Milan, Teatro alla Scala.
Last night I indulged in a dream.
The Scala Ballet Company was performing
a very classical Swan Lake,
as a tribute to the genius of Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov,
the original creators of the choreography of this masterpiece.
Petipa is considered the father of 19th-century Russian ballet.
His thoughts on all aspects of ballet – the dance technique and style, the music,
the structure, even the props used – became prevailing practices.
For some Lev Ivanov is Petipa’s dependable assistant.
For others he is ballet’s unjustly ignored unsung genius, who transformed Swan Lake
into a very different ballet.
Director Alexei Ratmansky created a new version respectful of Petipa style and intentions. The Scala Orchestra, directed by Michail Jurowski, started
with some hesitations
then was able to carry the passion and the drama on the stage to a great finale. Nicoletta Manni in the principal roles of Odette/Odile showed an amazing amount of grace, power and technicality. (I was carefully counting the nearly perfect Odile’ s32 fouettés in Act 3) Timofej Andrijashenko as the Prince Siegfried, colored his role with athletic moves and an amazing dramatic interpretation. Bravo to the female Ensemble that, in a challenging tour de force, spanned from being joyous courtesan to swans, to character figures from all over Europe, back to swans. The Spanish dance was a winner, thanks to the flamboyant Riccardo Massimi and Massimo Garon while Christian Fagetti as Benno performed a passionate pas de trois. Applause to the iconic Litte Swan, beautifully featured by Daniela Cavalleri, LusyMay Di Stefano ,Christelle Cennerelli, Agnese Di Clemente I wasn’t so impressed by the Jerome Kaplan costumes.
In my opinion, the pastel palette worked great on the courtesans in the Act I, but I didn’t like the long-than-usual feathered tutus of the Swans, as well the ‘Cirque du Soleil-meets-Disneyland’ Hungarian look neither the Botticelli/Art Nouveau/Renaissance dresses of the ‘marry-me’ Ladies who kept fanatically fanning with their golden fans.Swan Lake will perform till July 15th
The roles of Odette/Odile and Siegfried will be played by
Nicoletta Manni and Timofej Andrijashenko,
Vittoria Valerio and Claudio Coviello,
Martina Arduino and Nicola Del Freo All photos by Brescia e Amisano-Teatro alla Scala
For more info and tickets