Carmina Burana, Bolero & Afternoon of a Faun - Jan 5th, 2014
Wiener Staatsballet: "Carmina Burana", "Bolero" & "Afternoon of a Faun" (Volksoper, January 5th, 2014)
Quite obviously one already knew which themes to expect: Carmina Burana, Bolero & Afternoon of a Faun are woks which deal with relationships, man/woman but most of all with love, sex and desire…loads of it. Profanity at its best.
Let’s put it this way: we were not awaiting a “spiritual” programme.
Let us start with the second part of yesterday’s afternoon: “Bolero”.
We cannot close our eyes to the fact that it is nearly impossible to upstage Maurice Béjart’s masterpiece from 1961. I admire very much audacity and I was willing secretly to enjoy.
But even though András Lukács’ choreography is sometimes quite ostentatiously based upon Béjart’s work, it lacks the timing, the “crescendo” of it.
Béjarts’ choreography might “exist” without Ravel’s notes. This one could not.
The dancers were very well rehearsed but something was missing. Inventiveness.
Vesna Orlic’s “Carmina Burana”, the last piece yesterday’s show is definitely a great relief after seeing her “One Thousand and one Nights” just a few months ago.
Having seen a terrible performance of “Carmina” in Rio de Janeiro just some months ago (in which a “soloist” called Edifranc Alves kept insisting on upstaging his fellow dancers, even adding bits and heads where there shouldn’t have been any), I was very impressed by the discipline of the ensemble. Group work.
Some moments were very creative, others in which Miss Orlic tried to be humorous became a bit tasteless, risquée (like the “Can-Can” and the string-Tangas at the very end of “In Taberna”).
The use of the Singers (and the Children) directly on stage was in fact very good – even if Elisabeth Schwarz gave a very insecure and raucous performance.
Lázlo Benedek as “Fortuna” and Samuel Colombet, in full command on point shoes, (I prefer to call this role “The bird” instead of “Black Swan”) were inspiring.
I think that lots more of attention should be given to the preparation of the roles – but that is a point that I keep repeating and repeating. For example, lovely Rebecca Horner (very thin at the moment), had exactly the same expressions and attitude as in “One Thousand and one Nights” and “Out of Tango” last season. All three pieces not coincidentally Mrs. Orlic’s…. Dancers need coaching, preparation, inspiration, direction!
But you might be wondering why I have left the first part of the evening to finish this dissertation with. I simply the kept to best for the End.
Afternoon of a Faun.
Boris Nebyla’s new “reading” of the piece is enchanting: sensual, sexual, full of desire but at the same time earth and NEVER vulgar! What a relief not having to watch a copy of a copy of a supposed interpretation by Nijinsky. Even though Debussy’s “Prelúde a l’aprés midi dun faune” is not musically as popular to audiences in comparison to “Bolero” and “Carmina”, it brought down the house. But the music was not the only cause for such an ovation from the audience.
There is only way of describing it: Tainá Ferreira Luiz and Mihail Sosnovschi gave a sort of “show stopper” performance. Nobody could move as if we were all in a sort of trance. I even think that I heard no one coughing in the theatre… Miss Luiz and Mr. Sosnovschi’s chemistry on stage is enormous.
Analyzing her closely I realized that this strong dancer has an incredible “inner light” – precisely the very same quality that always fascinates me in Mr. Sosnovschi. Both don’t “play” their roles. They WERE completely inside their roles yesterday, they WERE their roles!
And the audience realized that: both dancers got the longest applauses of the evening. How fitting!
And to think that I nearly missed this performance for having lost my Glasses...
Just a thought: I wonder when Miss Luiz will give us her first “Myrtha”… she’d be perfect in it!
Picture Copyrights: All pictures were photographed from the programme (Wiener Staatsballet)