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Ballet Around The World 
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Сообщение The Flames of Paris
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The Flames of Paris, Mikhailovsky Theatre, St Petersburg

By Gerald Dowler

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The drums of revolution beat out once more in St Petersburg with Mikhail Messerer’s pitch-perfect restoration of Vasily Vainonen’s 1932 The Flames of Paris for the Mikhailovsky Ballet. This has been a labour of love for Messerer, today’s foremost champion of the USSR’s rich choreographic legacy, who has rescued as much as is possible of the original movement.

But this is no dry, academic exercise; what emerges is a potent work, admirable in its drive and in its execution. The house orchestra under Valery Ovsyanikov’s driven baton play Boris Asafiev’s tremendous score, a mix of Soviet blast and period pastiche, with panache, and the meticulous re-creators of Vladimir Dmitriev’s original sets and costumes provide a picture-book setting of revolutionary France.

Flames was said to be Stalin’s favourite ballet, and it is easy to see why: seething masses rise up to rid themselves of decadent despots in a flurry of balletic fervour. Not a wisp of irony clouds Messerer’s production, and the company dances this simple tale with clear-eyed commitment. The movement ranges from purely classical through “Bolshoi bravura” to character dances, all performed with elan.

Angelina Vorontsova and Victor Lebedev were impeccable in the court divertissement, while Mariam Ugrekhelidze’s eyes flamed with revolutionary zeal as she tore round the stage as the Marianne figure Teresa. Vorontsova reappeared in the flashy Freedom pas de deux, lifted and thrown with seeming insouciance by the stalwart Marat Shemiunov.

It is tribute to the excellence of the company that the main roles were part of this impressive whole rather than star turns. And turn they did: as the peasant girl Jeanne, home-grown ballerina Oksana Bondareva is a human centrifuge, endless spins executed with dizzying speed, the final pas de deux a balletic assault course, holding no terrors. Ivan Vasiliev is no stranger to Philippe (he created the role in Alexei Ratmansky’s 2008 version) but tore into this original version with renewed vigour, launching himself into seemingly suicidal leaps and turns, his eyes flashing.

But Flames was not his alone, nor hers; it was the Mikhailovsky’s and it was Messerer’s. Vainonen
has returned.

5 stars

http://www.mikhailovsky.ru


28 июл 2013, 18:14
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Сообщение Flames of Paris. Mikhailovky Theatre. St. Petersburg

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28 июл 2013, 18:33
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Сообщение Bolshoi Tour in London

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    La Bayadère, Bolshoi Ballet, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, review

    La Bayadère by the Bolshoi Ballet at Covent Garden was lit up by Olga Smirnova, a star in the making, says Sarah Crompton.

    5 Stars

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    By Sarah Crompton
    1:23PM BST 04 Aug 2013

    Even by the Bolshoi Ballet’s exalted standards, Olga Smirnova is something special. The programme describes her as first soloist — but she is clearly A Star in the Making.

    She’s 21, and graduated from the famous Vaganova School in St Petersburg just two years ago. But what is astonishing about her performance as the doomed temple dancer Nikiya in La Bayadère is that it looks fully formed: she has the directness and simplicity of the best dancers.

    In part this springs from her technique, a glorious combination of strength and delicacy. She seems to carve the air with the exquisite shapes she makes; her supple back sends a graceful wave of movement down to her finger tips; her beautiful feet graze the stage and are perfectly placed at the start of each movement; her jumps are light and elegantly formed.

    But she combines this with a rapt dramatic intensity. Her Nikiya is like a joyful schoolgirl when she first meets her lover, the hunter Solor; she is distraught when he deserts her for the Rajah’s daughter Gamzatti; when she meets him in the afterlife, she is gravely tender.

    It is, however, a sign of the Bolshoi’s incredible performing strength that an interpretation of this calibre is matched and heightened by everything around it. Petipa’s Bayadère, first seen in 1877, is classic 19th-century ballet, where a tenuous plot is constantly suspended to allow a lot of pretty dancing from girls with parrots on their arms, for example, or parading priests, or bounding men with drums.

    To hold the attention, it must be performed with high seriousness and precision. And it is, from the soaring leaps of Anton Savichev’s bare-chested Fakir to Anastasia Stashkevich’s graceful ghost and Alexander Fadeyechev’s ferocious High Brahmin. As Gamzatti, the sumptuous Ekaterina Krysanova is every bit Smirnova’s equal — which both makes dramatic sense of the love triangle and adds to the pleasure of the second act as she shows off before her wedding to Solor. Semyon Chudin struggles to convey the hero’s inexplicable mood changes, but when he unfolds his elegant, soft jumps it barely matters.

    This version of Bayadère, by the Bolshoi’s former director Yuri Grigorovich, cleverly concludes in the Kingdom of Shades, which means that the work ends where its heart lies — with the great pas de deux of love between Solor and Nikiya — and with its formal high point – a great procession of gauzy ghosts moving in perfect union across the darkness.

    The Bolshoi’s corps de ballet perform this scene with solemn majesty: it is heart-stoppingly lovely and a reminder of just how great unadorned classical ballet can be.

    The season continues until August 17.

    telegraph.co.uk/culture/theatre/dance


    04 авг 2013, 18:36
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    Сообщение A Star Is Born
      La Bayadère, Bolshoi Ballet, Royal Opera House

      Remember the name - young Olga Smirnova is a ravishing new star

      by Ismene Brown | Sunday, 04 August 2013

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      It’s unspeakably bad for so many reasons that the injured Bolshoi Ballet director Sergei Filin cannot be in London to see his company perform, and one is that he can’t see his protegée Olga Smirnova revealing herself to us as destined to be one of the great ballerinas of this era. Smirnova was signed in 2011 by Filin from the Vaganova Academy in St Petersburg, the Mariinsky’s nursery, whose combination of regal style and gossamer delicacy is evident through every fibre of this miraculous young dancer’s movement.

      In La Bayadère last night she showed herself not only to possess as if by nature all the refinements of classical training, but also as a woman born to make music and tell stories as she dances. There are no frozen arabesques in Smirnova’s being: she spins a constant filament of silk where she goes, she fills tiny micro-pauses with suspense, uses the electricity in her fingers and a proud in-breath to accentuate the climax of a phrase. I don’t think she tries to be an actress, any more than she tries consciously to be musical - she just is. It is no handicap that she is extraordinary beautiful, dark and soulful in last night’s Indian setting as Nikiya, the temple dancer doomed by her caste to be betrayed and murdered.

      Read further @ TheArtsDesk.com


      05 авг 2013, 01:24
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      Сообщение Ashes and Diamonds

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        Dance review: La Bayadère - The Bolshoi's Olga Smirnova is precise and otherworldly
        by Zoë Anderson

        4 stars

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        The Bolshoi Ballet’s Olga Smirnova dances with a moonlit glow. In the “Kingdom of the Shades” scene of La Bayadère, she gives the ghostly heroine a hypnotic beauty. Her bursts of dazzling speed don’t break the smooth flow of her dancing: she’s both precise and otherworldly.

        This year, the Bolshoi has hit the news with stories of backstage crisis and an acid attack on its artistic director, Sergei Filin. Smirnova, a remarkable young star, pulls attention back to the famous Russian company’s artistry.

        Read further @ independent.co.uk


        05 авг 2013, 19:47
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        Сообщение Bolshoi Tour in London

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          La Bayadère, Royal Opera House, London – review

          By Clement Crisp

          A handsome staging gives London its first sight of the extraordinarily promising Olga Smirnova

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          On Saturday night the Bolshoi Ballet showed us La Bayadère and gave London its first sight of Olga Smirnova (stress the second syllable), its newest talent. At the age of 21 she is an undoubted marvel. I reported last autumn on her Moscow appearances in Balanchine’s Diamonds – a role she repeats here next week – and on the ravishing qualities of her dancing, notably in the unaffected beauties of her upper body, with an exquisite dialogue between head and shoulders and the placing of the arms.

          These gave nuance to her account of Nikiya, the eponymous bayadère (temple dancer), not least in the moonlit raptures of the Kingdom of the Shades scene that ends the staging, as the ghostly Nikiya forgives the faithless hero, Solor. (She bends, all grace, over his shoulder, tells him: “Remember your vow!” Smirnova imbues this moment with intensest feeling, truth.) Everywhere we understand: Smirnova is an artist of glorious potential. She is young, and must find her way into the great roles she is – rightfully – inheriting, and we rejoice in this bright dawn of her talents.

          Reat further @ ft.com


          06 авг 2013, 01:33
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          Сообщение Novosibirsk State Choreographic College

            New building complex for Novosibirsk State Choreographic College

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          27 окт 2013, 20:28
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          Сообщение Alina Somova with her infant daughter Eva
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          09 май 2014, 01:39
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          Сообщение For die hard ballet fans only!


          23 май 2014, 19:35
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          Сообщение Svetlana Zakharova with her daughter
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          23 май 2014, 23:29
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