Saturday, February 4, 2012

90 years of National Ballet in Finland (pt.1)

As promised and planned, here's the first part of my gala report. It will include a lot of names - works, coreographers, dancers, composers... I'll mention the soloists' names (and corps de ballet - if they were on the same piece). If there were no solos, only cdb, won't mention them separately (too many names to write :P). In the second part I'll share my opinions about them :)

Participants were:

- Conductor Pietro Rizzo
- Hosts Kenneth Greve (Artistic Director of the Ballet) & Heidi Almi (Press Manager)
- Finnish National Ballet
- FNO Ballet School
- FNO Opera Orchestra
- Many important technical people!

The evening was said to last 2 hours and 50 minutes, including 1 intermission. Well... It started at 19.00 (7pm) and ended at 22.30 (10.30pm)! And I can tell you, it was ALL worth it. All 3,5 hours.

First half included:

  • Etudes (excerpt) - choreography by Harald Lander - music by Carl Czerny, Knudåge Riisager - Premiere at the Finnish National Opera Ballet 14th January 1965 - no soloists in this bit
  • Swan Lake (Pas de deux from the 2nd act, Cygnets) - Kenneth Greve / Marius Petipa - Pjotr Tshaikovsky - Premiere 17th January 1922 / this production 23rd October 2009 - Odette / Petia Ilieva, Siegfried / Jani Talo, Cygnets / Linda Haakana, Annabelle Hellinckx, Maki Nakagawa, Claire Voss
  • Seven Brothers (excerpt) - Marjo Kuusela - Eero Ojanen - World premiere at the FNO 23rd August 1980 - Juhani / Kare Länsivuori, Tuomas / Johan Pakkanen, Aapo / Aki Pakarinen, Timo / Nikolas Koskivirta, Simeoni / Antti Keinänen, Lauri / Jaakko Eerola, Eero / Frans Valkama, Female Fox / Sara Saviola
  •  Suite Murder (excerpt) - Jorma Elo - Bernard Herrmann - World premiere at the FNO 25th October 2008 - Milla Eloranta, Mai Komori, Maki Nakagawa, Terhi Räsänen (females), Yusuke Hikichi, Ville Mäki, Samuli Poutanen, Eemu Äikiö (males)
  •  Pessi and Illusia (excerpt) - after Irja Koskinen, Doris Laine - Ahti Sonninen - World premiere at Riihimäki 29th May 1952, premiere at Helsinki 23rd October 1952 - Pessi / Nicol Edmonds, Illusia / Aino Ettala
  • Springtime encounters - Satu Soldan - Adolphe Adam - World premiere - Darja Gustavsson, Ada Kaijala, Rosa Säilynoja (girls from the FNO Ballet School), Bruno Baer, Schonan Greve, Colin Jacobs (boys)
  • Seventh Symphony (Finale) - Uwe Scholtz - Ludwig van Beethoven - Premiere 28th February 2009 - Mai Komori & Jani Talo, Maki Nakagawa & Wilfried Jacobs, Maria Baranova & Nicholas Ziegler, corps de ballet
  • Swan of Tuonela (pas de deux from Lemminkäinen) - Imre Eck - Jean Sibelius - World Premiere (Lemminkäinen) 15th January 1976 - Swan of Tuonela / Tiina Myllymäki, Lemminkäinen / Jarkko Niininen
  • Minus 7 (excerpt) - Ohad Naharin - collage (music) - Premiere 7th May 2010 - no soloists, but some of the audience got to participate!!! :)

Second half included:

  • Don Quijote (Fandango, Grand pas de deux) - Patrice Bart / Marius Petipa, José de Udaeta (fandango) - Ludvig Minkus - Premiere 21st October 1930 / this production 20th October 1995 - Kitri / Salla Eerola, Basilio / Jaakko Eerola, Two friends / Annabelle Hellinckx & Maki Nakagawa, Fandango / Petia Ilieva & Nicholas Ziegler, corps de ballet
  • Anna Karenina (pas de deux) - Alexei Ratmansky - Rodion Stsedrin - Premiere 16th February 2007 - Anna Karenina / Minna Tervamäki, Count Vronsky / Jani Talo
  • Walking Mad (excerpt) - Johan Inger - Maurice Ravel - premiere 25th October 2008 - Linda Haakana, Johanna Nuutinen, Anna Sariola (females), Henrik Burman, Antti Keinänen, Nikolas Koskivirta, Johan Pakkanen, Samuli Poutanen, Emrecan Tanis
  • I could have danced all night - Marilena Fontoura - Frederick Loewe, Riku Niemi - World premiere - no soloists (dancers), Hanna Rantala (soprano/singer)
  • Ballet Pathétique (excerpt / male solo) - Jorma Uotinen - Pjotr Tshaikovsky - World premiere at the Helsinki City Theatre 22nd September 1989, premiere by the FNO in front of the House of Parliament 13th August 1992 -  Antti Keinänen
  • Scheherazade (excerpt from the end) - Kenneth Greve - Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov - World premiere 29th October 2010 - Scheherazade / Eun-Ji Ha, Shahryar / Wilfried Jacobs, Dünyazad / Annabelle Hellinckx, Shahzarem / Frans Valkama, corps de ballet
  • The Sofa - Itzik Galili - Tom Waits - Premiere 21st November 2009 - Antti Keinänen, Anna Konkari, Samuli Poutanen
  • Etudes (excerpt from the end) - Harald Lander / Kenneth Greve (chor. for the Ballet School) - Czerny / Riisager - Premiere 14th January 1965 - Salla Eerola, Minna Tervamäki (female), Jaakko Eerola, Michal Krcmár (male), Petia Ilieva, Eun-Ji Ha, Maria Baranova, Maki Nakagawa (female), corps de ballet, FNO Ballet School students (all of them!!!)
Ballet School kids - Photo by Sakari Viika

So, that was it. Quite an evening. Oh boy... Tomorrow is the day our country gets a new president. In honor of this important event I'll write the second part ;)

p.s Today's ballet was Good. Latino jazz wasn't - because we didn't have the class at all (teacher sick). Waiting for tomorrows JAZZ!

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