"Frederick Ashton" tag
American Ballet Theatre in Giselle.© Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Giselle (Abrera debut) – New York

The American Ballet Theatre season continues with Giselle where Marina Harss saw Stella Abrera’s company debut. The response to the performance was understandably enthusiastic.

Bianca Fota and Dawid Trzensimiech in Ashton's Marguerite and Armand.© Cristian Lazarescu. (Click image for larger version)

Bucharest National Ballet – Classical Symphony, Petite Mort, Marguerite and Armand, Tango, Radio and Juliet – Bucharest

Johan Kobborg took over as Director of Bucharest National Ballet just over a year ago. Time for Graham Watts to go and see how they are looking – in two very different bills…

Natalia Osipova and Edward Watson in the Becomings section of Woolf Works.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Woolf Works – London

Woolf Works is a chimera, an illusory creation made up of disparate elements…

Sterling Hyltin and Joaquin de Luz in La Sylphide.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – La Sylphide, Bournonville Divertissements – New York

At first glance, it’s hard to think of two choreographers more unalike than August Bournonville and Balanchine…

Anna Kuligina and Ivan Vasiliev in La Fille mal gardée.© Nikolai Krusser. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – La Fille mal gardee (Vasiliev / Kuligina) – St. Petersburg

Kuligina was the perfect foil for Vasiliev’s Colin (Colas) and the pair played off one another. There could be no better role for Vasiliev…

Cover of the Dance Open 2015 Gala programme.© Dance Open. (Click image for larger version)

International Ballet Festival 2015 Dance Open and Tsiskaridze at the Vaganova Academy – St Petersburg

Margaret Willis has just been in St. Petersburg, catching up with the Dance Open Festival and also visiting the Vaganova Academy where she had some words with director Nikolai Tsiskaridze…

San Francisco Ballet in Tomasson's Romeo & Juliet.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Romeo & Juliet – San Francisco

Choreographed by artistic director Helgi Tomasson in 1994, the ballet is popular with audiences here and makes a satisfying coda to his thirtieth-anniversary season…

Ako Kondo, Cristiano Martino, Robyn Hendricks and Amber Scott in Symphonic Variations.© Daniel Boud. (Click image for larger version)

Australian Ballet – Ashton bill: The Dream, Monotones II, Symphonic Variations – Sydney

After the long famine, Ashton’s ballets made a welcome return this week with the company’s triple bill under the umbrella title, The Dream.

Mark Morris Dance Group in Spring, Spring, Spring.© Ken Friedman. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – Pacific, Words, Whelm, Grand Duo, Crosswalk, Jenn and Spencer, and Spring, Spring, Spring – New York

Morris seems particularly interested in deploying turning and spinning movements these days; turns appear again and again in different forms in many of the new works, especially fast chaînés or dizzying rotations in one spot.

Vadim Muntagirov and Laura Morera in La Fille mal gardée.© ROH, Tristram Kenton (Click image for larger version)

Laura Morera & Vadim Muntagirov – Royal Ballet Principals, on La Fille mal gardée

Jann Parry talks to Laura Morera and Vadim Muntagirov about all things La Fille mal gardée and a few other things too…

Vadim Muntagirov, Laura Morera and Paul Kay in La Fille mal gardée.© ROH, Tristram Kenton (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – La Fille mal gardée – London

We don’t give stars but if we did this would get 5. Not to be missed.

Natalia Osipova and Steven McRae in La Fille mal gardée.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in La Fille mal gardée (Osipova / McRae)

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Roman Zhurbin and Craig Salstein in Cinderella.© Rosalie O'Connor. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Cinderella – Washington

Both nights that I attended were blessed with an exquisite Cinderella. Gillian Murphy gave this production a beating heart with her tenderly expressive and incisive performance…

Ashley Bouder in Donizetti Variations.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Serenade, Agon, Symphony in C, Donizetti Variations, La Valse, Chaconne – New York

In recent seasons New York City Ballet has gotten into the habit of starting things off with a week or two of Balanchine. It’s an excellent idea.

© Mariinsky Ballet

Mariinsky Ballet – Cinderella (+ The Enchanted Wanderer) – New York

…the Ukrainian-born soloist Anastasia Matvienko was a pliant, loose-limbed Cinderella who danced with uninhibited ease and looked perfectly at home in Ratmansky’s goofy interpretation of the character.

Alina Cojocaru in Swan Lake.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Swan Lake (Cojocaru / Vasiliev) – London

It is the final act that brings out the best in them. Vasiliev is abject, Cojacaru is truly touching, despairing and resolutely resolved to die.

Leanne Cope and Robert Fairchild in rehersals for An American in Paris.© Matt Trent Photography. (Click image for larger version)

Christopher Wheeldon – An American in Paris – Paris

As in his narrative ballets, Wheeldon crams in too many ideas. What he does supremely well is to convey emotions beyond words in his pas de deux and solos.

Ivan Vasiliev in Flames of Paris.© Costas. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – Flames of Paris – New York

But, for the ballet to work it has to be danced with conviction and joy, and this is what the Mikhailovsky pulls off marvelously well.

Edward Watson, Beatriz Stix-Brunell and Alexander Campbell in Kim Brandstrup's Ceremony of Innocence.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Ceremony of Innocence, The Age of Anxiety, Aeternum – London

The programme was so underwhelming that I went twice in succession, to see whether alternative casts could make a difference.

Aakash Odedra in Nritta.© Kajal Nisha Patel. (Click image for larger version)

Fall For Dance Festival – Program 5: Wayne McGregor | Random Dance, Pontus Lidberg Dance, Aakash Odedra Company, Sarasota Ballet – New York

The word transcendent gets tossed around a lot, overused, especially in the performing arts. But if one performer deserves it at this year’s Fall For Dance Festival, it is Aakash Odedra.

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