It was a happy idea to couple the Royal Ballet School production of Peter and the Wolf with the Netherlands Dance Theatre's L'enfant et les sortiléges, for in each story the boy is the protagonist, in one instance leading a wolf hunt and in the other wreaking revenge on his toys after his mother has locked him in his room to finish his homework. Neither work in their final form was conceived for dancing: the Prokofiev comes from the concert hall and the Ravel from the opera house. Colette, the authoress of Gigi penned the story of L'enfant et les sortil&ecute;ges, which is related here in an introduction by the choreographer Jiri Kylian with charm and a nod back at his own childhood pranks. Viewers coming to this dance version of the opera for the first time maybe be surprised that Ravel composed the boy's role for a girl and a rather buxom one in this instance. The somewhat gloomy, heavily embroidered production misses no opportunity in bringing to life the toys in the boy's room or the animals in the garden that turn on him in retribution. In conclusion as an act of compassion of binding the paw of an injured squirrel, the boy and the animal kingdom are reconciled in music of a truly sublime nature. Lorin Maazel conducts Ravel's sophisticated and witty score with its translucent vocal lines with the affection for which he has long been renowned. In marked contrast to that production, Peter and the Wolf is set against a plain backdrop with one prop, a slice of carved tree trunk centre stage. Anthony Dowell narrates and also dances the role of the Grandfather with aplomb. In each instance a musical instrument represents a character. The choreographer Matthew Hart marshals his small group of dancers, duck, cat, bird and wolf, with imagination and dexterity. David Johnson as Peter (represented by the full orchestra) gives a splendid performance, boyish and graceful, making a further excellent advertisement for schoolboys considering dancing as a career in the wake of Billy Elliot. A stylish presented and well contrasted double bill. --Adrian Edwards
Featuring The Sleeping Beauty Ballet performed by the Het National Ballet recorded at the Het Muziektheater in Amsterdam.
Kaguyahime is one of Japan's oldest fairy-tales: the story of the moon princess who descends to Earth and is cared for by the family of an old bamboo cutter her luminous is beauty meant to spread peace and happiness but instead the rivalry her heavenly presence provokes results in war. Maki Ishii's music and the choreography of Jiri Kylian combine in this merging of Western and Japanese traditions.
A remarkable showcase of choreographic high points from some of the great ballets performed by members of Russia's famous Kirov Ballet. Many of the excerpts such as Petrushka and Brber's Adagio are choreographed by Oleg Vinogradov who has been Director of The Kirov Ballet since 1977.
The Nutcracker is Mikhail Baryshnikov's breathtaking and critically acclaimed Emmy-nominated production. Baryshnikov was at the height of his career as a classical dancer in 1977 when he staged this beloved holiday classic for the American Ballet Theatre. Gelsey Kirkland had left the New York City Ballet to dance with the Russian superstar and their partnership was magical. In this Soviet-influenced version Baryshnikov casts himself as the hero who is transformed from a wooden figure to a soaring prince and Kirkland plays an adolescent girl of delicacy and vulnerability. Alexander Minz portrays Drosselmeyer a mysterious wizard who not only conjures the fantasy but aslo dances with the romantic couple. Kenneth Schermerhorn conducts the National Philharmonic in a fast-paced performance of Tchaikovsky's music. Celebrated by critics and public alike Baryshnikov's The Nutcracker delivers a brilliant and sparkling adaptation of the famous E.T.A. Hoffmann tale along with Tchaikovsky's classic score.
Die KameliendameBallet By John NeumeierMusic By Frederic Chopin
Kenneth MacMillan choreographed his last ballet The Judas Tree for Irek Mukhamedov who takes the lead in this striking production. A vampish woman turns up on a building site in dockland wastes and causes an explosive reaction amongst a group of thirteen workmen led by their Foreman. In the heated confusion only one man responds with tenderness. Gradually the dark underside of male sexuality is exposed and the power of peer pressure takes over. The ballet spirals into a climax
The multi-award-winning dance film Amelia (2002) explores the use of point technique using extended intertwining solos, complex partnering sequences and extreme speed to generate powerful performances with unexpected moments of tender emotion and serenity. Edouard Lock uses intricate choreography for both camera and dancers, creating amazing and constantly shifting points of view. Trademark performances, brilliant and relentless, combined with the delicate sensual lighting of Andr? Turpin and the minimalist environment of a giant wooden box with rounded forms that seems to have no exit, create a disturbingly exquisite and moving experience. The original score, written by David Lang for violin, cello, piano and voice, combines evocative minimalism with lyrics from five of Lou Reed's most famous works, created in the 60s for The Velvet Underground.
This new staging of Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake from the Royal Swedish Ballet features a dance ensemble of breathtaking wonder in a majestic staging true to the values of the original production. Choreographer Sir Peter Wright has built up the role of Prince Siegfried, giving him a greater presence right from the beginning when he appears as a mourner at the funeral of his father. Sir Peter also emphasises the darker forces that will destroy the romance between the Prince and Odette, the swan transformed into a beautiful maiden. These touches are manifest through the granite-like grandeur of the castle exterior and the skilful deployment of chiaroscuro, notably in the scenes by the lake where the indigo and royal blue contrast with the brilliant white worn by the corps de ballet. There are many other imaginative touches in the choreography, from the swans' initial entry, seemingly self-propelled to suggest their airborne flight overhead, to the comical turn of the bandy legged cygnets in the "Dance of the Little Swans". Nathalie Nordquist is an enchanting Odette, and, with a slight change in makeup, a characterful Odile. The Prince, danced by Anders Nordstrom, cuts an aristocratic figure, making an elegant partner for Odette. The swans are the last word in poise and grace. On the DVD: Swan Lake is presented in 16:9 anamorphic format with the option of stereo or surround sound. The picture quality is first class with good front-to-back depth. The orchestra may not be the world's most glamorous but there's compensation in hearing this score played in the theatre acoustic for which it was written. The special features are just that: an audio commentary on the plot, a list of notable productions, an interview with the two principal dancers, a history of the Royal Swedish Ballet from Director Peter Jacobbson and, best of all, an interview of wisdom and insight from Sir Peter Wright, the choreographer, entitled "Love Transcends Death". --Adrian Edwards
Maya Plisetskaya: Diva Of Dance
This performance of George Balanchine's ballet A Midsummer Night's Dream was filmed live at Sadler's Wells Theatre, London, in February 1999 and won the award for "Best Television Realisation of a Stage Production" at IMZ Dance Screen. The music is from Mendelssohn's youthful overture plus later theatre music, and five other pieces by the composer all selected by the great Russian choreographer Balanchine in 1962. In a fine ensemble cast, Paul Gibson as Oberon and Patricia Barker as Titania are suitably aloof, at least until the latter dances with the ass Bottom (Timothy Lynch) in a highlight of touching comedy. After all the quarrelsome entanglements of the first act, the finale ensures celebration and richly deserved happy endings all round. The simple sets have a picturesque charm, the costumes a fairytale glamour and the large cast, including many children, dance with flair and enthusiasm; this is clearly one production where everyone was having a fine time. In fact it is rather more enjoyable than Hollywood's A Midsummer Night's Dream of the same year. Ballet aficionados may also want to explore the BBC's wonderful Coppélia (2000). On the DVD: There are no special features on the disc, but the 12-page booklet is entirely in English and is well presented, offering track and cast lists, a synopsis and notes on Balanchine, Mendelssohn and the creative talents and directors of the Pacific Northwest Ballet. The sound is atmospheric--Dolby Digital 5.0--and the anamorphically enhanced 16:9 image is good, though slightly soft, and does occasionally reveal some compression artefacting. In defiance of regional encoding regulations, not only is this DVD region free, but includes the normal PAL UK television system programme material on one side and on the reverse includes the same content in NTSC format, suitable for American playback. Anyone curious to see if one format is better will find that the UK PAL transfer contains just a little more picture detail. --Gary S Dalkin
Three pieces of ballet: 'Image' with music by Gustav Mahler 'Ghost Dances' with music of South American Folk Tunes and 'Journey' with music by Palle Mikkelborg.
Every young girl loves ballet! It's every young girl's dream to be a ballet dancer and this magical DVD will show them how. Instructional and enjoyable this delightful production contains sections for those who want to practice ballet and home and for those who just wish to watch!
Tchaikovsky: The Sleeping Beauty - A Ballet On Ice
The first performance of Sleeping Beauty at the Marinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg in 1890 choreographed by the legendary ballet master Marius Petipa was doubtless the pinnacle of classic Russian ballet tradition.Tchaikovsky's score composed in 1889 was created based on a scenario from Petipa that took the composer's wishes into account from the outset. It was a 'number' ballet score which was a homage to the baroque 'ballet de cour.' The premiere of Sleeping Beauty was not gr
Alolphe Adam's Giselle is the first of the great classical ballets and this production was choreographed by Patrice Bart and filmed at La Scala in Milan.
SpartacusBallet in Three Acts.Recorded At The Bolshoi Theatre 1990.
This film by Francoise Ha Van captures the tremendous performance of this ballet by the great ballerina Sylvie Guillem as the heroine and the magnetic Nicolas Le Riche as her young lover. The first part is a studio film of the performance. The second part follows rehearsals and gives a facinating insight into the way that Guillem and Le Riche work together in their rewarding relationship. Guillem and Le Riche give powerful yet tender performances as the passionate lovers.
Dancing On Dangerous Ground is the thrilling new Irish dance drama based on Celtic's legend's most passionate and enduring love story - the tragic romance of Diarmuid & Grainne. The show features the world famous dancers and Riverdance stars Jean Butler and Colin Dunne. This long awaited Irish dance special received its world premiere in December 1999 at The Theatre Royal Drury Lane in London before transferring to Radio City Music Hall in New York in March 2000. Butler and Dunne
Please wait. Loading...