New York City Ballet: Bringing Balanchine Back
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Peter Martins became the artistic leader of the New York City Ballet after his own career as a dancer with the Royal Danish Ballet and the company he now leads. He now choreographs new ballets, teaches dancers, and does all it takes to keep the company alive and performing at a very high level. I love his pride in the legacy he both inherited and helped create with Balanchine, Robbins, and others. He notes that the present company dances as well or even better than when the dances were first created.
This movie shows the companies return to St. Petersburg in 2003.Read more ›
It's hard to believe that this company's dancers are so young (average age, we learn, is only 21) and so good. Many of them were not born when the revered "Mr. B." passed away, but under the able stewardship of Peter Martins, this company has more than kept Balanchine's legacy vibrant.
This is a documentary about the return to Russia, to the Maryinsky theatre where Balanchine danced his first steps, as well as Pavlova, Nijinsky, and Baryshnikov. The return commemorates Balanchine and the tour will take place during the "White Nights" festival (so called because at that time of the year, the sun sets after midnight and rises soon afterwards).
For most of the company, it is about dancing. But for some older company personnel who had visited Russia during prior NYCB visits, there seems to be an anxiety about presenting Balanchine's work in the country of his birth in a way that will both honor Balanchine, and not ruffle too many Russian feathers. (Some Russians interviewed in sound bites sound a little skeptical of American dancers' ability to perform the work of a native Russian as it should be performed, and a couple of Russian ballet students make little digs at this or that about the Americans' technique, but I guess it is awkward in a way to go back to perform the work of someone who left Russia to form this company.Read more ›
Why make the trip? Balanchine cannot go "back", He's been dead over twenty years, but his only progeny can go back for a visit to his birth-place. Who is his progeny? The New York City Ballet is the only child he ever had, even though he was married several times. Which brings up an interesting coincidence. He was once married to Maria Tallchief, one of his dancers (who was exceedingly beautiful), and one of the reviewers is named H. Tallchief from Oklahoma. So, his child is a whole group of children,(many born long after he died) carrying on his legacy with the help of people like Peter Martins, former dancer , now Artistic Director and Ballet Master of NYCB. The company has nearly 100 members in it's cast and their average age is only twenty-one. Think about that.
The occasion for the "trip" was to headline the three hundredth anniversary of St. Petersburg, and to bring to a conclusion "The Festival of the White Nights", so named because the sun does not set until after mid-night, and rises again shortly after, during that season of the year in St. Petersburg.
There is some anxiety in the minds of many cast members, because they do not know exactly how the Russians will accept them.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great documentary for teaching students about the history of ballet and Balanchine's role.Published 7 months ago by Casey Adams
This is an interesting documentary film on Balanchine - “Mr. B” - and his impact on ballet. The off-stage rehearsals and performance footage is great and you get to hear first hand... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Viviballet
A great tribute to Balanchine and his contributions to the ballet world!Published 7 months ago by lisee22
This is a very enjoyable look into the inner workings of New York City Ballet. No complete ballets are shown but there are substantial segments of Serenade, Western Symphony and... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Michael Paluszek
This is a great video. The Great NYC Ballet Company goes to Russia to perform Balanchine. Bittersweet for some who were close to Mr Balanchine as he had passed on. Read morePublished 9 months ago by iloveequus