Sunday, 2 May 2010
The Cuban National Ballet does Giselle (and I see Alicia Alonso in real life!)
Oh my goodness, please forgive my gushing whilst I just repeat my title. I saw Alicia Alonso. Live. On stage. The dancers brought her on at the end. Replete with headscarf and red lipstick. Live. For real. Wow! Wow! Wow!
Now we've got that out of the way with (I kind of feel a little like I would have done had I ever seen Margot Fontein!), I will say, I was also totally blown away by their Giselle. There was so much passion, it was so alive and the dancing so beautiful I don't know where to begin. So I shall begin with the ballet itself. I've never seen Giselle before and I didn't really know what to expect but I shouldn't have worried. The precision and clarity of the dancing didn't detract from the story, and I really felt that as much as they danced the roles, the dancers really acted. Passionately and realistically, with all of their hearts. Sometimes I am wowed by the dancing but I don't always believe the dancer IS the character, but I couldn't fault the dancers' (Annette Delgado and Javier Torres in the lead roles) commitment to character. Their eyes spoke the words they couldn't say, and their bodies pulsed with the rhythm of emotion beyond the tempo of the dance.
Mr Ballerina (as I have been instructed to stop referring to him as my husband (as it makes him sound too old and sensible, apparently) - this will be my new name for him, or rather, Mr. B) said, "It was the most beautiful ballet I've ever seen. Especially the Wilis!" And I have to agree. The whole of the second act was utterly mesmerising, the dancing beautiful and I loved the Wilis too. I thought they moved so seamlessly together, and by turns were both sinister and magical: moving in and out of formation as if controlled by some higher force. It took my breath away..!
My last comment, really, links more to my own experience of ballet. One of the things that I loved most about BNC doing Giselle was that their technique was so clean, so musical and spoke so clearly of the story that they did what many great experts (of anything) are able to do, which is make it look beautifully simple and effortless. It was, perhaps, the first time I have watched a ballet and have been able to identify the steps, how they are put into sequences and how they are danced and feel that I could, with practise, perform the same. Clearly I am completely deluded, as I could never perform with the perfection and precision the BNC did, but it's a nice thought...
Posted by Hannah at 02:29