Wednesday, May 10, 2006


it was an extremely enjoyable and fruitful evening. as a newcomer myself too, I felt that I gained a lot more indepth knowledge in the works for the Mixed Bill. It was informal and there was a warmth atmosphere. I thought I add on a bit to what gill m had mentioned.
Jane Pritchard provided some background information about the history of the mixed bill, and little details of how de Valois came up with her choreography for Rake's Progress by looking at painting. Barry Wordsworth shared his experience of when he worked with de Valois on the Rake's Progress.. "It was a pleasure working with de Valois" he said. He continued to said that de Valois had so much respect for music. The dancers on that evening, both Zenaida and Rupert worked extremely hard, despite a long day of rehearsals prior to that evening. Zenaida, having done several insight evenings, seemed to be quite comfortable with an upclose audience. she was very natural and 'at-home'. Both Jean Bedells and Zen shared a close and heartiness relationship which was very dear to see. Jean shared some nostalgic memories of working with Ashton, telling some of the younger audience what Ashton was like. "He had a wicked sense of humor". Also, Jean was such a sweetie, she turned all bashful when she said about, without the world war, she wouldn't had met her husband and her dear friends. One member of the audience, shared her experience about surviving the war and when she watched Bedells' performance back during the 1940s. At that moment, I, personally, felt how lucky I am to be here, to be in an environment where there are people who survived the war, and sharing their love of ballet, through different means, under the same roof.Jonathan Cope coached Rupert Pennefather in the Air solo. Jonathan talked a little about Michael Somes' solo. Rupert danced well, good elevation, but his port de bras needed more fluidity. As he is in his early stages of rehearsals now, I believe this promising young dancer will shine on stage when the time comes. Henry Roche accompanied the rehearsals for both Dante Sonata and the Air solo.Barry Wordsworth gave extensive indepth information on both the scores of Rake's Progress (by Gavin Gordon) and Homage to the Queen (by Malcom Arnold). Barry is very excited about working on these masterpieces and spoke highly of the composers and the music. Personally I enjoyed Homage to the Queen, each section of the music, Earth, Water, Fire and Air, has their unique characteristic, quality and motifs, which is extremely interesting to listen to. Being a non-musically trained person, I thought that the beginning of Earth reminded me of Stravinsky's opening in Le Sacre du Printemps (Rite of Spring).
Personally, I thought, the evening was an amazing experience. To be able to see one of the most successful ballerina in history rehearsing another acomplished ballerina of our time, on stage, was simply marvelous, and that both ballerinas shared such a lovely and warmth relationship, it was just wonderful to watch.
It was a pleasurable evening, watching wonderful working relations between the dancers and their rehearsal master/mistress, listening to beautiful music and understanding the origins of how these two choregraphic works began... I look forward to more insight events held by the opera house.


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