"The Sleeping Beauty" tag
Isabella Gasparini during coaching of the Fairy of Joy from Sleeping Beauty.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Ashton Foundation Masterclass with Monica Mason coaching the Spanish Dance from Swan Lake and the Fairy of Joy from Sleeping Beauty

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

San Francisco Ballet in Tomasson's The Sleeping Beauty.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – The Sleeping Beauty – San Francisco

★★✰✰✰   The efforts of San Francisco Ballet’s artists are sadly misplaced in this largely joyless and wholly unsatisfying rendition of The Sleeping Beauty.

Benjamin Ella and Isabella Gasparini in Crystal Pite’s Flight Pattern.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Memorable Performances of 2017 – London

Head and shoulders above other new work this year was Crystal Pite’s Flight Pattern for the Royal Ballet…

Steven McRae and Sarah Lamb in The Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Nutcracker – London

★★★★★   When Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker for the Royal Ballet was given its premiere on 20th December 1984, gala guests were treated to free champagne and souvenir booklets. No expense was spared…

Marianela Nunez and Vadim Muntagirov in Sylvia.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Sylvia – London

★★★★✰   Sylvia makes a welcome return to the repertoire, reacquainting dancers and audiences with Ashton’s sensibility and complex choreography. It’s a joy but not a masterpiece, as he well knew…

Men in Motion flyer.© Nick Knight. (Click image for larger version)

Ivan Putrov – Men in Motion (2017) – London

★★✰✰✰   All the ingredients seemed promising but the evening was disappointing, struggling to recover from the tedium of the dire opening item…

Anastasia Soboleva and Victor Lebedev in Cinderella.© Stas Levshin. (Click image for larger version)

Mikhailovsky Ballet – Cinderella – St. Petersburg

★★★★★   It seems appropriate that I’ve travelled to Russia to find a Cinderella interpreter of movement and spectacle to match up to the genius of Prokofiev’s music.

Lauren Cuthbertson in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.© Johan Persson, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – London

★★★✰✰   Wheeldon and his scenarist, Nicholas Wright, have made theatrical sense of a nonsensical children’s classic. This Alice, though, is a modern pantomime, not a classic ballet.

Jessica Harding and Courtney Reading in Morgann Runacre-Temple's Handsfree.© Fiona Whyte. (Click image for larger version)

Images Ballet Company – Distant Beauties, Concerto for Joyce and Dennis, Handsfree, Scenes of Death and Disaster – London

★★★★✰   This year’s Images Ballet Company is 8 strong, small in the graduate school scheme of things, and yet their show was one of the most exciting I’ve seen in years with a wonderful and eclectic choice of repertoire, danced with passion and verve.

Stella Abrera and David Hallberg in Whipped Cream.© Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Whipped Cream – New York

★★★★✰   Alexei Ratmansky’s new ballet for ABT, Whipped Cream, is like a Viennese confection: so layered and airy that it takes a moment to fully take in the flavor of its many ingredients.

Catherine Turocy, director New York Baroque Dance Company.© Courtesy New York Baroque Dance Company. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Catherine Turocy, artistic director of New York Baroque Dance Company

Meticulous reconstructions of Petipa, Cunningham, Graham, Taylor works are performance staples these days. Much rarer is a reconstruction like “Le Temple de la Gloire” (The Temple of Glory) a 1745 political opera-ballet with music by Jean-Philippe Rameau and a libretto by the philosopher Voltaire….

Ivan Vassiliev and Kristina Kretova in Sceherazade.© Marc Haegeman. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala – In the steps of the Ballets Russes – London

★★★★✰   The long gala (three and a half hours with one interval) was well organised, with no speeches and no protracted curtain calls.

Atlanta Ballet in 2014 feted its artistic director emeritus with a gala ball. Kelsey Ebersold, an apprentice with Atlanta Ballet at the time, is pictured along with Robert Barnett in costume for Barnett's Fascinatin' Rhythm.© Charlie McCullers, courtesy of Atlanta Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Robert Barnett, former New York City Ballet dancer and longtime Artistic Director of Atlanta Ballet

Robert Barnett joined New York City Ballet in 1949. In those early years he worked closely with Balanchine and Robbins particularly before going on to direct Atlanta Ballet. Now 91 he is still actively involved in dance and passing on all he knows…

Simone Messmer and Miami City Ballet dancers in The Fairy’s Kiss. Choreography by Alexei Ratmansky.© Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

Miami City Ballet – The Fairy’s Kiss, Walpurgisnacht Ballet, Polyphonia – Miami

★★★★✰   The Fairy’s Kiss (Ratmansky premiere): The final image is poetic, grand, inspiring. It takes one’s breath away.

Olga Smirnova and Semyon Chudin in La Belle.© Alice Blangero. (Click image for larger version)

Les Ballets de Monte Carlo – La Belle – Monte-Carlo

★★★★✰   Maillot has succeeded in giving perhaps the most authentic retelling of Perrault’s story in dance with his tale of love overcoming the darkest evil…

Akane Takada and James Hay in The Sleeping Beauty.© Bill Cooper, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Sleeping Beauty – London

★★★★✰   The grand pas de deux was the triumphant highlight of the fairytale festivities. Hay expressed the prince’s pride and pleasure in his variations; Takada was demure and regal in hers…

Sarah Lamb and Vadim Muntagirov in The Sleeping Beauty.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Sleeping Beauty

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Gary Harris.© Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Gary Harris on life and setting Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia for the Royal Ballet

Gary Harris has had one of the most varied ballet careers you can get… dancer, teacher, ballet master, artistic director, designer and notator. Now he’s working with the Royal Ballet to bring back Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia – Jann Parry went for a chat.

Stella Abrera and Marcelo Gomes in The Sleeping Beauty.© Gene Schiavone. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – The Sleeping Beauty – New York

★★★★✰   This is a production that lives and breathes, and which rewards multiple viewings, changing subtly with each cast.

Skylar Brandt and Duncan Lyle in The Golden Cockerel publicity image.© Fabrizio Ferri. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – The Golden Cockerel – New York

★★★★✰   American Ballet Theatre’s spring season has turned into a kind of voyage into the mind of Alexei Ratmansky, its choreographer-in-residence since 2009.

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