vulgar.

Xander Parish in Apollo.© Valentin Baranovsky. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2015 – 10th anniversary, Sunday 8 March 2015 at London Coliseum

30 dancers already confirmed include Natalia Osipova, Olga Smirnova, Semyon Chudin, Kim Kimin, Sarah Lamb, Xander Parish, Aline Cojocaru, Tamara Rojo, Marianela Nuňez and Thiago Soares.

Mariinsky Ballet in Le Sacre du Printemps.© Natasha Razina. (Click image for larger version

Mariinsky Ballet – Le Sacre du Printemps, Le Spectre de la Rose, The Swan, Paquita Grand Pas – Washington

In all, this was a tremendously entertaining and well-received program; but at the same time it left an unsettling impression that the Russian company is holding on to its eminent past with all its might, relying heavily on well-worn

The Making of Markova: Diaghilev’s Baby Ballerina to Groundbreaking Icon, book cover.© Pegasus Books. (Click image for larger version)

Book – The Making of Markova – by Tina Sutton

Sutton was originally asked to write a brief account of Markova’s career for the Gotlieb Centre but soon realised that her subject’s life, personal and public, was so fascinating that she undertook a substantial biography

Danielle Brown and Ricardo Rhodes in Frederick Ashton's Birthday Offering.© Frank Atura. (Click image for larger version)

Sarasota Ballet – Sir Frederick Ashton Festival, Programmes 1-4 – Sarasota

Both as a tribute to Ashton and as a coming-out party, it’s hard to imagine how the festival could have gone better. The ballets are in good hands.

Anastasia Soboleva and Victor Lebedev in La Fille mal gardée.© Stas Levshin. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – La Fille mal gardee – St. Petersburg

…the audience was in thrall to the bucolic genius of Ashton’s production with as many curtain calls at the premiere as I can recall witnessing for a very long time.

Alexa Gutierrez and Juan Carlos Costoya as Swanilda/Coppelia and Dr Coppelius in Coppelia.© Agustin Goncalves, @agusgon. (Click image for larger version)

National Ballet of Panama – Coppelia – Panama

The National Ballet of Panama recently put on Coppelia, staged by Vasily Medvedev over from St Petersburg. Margaret Willis was there for DanceTabs and we have lots of pictures of a colourful production:

Carlos Acosta in Scheherazade.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Carlos Acosta – Classical Selection – London

his diverse selection of 17 works (including musical interludes) is a gala in all but name and this one could have been sub-titled “Gems of The Royal Ballet” for all nine dancers hail from that company…

© Dance Open

International Ballet Festival 2013 – Dance Open – St Petersburg

The 12th International Ballet Festival – Dance Open – was held over 4 days in St Petersburg. Margaret Willis (our Ms Expressivity) was there to report on much ballet and not a little award giving…

Vaslav Nijinsky as the Golden Slave in ScheherazadeCourtesy of Dancing Times. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2013 dedicated to Nijinsky – 10 March, London

On Sunday 10 March the Russian Ballet Icons Gala, this year dedicated to the legendary Vaslav Nijinsky, will take place at the London Coliseum.

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo in Swan Lake.© Sascha Vaughan. (Click image for larger version)

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (Trocks) – Program A, Laurencia Mixed bill – New York

…it’s that ambiguity in their performances — the tension between seriousness and satire — that makes the company such a joy to watch.

Lana Jones, Rudy Hawkes, Adam Bull and Amber Scott in Gemini.© Jeff Busby. (Click image for larger version)

Australian Ballet – Icons bill: The Display, Gemini, Beyond Twelve – Melbourne

At the time of its premiere in 1964 The Display shocked its audiences. Highly sexualized, violent and thoroughly modern, the ballet divided audiences and critics. But, seen in the context of Helpman’s life, the choices within the work begin to make sense.

Anna Pavlova in Russian costume. From 1911. Courtesy of BFI ©. (Click image for larger version)

Anna Pavlova on Screen – London

Rambert provided the marvellous quote: ‘Pavlova excited in people the desire to dance where Diaghilev inspired in people a love of ballet and a love of choreography’.

Desmond Kelly at the launch of Ballet Hoo!.Courtesy of Birmingham Royal Ballet ©. (Click image for larger version)

Desmond Kelly – Artistic Director Elmhurst and Governor of the Royal Ballet Companies

My nickname in BRB used to be Bastard – and something happened with Ballet Hoo! – I don’t know whether it’s my age, or the kids we worked with, but it made me realise that you can get the best out of dancers and students by coming in on a certain level and talking to them on a certain level – not always shouting. I do shout still, I do get very angry…

Anna Pavlova at the front door of Ivy House. © Lafayette from a Private Collection. (Click image for larger version)

An Intimate Evening with Anna Pavlova – London

The compere of the evening was Anthony Dowell, in fine voice. He spoke the narration, enacted several of the characters and gallantly danced the ‘Fred step’ from Pavlova’s ‘Gavotte’ with Ursula Hageli as Anna.

Iana Salenko (with Marian Walter) in Elegie der Herzen. © Nikolai Krusser. (Click image for larger version)

International Ballet Festival – Dance Open – St Petersburg

International Ballet Festival – Dance Open Performances: Bad Boys of Dance, Gala Tribute to Natalia Dudinskaya, Dance Open – Gala of International Ballet Stars St Petersburg, Oktyabrsky Concert Hall and others 14-16 April…

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