I don’t know very much about ballet. In fact, this was my first time ever seeing one. I was completely swept away by the beauty and the elegance of it.
I did manage to follow the story. Although at first I was definitely a little lost. I did pick up the conflict between choosing passion or choosing love, and the eventual consequences that come to light as a result of the character’s decisions.
The dancing was gorgeous. Every single person on stage managed to look beyond elegant, and way beyond beautiful. The music alongside was amazing to see. Everything was so in sync and perfectly aligned, like the cat wasn’t well-practiced, but more like dancing to it was intrinsically within them and not something they had to even think twice about. Like I said, I don’t know very much about ballet. My eyes aren’t critical to the specifics of the dances, but I was unaware of mistakes and critiques in a borderline blissful way. I enjoyed something pretty and stunning. And I really, really liked it.
The setting was cunning, and extremely clever. There were things I didn’t expect to be used at all – like shadows, or smoke, the front of a train, audio of clapping – which I did mistake for the audience – and so forth. The ideas behind the production seemed big and well-thought out. Something daring but equally safe.
The English Youth Ballet recently put on an amazing show at the New Theatre in Cardiff, we were invited along to watch this show and as a parent of a dancer I was keen to go along.
We hadn’t been to the New Theatre before so as we wandered across to where it stood I was quite interested to see the exterior, the New Theatre in Cardiff seems to be a tiny little theatre from the outside, and compared to some I suppose it is quite small, however when we walked into the theatre itself I felt as though I was transported back in time. The curtains and the ceiling and all of the decor just reminded me of the theatres you would see in the old movies. Which I think it adds to the atmosphere, even the cushions for the children to sit on were made out of red velvet. The staff were incredibly friendly and hospitable as well.
So we waited for the show to start with our snacks and drinks, and as the children came onto the stage I realised that the show and the theatre itself really were a perfect fit. I have seen a couple of ballet shows that were very modern and the outfits very up-to-date, however this one really did stick to the original story and all of the beautiful dresses, outfits and tutus just added to the overall effect.
As a parent of a ballerina I know how much effort goes into the rehearsals and how much effort goes into each and every one of the moves, which is why I could really appreciate the effort and how well all of the dancers did in this production, every move they seemed to carry out effortlessly, even though I know it must have been very much hard work for them.
Also the story was told through the traditional ballet hand movements which was wonderful to see and carried out flawlessly in my opinion.
As the show moved on I really spotted some of the amazing talent on the stage, some stood out and the villain of the show really captured my attention as did the smallest children, as it takes a lot to stand on a stage in front of all those people but they seemed to enjoy every second.
I’m no expert however the show entertained myself and two children and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The standing ovation at the end really highlighted the fact that everybody there really did enjoy The Sleeping Beauty production.
One point I would make as well is that there were a few noticeable wobbles at one point and the dancers kept their composure and carried on regardless, I admire that above all, as that sort of poise and commitment proves a real talent.
Thank you to everyone that stood on that stage and danced their socks off! We really enjoyed the evening.
Many volunteers and Spice Time Credit users recently had an unexpected and very welcome trip to the ballet Sleeping Beauty. Wales Millennium Centre had generously offered tickets to be used by members of the community who could ‘pay’ with their well earned Time Credits. The tickets were quickly taken up and many had to admit that they had never seen a ballet and some had never visited the WMC before so what an opportunity this was to get close up and personal to a fabulous performance.
But this was no ordinary Sleeping Beauty. The Matthew Bourne production was full of colour, movement and energy performed to the well known music by Tchaikovsky. It was a gothic tale for all ages, a love story fraught with curses and spells. The costumes were outstanding, from the very first scene setting the christening of Aurora with a life-like puppet of the baby girl drawing in the audience from the beginning. We watched as the familiar fairy tale of a young girl cursed to sleep for one hundred years was enacted and danced through various scenes.
As Aurora grows up, we were taken through the fashions of the day, including a genteel tennis game followed by afternoon tea on the lawn, watching the antics of her suitors as they tried to gain her attention. Years later, when Aurora wakes up, we are in the modern world, still beset with many temptations and sinister goings-on.
It was an outstanding performance, full of magic, fairies, vampires, love and romance, danced by incredible dancers . There was certainly no falling asleep during this performance.
Thank you once again to the Wales Millennium Centre for giving us the opportunity to experience a beautiful and amazing ballet.
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