Mar 17, 2008

Ballet Review

Saturday evening Hotness & I went to the ballet.
As I've mentioned before, we have season tickets so we go to whatever pieces are being offered for the season (with the exception of the Nutcracker).

This time it was another night of four separate performances under the title "Director's Choice".
No pictures to accompany this post this time, but I'll keep it short so I don't bore you.

The first performance was called "Sense Of Doubt".
It started off a bit slowly but built up momentum and my interest as the piece continued.
The costumes were very unique and I think added to the dancers moves and the music being played.
It's funny how that kind of stuff kind make a difference, but it does.

There was an intermission and then we had the second piece which was "Fur Alina".
From the program notes, this promised to be a sparse musical piece played on the piano for the dancers.
"Oh great," I thought, "Some 'plinky-plinky' piano music. This'll probably be b-o-r-i-n-g."
It actually surprised me and was quite good.
Well, the dancers were quite good anyway. The music was still rather.... eh, 'plinky-plinky'.

A brief pause and then the third piece we had was called "Vespers".
Performed by all female dancers it was meant to evoke the feeling of "urgency & restraint" (according the PNB website), like one would experience during prayers.
I thought this would be rather cool because of the way they described it, but turned out not to be all that exciting... in my opinion.
It received a very enthusiastic applause from the audience, so again, it's just my opinion. Obviously others at the performance felt differently.

Another intermission and then we had the last piece called "One Flat Thing, Repeated".
This is difficult to say whether I enjoyed it or not.
It was a very interesting piece, but I found myself asking "How does this qualify as ballet and not modern dance?"
It was very organized chaos on the stage.
In a nutshell, the dancers dragged out a bunch of tables and set them up equally spaced on the stage. (Table = 'one flat thing' / bunches of tables = 'reproduced'. See? It kinda makes sense after you've been going for a while like we have)
Then they proceeded to bend, stretch, twirl, jump and all manner of types of movement between, under, over and on top of the tables.
It was amazing to see, but as ballet... it wasn't.
And the music. Yeah, this was probably what kept me from really enjoying the piece all that much. It was very discordant and pounding with no real sense of rhythm.
If you know me, you know that I have a VERY broad sense of taste in music. There is little that I will not listen to. But this music definitely falls into the "nope, don't like it" category for me.
I guess I'm sort of a fuddy-duddy, but this just wasn't quite ballet for me.

I have to give credit to the artistic director, however.
He's taken some real chances with the Pacific NW Ballet and tried to appeal to different types of crowds.
While I don't always think that a particular performance is all that great, at least he took the chance to present it and let me make the decision. I've been quite surprised by some of the performances he's offered and each one gives me a deeper appreciation for the dancers' abilities.
We can't always have Swan Lake every year, after all.

That being said, the next performance will be "A Midsummer Night's Dream".
It's more in the classic style and is fantastic. I like it much better than the Nutcracker.
I'm telling you, if you ever want to experience a ballet AND have fun, this'll be it.

After the ballet, we went to Pompodoro for late dinner and then drove home.
Nothing spectacular to report. The food was great as always and I recommend you go there when you get a chance to.
Let me know what you think if you do. And tell them I sent you.
(They know us pretty well there. Just mention "The guy and his girlfriend who brought a bunch of people from a comic book convention". They'll know)

We tried to sleep in late the next morning, but it just didn't work.
The cat walked all over us until somebody finally got up to feed her.
Then Hotness had to go to the barn and tend to her horse while I went and played Heroclix with some friends for the day.

That's about it for the weekend.
Just pretty mellow and laid back.

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