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Subject: "What makes you cry?" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Helen

17-02-02, 04:13 PM (GMT)
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"What makes you cry?"
 
   What, if anything, brings tears to your eyes when you go to a ballet performance? This subject may have been covered before - if so, my apologies.

Inspired by the Bayadere thread, I watched my Paris Opera Ballet video of the Nureyev version. And sure enough, the minute those Shades start coming down the ramp in the "blue transparency of night" (Karsavina's phrase) I am reaching for the tissues. It's only arabesques. It's not great music. Why does it make me weep?

I'm sure other people are the same. Confess!


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: What makes you cry? lara 17-02-02 1
     RE: What makes you cry? Jim 17-02-02 2
  RE: What makes you cry? Jim 17-02-02 3
     RE: What makes you cry? lara 17-02-02 4
         RE: What makes you cry? Ann Welsh 17-02-02 5
             RE: What makes you cry? sylvia 17-02-02 7
     RE: What makes you cry? Helen 17-02-02 6
         RE: What makes you cry? Anneliese 18-02-02 13
  RE: What makes you cry? pmeja 17-02-02 8
     RE: What makes you cry? Michael LL 18-02-02 9
         RE: What makes you cry? Pete 18-02-02 10
             RE: What makes you cry? Anneliese 18-02-02 17
             RE: What makes you cry? J 20-02-02 24
     RE: What makes you cry? Jim 18-02-02 11
         RE: What makes you cry? Paul A 18-02-02 12
             RE: What makes you cry? Anneliese 18-02-02 14
  RE: What makes you cry? Ted 18-02-02 15
     RE: What makes you cry? Jim 18-02-02 16
         RE: What makes you cry? Helen 18-02-02 18
             RE: What makes you cry? Tim Powell 18-02-02 19
  RE: What makes you cry? Bruceadmin 19-02-02 20
     RE: What makes you cry? Bruce Madmin 19-02-02 21
         RE: What makes you cry? Viviane 19-02-02 22
  RE: What makes you cry? pmeja 19-02-02 23
     RE: What makes you cry? Paul A 20-02-02 25
  RE: What makes you cry? alison 20-02-02 26

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lara

17-02-02, 06:24 PM (GMT)
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1. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   I have just the excerpt of Manon with Cope and Sylvie that even though it is short I get all weepy during that.

The last pdd with Irek and Viv in Mayerling never fails to bring tears to my eyes, but the real weeper is Bourne's Swan Lake.

I start to tear up sometime around 'the scream' in Act IV and then go into full tissue mode about the time the Swan dies diving into the group of swans.

And there is a moment near the end of Act II when the Prince and the Swan make this triumpant final entrance that I get all emotional over the pure beauty of it all blending terriffic dancing with powerful music.

Nothing quite like ballet to get the emotions stirring.

Outside of ballet, almost anything by Rachmaninoff or Tchaikovsky (especially the 6th Symphony) will do it.


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Jim

17-02-02, 07:22 PM (GMT)
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2. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #1
 
   LAST EDITED ON 17-02-02 AT 08:08 PM (GMT)

Oh dear, I don't suppose you were expecting to see a bloke here. Here goes (sample):

Jayne Regan (NBT) as Juliet when her dad thrashed her with his belt (tears of outrage, really).

Chiaki Nagao (NBT), as Cinderella when the birds came to help her pick up the rice spilled by her rotten sisters.

NBT "A Christmas Carol", when the tune Es ist ein Ros entsprungen (A Spotless Rose is growing) started playing (uncontrollable - most embarrassing).

Lesley Collier, La Fille mal gardée (ribbon pdd)

Finale of Act 2 Swan Lake (invariably) and again at the end when they jump into the lake of her mother's tears; also the Odile pdd.

Sylvie at her entrance to Manon Act 3

Leanne Benjamin, Dream pdd

Darcey's rose adagio

Fanny Gaïda (POB) - Manon

Sylvie's Giselle mad scene

When my bouquet was given to Sylvie at a curtain-call after Hermann Schmermann

I think that's enough for now - there's live footbal on TV...


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Jim

17-02-02, 08:44 PM (GMT)
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3. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   >It's only arabesques. It's
>not great music. Why does
>it make me weep?

You're not alone, Helen. I heard Dame Ninette de Valois on Desert Island Discs (some years ago now). She made almost exactly the same point as you but nevertheless chose the music as one of her precious eight discs. In fact I think she even selected it as the "if you can only take one". There is something rather magical about that entrance, isn't there? A true masterpiece of choreography.


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lara

17-02-02, 08:55 PM (GMT)
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4. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #3
 
   Jim,

Yay for the bloke's posting!


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Ann Welsh

17-02-02, 09:46 PM (GMT)
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5. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #4
 
   Oh well, here goes:

I have to agree with Lara on those final moments of AMP's Swan Lake. Totally heart-breaking.

But also, for me, the reconciliation scene in Two Pigeons. I always take non-ballet-goer friends to see this just for the masochistic delight of seeing these so-called 'hard-cases' reduced to mush.

And, of course, the balcony scene from R&J.

But again, any ballet scored by Prokoviev. Any composer who can evoke such dawn-awakening love scenes in music has to be a winner.


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sylvia

17-02-02, 10:22 PM (GMT)
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7. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #5
 
   I'm not a big crier but the music where the swans rush in in the final moments of Swan Lake always makes me weepy.

And the final scenes of Onegin never fail to tug me emotionally.

But most of mine consist of 'firsts'.

First proper Bayadere - when Natasha Oughtred appeared unexpected and literally out of nowhere as the first shade. That gave me shivers.

First time I saw Guillem and Cope in Manon swamp pdd - same extract as Lara's.

First 'The Dream' with Cojocaru and Essakow. I'd never heard the music before and was already enraptured and suddenly there were these angelic children's voices.


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Helen

17-02-02, 10:20 PM (GMT)
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6. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #3
 
   I am very honoured to have shared even one thought with Ninette de Valois! And of course I expect blokes to post - blokes are human, aren't they, even if they do watch football?

I agree about Fille - I've cried through many a performance of that ballet, for the sheer joy of it.


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Anneliese

18-02-02, 09:59 AM (GMT)
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13. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #6
 
  
>I agree about Fille - I've
>cried through many a performance
>of that ballet, for the
>sheer joy of it.

ONLY time I've ever cried for joy at a ballet! Jan 2 1999, Miyako & Irek, second act.


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pmeja

17-02-02, 11:08 PM (GMT)
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8. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   i'm sure i'll think of others, but the first three that come to mind, as strange as they may seem:
1. the introductory music to the snow scene from the nutcracker
2. the overture to the sleeping beauty
3. the overture to the opera carmen
just get shivers all over...


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Michael LL

18-02-02, 02:48 AM (GMT)
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9. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #8
 
   Another bloke - shivers of emotion and tears pricking the eyes are not exclusively female!

Two Pigeons finale - you are so right Ann - the final big chord when the pigeons fly in is the trigger for the shiver

The moment when (any) Lise lets the ribbons, as Colas lifts her, in Fille

Bourne Swan Lake at several points!

Cinderella Act 1 finale

The finales of Song of the Earth and Gloria

Giselle finale (the shivers vary according to dancers, but are usually there)

and dancer specific, just a few -

Lesley Colliers Rose Adagio and Birthday Offering pas de deux, especially in her last season

Asylmuratovas Rose Adagio, and Corsaire Act III Rose scene

Makarova and Dowell in the Manon Act I bedroom pdd

The Fonteyn solo in Birthday Offering danced by Sibley, Collier, Yoshida


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Pete

18-02-02, 07:28 AM (GMT)
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10. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #9
 
   LAST EDITED ON 18-02-02 AT 07:32 AM (GMT)

Yet another bloke & self-confessed weeping baby. I tend to 'get something in my eye' especially during the following....

Des Grieux's bedroom pdd from Act I of Manon

The port scene from Manon

Romeo & Juliet balcony pdd & finale

Mad scene from Giselle (certain dancers)

Slightly suprising was the effect of seeing Cojocaru and Putrov dance the Clara/Soldier pdd (Fir tree forest) just before the Snowflakes in Nutcracker. The music is very moving anyway and Cojocaru's acting/facial expression was just so perfectly animated that I found myself weeping uncontrollably -what a star she is!

My biggest wail ever was also during one the Nutcrackers I saw on 13th Dec - the return of the Bussell. A mixture of nerves, anticipation and excitement, I cried absolute buckets when I saw her & Johnathan Cope bathed in light at the entrance of the Sugar Plum and Prince -the music doesn't help with emotional stabilty there either!

I always find that sitting closer to the stage helps me in the weeping stakes much more in general - the music tends to get to me more and the acting becomes more affecting, though it seems much better sitting further back when you see wonderful corps dancing such as the Shades.

Told you, big baby!



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Anneliese

18-02-02, 01:56 PM (GMT)
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17. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #10
 
  
>I always find that sitting closer
>to the stage helps me
>in the weeping stakes much
>more in general - the
>music tends to get to
>me more and the acting
>becomes more affecting,


My other half would concur here - the performances that he's found most emotionally engaging have been those where we were sitting very close to the action (possibly the extreme case being Butterfly at the Albert Hall where we were in about the 4th row...) so less chance to be distracted.


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J

20-02-02, 07:40 AM (GMT)
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24. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #10
 
   Good heavens! I thought I was the only chap to find Clara & Hans Peter's pdd unbearably moving. And you're right, when Cojocuro & Putrov perform it, there's an intensity of emotion which is utterly stunning.

MB's Swan Lake - final scene - is a absolute tear provoker, as can be the Rose Adage from Sleeping Beauty.

Sitting close to the stage does seem to intensify the emotional impact but I'm convinced the music has to be major factor.


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Jim

18-02-02, 08:43 AM (GMT)
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11. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #8
 
   >i'm sure i'll think of others,
>but the first three that
>come to mind, as strange
>as they may seem:
>1. the introductory music to
>the snow scene from the
>nutcracker
>2. the overture to the
>sleeping beauty
>3. the overture to the
>opera carmen
>just get shivers all over...

pmeja, yes, overtures can be devastating, can't they? Maybe it's the anticipation of what is to follow, or maybe the relief that after all the looking forward to it, and overcoming hurdles that conspire to stop you going, you are at last in your seat, the lights have gone down and things are actually under way....
That very first single note on the oboe at the start of Swan Lake never fails to get me tingerly, and the opening chords of the Manon overture (Massenet's The last sleep of the Virgin) always succeeds in transmogrifying me into a wibbly-wobbly jellyfish! But why, oh why, do such a large proportion of any audience not consider that the performance starts with the raising of the conductor's baton, and continue burbling until the curtain goes up?

And I agree with Pete - I've heard much contempt of the Nutcracker from supposed officionados, but it really does have some truly spine-tingling moments!


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Paul A

18-02-02, 09:57 AM (GMT)
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12. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #11
 
   - The transformation scene in BRB's Nutcracker.

- The pdd in Rhapsody - shocking triumph of sentiment.

- The pdd in Fille used to do but the heart strings are tougher now.


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Anneliese

18-02-02, 10:01 AM (GMT)
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14. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #12
 
   BRB's nutcracker - the pdd between the Prince and Clara.

Onegin - the final pdd

Giselle when it all works

R&J ditto


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Ted

18-02-02, 01:08 PM (GMT)
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15. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   What about witnessing a dancer cried at curtain call? I only recall seeing David Blair cried at his farewell performance as Colas in La Fille. I don't recall seeing the others cried at their respective last performance at the ROH. I must admit that I have not been to many of those performances as the RB has not been making those announcements for years. I remember most of us cried at the curtain call of Margot's farewell gala (I think it was called a Tribute to Margot Fonteyn and not the fund raising R& J performance). At the end of the performance, Margot was sitting in the middle of the stage and one by one, each of the RB dancer (I don't remember if it was only the male dancers or all the dancers) brought her a single red rose. It was so very moving!


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Jim

18-02-02, 01:21 PM (GMT)
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16. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #15
 
   >At the end of the
>performance, Margot was sitting in
>the middle of the stage
>and one by one, each
>of the RB dancer (I
>don't remember if it was
>only the male dancers or
>all the dancers) brought her
>a single red rose. It
>was so very moving!

Ted, was that the gala for which Sir Frederick Ashton specially chreographed Elgar's Salut a l'amour (I think that's how it's written) for her? Then Sir Fred joined in....
Yes, very moving!


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Helen

18-02-02, 09:48 PM (GMT)
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18. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #16
 
   I am so furious that I, the greatest Fonteyn fan of all time, missed that. But some of it was on television, and I cried then. In fact I cried at practically everything Margot did, ever. The final pas de deux from Sleeping Beauty was the biggest tear jerker, with Act 4 of Swan Lake (Ashton version) and Marguerite and Armand of course. My mother always cried through Symphonic Variations. Must be hereditary!

I didn't know that David Blair cried at his final Colas - that is so sad. He was such a wonderful Colas, and Mercutio, and Captain Belaye in Pineapple Poll, but the romantic princely roles never really suited him, I felt, and he was utterly eclipsed by Nureyev, like so many others.

It's true about Nutcracker - however much you knock it, there are quite a few unbeatable moments - I remember Fonteyn saying that it was when she was a Snowflake, and the choir was singing, that she first felt the overwhelming magic of the theatre.


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Tim Powell

18-02-02, 10:22 PM (GMT)
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19. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #18
 
   Salut d'amour, the pas de deux itself was a true tear jerker
particularly when Sir Fred energed from the wings to partner the great one. Another Fonteyn moment to catch in the throat was in Act I of the Oliver Messel Sleeping Beauty when we first glimpsed her flitting behind the columns to make her entrance down the steps,this was utter magic

Agreed that Blair was not a danseur noble by nature but he gave some superb performances when dancing with Elvin in Swan Lake with full arm lifts which we had not been used to then and which showed the lovely Russian to perfection. We also saw dancing in the Black Swan pas de deux we had not seen before and in any cases which is not matched today. Sorry to digress from the tears.


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Bruceadmin

19-02-02, 01:16 AM (GMT)
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20. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   Q: What makes you cry?

A: Seeing a load of great people fall out and tip abuse on one another


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Bruce Madmin

19-02-02, 09:20 AM (GMT)
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21. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #20
 
  
Sorry about that - it was not one of my better nights!


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Viviane

19-02-02, 09:43 AM (GMT)
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22. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #21
 
   Postings can be infectious in the good and ...the bad sense !


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pmeja

19-02-02, 12:22 PM (GMT)
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23. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   LAST EDITED ON 19-02-02 AT 01:18 PM (GMT)

well to answer somehow the terrible review of 'the prodigal son' in the new york times;i didn't see the performance the reviewer did but i have seen this ballet many, many times with many people. a moment that never fails to make me cry is when the prodigal comes crawling back to his home to ask his father's forgiveness, and after coming slowly to his waiting father on his hands and knees, crawls into his arms, and the father, who cradles him like a baby, slowly folds his cloak over his son in acceptance and forgiveness. bah humbug jennifer dunning!

here is a link to a much different review of the same performance: (and it mentions the moment i speak of)
http://www.danceinsider.com/f2002/f0215_2.html


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Paul A

20-02-02, 09:45 AM (GMT)
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25. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #23
 
   - The Titania/ Oberon reconciliation pdd

- Seeing a performer at peak power and knowing it will be the last time ie the Mukhamedov gala farewell


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alison

20-02-02, 06:03 PM (GMT)
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26. "RE: What makes you cry?"
In response to message #0
 
   Well, I'm a notorious non-cryer at the ballet (yet I can blub uncontrollably at plays/in the cinema - it must be something to do with the lack of words). In fact, I think the last time I was in tears at the ROH was at the end of La Traviata last year - words again, y'see. I even sat dry-eyed through Guillem and Cope in Marguerite and Armand the other night, despite the sobs all around me.

So, with the exception of Trinidad Sevillano's Juliet (Ashton version), I'd have to say "very little" - yes, I get a lump in my throat, possibly tears pricking at my eyes occasionally, but as for them actually falling ... I think the moments that get me most are what various other people have referred to as "spine-tinglers" - a bit of music (yes, Nutcracker first act does have some stunning bits), something that's either particularly well performed or that for some reason that I can't necessarily even pin down unexpectedly just hits me, or is particularly beautiful. Rojo/Cooper in Onegin *nearly* did it for me (as did Rojo's Juliet last year and at the Albert Hall - and a few other people's over the years); Prodigal Son is definitely a lump-in-the-throat moment, certain Giselles' mad scenes ...

On the other hand, perhaps I have cried at the ballet in the past but just not remembered afterwards, so if anyone's sitting there thinking: "Oh come on, I saw you blubbing away after ..." then do let me know .


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