quinta-feira, 5 de maio de 2016

Wiener Staatsballet: Mayerling revisited. May 04th, 2016

Many people, who know me well, are aware that MacMillan’s Mayerling is not „my cup of tea“.


In fact I have a huge problem with its language, which I do not consider as a ballet one. Let me try to explain this: the story-telling line is extremely confusing, so filled-up with characters (25 “main characters”) that it is impossible to understand the whole work unless you have a full command of this mad chapter in Austrian history or keep reading the programme during intermissions. This is neither ballet language nor dance material - this is the kind of of stuff that cinema and theatre are made of – and as the educated lady sitting next to me put it quite wisely: “I am all confused”.

Please note that this commentary has absolute nothing to do with the choreography itself, which has Kenneth MacMillan’s distinct signature. Many moments are overwhelming like the humiliating pas de deux of the wedding night,like Mizzi Caspar’s variation with the four Officials, like Bratfisch’s attempts to entertain both Rudolph and Mary and like the last pas de deux before Rudolph kills Mary: that anguish, madness and despair “in the air” are sometimes too much to bear.

Some points in the narrative are just too “cliché like” and the strong action in the backside of the inn during the first scene of the second act distracts the attention of the audience. But is a narrative, conception problem which has absolute nothing to do with the dance itself.

Yesterday’s performance offered us once more many memorable moments. It is quite impossible to mention and comment every single member of the cast and I will try to be brief.

I cannot start this without mentioning the ones that are seldom mentioned: the magnificent, steadfast members of the corps de Ballet. Dancers that have joined the company already some years ago like Céline Janou Weder, Igor Milos, Jaimy van Overeem and Franziska Wallner-Hollinek but also some that have not been in the company for long like Suzan Oppermann, Alaia Rogers, Géraud Wielick, Tristan Ridel and Zsolt Török, just to name a few. By the way: such a joy to be able to witness once more lovely, gifted Gloria Maass again on stage as Baroness Helene Vetsera.

Tonoli/Lasik. Copyright Wiener Staatsoper.

Nina Tonoli, in the small role of Louise, Stephanie’s sister, gave us rich moments filled with those enchanting lines (lovely arms!) and strong precision that she possesses. A funny coincidence: such a coincidence to have a Belgian princess played by such a charming Belgian Dancer.

Stephanie, a character not much mentioned in history due to its pathetic “short passage” through the Austrian court, was beautifully performed by Natascha Mair. Miss Mair keeps surprising me anew. Her development as a dancer and an artist has been obvious to everyone during the last two seasons – and so quick. As a young dancer Miss Mair has a rare quality among her generation: she is also an actress. Her technique is clean, well formed, strong. The paleness that she brought to this role is heart-breaking. The final Scene of the first act, the wedding Night, was a real display for her vulnerability and frailty in this role. One of the highlights of the evening!

Davide Dato’s Bratfisch is a joy. Mr. Dato, one the best dancers from the company, has turned into a public’s darling and has an immense following. A star with a low-profile, he combines a marvelous technique (his jumps are more and more amazing with the pass of time, in perfect unison with his en dehors, very well accentuated and that also when he is “en l’air”), interpretation gifts with the eagerness of a hard worker.
A man of discipline.
I admire that.

Papava/Lasik. Copyright Wiener Staastsoper.

Marie Larisch, one of the most dishonorable characters in Austrian history (which in fact was sent away from the court after the Mayerling scandal) was bravely played by Ketevan Papava. One of the most expressive dancers in the company and, I think, the most versatile one (I remember her in this same Ballet playing the emotional complicated role of Elizabeth), a dancer with imagination and visions. Intelligent. Unfortunately Miss Papava has to wear that terrible red wig for the role, that makes her look more like “Orphan Annie” than a woman of extreme beauty like Marie Larisch was (and just like Miss Papava also is!).

The four officials were dynamically played by Alexis Forabosco, Marcin Dempc, Mayasu kimoto and Alexandru Tcacenco, all four of them dancers that fall in that beautiful category called steadfastness: loyal and constant.

Liudmila Konovalova, giving her debút in the role of Mizzi Caspar, danced the most interesting dance part of the evening.


Mizzi Caspar & the officials - Rehearsal Wiener Staatsoper - 2016

Also one that combines extreme technical efforts with lots of trust on her partners – such strong, steady partners like, for example Mr. Forabosco, a very masculine dancer, as one of the officials, proved once more to be. Miss Konovalova, also a dancer in constant technical and artistry development, showed us once more why she earns the denomination of being captivating – a rare quality with audiences – while she is endearing. After a long, hard season (that even included a performance in a London Gala with Matt Golding), she is in top form and in full command of her gifted body and talents.

I keep thinking that Miss Konovalova is the only dancer I know that I can imagine as Myrtha and as Giselle as well…
Fabulous performance!

Mr. Lasik, as usual a very predictable dancer, ran the gamut of emotion from A to B (like Dorothy Parker once said about Katherine Hepburn).
Technically very good (but a bit too thin at the moment) he looked uncomfortable and tired in the role of Rudolph.

Tsymbal/Lasik.Copyright Wiener Staatsoper.

Miss Tsymbal’s Mary Vetsera was a again surprise for me. Even more subtle than in the past. Her looks (which reminded me incredibly of Gelsey Kirkland in her prime), with slightly lighter hair, were so charming, captivating – you could not take the eyes of her every time she went on stage. Technically, her clever use of the floor must be mentioned. Her feet and legs seem to be caressing the stage floor very carefully, in order to give her the energy to rise to the air: light, nearly fairy-like.

She offered us a very emotional performance and her last scene (which I have mentioned at the beginning of this critic) moved us nearly to tears. This hard piece of choreography, MacMillan’s at his very best, is the perfect frame for lovely Miss Tsymbal.
She is the company's best Mary Vetsera. It is her role. No question about that.

A very pleasant evening. Even though, as have said before, “Mayerling” is not “my cup of tea”!



Both Videos: Copyright Delbeau Films - Balázs Delbo


34 comentários:

Gloria Gregor Maass disse...

Oh DANKE - wie schön, ich freu mich seeehr!!!! Bin ganz gerührt 😊 Wer schreibt diesen blog? Das habe ich noch nicht ganz kapiert - du???

As Tertulías disse...

Ich, liebe Gloria. Das ist mein Werk..

Gloria Gregor Maass disse...

Oh danke dir vielmals, du machst mich ganz glücklich - auf meine alten Tage

Natascha Mair disse...

Danke! Sehr schön geschrieben! :))

Gloria Gregor Maass disse...

Super!!! Ich habe jetzt noch nicht die ganze Kritik gelesen, mache ich aber gleich! Nachdem ich gestern gehacked wurde hatte ich ziemlich viel zu erledigen. 😑 Den neuen Merker kenne ich natürlich, toll, dass du das machst! Vielen Dank nochmals, dass du mich so lieb erwähnst!

Céline Janou Weder disse...

liked this on Facebook.

Céline Janou Weder disse...

Eine aufschlussreiche Kritik!

As Tertulías disse...

Danke!

Jean Christophe Lesage disse...

Muchas gracias.....Ricardo

Alaia Rogers disse...

I agree very much with your review I'm in every rehearsal for this ballet and I am still very confused as to who is who haha and I am in awe of irina's artistry .. Thank you for the mention as well , have a nice day - alaia

As Tertulías disse...

Thank you, dear Alaia! It IS a very confusing thing... you know in what I believe? If a good libretto is written, eveyone will understand it... remember Julia Roberts' reaction after being in "La Traviatta" in "Pretty Woman"? She could not understand a single word and did not know what the Opera was about... but due to perfect "libretto", everything came through... no need to "read about it". And I remember all the talk about the confusing story of "Le Corsaire"... ha ha.. it's peanuts in comparison to Mayerling!!!!

Alaia Rogers disse...

I love pretty woman ! One of my favorite scenes , it's very true you can be moved

As Tertulías disse...

Danke, Gloria!

Tristan Ridel disse...



Great article . Always the right words

As Tertulías disse...

Merci bien, Tristan!

Gloria Gregor Maass disse...

Toll geschrieben Ricardo, du hast wirklich Talent eine Vorstellung in Worte zu fassen!
Ich freu mich sehr, dass du mich erwähnt hast!

Nina Tonoli disse...

liked this on Facebook.

Suzann Oppermann disse...

As always , a wonderfully written review!!! And thank you for the mention

Igor Milos disse...

Thank you so much for kind words.I appreciate it a lot.
I will do last 2 show role of Middlton(Enos part).
Wish you a great holidays.I love Crete.Enjoy it.

Jaimy disse...

xoxo

Laura de Sousa disse...

liked this on Facebook.

Irina Tsymbal disse...

Lieber Ricardo, Vielen Herzlichen Dank ! Tolle Artikel, sehr gute und richtige Worte! Ganz liebe Grüße, Iryna

Thomas Schulz disse...

mein Lieber - vielen dank für den link. na was soll ich sagen, wiederholen ? wieder ist es dir gelungen mir nachträglich freude an der gestrigen aufführung zu verschaffen. auch ich finde es extrem confusing aber die tänzer waren gut, zweifellos. und man sieht wen du magst fast alle. freut mich dass du soviel spass hattest. ich komme morgen zu Marie Antoinette, muss ein paar bildchen meines lieblings machen.... seh ich dich dort ? liebe grüsse und alles gute, Th

Davide Dato disse...

Thanks a lot Ricardo for the good words you spent about my role. I appreciate it! Grazie
Davide

Liudmila Konovalova disse...

Thank you Dear Ricardo!

Liudmila Konovalova disse...

Thank you, dear Ricardo!

Alexis Forabosco disse...

liked this on Facebook!

Masayu Kimoto disse...

liked this on Facebook!

Ketevan Papava disse...

Vielen Dank!

Iris Braga Ferreira disse...

Adorei sua crítica!

David Evans disse...

liked this on Facebook!

Veronika Kaufmann disse...

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Regina Ferraz disse...

Ricardo querido.Mayerling é um dos meus preferidos
ballets.Uma historia dramatica muito bem dançada e representada por alguns bailarinos que não posso nomeá-los aqui.Perfeita escolha pras suas tertulias Ter a oportunidade em vê-lo pessoalmente deve ter sido emocionante.Beijos Regina.

Mary Castro disse...

A análise que c. fêz é uma autêntica aula, principalmente para mim, que apenas gosto de assistir balé, mas não sou uma especialista em entender os meandros da dança.

Obrigada.

Bjs.