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Subject: "RB Onegin..." Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences What's Happening Topic #2293
Reading Topic #2293
Bruce Madmin

22-11-01, 09:55 PM (GMT)
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"RB Onegin..."
 
  
It's Thursday, its the opening night of a brand new RB piece... so tell us what you think..... (in short or full form!)


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: RB Onegin... James 22-11-01 1
  RE: RB Onegin... Hermione 23-11-01 2
     RE: RB Onegin... lara 23-11-01 3
         RE: RB Onegin... meunier 23-11-01 4
             RE: RB Onegin... tortie14 23-11-01 18
         RE: RB Onegin... alison 23-11-01 5
         RE: RB Onegin... sylvia 23-11-01 9
     RE: RB Onegin... alison 23-11-01 6
         Onegin 22/11/01 sylvia 23-11-01 7
             Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01 sylvia 23-11-01 8
                 RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01 alison 23-11-01 10
                     RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01 Tomoko.A 23-11-01 13
                         RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01 Tomoko.A 23-11-01 14
                     RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01 sylvia 23-11-01 15
     RE: RB Onegin... alison 23-11-01 11
         RE: RB Onegin... sylvia 23-11-01 12
             RE: RB Onegin... lara 23-11-01 16
                 RE: RB Onegin... Viviane 23-11-01 17
  RE: RB Onegin... Bruceadmin 23-11-01 19

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James

22-11-01, 10:48 PM (GMT)
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1. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #0
 
   Judging by this afternoon's rehearsal, the first nighters are in for a real treat. Considering this was supposedly a rehearsal, I thought it was magnificent. The sets and costumes are quite beautiful - the ball at Gremin's palace (Act 3) drew instant applause the moment the curtain rose. There were some really passionate, highly dramatic performances from the leading quartet: Mara Galeazzi as Tatiana (recklessly romantic in the early scenes, beautifully poised in the first scene of Act 3, agonised in her final duet with Onegin), Robert Tewsley as Onegin, Narianella Nunez as Olga and Johan Persson as Lensky (his solo in the duel scene was particularly moving - in fact the whole of that scene was heart rending). I think the Royal Ballet may well have a huge hit on its hands.


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Hermione

23-11-01, 00:48 AM (GMT)
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2. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #0
 
   Personally I think Tamara Rojo was a wonderful Tatiana in all 3 acts.
Initially she is a shy but self-determined girl, gradually as the story goes she realizes that Onegin, charming as he is, isn't worth her love for nobody is worth loving unless he loves, & clearly Onegin mocks her innocence affection towards him & regards it as merely youthful infatuation.
In the final act she's even more determined but with more rational sense & dignity, though not less passionate.
I love the way she looks at Onegin at the moment just after the fatal duel in which Lensky is killed. Onegin comes out from the duel with guiltless expression but when he beholds Tatiana's expression he feels remorse & starts wiping his hands as if trying to cleanse them from Lensky's blood. Tatiana's looks seem to say to him, "Is this the man I love? The man who kills his own friend, the man who mocks affection & discards friendship easily to suit him."

Both Adam Cooper & Ethan Stiefel did a great job in their portrayal as worldly, sardonic, & insensitive Onegin & romantic, idealistic Lensky. Adam has always been a great actor as well as a marvellous dancer & Ethan Stiefel has danced this role before with the ABT, so they do deserve credit for their roles.

Alina Cojocaru, while she was a charming & flirty Olga, I found her miscast because I think Olga is Tatiana's older sister while she is younger than Tamara Rojo & clearly looks younger than her, & that leaves me with an impression that this Olga isn't just flirty but spoilt as well.

Christopher Saunder was a calm, dignified, & authoritative as the Prince Gremin. I can't help thinking that this prince is a dependable though probably less exciting a husband to wed.

On the whole though I believe the Royal Ballet didn't disappoint John Cranko had he been there tonight. If they were a bit unsure, it was excusable because it was only the 1st night & there's so much hope for them to improve in later performances.


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lara

23-11-01, 03:16 AM (GMT)
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3. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #2
 
  
>I love the way she looks
>at Onegin at the moment
>just after the fatal duel
>in which Lensky is killed.
>Onegin comes out from the
>duel with guiltless expression but
>when he beholds Tatiana's expression
>he feels remorse & starts
>wiping his hands as if
>trying to cleanse them from
>Lensky's blood.

In both the version by the National Ballet of Canada and in the film with Fiennes, Onegin tries to convince Lensky NOT to fight the duel and goes to it reluctantly and when it is over is mortified by what he has does. His blase-ness does not extend to killing his friend.


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meunier

23-11-01, 11:52 AM (GMT)
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4. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #3
 
   I had very mixed feelings about last night. I admire all of the artists who were dancing, individually. I thought Ethan Steifel came off best as Lensky as his drama was as clean as his line - which was delicately pristine. The ladies, I thought, should both be dancing Olga. Adam Cooper looked the role, but struggled with the, admittedly, heavy work of the partnering. Still, this, too, could be forgiven. All were doing their best. Last night, for me, proved that the ballet needs a senior ballerina (Seymour, Heidi, Maximova, Makarova, etc.) to really give it enhanced weight; an expanded sense of drama; in order to bring it afire. Where this is not prevelent, it is all too easy for the piece to date, which I thought was the case. Certainly, the orchestra drooped on more than a few occasions. I agree that Rose did, originally, a lovely job with the settings - firmly placing his emphasis on the dance itself. No tables or beds here to steal from or unduely engulf the steps. However, like some of self-same choreography and the dance boom having bust - the flower has, if memory serves accurately, faded.

Or is it but my aging eyesight? Bless all who joyously cheered - and Pushkin for the poetry.


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tortie14

23-11-01, 09:25 PM (GMT)
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18. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #4
 
   LAST EDITED ON 23-11-01 AT 09:27 PM (GMT)

Like you I had mixed feelings - nicely done by whole company. I am not a Cooper fan and I found him unconvincing (sorry to his fans) - a rather cardboard villain - could not she why she would fall for him - lacked charm; totally agree about Olga looking younger (programme said she is supposed to be older). I AM a Cojacaru fan and could watch her all night dancing anything and can't wait to see her as Tatiana because I thought her softer and more radiant presence was wrong against Rojo's much stronger more sophisticated looking Tatiana and Alina did not convince me with the flirting at the party bit. Love Steifel's dancing - agree with the comment on how beautiful he and Alina are together they are so graceful and have a Sibley/Dowell quality - (lets have more please Mr Stretton) but I think his acting was less convincing in this role - partly I think that it has dated and the music does not really support the drama which slipped into melodrama for me last night. I do think it needs dancers with some maturity and dramatic weight - Seymour, Markarova etc.

I am looking forward to seeing other casts.

Vanessa



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alison

23-11-01, 12:51 PM (GMT)
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5. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #3
 
   And in ENB's version. Is this an actual change, or just a difference in perception from the viewer?


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sylvia

23-11-01, 01:15 PM (GMT)
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9. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #3
 
  
>In both the version by the
>National Ballet of Canada and
>in the film with Fiennes,
>Onegin tries to convince Lensky
>NOT to fight the duel
>and goes to it reluctantly
>and when it is over
>is mortified by what he
>has does. His blase-ness does
>not extend to killing his
>friend.

My impression from the RB is pretty similar - Onegin trying to convince him not to duel. But his own arrogance and failure to see the concequences takes over. On killing Lensky he comes out satisfied as the winner. He meets Tatiana's eyes and realizing what he has done and collapses in despair.


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alison

23-11-01, 12:54 PM (GMT)
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6. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #2
 
   >
>Alina Cojocaru, while she was a
>charming & flirty Olga, I
>found her miscast because I
>think Olga is Tatiana's older
>sister while she is younger
>than Tamara Rojo & clearly
>looks younger than her, &
>that leaves me with an
>impression that this Olga isn't
>just flirty but spoilt as
>well.
>
I've always been under the impression that Olga is younger than Tatiana, and, as I've unflatteringly described her before, a bit of an airhead. (Nor could her feelings for Lensky have run that deep, since in the novel she marries a hussar only about 6 months after Lensky's death).


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sylvia

23-11-01, 01:06 PM (GMT)
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7. "Onegin 22/11/01"
In response to message #6
 
   After the flamboyance and pyrotechnics of Don Quixote, Onegin felt wonderfully fresh and even airy in spite of the tragic storyline.

It’s fantastic to see Adam Cooper back with the Royal Ballet in a role that he is eminently suited to and Tamara Rojo in a role that splendidly highlights her dramatic gifts. Rojo was so convincing in her mannerisms as a young girl. Rojo’s adolescent infatuation and Cooper’s disdain and cruelty made for some exciting chemistry – theirs is a partnership I’d never dreamed of seeing. The mirror scene was to say the least, emotionally draining. And I just loved how when Onegin came away from the duel the way Tatiana seemed to age years as she stood over condemning him.

I was delighted at the portrayals of Olga and Lensky which I thought were well fleshed out by Alina Cojocaru and Ethan Stiefel. Cojocaru dances with youthful sweetness, the spirited girl so well I’m more than curious to see her approach to Tatiana later on. Ethan Stiefel’s innocent sunny blonde looks and superb dancing made it easy to see why Olga loves him so. I keep seeing the word ‘clarity’ used to describe their dancing and it does make their partnership an ideal one. Their first pas de deux was extraordinarily romantic, a dance of youthful, unsullied love. Stiefel’s solo before the duel was beautiful to watch in his despair at what he saw to be his end and his parting kiss to Olga just about broke my heart.

Cranko’s choreography: his pdd are fascinating, the acrobatic lifts and innovative positioning of the arms in particular. And although there were a few dull moments I thought the choreography for the corps was very eye-catching and fun to watch. I can’t accept this ballet belonging just to the title role. The four roles have such extensive and gorgeous steps and were danced with such verve by Cooper, Rojo, Stiefel and Cojocaru that I feel the night belongs to all of them. I did feel that the their extended solos and pdd interspersed with the corps wasn’t enough – it left me wanting more.

As for the production, the sets are very simple, in most cases just a beautifully detailed backcloth and a few pieces of furniture. I think they catch the atmosphere perfectly and its simplicity allows the dancers to shine. The muted costumes especially those of the corps are indescribably lovely.


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sylvia

23-11-01, 01:08 PM (GMT)
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8. "Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01"
In response to message #7
 
   I was lucky enough to attend the rehearsal that afternoon too. First cast is a dream cast for me so I foolishly expected that the rehearsal wouldn’t be as good as First Night. Well what surprised me was how Galeazzi, Tewsley, Nunez and Persson more than matched their counterparts.

Tewsley a revelation. He was absolutely outstanding. His brilliant portrayal of Onegin was polished, cold, full of disdain and expressed through his exacting leaps and pirouettes. In Act III he was a man transformed, broken by guilt and by love. Galeazzi’s Tatiana is every bit as tragic as Rojo’s - achingly sad, beautifully danced and weightless in her lifts.

I've seen Nunez and Persson in lead roles before and haven't been very impressed. But the roles of Olga and Lensky brought out a sensitivity I'd never seen before in these two. They are very fine actors and were believably in love.

This cast is very memorable and highly recommended. After yesterday afternoon I’m tempted to watch the other casts and see what they make of the ballet.


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alison

23-11-01, 01:18 PM (GMT)
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10. "RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01"
In response to message #8
 
   That's interesting - was the rehearsal cast put together on a mixed cast according to who was available, or has the casting been changed? Does anybody know? (Galeazzi and Tewsley were supposed to be with Tapper and Coppen, and Nunez and Persson weren't supposed to be dancing together at all!)


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Tomoko.A

23-11-01, 04:29 PM (GMT)
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13. "RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01"
In response to message #10
 
   Alison, I was at the rehearsal and surprised to see the mixed cast. I don't know why....but they danced wonderfully together. I was really pleased to see Tewsley for the first time. Why didn't RB give him a contract ? I was also at the evening performance and thought three gorgeous men ( i.e. Tewsley, Cooper & Stiefel )for one day was too much !!


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Tomoko.A

23-11-01, 04:32 PM (GMT)
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14. "RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01"
In response to message #13
 
   And I was also surprised to see Vanessa Palmer as Nurse at the rehearsal.


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sylvia

23-11-01, 04:45 PM (GMT)
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15. "RE: Onegin Rehearsal 22/11/01"
In response to message #10
 
   It is odd. I think the cast of the rehearsals are partly based on whoever's dancing that night, whoever's dancing later or maybe whoever needs a rehearsal. Cooper is meant to be dancing Gremin with Galeazzi and Tewsley but of course had to save himself for the evening performance.


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alison

23-11-01, 01:20 PM (GMT)
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11. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #2
 
   By the way, was Adam wearing a moustache as he appeared to be in the advertising material? I can't quite imagine Onegin with a 'tache.


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sylvia

23-11-01, 01:23 PM (GMT)
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12. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #11
 
   Onegin goes through Acts I and II without it (thankfully!). It goes on in Act III which signifies aging I guess. All the publicity material I've seen comes from that final Act III pdd.


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lara

23-11-01, 04:52 PM (GMT)
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16. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #12
 
   I just want to say thank you so much to everyone that posted their impressions of Onegin's opening night.

Does anyone know if there are plans to film Onegin? This would have been a much better choice to film instead of the war horse Don Q. It sounds like the dream cast of opening night would make an incredible film and allow those of us that can't see the production live, at least see a film of the ballet.


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Viviane

23-11-01, 05:02 PM (GMT)
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17. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #16
 
   I want to join Lara and send many thanks for all these impressions ! ...and we are hungry to have some more
How nice to hear some exciting news about RB again.
I hardly can wait to see it myself !


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Bruceadmin

23-11-01, 10:35 PM (GMT)
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19. "RE: RB Onegin..."
In response to message #0
 
  
Sorry folks but we seem to have two threads on the go and its far less confusing if we have just one.

I thought I'd lock this thread because its getting long anyway and the other has more scope for growth.

Wish I could merge threads btw - but I can't I'm afraid. So more Onegin comments on the following thread please:
http://www.danze.co.uk/dcforum/happening/2294.html


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