Weird modern ballets

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike Broadman, Oct 12, 2002.

  1. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    After purchasing and listening to two pieces of music that were ballets- Rite of Spring and The Perfect Fool by Holst, it occured to me that, while we listen to them as concert pieces, people actually had to dance to them, once.

    Yes, this point is obvious, but I never really thought about it. I mean, this is some weird-ass music- uneven rhythms, banging and clanging all over the place- how the heck does one dance to this?

    I'm aware of the infamous riot that happened after Rite of Spring was performed. I guess those folks had the same questions, but they were a little less cool about it.

    Has anyone ever actually seen this kind of thing performed? I am curious to hear impressions.
     
  2. Stefan A

    Stefan A Second Unit

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    Mike,

    I have seen a video of the Joffre(sp?)Ballet Co. from Chicago do The Rite of Spring. The choreography is tough to describe in words. It's not pretty - like say The Nutcracker. It was very rhythmic - a lot of jumping and spinning around. If I remember right, the dancers were sort of slumpted over for a lot of it.

    I would really like to see Bartok's Miraculous Mandarin performed. It's not a ballet = it's a pantamime. That's got to be pretty neat to see.
     
  3. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Ah, yes, Bartok. Love that piece (and the multi-channel SACD [​IMG] ).
    There seems to be some disagreement as to whether Rite of Spring was always intended to be a ballet. Stravinsky himself claimed that it is really a concert piece, but I think he said that after the ballet failed.
    Curious.
    It certainly does work extremely well as program music.
    NP: Bach, Magnificat, DVD-A
     
  4. Stefan A

    Stefan A Second Unit

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    I have never heard anything about Stravinsky wishing it to be a concert piece. I have taken several classes where Stavinsky and the Rite of Spring were discussed extensively - but nothing like that ever came up. That doesn't mean he never said it though. I think it is just generally accepted that it is a ballet. Although it is almost always presented as a concert piece. Oh well!

    There are also recordings of Petrushka with dancers. It is much "nicer" to watch
     
  5. andrew markworthy

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    With respect, I thiink you're confusing modern ballet (a.k.a. modern dance) which is fluid and without a lot of formal movements with classical ballet (far less fluid and governed by a set of formal movements, and generally done with special ballet shoes with reinfoced toes). Most modern ballet scores are written with modern dance in mind (though there are exceptions).
     

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