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In this issue | Short summary
¹  4 [175]   July-August 2012
 The  summer edition of  the “Ballet” magazine (4, 175, 2012 opens with a double-page photo report of the Award Ceremony of the “Soul of Dance”  - a  prize founded by the editorial board of the magazine. A fine selection of photos features  ballet stars, such as Nina Kaptsova, Artjom Ovcharenko, Semen Chudin, Olga Smirnova, Timur Askerov, Dmitry Sobolevsky, Oksana Skorik and others, who dedicated their performances to the Soul of Dance winners of the year: Aleksey Melentiev, Vladislav Lantratov, Mikhael Timayev, Anna Ol, Natalya Zozulina, etc/

The FIRST NIGHT column’s first article “With no brilliance”  invites the reader to thoughtfully observe and analyze one of the nearly  most important and laudable projects of the Bolshoi Theatre – “Jewels” by George Balanchine. It is an absolute advantage, states the author Valeria Uralskaya, that we can see all three parts of the ballet during one evening performance, as this naturally creates an overall feeling of rich fantasy and at the same time reality of the world on stage. Mister B. is very specific to dance for the musical phrases are strongly “consistent” of lexis which in it’s turn requires dynamically coordinated movements in the quickly changing dimensions, tensely elevated body, almost no pli?s in the combination links and stops (Vite, vite - master used to say to his dancers, increasing the temp and dynamics of the dance). So has the Bolshoi Ballet proved its priority? “Emeralds”-is a peculiar beads stringing of gracious pas and combinations.  And it was womanly Evegnia Obraztsova who sparkled among the cast enlightened by the masculine demeanor of her partner Vladislav Lantratov. “Rubies” – are red and bright and are choreographically depicted by a set of light and jolly  solos, duos and ensembles. And if the male ensemble looked unexpectedly well-turned, the female part rather disappointed with the indistinct temps and blurred patterns. Thus Ekaterina Shipulina was too “soft” for the “strong stone”, while Ekaterina Krysanova was the most true in  the  Balanchine’s technique interpretation,  in harmony with her highly professional and “neat” in every pas Vyacheslav Lopatin creating a musical, both jovial and strict dance. Grand patterns, exquisite lines and white dresses of corps de ballet in cooperation with Tchaikovsky heavenly music created the atmosphere of mysterious play of light in “Diamonds”. Graceful Svetlana Lunkina together with aristocratically reserved David Hallberg  soothed the cold detachment of their parties adding more warm splendour and lively sparkling to the play of  diamonds.  Designers in their attempt to “frame” the space of the stage by the setting manage to work out the twinkling light of “Emeralds” and “Rubies” but  almost lost the effect (not to say spoiled) in the “Diamonds” as they differ a lot in style. It is quite natural for modern designers to search for new ways of stagecraft and set design, but it is also essential that the authors’ poetics and the diverse unity of “Jewels” three parts should also be taken to consideration. The price for “Jewels” is high and it is very much desirable that their “faceting” will reach the necessary artistic level, worthy of Balanchine’s name. 


In the article “Class by “A Class” Valeria Uralskaya  reviews the “Ballet Night”  - program project of Denis Matvienko, who has  not so far ago taken charge of the ballet company of Kiev Opera and Ballet Theatre named after Taras Shevchenko. Matvienko announced theatre’s repertoire policy as a unity of classics and modern, which was perfectly well illustrated by the evening’s two ballets: A. Meserer’s “A Dance Class” and  E. Klug’s “Radio and Juliet”. The first piece is a real challenge for the dancers to perform their technique skills and mastery, as the core of the “Dance Class” is harmony of classics as an essential, true artistic  expression and beauty.  A newly interpreted  Shakespeare’s myth  - ballet “Radio and Juliet”  by Slovakian choreographer Edward Klug  added a necessary contrast to the evening with it’s video installations, different means of expression, a unique combination of dance styles and plastics, requiring  from the performers an absolutely  different system of coordinates. The ballet evening  proved that the state of the Kiev company is quite agreeable, showing it’s perspective and good taste and specially featuring the heroes of the evening -  Anastasia Matvienko, Anastasia Shevchenko and the artistic director of the project and the company  -Denis Matvienko. 
In “That serious genre of comedy” Valeria Uralskaya continues her  observation of the latest premieres, now the new production of Yekaterinburg Opera and Ballet Theatre.  Choreographer Vyacheslav Samodurov in co-operation with conductor Pavel Klinchev and set designer Antony Makiluejn aimed at retelling the famous Donizetti’s “L’elisir d’amore” by  means of the language of dance. Conductor Pavel Klinchev was the best to cope with the task because it was the music that was so stylish, so slightly ironic, so true and so light. And the airiness and lightness was the very thing the whole performance lacked. Partly because of the set design – too variegated  and static and thus  failing to create  an overall image. The choreographer tried to broaden the time frames by adding some modern elements like graffiti and mixing the dance text with ordinary steps and pauses which generally was not at all bad. Some episodes were rather impressive and colourful, such as the “officers” episode, while the “ladies” compositions were less captivating, not to say dull. The performers of the main parts – Elena Vorobjeva and Andrey Sorokin were quite natural though also lacking the light comedy air. The genre of comedy is a “sparkling”  and “tinkling” of joy, freedom and optimism and it is necessary to keep that wonderful spirit and to be able to  pass it to the audience.

 “Korean Fairytale” is a report of the Korean Universal Ballet tour to Moscow on stage of the Stanislavski and Nemirovich-Danchenko Moscow Academic Music Theatre. Ballet “Shim Chon” is a well-designed 3-parts ballet fairytale based on a story as old as time – about a  girl  who passed  through many troubles found  her true love and happiness. Simple but powerful, as our modern high-tech society definitely misses something kind and optimistic. 
In the article “Formation of Human Spirit” Valery Modestov discourses of the a  program ballet by John Neumeier  performed by his company on stage of Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Musical Theatre. Dedicated to Neumeier’s 70 anniversary the tour is the first in latest 20 years. So Maestro brought one of his favorites  - the calling card of the company– Gustav Mahler’s  “Third Symphony”. A two-parts choreographic “canvas” is a philosophic story which covers all aspects of life, starting with the becoming of the Universe and finishing with triumphant  apotheosis, the music in which, with it’s profound sounding, shakes the very depth of a soul. A story of a Man who comes to life alone and lives it all by himself. This is almost the only difference between the content of the ballet and music, because the latest, unlike the Neumeier’s masterpiece, gives us the ray of hope in the end. 
Another analyze of John Neumeier’s ballet is presented by Vladimir Kotykhov in his article “Nijinsky. Hamburg version”. A quintessential ballet, consisting of historic facts, associations and choreographer’s fantasies, is lacking dramatic  tension and powerful impact on the viewers – may be because the plot is overloaded with minor characters who only confuse the public which is not that well-read in Nijinsky biography. And there is also a certain dissonance between the content and music  - which is Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherezade”  and has it’s own plot and can’t be the leitmotif of that ballet. And even the clear beauty of plastics and pauses, the purity of a dance language couldn’t improve the whole - rather bloodless – picture. 
In the column “Festivals” we can enjoy a photo report from the “Mariinsky invites stars” ballet festival and results of the annual Dance Open ballet festival, with Jana Salenko awarded the Grand Prix, Miss Virtuosity Evgenia Obraztsova, Mister Virtuosity Jona Acosta, Miss Expressiveness Maria Eihvald, Mister Expressiveness Dinu Tamazlacaru, Best Duo – Otto and Jiri Bubenicek, Audience Choice Award Daniel Ulbricht, Outstanding Contribution to the art of ballet Vladimir Malakhov and Sberbank Special Award Isabel Ciaravola. 
In the article “Youth meet in Kazan” Anastasia Smirnova reports of IV International Festival of Choreographic Colleges and Schools with over 15 ballet schools and colleges from all over the country  taking part this year. Traditionally high professional level showed  Vaganova Ballet Academy, as well as Bolshoi Ballet Academy, to be followed by Perm, Kazan, Krasnodar, Voronezh, Ufa, Krasnoyarsk, Yakutia,  etc. Among classical heritage there were  also performed  character and contemporary pieces. The column finishes with the list of “Golden Mask” Awards: Best Ballet – “Por vos muero” by Nacho Duato, Best Composer – Leonid Desyatnikov, ballet “Lost Illusions”, Best Choreographer’s Work – Mauro Bigonzetti, ballet “Cinque”, Best Conductor’s Work – Feliks Kolobov, ballet “Little Mermaid”, Best female part – Anna Hamzina, ballet “Little Mermaid”, Best Male part – Denis Savin, ballet Herman Scherman”, Best Designer’s Work – Jerome Caplan, ballet “Lost Illusions”, Ballet Critic’s Award – ballet “Cinque”
The column “Emigration” presents a documental article by professor Amir Hisamutdinov, Doctor of Science, about the work of ballet companies, schools and ballerinas at the Far East Area during the Civil War at the beginning of the 20th century due to which – though strange this sounds – the Far East  countries and regions got to know the superb examples of instrumental music and ballet. The article is followed by the philosophic essay by Janna Pimenova’s  “Images of Beauty in the Art of Dance” and a historic report by Aleksandra Ryzhkova about the first modern children’s ballet specially choreographed for the Bolshoi Academy in the memoirs of it’s dancers of different years. 
  The column “Season’s results” provides us with the results and season’s achievements of such theatres as “The Kremlin Ballet” theatre, Classical Ballet theatre of N. Kasatkina and V. Vasilev, Mikhailovsky Theatre, Ballet Theatre of Boris Eifman, Theatre of Ballet named after Leonid Jakobson, Yekaterinburg  Opera and Ballet Theatre, “The Nutcracker” Ballet theatre, Novosibirsk Opera and Ballet Theatre, Perm Opera and Ballet theatre named after P. Tchaikovsky, Karelia Musical Theatre, Bashkirsky Opera and Ballet Theatre, the latest specially featuring  the anniversary of People’s Artist of Bashkortostan Ludmila Shapkina,  and Yakutia Opera and Ballet Theatre with special attention to the 75 anniversary of the first Yakutian professional ballerina Evdokia Stepanova. 
The column “Competitions” and the page of International Federation of Ballet Competitions provides the readers with the latest information concerning International Ballet Competitions. The winners of Open All-Russian Ballet Competition “Arabesque” are:  Gran Prix Kim Ki Min (Korea), 1 Prize Jeaon Ga Yong (Korea) and Okawa Koya (Japan), 2 Prize Kristina Andreeva (Russia), Terada Midori (Japan), David Zaleev (Russia), Oleg Ivenko (Ukraine), 3 Prize Tatyana Bolotova (Russia), Olga Chelpanova (Russia), Konstantin Korotkov (Russia), Best Choreographer- Elena Bogdanovich (Russia). the page is also announcing  the oncoming II All-Russian Ballet Forum “Ballet XXI Century” dedicated to the 85 anniversary of Yuri Nikolayevich Grigorovich, which will take place in Krasnoyarsk from 5 to 11 November 2012. 
In the column “Illusion” the readers  by Vladimir Kotykhov can get acquainted with “The Queen of pirouettes”   - Marika R?kk, dancer and actress, who had danced an enormous amount of dances during her career – from waltz, tap-dance, cancan, tango Charleston to acrobatics tricks and pirouettes on point shoes – the famous actress who danced “from her heart”. 
The column In MEMORIUM gives the last tribute and farewell to our great colleagues in dance who has left us  -Nikita Dolgushin, Ludmila Saharova, Vladimir Koshelev. 
The traditional address to the readers from the editor-in –chief Valeria Uralskaya in the column Post Scriptum is this time presented in the form of an open letter – from Mrs. Uralskaya and her colleagues with the general headline “If the choreography needs a Science ?” Valeria Uralskaya stresses upon the fact the practical dance and it’s theoretical side should go together and co-operate in order to keep developing and increase the professional level of both choreographers and critics and that we should never ban any theoretical research works only because we yet can’s think of how we can practically use the  results. 

 


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