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Hans van Manen Festival
Hans van Manen Festival
Actors: Dutch National Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater, Kirov Ballet, Bayerisches Staatsballett (Munich)
Directors: Adrienne Liron, Jeff Tudor, Altin Kaftira
Genres: Special Interests, Educational, Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2008     2hr 10min

The Hans van Manen Festival was staged by The Dutch National Ballet to celebrate the work of choreographer Hans van Manen for his 75th birthday. International guest artists from companies such as the Kirov Ballet, and Nede...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Dutch National Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater, Kirov Ballet, Bayerisches Staatsballett (Munich)
Directors: Adrienne Liron, Jeff Tudor, Altin Kaftira
Genres: Special Interests, Educational, Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Dance, Educational, Classical, Ballet & Dance
Studio: Kultur Video
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 05/27/2008
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 2hr 10min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
Edition: Classical
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

More moves from Van Manen!
David Thierry | Chicago, IL United States | 06/03/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Can there ever be enough? We start with a stately ensemble of six dancing to Beethoven's 19 minute adagio from the Hammerklavier sonata. The second piece , Simple Things, is a lot more fun with two male dancers competing with each other to some very lively accordian music before the two females enter for some spectacular pas de deux to a Haydn adagio, then finish with the men repeating the opening. The audience goes wild and the dancers have many curtain calls. The first two pieces are danced by the Netherlands Dance Theater. Next two dancers from the Kirov do three pas de deux to Satie's most famous works, Gnossiens. Sweet and lyrical. The fourth piece is Tango, danced to tangos by the famous Argentine composer Astor Pazzola, who's music I have not heard before but now I see what all the fuss is about. The lead ballerina shows us why she is a star. Once again I have to question the choice of costuming dancers in black against a black background. Finally, in the bonus section, Twilight featuring Alexander Zambrosky in his third HVM performance, danced to the music of John Cage on a prepared piano but don't be frightened, it's quite listenable and rather sounds like Indonesian gamelan with a consistent rhythm no dissonances to speak of, composed in 1944, way ahead of it's time. Very highly recommended. A little something for everyone."
Incredible dancers, but otherwise disappointing
R. Nicholson | 11/03/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)

"I've always had an interest in ballet so when I saw that this recording was available and then read the positive review by David Thierry, I decided to get this DVD. This turned out to be a case of 'one man's treasure is another...

This performance was recorded in Sept 2007 in the Netherlands; it was dedicated as a tribute to fete choreographer van Manen's 75th birthday, by dancing some of his 'most celebrated ballets'.

There were things I liked and disliked about this DVD...let me explain

The Pros:

1.)The dancers could really dance! They were young, flexible and lithe; I could only wish to have been in such shape when I was that age.

2.)There were segments of dance that were very pleasing to watch during this performance (the 'trois gnossiennes' and some moments of '5 Tangos' come to mind); unfortunately they were few and far between.

The Cons:

1.)The choreography. A lot of the dance (with some notable exceptions above) appeared wooden and stiff; it lacked a sense of flow and spontaneity. The general motif for the entire night's performance was that of classical ballet techniques blended with modern dance, and it just didn't fit; and maybe it didn't fit, because of...

2.)The music! A selection of music as dreary and morose to dance to as I've ever heard...and this continued throughout the entire performance. Usually if you go to concert there may be something that doesn't please your ear; but rarely the entire evening's offerings. And there was nothing technically wrong with the playing of the music, but these particular classical offerings just did nothing to enhance one's enjoyment of the dancing. I can't image what would have persuaded the powers that be, who had the choice of music, to pick the audio selections they did.
Shows like this always make me wonder how the dancers felt about performing to such music; surely something a little more 'pleasant' would help with one's 'dancing attitude'.

Conclusion:

To have a great dance performance you need three things: great choreography, great music and great dancers; a nights entertainment featuring just one out of three is really unacceptable.
If, your a hard core van Manen fan you'll may really like this; I honestly did not.
5 Stars for the incredibly skilled and talented dancers. 2 Stars for the overall DVD

Ray Nicholson"