Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|SWAN LAKE - YEVTEYEVA KIROV BALLET DUDKO|
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Special Interests, Educational, Musicals & Performing Arts
A common man's point of view.
Richard Rawls | Dublin Ga USA | 08/28/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD was included in a set of three Tchaikovsky Ballets when I purchased it, but it is available as a single. It is not a really great copy. There is a tear at the top of the screen, which cuts off a face or head or whatever comes into the tear area. Luckily it's not always there so it is not too obtrusive, and one can live with it. So, please don't hesitate to purchase this ballet, the quality isn't terribly bad. It is a 1968 sound stage production w/o an audience, so there is no applause nor the sound of tiny little feet on the floor. It looks like a movie that has been shown all over Russia. The sound quality is good enough, and it is claimed to be in stereo. There are chapter synopses in five or six different languages, including English. It is 83 minutes in length, but should be about 130 minutes to be the complete version. There are a few dances left out of the first and second acts, but the last act seems to be complete. One dance in particular that is left out of scene two of the first act at the lakeside, is the Waltz of the Swans, and the variations by the Three Swans. It is so utterly beautiful that it is a real shame that it was omitted. Also, there are only two National dances in the Ballroom act. Prince Siegfried kills Rothbart, so the final scene is semi-tragic, as its hard to tell if the Swan-Maiden dies or not, but at least the other Swan-Maidens are returned to their human forms so, in a sense, it falls into the happy ending genera of Russian ballet.
The part of the fool or joker is played by Valery Panov, and is undoubtedly the best and most acrobatic male dancer I've seen in my five copies of Swan Lake. Not all versions have a, so called fool, but use, instead, a friend to the Prince. The American Ballet is one example.
Yelena Yevteyeva is a very capable Odette/Odile technically. Her surprise and subsequent fear of Siegfried when they first meet is well done, and her wing fluttering is also very good. Some Ballerinas are better at that than others, but Yelena is exceptionally good. She is not the most beautiful Odette/Odile, but when in the Black Swan outfit she is very attractive. As I said, Yelena is a very capable dancer, and since this ballet is 40 years old we probably won't see Yelena in any other ballets, so historically this ballet is worth owning. Even though the picture quality is not quite as good as some other copies, I watch this one often, because I like the last act. Some of the music is different, and there are two lifts by Siegfried of Odette that are beautiful and not done at all in some other versions. They are so vigorous that it looked like he might have dropped her, she goes so far back over his head. Angel Corella's lifts of Gillian Murphy in the ABT version of Swan Lake are just as dramatic, however.
This ballet can be purchased for close to $10.00 from an Amazon dealer, so you could add it to your collection quite inexpensively. I recommend this ballet.
PS. Imagine my surprise, when I found Yelena again! Yes, I purchased "The Glory of The Kirov" which is a potpourri of dances by ballerinas and danseurs from the archives of the Maryinsky theater and other Russian sources, and there she was. In black and white, but very beautiful. She was featured w/Baryshnikov in a 1969 pas de deux called "The tale of Serf Nekish", and again in a 1968 pas de quatre featuring Yelena as "Fanny Cerreto" and also featuring Gabriela Komleva as "Carlotta Grisi", Lubov Galenskaya as "Marie Taglioni", and Ludmilla Kovaleva as "Lucile Grahn". Unfortunately, I would never have recognised her in black and white except in the "Tale of Serf Nekish" pas de deux. I feel fortunate to have found her again at all. Ivy Lin wrote a nice review about The Glory of the Kirov, but didn't even mention Yelena because the Pas de Quatre, "annoys the crap" out of her. What a shame."