"Sofiane Sylve" tag
Tyler Angle and the corps in Namouna, a Grand Divertissement.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Russian Seasons and Namouna, a Grand Divertissement – New York

★★★★✰   I still remember my feelings during the premiere of Alexei Ratmansky’s Russian Seasons at NYCB in 2006. There was a shock of recognition: this was the thing I had been looking for…

Sarah Van Patten and Luke Ingham in Balanchine's Stravinsky Violin Concerto.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Stravinsky Violin Concerto, Prodigal Son, Diamonds – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   The soloists and principals of San Francisco Ballet brought unique interpretations to George Balanchine classics for the company’s fourth program of the season, a varied survey of Balanchine’s oeuvre.

Lorena Feijoo in Possokhov's Optimistic Tragedy.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Seven Sonatas, Optimistic Tragedy (premiere), Pas/Parts 2016 – San Francisco

★★✰✰✰   The trouble with Program 2 is its centerpiece, choreographer-in-residence Yuri Possokhov’s new work ‘Optimistic Tragedy’.

Koto Ishihara, Francisco Mungamba and Wei Wang in Bubeníček's Fragile Vessels.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Haffner Symphony, Fragile Vessels (premiere), In the Countenance of Kings – San Francisco

★★★★✰   The company’s first regular-season commission from Czech choreographer Jiří Bubeníček, “Fragile Vessels”, is a 40-minute meditation on love, loss and reconciliation.

Madeline Skelly and Connor Walsh of Houston Ballet in Forsythe's Artifact Suite.© Amitava Sarkar. (Click image for larger version)

Celebrate Forsythe – Pas/Parts 2016, The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude, Artifact Suite – Los Angeles

★★★★✰   San Francisco Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet and Houston Ballet have come together in LA to celebrate William Forsythe probably the most influential ballet choreographer of his generation. Claudia Bauer reports on a fine night…

Frances Chung, Jennifer Stahl, Dores André and Joseph Walsh in Justin Peck's In The Countenance Of Kings.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Continuum, In the Countenance of Kings (premiere), Theme and Variations – San Francisco

★★★★✰   San Francisco Ballet (SFB) saved the best for its last mixed bill of the 2016 season.

Frances Chung and Vitor Luiz in Balanchine's Coppélia.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Coppélia – San Francisco

★★★★✰ It’s a treat to be in the theater when a dancer achieves a triumphant performance…

Sofiane Sylve in Scarlett's Fearful Symmetries.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Fearful Symmetries (premiere), Rubies, Drink to Me Only with Thine Eyes – San Francisco

★★★✰✰ “But despite his high concept, Scarlett seemed to lose the thread halfway through, resorting to lascivious theatrics to complete the work…”

Maria Kochetkova and Francisco Mungamba in Forsythe's Pas/Parts.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – 7 for Eight, Magrittomania, Pas/Parts – San Francisco

★★★★✰ “….that is what is marvelous about Forsythe’s Pas/Parts. Would that more choreographers would offer that kind of brisk and bracing slap in the face.”

San Francisco Ballet School students in the Waltz of the Hours from Balanchine's Coppélia.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Opening Night Gala – San Francisco

★★★✰✰ By way of a défilé, the evening opened with the “Waltz of the Hours” from Balanchine and Danilova’s Coppélia …Soloist Jennifer Stahl led two dozen girls from the SFB School, adorable in cotton-candy tutus.

Dores André.© Chris Hardy. (Click image for larger version)

Dores André – Principal, San Francisco Ballet

If it was up to me, I would pay more [salary] to the corps than to the principals. Half the ballet depends on them, and it is very hard to be in a good mood and trying your hardest every day when you are not getting the attention and the development that we get as principals and soloists.

Taras Domitro in Possokhov’s Swimmer.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Caprice, The Four Temperaments, Swimmer – San Francisco

Swimmer is one man’s journey from being the stereotypical breadwinner… to his own self-realisation in a kind of isolated freedom.

Frances Chung in Ratmansky's Piano Concerto #1 from Shostakovich Trilogy.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Program 6: Shostakovich Trilogy – San Francisco

It’s a disconcerting feeling when you don’t respond to a piece that nearly everyone else agrees is revelatory. That’s the situation I find myself in with Alexei Ratmansky’s Shostakovich Trilogy.

Mathilde Froustey and Carlos Quenedit in Tomasson/Possokhov's Don Quixote.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Don Quixote – San Francisco

Principal dancers Mathilde Froustey and Carlos Quenedit were exactly what the audience wanted on opening night.

Norika Matsuyama and Steven Morse in Thatcher's Manifesto.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Program 3 including Myles Thatcher premiere – San Francisco

Program 3 features Hans van Manen’s Variations for Two Couples, William Forsythe’s The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude, Manifesto by Myles Thatcher and “The Kingdom of the Shades” from La Bayadère.

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…

Maria Kochetkova and Davit Karapetyan in Possokhov's Bells.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Infinite Romance: 2015 Season Opening Night Gala – San Francisco

The SF Ballet premiere of choreographer-in-residence Yuri Possokhov’s pas de deux from Bells is my all-round favorite of the evening. Sublime dancing from Maria Kochetkova and Davit Karapetyan…

Yuan Yuan Tan in Russell Maliphant's Two x Two.© Xiaojing Wang. (Click image for larger version)

Fall For Dance Festival – Program 1: Black Grace, SF Ballet, Russell Maliphant, Mark Morris – New York

New York City Center’s Fall For Dance Festival opened its 11th season with a very fresh program…

Sarah Van Patten and Luke Ingham in Christopher Wheeldon's Within The Golden Hour.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Maelstrom, Within the Golden Hour, Glass Pieces – Paris

Great to see so many of San Francisco Ballet’s dancers enjoying themselves and enthusing their audience in a steamy summer evening in Paris.

Yuan Yuan Tan and Davit Karapetyan in Tomason's Giselle.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Giselle – San Francisco

Though Tan dances with a wonderful lightness and an elegance not quite suited to a naïve peasant girl, she never really emotionally engages with the ardent Karapetyan, who possesses nuanced acting and strong technique, and deserves to have a partner who can match his level of commitment to crafting a role.

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