Saturday afternoon, Madrigal danced with Erica Cornejo, who’s brighter and more fluid than Feijóo but not as powerful. She does everything beautifully; sometimes I wish she could do it with more attitude. Saturday evening Lia Cirio danced with Pavel Gurevich. She’s an athletic dancer who can seem too gymnastic, all angles and no curves, and also a little studied in adagio; here she was fine, with a nice line in her slow solo and steady fouettés. Gurevich is a tall elegant partner, but in his solo he looked tentative, as if he hadn’t yet adjusted to the smaller Opera House stage.
The Pas de Trois performances — anchored by Cornejo and Misa Kuranaga — were gratifying but not special. In the first of the four solo variations for women on opening night, Melissa Hough raised the bar several notches as she flicked a leg up in developpé, teasingly, insouciantly, as if asking did we want to see Italian fouettés; we did, and she obliged. Misa Kuranaga zipped through changes of direction and attack in the third variation; Breen Combes opened the fourth with explosive grands jetés and concluded with an elegant pas de chat. The rest of the weekend brought fewer fireworks. There were creditable Italian fouettés from Dalay Parrando, though she lost the thread on Sunday; Boston Ballet II member Sylvia Deaton was almost as nippy as Kuranaga; Whitney Jensen’s ebullience would have read better if we hadn’t seen Breen Combes first. The second variation was problematic: Megan Gray foundered at a very slow tempo, and Tiffany Hedman, at a slightly faster one, didn’t fare much better. The ladies, in their plate tutus, are stylish in Alosa’s fizzy choreography, and I like the backdrop, red with a black Moorish-arabesque frame, though I’m not sure why the chandeliers disappeared after opening night.
RHYME Altan Dugaraa and Heather Waymack look to write a poem.
Tsukiyo — “moonlit night” in Japanese — is a duet set, after a brief introduction, to Estonian composer Arvo Pärt’s Spiegel im Spiegel, a hypnotic violin cantilena over repeating piano arpeggios — mostly the same F-major triad — that’s both beautiful and boring. On opening night, Sabi Varga entered in front of the inner curtain — which was lit to suggest a dense forest — and pulled it back to reveal what might have been a space capsule set in the middle of a shrine. Lia Cirio emerged and the dance began, Cirio childlike, deerlike, plunging forward, drawing back, Varga calm and reassuring but in vain. This too was beautiful and boring: after five minutes, you weren’t seeing anything new, and you certainly weren’t seeing Varga, since Cirio was dancing as if the piece were her solo. (Which, it seems, was all right with Pickett.) Sunday afternoon, Misa Kuranaga and Yanowsky made it a totally different work. They danced as equals, and they interacted, she as a kind of moon goddess to his mortal, and the degree of detail in their body language had spectators walking about dazed at intermission. I was too mesmerized to take a single note.
Regardless of who danced Tsukiyo, it was a hit with the audience. Some credit has to go to the performances by Boston Ballet Orchestra concertmaster Michael Rosenbloom and principal pianist Freda Locker.