Saturday, 5 December 2015

Hampson's Cinderella

The Forth Road Bridge
Author Euchiasmus
Source Wikipedia
Copyright released by the author

I had planned to see Scottish Ballet's Cinderella with a good friend from university who lives in Perth but I received an email from her yesterday calling off our outing because of the horrendous congestion on the roads and railways as a result of the temporary closure of the Forth Road Bridge. She and all the other motorists who have been inconvenienced by those emergency maintenance works may be amused by The Scottish Cinderella though I doubt that she would want her granddaughter to watch it just yet. Some of the language would make even the ratings at the Rosyth naval base blush.

Parents and grandparents in Scotland and indeed the rest of the United Kingdom may prefer to let their little ones watch this trailer or better still take them to see the show which opens at the Festival Theatre in Edinburgh tonight. It remains at that venue for the rest of this month and then goes on tour to Glasgow, Aberdeen and Inverness where I hope my friend will be able to catch it.

This is the ballet that Christopher Hampson created for the Royal New Zealand Ballet in 2007 to considerable critical acclaim. Hampson mentioned this ballet when he spoke at the State of the Art Panel Discussion: Narrative Dance in Ballet on 20 June 2015 (see My Thoughts on Saturday Afternoon's Panel Discussion at Northern Ballet 21 June 2015). He described it as a study of grief which is certainly consistent with the synopsis.

This has been a bumper year for Cinderella with productions from Ballet Cymru (Ballet Cymru's Conderella 15 June 2015) and the Dutch National Ballet (Wheeldon's Cinderella 13 July 2015) following on from David Nixon's last year (see Cinderella - even better 30 Nov 2014 and Northern Ballet's Cinderella - a Triumph 27 Dec 2013). I liked all those shows but I think my favourite up to now has been Ballet Cymru's. However, Scottish Ballet (or STB as it was called when I first knew it) was the first ballet company that I got to know and love and you know what they say about first love.

In my review of Northern Ballet's Cinderella in Sheffield I commended Matthew Broadbent who amused us all with his antics as a performing bear. Broadbent has now joined Scottish Ballet and it will be very good to see him again.

Returning to the Forth Road Bridge there used to be a permanent tailback across the Forth Road Bridge when they charged a toll - especially after decimalization when motorists had to fish around their pockets or handbags for a half penny as the half crown had ceased to be legal tender. I remember some medical students picked up a skeleton in Edinburgh and plonked it in the front passenger seat of a left hand drive car. They inserted the toll money in the skeleton's fingers and waited for the cashier to collect it. Feeling the bones she looked up and got the shock of her life. Her temper was not improved on being told by one of the students that the motorist had died waiting for his turn in the queue.

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