"The Firebird" tag
Tamara Rojo and James Streeter in Dust by Akram Khan.© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Lest We Forget bill – London

★★★★★   “I cannot recall being so moved at a dance performance for a very long time, if ever.”

Kizzy Matiakis in the lead image for The Queen of Spades.© Camilla Winther. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Danish Ballet – The Queen of Spades – Copenhagen

★★★✰✰   The good news is that Queen of Spades is a good-looking crowd pleaser and the RDB dancers look fantastic in it – I can’t emphasise that enough. Also good that it’s a step up from his last commission, Frankenstein – thank goodness, really.

Le Rossignol masterclass: Anna Rose O’Sullivan and William Bracewell with Anthony Dowell.© Rachel Thomas. (Click image for larger version)

Feature – Frederick Ashton’s choreography for Le Rossignol – a masterclass with Sir Anthony Dowell

The Metropolitan Opera in New York staged “Le Rossignol” in December 1981 as part of a programme commemorating the hundredth anniversary of Stravinsky’s birth… the producer was John Dexter. He told Ashton, back in London, that he could choreograph two dancers as the Nightingale and the Fisherman on stage, while the roles would be sung by opera singers in the orchestra pit…

Ivan Vassiliev and Kristina Kretova in Sceherazade.© Marc Haegeman. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala – In the steps of the Ballets Russes – London

★★★★✰   The long gala (three and a half hours with one interval) was well organised, with no speeches and no protracted curtain calls.

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?

David Drew in his later years - here as the Duke of Courland in Giselle.© John Ross, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Obituary: David Drew, Royal Ballet Principal, with the company 56 years

David Drew, for 56 years a member of The Royal Ballet, has died after a long battle with illness. He described himself as one of a ‘bridge generation’ of dancers. The longevity of his career meant that he worked with many figures from the Ballets Russees – but also taught many dancers and choreographers working today.

Yabin Wang in Genesis.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui / Yabin Studio & Eastman – Genesis 生长 – London

While other Cherkaoui collaborations have generally crossed boundaries to link contemporary movement with the borrowed style, in Genesis there appears to be a multiplicity of influences.

Sylvie Guillem and Russell Maliphant in Push, taken in 2005. From a John Ross Gallery of 6 images.© John Ross.

2014 Dance Memories – London

Lynette Halewood with her personal selection of London dance memories this last year…

Hannah Grennell in Unearthed.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Deloitte Ignite 2014, Royal Ballet and others – Sampling the Myth bill – London

The best of the videos and best piece of the night was Kim Brandstrup’s Leda and the Swan using the much-loved Zenaida Yanowsky and Tommy Franzen

Mariinsky Ballet in Concerto DSCH.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Mariinsky Ballet – The Firebird, Marguerite and Armand, Concerto DSCH – London

“This is how ecstasy is danced.” Kimin Kim in Concerto DSCH.

Mikhail Fokine.© & courtesy of Isabelle Fokine and Fokine Estate Archive. (Click image for larger version)

The Work of Mikhail Fokine – Q&A with Isabelle Fokine

Born in Paris in 1958, Isabelle Fokine is the daughter of Vitale Fokine and granddaughter of choreographer Mikhail Fokine. She is artistic director of the Fokine Estate Archive, which holds the worldwide copyright to his work.

Natalia Savelieva (Queen of Shamakha) in Le Coq d'Or.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Les Saisons Russes / Natalia Sats Opera & Ballet – Le Coq d’Or (The Golden Cockerel) – London

…it’s very Russian in its mixture of comedy, satire and luscious spectacle – and first-class performances.

Xander Parish in Chopiniana (Les Sylphides).© Natasha Razina. (Click image for larger version)

Mariinsky Ballet – Mikhail Fokine bill: Chopiniana, The Firebird, Scheherazade – St. Petersburg

The corps (in Chopiniana) must be congratulated for the ball-bearing precision in their soft gentle boureeing, gliding gently back to their original positions as the music ended. A real treat to see it done so beautifully.

Boris Eifman.© Eifman Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Boris Eifman – Artistic Director, Eifman Ballet

Graham Watts met up with the choreographer on a recent visit to St Petersburg to discuss his career and to ask what London audiences might expect from Rodin…

Mariinsky Ballet – London season including Casting

Casting Released for Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Apollo, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Firebird, Marguerite and Armand, DSCH, Cinderella (and remember all casting can change…)

Xander Parish in Scheherazade.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Les Saisons Russes of XXI Century in Spectre, Firebird, Scheherazade

18 pictures by Dave Morgan…

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.

Alexandra Timofeyeva and Ilya Kuznetsov in The Firebird.© Valeria Komissarova. (Click image for larger version)

Les Saisons Russes of XXI Century – Le Spectre de la rose, Firebird, Scheherazade – London

But altogether, this was an evening of historical curios that lacked consistent vibrancy.

Valentine Gross pastel of the original trio in “the fountain” grouping, 1913. First published in Comoedia Illustré, the souvenir programme of Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. From Millicent Hodson, Nijinsky's Bloomsbury Ballet, Jeux (Pendragon, New York, 2008), p. 8. (Click image for larger version)

Games People Play: ‘Jeux’ Young at 100

Nijinsky’s ‘Jeux’, like ‘Rite’, is in its centenary year – lesser known it may be but Archer & Hodson give fascinating detail on its creation and the thought that went into putting on, at UNCSA, their reconstructed version earlier this year.

Nadia Nerina as The Bluebird in The Sleeping Beauty (1951) and Isabel Rawsthorne.© Roger Wood (NN), courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Nadia Nerina and Isabel Rawsthorne exhibitions at the Royal Opera House

Rawsthorne was painted by André Derain and Pablo Picasso, and later by Francis Bacon. She was the inspiration for Alberto Giacometti’s etiolated sculptures of walking figures…

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