This valentines day, which has been pretty the suck because of the combination of typhoid fever shot, hep a shot and chloroquinine, ended with a very enjoyable evening. I went to San Francisco Ballet together with erinearl and her roommate.
It was quite some time since I last saw a ballet, and to be honest I think a lot of ballet looks too ridiculous to be taken seriously, but with the rather limited opera season here, and since it was a lonely valentines coming up, I figured why not.
It was a 3 ballet program with one World premiere and one US premier. It started off with Stravinsky's Apollo which was fairly classic, Pauli Magiereks opening was a great promising start, and Yuan Yuan Tans performance was extraordinary. The orchestra performed well under conductor Martin West. Problematic however seemed to be the coordination of the dancers with each other and the music. There was this underlying irritating feeling I had that the dancers where just slightly off from where they should be, it is hard to quantify and the it was entirely apparent. However it did become apparent when they danced synchronized that they were in fact not entirely synchronized, some of the faster movement parts with silly jumping became quite painful.
After the intermission it was time for the world premiere of Blue Rose. Choreographed by Helgi Tomasson to a composition by Elena Kats-Cherin it was joyful and entertaining. Some brilliant dancing by Tina LeBlanc, Lorena Feijoo, Vanessa Zahorian, Pascal Molat, Pierre-François Vilanoba and Nicholas Blanc.
It was quite modern, and very energetic, it picked me up from the drug induced mood I was in and propelled me into happiness. I can warmly recommend to go and see this.
It ended by the US premier of Quaternary, which had it's World premier 8 months ago in Paris by the SF Ballet. It is a based on the four season with musich from Johann Sebastian Bach, John Cage, Arvo Pärt and Steve Mackey and choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon. In four acts it represents Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn, powered by a prepared piano, cello, piano and finally by an electric guitar. Winter was exquisite, spring was full of joy, but sadly summer was beautiful but so slow and, uhm, boring? I can only judge by the fact it put me close to sleep multiple times! So beautiful but not the right thing there. Autumn ended well and parts of the combination of electric guitar with dancing was creatively fantastic. You got the sense that the music was actually being emitted by the dancers move, perfect coordination.
I am please with this Ballet outing, and I shall have to go back and watch some of this years season.