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July 13, 2023


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Glad to see you back Haglund! I caught the double header of what was supposed to be Murphy and then Hurlin yesterday, but turned out to be Boylston and then Hurlin when Gillian had to pull out due to injury.

Cate Hurlin made another great debut in Swan Lake. In the Act II PDD she reminded me of my more timid cats who occasionally gives into the ecstasy of a good belly rub/ear scratch only to have a moment of instant clarity that's some sense check. You could see that with Hurlin's Odette - she was giving herself fully into the romance, but had moments where she had this momentary "wait what am I doing?" Her Odile was authoritative, teasing and a bit malevolent. She tripped up in her initial en dehors attitude turns into the arabesque, and her fouettes traveled a bit too much to let her keep control, but I thought she was otherwise splendid. LaMarche did some odd things with the tempo of the music during the fouetttes that I don't think helped - like trying to keep her initial very quick turns on the music - not sure.

James Whiteside was a great partner - it's nice to see him back on the stage, and I suspect his solo work will only get back to its usual form as his knee fully heals.

The PDT of Misseldine, Park and Han was great.

Roxander is standing out for me this season both in the peasant pas in Giselle and as one of the Neapolitan brothers last night - he dances very cleanly and confidently.

Good to hear about Hurlin's performance, Rachel.

Roxander is an obvious new talent, but we have watched so many obviously talented men burn through the PdT, Peasant Pas, Neapolitan, etc. only to languish for years in stalled careers. His new face is a welcomed sight, though, that's for sure.

Given Bell's sterling Albrecht in the July 4 "Giselle," I'm sorry not to see his Siegfried this season but I no longer have the Sitzfleisch for a double-header this coming Saturday. I saw two other Albrechts last week but Bell's was in a class of his own. Although disappointed Wednesday afternoon not to see Murphy as Odette/Odile, Boylston was aflame and Forster made a noble, manly Prince. The lifts in the first White act were stunning. That Boylston danced such demanding choreography twice within 36 hours at such a level of technical mastery is amazing. Brava, diva! ¶

I was sitting in the front of the Dress Circle to the left hand side of the house and regret to say that my enjoyment of the Black act was compromised by some barbarians in the DC boxes who decided to film much of the Black act on their telephones. Upon leaving the theatre, I spoke to the house manager to say that the ushers must be much more alert to put a stop to such prohibited behavior. It's not for the public to have to police a performance and if one is at a distance, what can one do? This is New York, not the Amazon, and we do not, thank goodness, equip ourselves with dart guns. The stage is a sacred space and to distract from it as these selfish people did is nothing less than an act of profanity.

Great review and commentary on Swan Lake. My friend is a dancer in the corps de ballet. Breanne Granlund was injured, which explains her struggles with the PdT choreography in Act 1. She was just trying to get through it, but is normally a lovely and consistent performer.

Echo your sentiment, Eulalia, about Isabella rising to the occasion of pulling that role off with aplomb twice in 36 hours. Even one performance is no easy feat!

Arneita, thank you for the update on Breanne Granlund. Hopefully it's nothing serious.

Rachel, are you seeing another SL before the run ends? I'm sure you lament with me how short the ABT season is this year. How I wish the ballet and opera could alternate as is done at Covent Garden.

Rachel, please share your impressions of any other SL you take in. Are you going to Romeo? We may have to give the last week of the season a miss since we are adopting new kitties. Always appreciate your comments.

Eulalia, sadly, I am not able to go to another Swan Lake, as I am headed out of town this weekend. I am terribly sad at the length of this ABT season, and while I enjoyed LWFC, I really wish they had done another ballet instead of two weeks of it. If we get back into town at time, I might try and go see the Saturday evening performance.

I don't currently have any R&J tickets. I may try to get over there to see Devon/Aran - I've long admired Bell and saw his Romeo debut a few years ago, and I haven't had the pleasure of seeing Devon in anything this season. I'd love to go to the Hurlin debut Wednesday afternoon, but I fear for my job "playing hooky" three Wednesday afternoons in a row :)

Thanks to your review, Haglund, I'm going to see the Bell/Seo performance tomorrow afternoon. Thank you for pointing me in that direction.

Angelica, tonight you could have seen Bell step in at intermission for Stearns and knock it out of the park while making the gorgeous Teuscher look like a million dollar ballerina.

I hope Bell is able to dance this afternoon after stepping in for Cory last night. Do we know what happened to Cory?

Hurrah, Aaron Bell!!! I’m sorry that he’s no longer dancing primarily with Hurlin. Are they still a couple? Looked so nice together.

I don't know what was wrong with Cory. He didn't exactly dance badly but seemed quite winded after the first few steps of Act I. He made it through Act II in his usual fashion. There was no hint that anything was wrong.

The intermission was very long and then an announcement was made before the start of Act III. The PA system was so underpowered that not many people heard the announcement.

Speaking with an occasional balletgoer while waiting for the bus, he was not even aware that a substitution had been made or that a different guy wasn't supposed to dance Act III & IV.

Bell and Teuscher look fantastic together. Devon's glorious dancing has risen to true étoile level thanks to Isabelle Guerin's fine efforts.

Saturday night’s “Swan Lake” was an exciting performance. The current that surged through conductor La Marche appeared to electrify the orchestra and dancers. The corps was more uniform than on Wednesday afternoon. Substitutions were plentiful. Han stepped in for Hoven as Benno and performed with panache. Klein spelled Magbitang as a Neapolitan with Roxander; the two men were thrilling and Klein’s subtle acting as his character observed Rothbart harvest Siegfried and the queen demonstrated his ability to communicate whether dancing or just being. For heaven’s sake, ABT, make this fellow a soloist already! Royal was elegant, fluent, noble—an absolute pleasure to watch and truly princely in his support of Shevchenko’s O/O, both sublime and different from each other body and soul. Every atom in her was eloquent. One could write pages appreciating her accomplishment but let one example suffice for praise of her technical skill. She nailed her fouettés while seemingly nailed to the floor: No traveling and bravura for days. For us, a moving and lasting impression!


Good to hear about Klein. Such a talented and interesting dancer -- not tall, but possesses an unusual elegance and noble bearing. He can throw a look with his eyes that speaks dramatic volumes. I view him as a natural Albrecht. I recall that Ratmansky matched up Klein with Skylar Brandt in Whipped Cream and it turned out to be magical.

Re Klein, he can be a future Romeo if given a chance….

So true, Jose. Good to hear from you.

So glad you’re back on your feet. Being active, in a sensible way, is the best way to recover from new surgery. Pretty soon you’ll be back on your toes.

Thanks, Jose. It's been kind of a long slog, but worth it.

Never commented before, but saw that you were incapacitated. Just letting you know that some of us missed your more regular posts. Looking forward to your further discussion on this past weeks S/L. Get well!

Thanks much, Jon Michael. Doing okay. Two knee replacements over three months seemed like a good idea at the time, lol.

Both knees ? Amazing..

Happy to once again read your excellent reviews.
Best of luck with all the rehab!

I MISSED you Haglund! I couldn't get to NY this spring and have missed not being able to enjoy the ballet thru you. Welcome back! Continue to heal and be well.

Thank you, Phyllis. So looking forward to the fall seasons.

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