Injuries to John Gardner and Kirk Peterson caused changes in both dancers and dances Saturday night as American Ballet Theatre continued its three-week run at Kennedy Center Opera House.
Danilo Radojevic substituted for Peterson in the "Le Corsaire" pas de deux and performed with more chutzpah than technical or stylistic finesse. He took a lot of risks, interpolating virtuoso steps that were slightly beyond his depth. Except for some beautifully executed multiple pirouettes in the coda, the strain this caused made his dancing hard and forced.
His partner, Yoko Ichino, looks so delicate one is surprised by her strength. She performed an unfamiliar variation which showed off her lovely jump. Although Radojevic partnered her with care in the adagio, there was no noticeable rapport between the two and the coda seemed more a contest than a pas de deux.
"Concert Waltzes" may just be the best-danced ballet in ABT's current repertory. On Saturday, the corps of 10 women danced with musicality and style and, in the pas de trois, Warren Conover, Johan Renvall and Hilda Morales were beautifully matched, dancing as one with joyous ease.
Cynthia Harvey and Kevin McKenzie assumed the leading roles for the first time here. Harvey is not quite fluffy enough for this frothy work. She danced cleanly, but almost athletically, with brusque arms. McKenzie danced his solos with an easy elegance, but proved surprisingly awkward in some of the lifts.
A spirited performance of "Interplay" took "Fancy Free's" place.