"Nikolai Tsiskaridze" tag
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.

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…

Vladimir Malakhov and Beatrice Knopp in Hans van Manen’s The Old Man and Me.© Sergei Andreetsev. (Click image for larger version)

Two Russian Galas – Dance Open in St. Petersburg, Soul of Dance in Moscow

Margaret Willis has been busy: in St. Petersburg at the Dance Open Festival Gala and 2 days later in Moscow at the Soul of Dance Ballet Gala. And important awards were given at both…

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.

Marjin Rademaker and Edward Watson in Javier de Frutos' 3 with D.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Ivan Putrov – Men in Motion (2014) – London

…the men Ivan Putrov has chosen for his latest Men in Motion programme are exceptional dance-interpreters, not self-glorifiers…

Rudolf Nureyev, La Bayadère, Kingdom of the Shades Act, Palais Garnier, 1974.© André Chino. (Click image for larger version)

The Nureyev Collection – Centre national du costume de scène et de la scénographie – Moulins

The triumph of the Nureyev collection at CNCS Moulins is to make the many facets of his profligately talented, maddening personality so vividly alive still.

Oksana Bondareva, Ivan Vasiliev together with Angelina Vorontsova and the company in The Flames of Paris.© Stas Levshin, courtesy the Mikhailovsky Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – The Flames of Paris – St. Petersburg

There is a lack of egotism to Messerer’s work that is immensely appealing, too: unlike Nureyev or Grigorovitch, he never appears to be coercing the music or the steps into fitting his idiosyncratic vision.

Svetlana Zakharova and Alexander Volchkov in Swan Lake.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Bolshoi Ballet – Swan Lake – London

Grigorovich’s production is not concerned with dramatic plausibility or characterisation, which may account for Zakharova’s Odette remaining a remote vision and her Odile a cool doppelganger rather than a temptress.

Les Saisons Russes of XXI Century – Firebird, Scheherazade – London

An apologetic Liepa promised to return for a week next time and bring the new Cleopatra with him, but this was an unsatisfying evening in its current form.

English National Ballet – Beyond Ballet Russes, Programme 1 – London

Firebird: To Williamson’s credit, the action, though baffling, never palls. He knows how to deploy a diverse cast, using an interesting vocabulary of classical ballet steps and partnering. He’s obviously fired up his dancers to commit themselves to their roles, flaunting their glitzy costumes with panache. But it’s a muddled piece, overpowered by Stravinsky’s myth-making music.

Sergei Polunin in Narcisse. © Dave Morgan.

Ivan Putrov – Men in Motion – London

After all the fuss about Sergei Polunin abruptly leaving the Royal Ballet, guess who stole the Men in Motion show? Daniel Proietto, in the AfterLight solo Russell Maliphant made for him in 2010. Admittedly, you could read the 15-minute solo as a warning of the fate awaiting a troubled dancer deprived of the support of a company of colleagues

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