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Subject: "Durante in SB" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences What's Happening Topic #452
Reading Topic #452
Eleonore

13-01-00, 04:40 PM (GMT)
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"Durante in SB"
 
   I saw Viviana Durante in SB on television last night. I must confess that I had never seen on dance (Guillem and Bussell are always my RB first choice) and I was a bit disappointed especially after reading some much praise about the quality of her dance in these columns. She is indeed a good dancer but I found her rather aloof and concentrated on doing the steps right (I found the "I made it" little nod after each balance of the rose adagio particularly irritating).In my view, Guillem and Dupont are much better Auroras. Their technique seems effortless and they both demonstrate sheer joy of dancing. I am pretty sure though that our British hosts and friends will disagree with me. So one question for them : who is the best RB Aurora? and outside the RB?


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: Durante in SB Fuzzyface 13-01-00 1
     RE: Durante in SB Rachel 13-01-00 2
         RE: Durante in SB Eugene Merrett 13-01-00 3
  RE: Durante in SB Nina 14-01-00 4
     RE: Durante in SB Bruce Madmin 14-01-00 5
  RE: Durante in SB Penny 14-01-00 6
     RE: Durante in SB Barbara 14-01-00 7
         RE: Durante in SB Anneliese 14-01-00 8
             RE: Durante in SB Eugene Merrett 14-01-00 9
                 RE: Durante in SB Tomoko.A 15-01-00 10
                 RE: Durante in SB Bruce Madmin 15-01-00 11
  RE: Durante in SB Tony Newcombe 16-01-00 12
     RE: Durante in SB Kevin Ng 16-01-00 13
     RE: Durante in SB Anneliese 17-01-00 14
     RE: Durante in SB Jane S 17-01-00 15
         RE: Durante in SB Michael Llewellyn 18-01-00 16
             RE: Durante in SB Catherine 18-01-00 17
                 RE: Durante in SB alison 18-01-00 18

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Fuzzyface

13-01-00, 05:13 PM (GMT)
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1. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #0
 
   The Royal Ballet have had many distinguished Aurora's in the past, including my personal favourites Lesley Collier, Fiona Chadwick, Sandra Madgwick & Gelsey Kirkland (ie the best that I have seen in the past 20 years). I agree that Durante is not that good, I find her rather brittle and affected. The best of the current Aurora's is Yoshida (in my opinion). Amongst other companies the best included Ludmilla Semeyaka of the Bolshoi, and Zhana Ayupova & Altynai Asylmuratova of the Kirov. I would love to see Ananashivili too. I'm sure that others will think my choices are awful, but there we go!


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Rachel

13-01-00, 05:57 PM (GMT)
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2. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #1
 
   I think that Viviana Durante is great in something like Manon though.


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Eugene Merrett

13-01-00, 10:30 PM (GMT)
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3. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #2
 
   I do not agree. I love her SB more because of her charming personality. More a young girl then a Princess but I prefer it that way.

The Ballet Shop in NY says this recording outsales all others and customers continually comment on how good it is. The shop owner loves it too!

May I draw you attention to my longish review of it - go to HOME and click on video review.


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Nina

14-01-00, 10:51 AM (GMT)
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4. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #0
 
  
>So one question for them
>: who is the best RB Aurora?

The best Aurora in & out RB is charming Miyako Yoshida in my view !


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Bruce Madmin

14-01-00, 12:04 PM (GMT)
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5. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #4
 
   Miyako is lovely for sure. Lesley Collier was special though I only cottoned-on to this late. Not so sure about Viviana - good yes, but I don't think its really 'her'. I remember a nice Muriel Valtat performance (but the following one was less good!)


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Penny

14-01-00, 01:55 PM (GMT)
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6. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #0
 
   I take your point about aloofness but I think that lately she is blossoming again. I have not seen her SB recently but I agree with Eugene that the video is still excellent and her performance excellent. Interestingly she said at the beginning of the video that she concentrates on the role rather than the technique. She is a lovely Manon and Giselle and an amazing Ondine. I think her less aloof of late. Her Giselle at Sadlers was very moving even in the second act. She does some things better than Guillem and Bussell.


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Barbara

14-01-00, 03:56 PM (GMT)
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7. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #6
 
   I agree that Miyako is the best current Aurora in the Royal - the role really suits her and she is absolutely lovely in it.

One of the most memorable SB performances for me ever was the Asylmuratova/Zelensky/Lophatkina performance with the Kirov a couple of seasons ago. Really something special.

Barbara


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Anneliese

14-01-00, 08:47 PM (GMT)
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8. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #7
 
   I would not have chosen to see Viviana as Aurora - it didn't strike me as her thing. I tried to see my all-time favourite dancer Lesley Collier in SB, but she was replaced by (not-quite-ready then) Belinda Hatley - I'd like to see Belinda again now, as I think her style is good for this role. Incidentally, Lesley Collier was my favourite dancer (no, still is) because I'd happily watch her in ANYTHING (and there's no RB dancer I'd say that of at present, not even the lovely Miyako, who would probably be my first choice for Aurora now) - that's how good a dancer and an actress she was. But back to Viviana. I loved her in SB - although I don't think her arms are really suitable for Petipa, her total security in the technique of the role allowed her personality to fizz and radiate, and her opening variation before the Rose Adage (Rose adage was stunning, left Darcey for dead I reckon) was just enchanting. I really didn't expect to enjoy her performance but I found her totally convincing as well as effortlessly dazzling technically!


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Eugene Merrett

14-01-00, 10:42 PM (GMT)
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9. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #8
 
   My impression of Viviana have largely come from the video. I have only seen her once live (at the Labbatts Appollo) and it did not impress me as much. So I can understand that many people who have not seen the video are somewhat bewildled by my views on Durante.

At least one of my friends (a very promising pianist who has since worked as rehersal pianist for the RB) said it was that video that converted him to ballet! In my view and his, Durante is unsurpassed on the video.

Compared to Ms Dupond on the recent French film Durante is more fleet footed and has a stronger personality.

But what I also like about Durante is that she has a very soft line yet very good extension. This gives her great range - I know of no dancer who can do both MacMillan and the classics so well. Of course many will think that Gulliem is better but she is very idiosyncratic and not all will like her.


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Tomoko.A

15-01-00, 10:29 PM (GMT)
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10. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #9
 
   I think Viviana's Aurora is excellent on this video. She is good not only in her technique but also in her adaptation of Aurora. It's difficult and sometimes not suitable to bring a dancer's personality to a classical ballet, but she does it without looking intentional. She replaced injured Bussell (Is that right, Eugene ?)and the ticket holders were really lucky to see Viviana's Aurora. She is one of the rare dancers who are wonderful in both classics and narrative ballets such as MacMillan's. I completely agree with Eugene.


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Bruce Madmin

15-01-00, 11:29 PM (GMT)
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11. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #9
 
   >So I can understand that many
>people who have not seen the
>video are somewhat bewildled by my
>views on Durante.

I'm less into videos than many, but I just don't see how greatness in a role can really be deduced from video. And of course some videos are shot over a number of performances. Its great to see people in things that you could not otherwise, but I'm very wary of inferring too much from them.


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Tony Newcombe

16-01-00, 06:16 PM (GMT)
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12. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #0
 
   Lesley Collier has to be the best Royal Aurora of modern times. Anyone lucky enough to have seen her performance on Monday 1st February 1993 will know what I mean. You could see the reaction of the other dancers on stage to realise that it was something very special. Her Rose Adagio was of the quality we are always hoping to see but are often disappointed with. After her third Promenade in Attitude she took up her position on point with her arms "en Couronne" and held the balance for an age while her fourth Prince who had been expecting to promenade her retired backwards with a bow. As she extended her arms and leg out into a stunning Arabesque effacee the audience erupted. If memory serves me right one of her princes bought her back onto stage at least twice for encores. Irek had not started his performance of course. But it was the same story for the rest of the ballet. He realised that something special was happening and generous as ever took every opportunity to present Lesley to the audience.
As for other great Auroras how about Yelena Pankova. Early in the nineties I saw her at the old Wells dancing with a smaller Russian Company, maybe Moscow City Ballet. What was extraordinary about this performance apart from the expected technical wizardry was her interpretation of the role. We are used to the Rose Adagio as a showpiece and knowing the story we are aware of how the ballet is going to progress. Aurora of course does not and after her entrance and introduction to the four princes, Pankova sets her eyes on the prince she is going to marry. With all the technical difficulty of the Adagio she still found time to keep glancing at the prince that she had selected as her favourite!


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Kevin Ng

16-01-00, 08:16 PM (GMT)
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13. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #12
 
   I also remember seeing Yelena Pankova guesting with Moscow City Ballet at the old Sadler's Wells in 1991, shortly after her guesting in the summer season of the English National Ballet. Pankova was a great Aurora. Pity that she doesn't dance with the Kirov anymore.


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Anneliese

17-01-00, 07:56 PM (GMT)
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14. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #12
 
   I think I'm going to cry now - I had tickets for Lesley and Irek in the latest SB in Lesley's last season but she pulled out! Sigh.... Good to find another fan, though.


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Jane S

17-01-00, 09:37 PM (GMT)
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15. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #12
 
   The extraordinary thing about those Collier Auroras was that they came as a complete surprise. I'd been watching her through most of her career and though I always enjoyed her performances I'd long since stopped thinking that she could do anything so amazing - she was on a completely new plane, touching greatness. I once asked Mukhamedov, when Bruce and I were interviewing him for ballet.co, if he had any idea why she'd suddenly blossomed like that - he said maybe she'd thought that, as it was his debut, he wouldn't want to be worrying about her so she'd just gone ahead and given the best she had on her own account: whether it was that, or pleasure at finally finding the perfect partner, or whatever, it was as if she'd finally thrown off whatever inhibitions had held her back for the last 25 years, and decided she was a great ballerina and was going to behave like one. It was a wonderful evening and I only wish she'd done it years earlier!


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Michael Llewellyn

18-01-00, 01:31 AM (GMT)
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16. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #15
 
   Lesley Collier is still my favourite Aurora, even surpassing Asylmuratova, who is I think the best of the last five years. My first visit to Covent Garden was SB with Lesley and I was instantly enslaved. I absolutely agree that the performance on Feb 1 1993 was her best, and one of my top ten ballet performances ever. The atmosphere was electric right from her entrance, and her pdd with Irek were perfection. She certainly had that extra patina of radiance at the time - I am sure all her fans remember the extraordinary series of six Birthday Offering pdd she did as part of the Ashton Celebration in Autumn 1994. Sublime is an understatment. Oh how I miss her still! None of the current RB Auroras have a really complete portrayal over the whole ballet - they tend to have best acts, such as Darcey is Act I, Viviana in Act II and Miyako in Act III. Just one more reminisence - even though she was rather a brittle Aurora, Jenny Penneys balances were stunning.


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Catherine

18-01-00, 11:28 AM (GMT)
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17. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #16
 
   I like too many Durante in video but I think the best Aurora I saw was Noella Pontois several years ago. At this time in France, the best Aurora are Aurélie Dupont and Agnès Letestu. Guillem is an exception. She's wonderful in technic but I thnik it's not her greatest role, but I like too many her Act II.
I never see Lesley Collier in Aurora but every time I can see this ballerina by video I find her very fine. She looks charming and I love too many her Lise (fille mal gardée) or Cinderella.


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alison

18-01-00, 01:32 PM (GMT)
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18. "RE: Durante in SB"
In response to message #17
 
   I can confirm that Durante was replacing the injured Bussell in this - that's why there's such a discrepancy in height between her and Solymosi. I think I'm right in saying that she was doing all her scheduled performances and Darcey's too (or was that just for Manon?) which led to a very heavy workload which may not have helped.

I've managed to miss both Collier's and Yoshida's Auroras, unfortunately, although I'm sure Miyako would be excellent - it's the sort of role in which she excels. Of the current crop that I've seen, I actually preferred Hatley's performance to Bussell's (including the Rose Adage - I've never actually seen Darcey when she's doing these really good ones everyone always talks about) - and thought her much better in the melancholy second act.


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