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Chopin: Les Sylphides; Adam: Giselle / Robinson, Beriosova, Elvin [DVD]

Album Summary

>Chopin, Frédéric : Les sylphides, ballet (arrangement)
>Adam, Adolphe : Giselle
Performers Conductors Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

These two exceptional studio performances represent some of the earliest filmed dance material from the BBC archives. Les Sylphides, introduced by Tamara Karsavina, one of the founders of modern British ballet, and the 1958 performance of Giselle both feature stellar international casts embodying a bygone era.

The Ballet Review
Nerina makes a very good Giselle, technically controlled yet fluid against the manly Fadeychev... Sokolova and Larsen are superb mimes. And the camera could now move so that the space feels much more open, with some imaginative effects, and everything registers.

MusicWeb International
An ex-dancer herself, the broadcast's producer and director Margaret Dale uses the confines of the studio to great effect, even if some of George Djurkovic's designs are a little on the twee side. It would be idle to pretend that the filming of ballet hasn't improved by leaps and bounds over the fifty years since this film was produced, but its quaint studio intimacy has a charm all its own.

Anyone interested in ballet and its history in the UK will certainly want to watch this fascinating disc.

New Yorker
On the newly released DVD of "Les Sylphides" and "Giselle" (ICA Classics), recorded in the fifties for the BBC, Tamara Karsavina, the beloved Diaghilev ballerina, introduces "Les Sylphides", which she danced in at its premiFre, in 1909. Lydia Sokolova, of the later Ballet Russes, plays Giselle's mother. But the most precious gift of this disk is that is shows us the young British dancers of the fifties. Margot Fonteyn, at that time the undisputed star of the field, is mercifully absent, so that we get to see the others. Most wonderful is Svetlana Beriosova - twenty years old, still unfolding - in "Les Sylphides." (You also see Alicia Markova, with her fabulous technique, even at forty-two, and her society-lady smile.) In "Giselle," the heroine is Nadia Nerina; her Albrecht, Nikolai Fadeyechev, is from the Bolshoi. They are extremely sweet. In all, the disk shows us how much the British did in the twentieth century to preserve classical ballet, and how they performed it: softy, and with lots of acting - a manner probably truer to the originals than anything we have now.

Notes & Reviews:

Run Time: 92 min.
Region: All
Picture Format: NTSC, 4:3
Sound Format(s): LPCM Mono,
Subtitles: French, German


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Works Details

>Frédéric Chopin (1810 - 1849) : Les sylphides, ballet (arrangement)
  • Performers: Svetlana Beriosova (Dancer); Violetta Elvin (Dancer); John Field (Dancer); Alicia Markova (Dancer)
  • Conductor: Hugo Ringold
  • Ensemble: Covent Garden Orchestra
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Ballet

>Adam, Adolphe : Giselle
  • Performers: Nikolai Fadeyechev (Dancer); Niels Larsen (Dancer); Nadia Nerina (Dancer); Lydia Sokolova (Dancer)
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Ballet
  • Written: 1841