Originally uploaded by swan lake samba girl via mobile.
On a scale of one to ten, Hanna is a ten, Slavik a 20000. In other words, no match. No match at all. I’m seriously depressed.
Update:Â Now that I’m home, I’m re-thinking this. I just think my expectations were so high for a Slavik and Hanna Karttunen partnership because I’ve found her so mesmerizing in her exhibitions. I just felt like her Latin wasn’t all there. Maybe she just had a bad night. Maybe she wasn’t feeling well. Or maybe good women just tend to suffocate under the weight of great male partners. But why? I think when a woman is dancing with a great man — one who’s both uber-charismatic and technically excellent with mind-boggling speed and precision of movement — she really needs to find herself, to bring out her artistry. We’re never going to be as good as the men in the athletic department, so we need to excel in other ways. I think I remember Melia saying something like that during her and Sergey’s Blackpool Congress lecture — she had to work hard to find her own “voice” to keep from getting lost under Sergey’s strength.
I just felt like even though she has great flexibility and has lovely extensions, etc., Hanna was really just all but invisible tonight.
On the other hand, Slavik! Slavik had people screaming. This girl next to me moaned loudly in ecstasy when he started to play with his suspenders, and she got so embarrassed her head practically ended up in my lap, but how much could I relate 😀 I realized this is actually the first time I’ve ever actually seen him perform live. I’ve only ever seen him compete before. He is a performer beyond any other I’ve ever seen — and I mean any — ballet (Marcelo Gomes, Angel Corella), modern, flamenco (Joaquin Cortes) — I mean everyone and every kind of dance included. It’s quite impossible to exaggerate the man’s performance ability.
And, among other things, I really don’t see how it’s humanly possible for anyone’s pelvis to move as fast as that man’s does…
And then, at one point he took the microphone and gave a little speech. Said he lived and worked in New York for a few years, back when he was competing for the United States (with Karina Smirnoff) — everyone cheered like nuts — and that New York and the U.S. in general occupied a special place in his heart, it’s “part of my soul.” A bunch of people went “ooooooh, aaaaawww,” and he looked out and smiled and said something that made people nearly fling themselves to the floor. I wish I could have heard what he said — his Russian accent is pretty strong.
Anyway, more thoughts on this later. It’s been a long day and I’m tired…