"Valery Ovsyanikov" tag
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.

Maya Plisetskaya.© Ensemble Productions. (Click image for larger version)

Ave Maya Gala in Memory of Maya Plisetskaya – London

★★★✰✰ Every gala needs a revelation, and this one was provided by Sergio Bernal, a Spanish dancer who dominated the stage in an imperious farruca solo from Antonio’s flamenco version of The Three Cornered Hat…

Russian Ballet Icons Gala front cloth with Olesya Novikova.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala – Dedicated to the History of Russian Ballet – London

The gala opened with the Act III wedding pas de deux from The Sleeping Beauty, performed by Ekaterina Osmolkina and Guiseppe Picone. No fish-dives in this version – the Russians regard them as vulgar, and Osmolkina could never be vulgar.

Xander Parish in Apollo.© Valentin Baranovsky. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2015 – 10th anniversary, Sunday 8 March 2015 at London Coliseum

30 dancers already confirmed include Natalia Osipova, Olga Smirnova, Semyon Chudin, Kim Kimin, Sarah Lamb, Xander Parish, Aline Cojocaru, Tamara Rojo, Marianela Nuňez and Thiago Soares.

Natalia Osipova in Laurencia (from her 2012 Mikhailovsky debut).© The Mikhailovsky Theatre. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – Laurencia with Osipova and Vasiliev – London

When the Mikhailovsky Ballet first brought this production to London in 2010, Laurencia seemed a creakily old-fashioned Soviet drambalet. Now, with Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev as the leads, it sparkles with fun, melodrama and commitment…

Ivan Vasiliev and Natalia Osipova in Don Quixote.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – Don Quixote (Osipova / Vasiliev) & Giselle (Semionova / Matvienko) – London

…the Mikhailovsky put on a wonderful display of classical excellence that we just don’t routinely see in the UK.

Russian Ballet Icons – Nijinsky Gala – London

Though this year it was Nijinsky’s turn to be reclaimed as a Russian icon, the contents of the gala had little to do with him. Very probably the choice of items – mainly pas de deux – depended on which dancers were available to perform whatever was in their repertoire.

Uliana Lopatkina and Marat Shemiunov in Pavlova and Cecchetti. © Marc Haegeman.

Russian Ballet Icons – Anna Pavlova Gala – London

The ballerinas who made the greatest impact were Uliana Lopatkina and Tamara Rojo: regal, gracious, seemingly effortless…

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