Friday, 10 October 2014

What Manchester does today

English National Ballet, Swan Lake, Palace Theatre, Manchester 9 Oct 2014

Isn't it lovely when someone achieves his ambition? On James Forbat's profile the following words appear:
"Roles would love to dance
Romeo, Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake"
Well yesterday in Manchester Mr Forbat danced that role and he did very well indeed.  Of course, he had the benefit of an adorable Odette-Odile in Erina Takehashi. Yesterday was the first time I had seen her (or at any rate the first time I had noticed her) and she impressed me considerably. She was a very convincing Odette in the prologue and second act - so delicate and feminine - and I couldn't imagine her as Odette but the lady is tough as well as beautiful and she is also an accomplished actor. She danced the seduction scene even more brilliantly than she had danced Odette.

Many of my other favourites were also in the show: Arionel Vargas as Rothbart, Lauretta Summerscales, Michael Coleman and Sarah Kundi. It was a great pleasure to see them all again.

I have seen a lot of Swan Lakes in my time but this is one of the best. There were some very nice touches like the prologue with Odette as a girl plucking the petals of a daisy before Rothbart turns her into a swan. I also liked the divertissements particularly the Neapolitan dance which seems to have reinstated Ashton's original choreography. It was also good to see Peter Farmer's designs.

Appropriately this production will start in Manchester and move on  to Milton Keynes, Liverpool and London. Manchester was the first city outside London where Festival (as the company was originally called) performed. Manchester was where Laverne Meyer founded Northern Ballet. Manchester was going to be a  Northern hub for the Royal Opera House and it is a tragedy that those plans were shelved (see Royal Opera House shelves move north 28 Oct 2010 The Independent). The second city needs its own resident world class ballet company. We had one once and let it go. So sad!

Further Reading

18 Oct 2014
Sarah Kundi

No comments:

Post a Comment