"James F. Ingalls" tag
Sarah Van Patten, Mathilde Froustey and Ulrik Birkkjaer in Marston's Snowblind.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Unbound Festival Program B: works by Myles Thatcher, Cathy Marston, David Dawson – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   Snowblind is a great narrative ballet – the source material is striking and Marston’s interpretation of it, equally so.

Miami City Ballet in The Nutcracker.© Lawrence K. Ho. (Click image for larger version)

Miami City Ballet – The Nutcracker – Los Angeles

★★★✰✰   The MCB dancers exude Balanchine brio and delight in performing his intricate steps, but they had to give their all to keep up with the youngsters.

Simone Messmer and Miami City Ballet dancers in The Fairy’s Kiss. Choreography by Alexei Ratmansky.© Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

Miami City Ballet – The Fairy’s Kiss, Walpurgisnacht Ballet, Polyphonia – Miami

★★★★✰   The Fairy’s Kiss (Ratmansky premiere): The final image is poetic, grand, inspiring. It takes one’s breath away.

Aaron Loux and Billy Smith in The Hard Nut.© Julieta Cervantes. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – The Hard Nut – New York

★★★★✰   Few alternative takes on tradition survive this long and The Hard Nut remains as subversive as it is satisfying.

Lesley Garrison and Durell R. Comedy in Layla and Majnun.© Susana Millman. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – Layla and Majnun – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   Where Morris succeeded beautifully was in melding Eastern dance styles into his balletic modern vocabulary in deep torso bends, dervish whirls and arms extended beyond his already expansive port de bras.

Maria Kochetkova and Vitor Luiz in Cranko's Onegin.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Onegin – San Francisco

★★★★✰   Created in 2010 for the National Ballet of Canada, this production of the late John Cranko’s 1965 ballet was a smash here in 2012; it was reprised in 2013 and it’s wonderful to have it back again so soon.

Parisa Khobdeh and Michelle Fleet in Offenbach Overtures.© Paul B. Goode. (Click image for larger version)

Paul Taylor – Gala: Junction, 3 Epitaphs, Perpetual Dawn, Offenbach – New York

Opening night was a gala performance; one might have expected Esplanade, or Arden Court, but that’s just not Taylor’s style. For a choreographer who has been criticized for being too popular in his tastes, Taylor can be very odd indeed.

Diana Vishneva and Marcelo Gomes in Onegin. © Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Onegin – New York

And yet, even on its own terms, it leaves one wanting, despite the performances of two excellent casts… And it does not blossom with repeated viewing. Much to the contrary. What are its short-comings? First, the music…

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