"Clara Blanco" tag
Maria Kochetkova in Tomasson's Giselle.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Giselle – San Francisco

…Kochetkova and Luiz told the tale beautifully…

San Francisco Ballet in Wheeldon's Cinderella.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Cinderella – New York

San Francisco Ballet continued their East Coast season with the New York premiere of Christopher Wheeldon’s Cinderella. The staging is lavish…

San Francisco Ballet in Wheeldon's Cinderella.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Cinderella (another look with different casts) – San Francisco

Christopher Wheeldon’s new Cinderella for San Francisco Ballet is spied in 2 more casts by Aimée Tsao. Some nice dancing but still rather an OTT Broadway-style extravaganza.

Maria Kochetkova in Wheeldon's Cinderella.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Cinderella – San Francisco

If extravagant productions are the way to bring in new audiences and fill the till then they are justified for those reasons alone. However, they don’t necessarily leave a rich legacy for future generations.

Maria Kochetkova and Joan Boada in Possokhov's Francesca da Rimini.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Criss-Cross, Francesca da Rimini, Symphony in Three Movements – San Francisco

Program 7 made me think a lot about this tricky issue of programming because this bill is a weird sandwich made with a delectable gourmet filling between slices of bland Wonder bread.

Lorena Feijoo and Vitor Luiz in Caniparoli's Ibsen's House.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Raymonda Act III, Ibsen’s House, Symphonic Dances – San Francisco

The highlight of the program is Lorena Feijóo’s return to the stage in more than one ballet during the evening. After being out on maternity leave for a year …is dancing better than ever.

Maria Kochetkova in Cranko's Onegin.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Onegin (3 casts) – San Francisco

I first saw Onegin with Marcia Haydée and Richard Cragun when the Stuttgart Ballett made its New York debut in 1969. So when San Francisco Ballet premiered it in the 2011-12 season I was happy to meet an old acquaintance again.

San Francisco Ballet in Ratmansky's From Foreign Lands.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – From Foreign Lands, Scotch Symphony, Golden Hour – San Francisco

From Foreign Lands: “This amusing, yet subtle send-up of classical ballet is rewarding in its expertly-shaped choreography, and made all the more appealing by the slight wackiness of the costumes and visual jokes.”

Yuan Yuan Tan and Damian Smith in Wheeldon's After The Rain.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – 80th Season Gala Opening – San Francisco

Perhaps the best pas de deux of the evening, judging by the audience reaction, is one from Christopher Wheeldon’s After the Rain.

Frances Chung and Davit Karapetyan in Nutcracker.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Nutcracker – San Francisco

Not to be a scrooge-ish Grinch (or is it a grinchy Scrooge?), but I don’t really like all the sentimental and consumeristic trimmings and trappings that surround the holidays.

San Francisco Ballet in Tomasson/Possokhov's Don Quixote. © Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Don Quixote – San Francisco

Kochetkova and Domitro, together and separately, dance extraordinarily well. They don’t have the elusive chemistry that she has with Boada, but they still are very much in tune with each other, both musically and artistically, and make a very satisfying partnership.

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