"La Valse" tag
Cassandra Trenary and Cory Stearns in A Time There Was.© Rosalie O'Connor. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – New Romantics: New American Romance, Garden Blue, A Time There Was – New York

★★★✰✰   The emphasis here was on new. This was a night to check in on the creative efforts of two emerging voices on the ballet scene – Gemma Bond and James Whiteside.

Arthur Pita.© courtesy of arthurpita.com. (Click image for larger version)

Interview: Arthur Pita on choreographing “Alice in Californiland” for AXIS Dance Company

Arthur Pita’s latest work is called “Alice in Californiland” for the Bay Area AXIS Dance Company – to be premiered later this week, on Friday 25 October, Claudia Bauer caught up with him to find out what its all about – a thought provoking collision of Lewis Carroll and homelessness…

Royal Ballet School in David Bintley's Flowers of the Forest.© Tristram Kenton. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet School – Summer Show, ROH Main Stage – London

★★★★✰   The choice of works emphasised ensembles more than individuals. It was interesting to see large numbers of young men dancing together, as well as a more usual female corps de ballet.

The Royal Ballet School in Goyo Montero's Pulse.© Tristram Kenton. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet School – Holland Park bill (mainly Upper School) – London

★★★★✰   The show overall gave us a good slice of what ballet is in 2019, and just how adaptable the students need to be these days – exciting times for them and exciting for us in the audience as well.

Margot Fonteyn as Ondine, 1958.© Roger Wood, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Margot Fonteyn, A Celebration – London

★★★★✰   The Royal Ballet did themselves a lot of good with the last new bill of the season – a one-off celebration of Margot Fonteyn. There was much to be reminded of and be proud of.

Wei Wang in Frankenstein.© Andrej Uspenski, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Frankenstein – London

★★✰✰✰   Could Liam Scarlett’s monstrous Frankenstein be fixed with more, better surgery? Evidently not, in this revival, three years after its creation.

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.

Ahmaud Culver, Jasmine Hearn and Anna Witenberg in live performance as part of the Nick Mauss: Transmissions exhibition.© Paula Court. (Click image for larger version)

Interconnections: Thoughts on “Nick Mauss: Transmissions” at the Whitney in New York

Whiteny PR about the exhibition: “Artist Nick Mauss (b. 1980) presents Transmissions, a multidisciplinary work exploring the relationship between modernist ballet and the avant-garde visual arts in New York from the 1930s through ’50s.”

Atlanta Ballet in 2014 feted its artistic director emeritus with a gala ball. Kelsey Ebersold, an apprentice with Atlanta Ballet at the time, is pictured along with Robert Barnett in costume for Barnett's Fascinatin' Rhythm.© Charlie McCullers, courtesy of Atlanta Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Robert Barnett, former New York City Ballet dancer and longtime Artistic Director of Atlanta Ballet

Robert Barnett joined New York City Ballet in 1949. In those early years he worked closely with Balanchine and Robbins particularly before going on to direct Atlanta Ballet. Now 91 he is still actively involved in dance and passing on all he knows…

Nathalia Arja in Ratmansky's Symphonic Dances.© Sasha Iziliaev. (Click image for larger version)

Miami City Ballet – Opening Night Gala: Serenade, Symphonic Dances – New York

★★★★✰   This is dancing that makes one hungry for more.

Adrian Danchig-Waring and Sara Mearns in Kim Brandstrup's Jeux.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Ash, This Bitter Earth, The Infernal Machine, Jeux, Paz de la Jolla – New York

★★★✰✰ Handsome to look at, with its film-noir lighting and flattering black 1940’s style dresses (by Marc Happel), Jeux nevertheless proves to be rather thin…

Adrian Danchig-Waring and Sara Mearns in Kim Brandstrup's Jeux.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Jeux + Polaris, The Blue Distance, Common Ground, New Blood – New York

Jeux, has a distinctly adult atmosphere and a highly cinematic look. Actually, the look might be the most interesting thing about it…

Sara Mearns and Ask La Cour in Balanchine's Walpurgisnacht.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Walpurgisnacht Ballet, Sonatine, La Valse, Symphony in C – New York

After a week of modernist works by Balanchine set mostly to Stravinsky, Hindemith, Webern, there’s no denying that a night of French music falls sweetly on the ear.

Ashley Bouder in Donizetti Variations.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Serenade, Agon, Symphony in C, Donizetti Variations, La Valse, Chaconne – New York

In recent seasons New York City Ballet has gotten into the habit of starting things off with a week or two of Balanchine. It’s an excellent idea.

Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild in Liam Scarlett's Funérailles.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Fall Gala – New York

It’s as pointless to complain about ballet galas as it is to grumble about the weather. They serve a purpose…

Danielle Brown and Ricardo Rhodes in Frederick Ashton's Birthday Offering.© Frank Atura. (Click image for larger version)

Sarasota Ballet – Sir Frederick Ashton Festival, Programmes 1-4 – Sarasota

Both as a tribute to Ashton and as a coming-out party, it’s hard to imagine how the festival could have gone better. The ballets are in good hands.

Janie Taylor and Sebastien Marcovici in Balanchine's La Valse.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Acheron, Afternoon of a Faun, Walpurgisnacht Ballet, La Valse – New York

George Balanchine’s favorite composers may have been Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky, but it’s no secret that he also had an affinity for France and its music…

Rocking Tyler Angle to sleep in Namouna.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – Spectral Evidence, Soirée Musicale, Namouna – New York

One feels as Débussy did when he wrote, at the end of the nineteenth century, that “amid too many silly ballets, Lalo’s Namouna is something of a masterpiece.”

Tobias Batley (Jay Gatsby) and Martha Leebolt (Daisy Buchanan) in The Great Gatsby.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Northern Ballet – The Great Gatsby – London

The ballet succeeds most in its incidental scenes – though everything is presented fortissimo. Most clever is the way in which Nixon depicts Myrtle and George Wilson …The performances of Benjamin Mitchell and Victoria Sibson were the strongest of the evening.

Julie Shanahan and Eddie Martinez in Two Cigarettes in the Dark.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch – Two Cigarettes in the Dark – London

Working backwards from the title song that ends Two Cigarettes in the Dark, it’s possible to discern a theme in Pina Bausch’s 1985 piece…

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