The Great Cornejo as Siegfried
(2010 Corella Ballet)
There are about a hundred scattered seats still available for Barcelona Ballet's final performance Friday night at 8PM. This young company really hit full stride tonight. Wow, did the dancers look great!
So handsome in all three pieces tonight. Vera, Virellles, Robison, Radev, Iseda, Corella(s), Hirata, Calderon, Omori, Casa sold it big time. Stepping into the Blue PdD in the Bruch Violin Concerto for the first time during this week, Maria Jose Sales and corpsman Jonatan Diaz were dazzling. Pálpito sizzled!
Bruch Violin Concerto No.1 has got to be this company's signature ballet. They should perform it everywhere they go.
Don't miss the chance to see Barcelona Ballet!
It looks like City Center has opened the Balcony seating for ticket sales for the final performance tonight!
Posted on April 19, 2012 at 11:13 PM in Ballet Cop on the Beat, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
The Barcelona Ballet returned to New York's City Center on Tuesday night with a new name, a new cohesiveness in style, new choreography, and the treasured brilliant energy of its star director, Angel Corella. This is not to say that there weren't a few problems that need to be discussed. But overall, the company, formerly known as Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon, gave a performance that showed that its artistic growth and development continue from its root structure up through the branches to the blossoming ends of its limbs.
The program opened with what was for Haglund the highlight of the evening, Clark Tippet's Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1 which was created in 1987. The City Center stage is too small to display the grandness of Tippet's designs but it's large enough to make clear that the future lost a major choreographic voice when Tippet died in 1992 from AIDS at the age of 37. He really knew how to build a choreographic phrase to bring out the beauty and drama of the music.
The Barcelona Ballet dancers soared in the Bruch and displayed tidy, beautifully curved feet and legs along with unaffected and graceful port de bras. If Angel Corella can achieve this degree of harmony and style among a collection of dancers trained in a multitude of styles from schools all over the world, imagine the greatness that is on the horizon for this company when it begins producing dancers in its own school which will soon open in Figueres, Spain.
Yuka Iseda, substituting for Kazuko Omon, with Kirill Radev displayed sublime elegance and perfect coordination in the Aqua PdD. Ana Calderon and Aaron Robison in the Red PdD tugged and pulled and challenged each other with quick changes of direction and (intentionally) off-balance maneuvers. Carmen Corella and Dayron Vera in the Blue PdD were the calm and collected lovers simply enjoying the moment. Momoko Hirata and Alejandro Virelles rose to the challenges of the allegro in the Pink PdD. Virelles pulled off the successive double pirouettes with the changing arm positions with ease. All of the soloists were wonderful, but the outstanding corps de ballet was the main attraction in this ballet. A few opening night nerves were in play that included an unintentional sit-down and some difficult adjustments to the small stage, but the piece taken as a whole looked very, very pretty. The women's tutus, originally designed by Dain Marcus, were simply lovely for their layers of color and the way in which the backs were slightly longer and fuller than the fronts which gave them a trailing effect when the dancers moved.
The middle piece on last night's program was Christopher Wheeldon's For 4 which he made for the Kings of the Dance in 2006. It was not a good programming choice for a couple of reasons. First, it followed the much better crafted Bruch Violin Concerto No.1 by Tippet, and it showed Wheeldon's lack of focus and his reliance on arbitrary quirks as filler when his creativity got stuck. Second, the original interpreters (Corella, Ethan Stiefel, Johan Kobborg, and Nikolay Tsiskaridze) carried the weak choreography on their famous backs and bolstered it with their huge well-known stage personalities and their abilities to wrestle any movement to the mat for a win. The four gentlemen in the performance last night, who were unknown to most of us, couldn't make For 4 fly despite their obvious technical talents. But it certainly wasn't their fault.
The world premiere of Pálpito concluded the program. Choreographed by Flamenco specialists Angel Rojas & Carlos Rodriquez, who direct the Nuevo Ballet Espanol, to a commissioned musical and vocal composition by Hector Gonzalez, the dance incorporated different Spanish dance styles into the balletic vocabulary. From the synopsis in the Playbill:
"The story of Pálpito is about the main character who is trying to free himself from the strings that have him bound to his former role of a dancer and that keep him from advancing into the mature role in his spirit with tranquility and peace, allowing his heart to beat with a new force and inspiration preparing him to discover new horizons."
Vicente Solar's inventive and extremely colorful costumes combined elements of traditional Spanish Flamenco designs with balletic tutus to good effect. The central character, danced by Corella, transitioned throughout the piece from formal black and white attire with ruffled shirt to gradually discarding the ruffles and confining jacket to finally emerge renewed in traditional Spanish costume. His choreography, intense and contemporary, was framed by light on the stage floor. Sometimes he followed the straight path of the beam. Sometimes he reeled on a grid of light beneath his feet. Finally, he arrived rested, relieved, and at peace on his knees in a circle of light. The lighting design on the floor is important to moving the story along and may not have been in full view by those in the most forward section of the orchestra.
Perhaps Pálpito was a little self-indulgent. It's not a piece that the company could present without Angel. It is his story. It is his inner torment about giving up what has brought him our love and admiration so that he can create something greater and bigger - for us. Okay, go ahead, but let us have our grief.
Haglund was so happy to see Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1 again that he's going back tonight and Friday. It's like finding lost treasure. And to see it in such fine condition after all these years – the company deserves our thanks and a black Spanish lace Pump Bump Award for the dancers who breathed such life into it:
Posted on April 18, 2012 at 02:33 PM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack (0)
Just a reminder that tickets to the Paris Opera Ballet's performances during the Lincoln Center Festival go on sale to the general public this Monday. They're on sale right now for LCF members. The company's six performances of its magnificent Giselle are sure to sell out quickly. And you don't want to miss Bejart's incredible Bolero. So hot!
Angel Corella's Barcelona Ballet will bring the electrifying Bruch Violin Concerto by Clark Tippet and other very interesting rep to City Center in April. One of our Haglund'eelers just reported that tickets are up on TDF for those of you who qualify. The company is presenting Swan Lake in Detroit at the end of April. Haglund still has his fingers crossed that either Herman Cornejo or Sarah Lane or BOTH will dance. That would be a trip worth making!
Posted on March 28, 2012 at 01:32 PM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon), Paris Opera Ballet | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)
Tickets for these performances on Tues 4/17 through Fri 4/20 start at $25. The program includes Clark Tippet's Bruch Violin Concerto, a truly beautiful bona fide ballet that is alone worth the price of the ticket. This brief clip from the last part of the ballet includes an early Corella Ballet dancer, Matthew Golding (dancing with the ballerina in dark blue costume in the Jaffe/Kent/Ferri role). Golding was one of the many talented male dancers completely stalled in the ABT corps for years before making the break just a few years ago. He is now a principal at the Het National Ballet in Amsterdam and in exactly two weeks will star in Swan Lake with Alina Somova during the Mariinsky's XXII Ballet Festival in St. Petersburg. Odd how there are no ABT dancers performing at the Festival this year - just one brilliant dancer who ABT had in its midst but couldn't/wouldn't develop while opting for guest artists. And so it goes . . . .
Get your tickets to Barcelona Ballet today!
Posted on March 09, 2012 at 09:52 AM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)
Posted on February 15, 2012 at 02:05 PM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
Herman Cornejo will teach a master class at the Manhattan Movement & Arts Center (248 W. 60th St.) next Monday, February 20th at 4:30. There will be an extra half hour for the men only from 6-6:30. $25 for ladies; $30 for men.
Posted on February 15, 2012 at 01:24 PM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)
Look at these beautiful photos by photographer A. Bofill courtesy of the press office of the Gran Teatre del Liceu from Ballet de Barcelona's Swan Lake starring Sarah Lane and Angel Corella. Click on each one for a larger image.
Just got to say it one more time – Angel is our hero!
All photos © A. Bofill
We need to see this at the MET THIS SPRING, don't we?!
Posted on February 13, 2012 at 10:46 AM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)
Here's a link to a very brief performance clip of Sarah Lane and Angel Corella in Swan Lake Thursday night in Barcelona.
This article at elPeriodico.com entitled The Magic of the Black Swan (Google translation) carries a subtitle "Sarah Lane with Angel Corella triumphs with the work of Tchaikovsky." Unfortunately, reading the article requires a subscription.
Posted on February 11, 2012 at 09:55 AM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)
Here's a little video of Sarah Lane rehearsing Swan Lake with Angel Corella. They look so beautiful together. The Spanish press has been fairly excited about Sarah's "Black Swan" connection, and it sounds like she was grilled pretty thoroughly on it in this interview. The accompanying article in Spanish is here.
Also, Angel has changed the name of his company to Ballet de Barcelona because it has just relocated there from Castillia and Leon.
Post Update with Additional Info:
Here's a link to another article and interview with Sarah. The Google translation to English is rough, but a couple things ring loud and clear. Sarah notes McKenzie's preference for tall men in leading roles and the corresponding limitations it presents for the smaller women in the company, and she echoes frustration with losing opportunities to guest artists.
Posted on February 09, 2012 at 05:47 PM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack (0)
In a few hours, ABT's Sarah Lane will debut as Odette/Odile in Angel Corella's production of Swan Lake in Barcelona, Spain with the Corella Ballet. We wish her the best of luck, and know that she will knock it out of the ballpark. Here's hoping that we get to see her perform these roles somewhere in the U.S. soon!
Once again, thank you, Angel!
How odd that ABT can celebrate on the scrolling news on the front of its website that Marcelo Gomes is guesting at the Royal Ballet in The Dream, but when its soloists land huge opportunites (Lane in Swan Lake with Corella Ballet; Abrera in Sleeping Beauty with the Royal New Zealand Ballet), ABT completely ignores them. Who understands this?
Posted on February 09, 2012 at 10:40 AM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Even though we have more than enough reasons to keep on loving and idolizing Angel Corella, he just keeps on giving us more.
Angel is going to put Sarah Lane front and center on his Barcelona stage as Odette/Odile in his company's production of Swan Lake next week! From the Spanish newspaper Pais Cataluna:
Sarah Lane, bailarina solista del American Ballet Theatre, será la artista invitada del Corella Ballet para la primera función de El lago de los cisnes, que la compañía del bailarín español ofrecerá entre el 9 y el 12 de febrero en el Gran Teatro del Liceo de Barcelona.
Sarah's homegrown fans need to stay focused and be optimistic, because Corella Ballet brings its Swan Lake to Detroit at the end of April. We need to know about that casting. Detroit needs everyone's support; so the sooner we know the casting, the sooner we can make flight, hotel, ballet, and restaurant reservations - before wasting money on ABT single tickets.
Don't forget, Corella Ballet will be at City Center with a mixed rep program April 17 - 20. Sell this out, People!
Yes, People, Sarah Lane WILL BE Odette/Odile. Angel is our hero.
Posted on February 03, 2012 at 11:49 AM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0)
Thanks to Haglund'eeler, Robin, for bringing these awesome new clips of Herman Cornejo to our attention. Now we can actually see why his picture was splashed across the front pages of the Spanish newspapers when he debuted as Prince Siegfried in Angel Corella's Swan Lake for the Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon. It's hard to believe that at the time of these videos, Corella's company was only a year and a half old.
Everyone knew that Herman would kill the Black Swan PdD, but in these videos of the debut performance he is just as remarkable in the White Swan PdD. His partnering is superb, and he added little touches that give it all such a nice finish – like between minutes 3 and 4 when he lifts the lovely Adiarys Almeida who then splits her legs, Siegfried steps back to the side and then releves with his arms outstretched and his weight falling forward as he is drawn toward Odette.
It remains one of Kevin McKenzie's greatest crimes not to allow Herman Cornejo to dance the role of Prince Siegfried.
Posted on January 24, 2012 at 10:35 AM in American Ballet Theatre, Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)
From BroadwayWorld.com today:
CORELLA BALLET CASTILLA Y LEÓN
April 17 - 20, 2012 Tickets on Sale Sep. 12
Spain's Corella Ballet returns to New York City Center for a second engagement following several successful U.S. tours, this time presenting Clark Tippet's Bruch Violin Concerto, Christopher Wheeldon's For 4 and the world premiere of a new full-company ballet by Nuevo Ballet Español Artistic Directors Ángel Rojas and Carlos Rodríguez. In the vein of Soléa, the flamenco-inflected ballet that was the hit of the company's 2010 City Center season, the work fuses classical ballet and traditional Spanish dance.
Tickets: Starting at $25
Posted on September 08, 2011 at 12:48 PM in Barcelona Ballet (formerly Corella Ballet Castilla y Leon) | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)