Alex Hammoudi will replace James Whiteside as Prince Desire opposite Gillian Murphy's Aurora in the March 4th and March 8th evening performances of ABT's new Sleeping Beauty at the Segerstrom Center in Costa Mesa.
Blaine Hoven will replace James Whiteside as Bluebird at Saturday's matinee opposite Stella Abrera.
Both Hammoudi and Hoven have been victorious in every role that Alexei Ratmansky has entrusted them to pitch and we expect them to be so next week. Lucky LAers.
ABT hasn't yet noticed that for the past four days the "Buy Tickets" links for its run of Sleeping Beauty at the Segerstrom Center =>>> have been broken on its own website calendar. Perhaps someone can give them a ring to let them know that they might have lost a few sales. The Segerstrom Center moved its own ABT page to a more prominent level on its website which changed the links – four days ago. Not too serious. What is serious is the lack of attention that ABT pays to details such as these or that it pays to posting significant changes in casting at Segerstrom and at the Met.
The first Preview performance for the Broadway opening of An American in Paris is fast approaching. Theeeplace to be and where it's at on March 13 will be the Palace Theatre in New York City. Haglund will be there because he always tries to be where it's at except when he's where it's not (at) which seems to be happening more and more these days. (Translation: he's so excited that he can barely contain his rambling.) Here's a little preview of the production by Laura Jacobs in the March issue of Vanity Fair.
Robert Fairchild and Leann Cope star in Christopher Wheeldon's production. If you're not already as excited as Haglund, take a look at this sneak peak that just went up on YouTube this week:
Julio Bocca's Ballet Nacional Sodre in Montevideo, Uruguay celebrates its 80th birthday this year. In March and April, the company will present Coppelia with choreography by Enrique Martinez, the former dancer, ballet master, and assistant director of ABT under Lucia Chase. He died in 1998 from hepatitis at age 72.
Here is a photo of our Maria Riccetto (BNS Primera Bailarina Residente) as Nikiya in BNS's production of La Bayadere in December. We already know what a charming Swanilda she will make.
Angel Corella's Pennsylvania Ballet opens its Swan Lake on March 5 in Philadelphia. The choreography, by Christopher Wheeldon, re-invisions the ballet with Degas-like influences.
On February 27th in The Great Hall of the StatePrimorsky Opera and Ballet Theater in Vladivostok, Russia, Joseph Phillips and his partner, Irina Sapozhnikov, both principal dancers at the theater will close out the evening's opera and ballet gala with the PdD from Sleeping Beauty. Here's a picture from the theater's refurbished website. It's hard to tell if this is from SB or Nutcracker, but wherever it's from, it's gorgeous.
Houston Ballet will present the world premiere of Stanton Welch's Romeo and Juliet on February 26th with the perfectly gorgeous Karina Gonzalez and Connor Walsh in the leads. The company created a slick television commercial just for the occasion. The menacing Mercutio in the commercial, our Jared Matthews, will debut as Romeo on February 28th (mat) opposite the lovely Sara Webb. Check this out:
Houston Ballet has announced its 2015-2016 season lineup, and it will include a brand new production of Giselle by Stanton Welch, MacMillan's Manon, Sleeping Beauty, Balanchine's Serenade, MacMillan's Gloria, Robbins' West Side Story, Kylian's Wings of Wax, Welch's Velocity, a world premiere by Garrett Smith, works by Wayne McGregor and Alexander Ekman, and of course, a full season of Nutcracker. The scope of the next season is crazy.
Those in Manhattan who are currently struggling with their own 3 degrees winter tale may watch this performance at IMAX Empire 25 on 42nd St at 8th Ave, Union Square Stadium 14, and at IMAX Kips Bay 15 on 2nd Ave at 31st St beginning at 7PM.
2/17 – Edited to add post-performance reaction:
Wow. Just wow. Startlingly good. Emotionally exhausting.
A few more details have emerged about ABT's new Sleeping Beauty from the performance program just published by the Segerstrom Center:
Carabosse arrives on the scene via chariot pulled by rats.
And, because we love our most-est, worst-est-est, evilest fairytale characters so much, Carabosse gets invited back for the wedding at the end – and presumably behaves herself, although we can see that varying by cast.
Among the dancing guests at the wedding is Hop-o'-my-Thumb.
[Aurora] takes the spindle from the woman and begins to dance with it coquettishly to win the admiration of her suitors
It doesn't seem that Aurora should really have to dance "coquettishly to win the admiration of her suitors," because they've already flipped out over her and see her as the prize. But, okay, we'll go with it for the time being.
The program also reveals that in this production Alexei Ratmansky "customizes the choreography for each dancer." We know what that means: beginner, intermediate, and advanced level Auroras. Hopefully, this year, everyone will be able to get around in attitude in the Rose Adagio without incident.
We're very optimistic about this Sleeping Beauty. Very optimistic, indeed. Even excited.
Here is a video of designer Richard Hudson speaking about the new designs which we fished off of the Segerstrom's FB page. It includes glimpses of the sets and costumes which seem to be, to put it mildly, awesome.
It is possible that our wait is over; our torture has ended; our patience whining has been rewarded.
It is so good to hear Hudson say that he creates all of his designs by hand without the use of a computer and that his assistants create the set models by hand. In describing the mammoth task of creating the production, Hudson said that there were between 300 and 400 costumes most of which are individual and required him to choose each element.
Also on the Segerstrom's FB page is another enticing post about ABT's new Sleeping Beauty which features this picture of Blue Bird and Princess Florine. LOL. It seems that everyone misses Yuriko and Jared – from the east coast to the left coast.
More casting for the Segerstrom Center premiere of ABT's Sleeping Beauty has been posted on the calendar. It appears that Marcelo Gomes is slotted to perform - in addition to his Prince Desire role opposite Diana Vishneva - the role of Carabosse in the Seo/Stearns cast on Thursday and Sunday afternoon. That might turn out to be Petipa reconstruction with atwist.
NYCB's Week 6 casting hasn't yet been posted in its regular place on the website, but it is showing up when you click on a specific date to buy tickets. For example, click on February 25th and the page shows that Erica Periera and Taylor Stanley will dance the leads in Harlequinade Square Dance on February 25th and 28th while Ashley Bouder and Anthony Huxley will dance on February 24th and March 1st.
Here's the link for purchasing tickets to see Tom Gold Dance at the Kaye Playhouse on March 2nd and 3rd. As we mentioned last month, Simone Messmer will be performing with the group that includes NYCB dancers Marika Anderson, Daniel Applebaum, Likolani Brown, and Andrew Scordato.