Wednesday, 16 December 2015
The Bolshoi's Encore
Last Sunday I took another butcher's at The Bolshoi's performance of The Nutcracker of 21 Dec 2014. I reviewed it last year in Clara grows up- Grigorovitch's Nutcracker transmitted directly from Moscow 21 Dec 2015 so this was literally a case of déjà vu. The company is actually dancing The Nutcracker on Sunday with Semyon Chudin in the title role. So why could we not see that performance in England? My guess is that the cinemas think they can make more money from showing the latest Star Wars and if that is the case they are almost certainly right. Love a duck! So much for popular taste. May the force be with us!
I enjoyed the show a bit more second time round as I knew what to watch for. Having seen Rodkin on the stage in St Petersburg Ballet Theatre's production of La Bayadere in September (see Blown Away - St Petersburg Ballet Theatre's La Bayadere 24 Aug 2015) I expected fireworks and that was what we got - particularly in the final pas de deux with Nikulina, Russian ballerinas can be rather grand, remote if not slightly frosty ladies. Nikulina is sweet and sparkly. She is as exciting to watch as any other Russian principal dancer but she can also act. She looked genuinely frightened in the fight between the Nutcracker and King Mouse. She looked as though she needed a hug and a cuddle.
I saw the video at the Pictureville cinema at the Bradford Media Museum. It was quite full for a Sunday afternoon screening. On leaving the cinema I overheard one of the denizens of Bramhope or Huby remark to her companion "I'm seeing The Nutcracker again you know. By the "Royal" Northern Ballet" (sic). Now there's a thought.