Remember in the Disney version of Sleeping Beauty when Aurora’s fairy godmothers fight over which dress is best, pink or blue? Watching Petipa’s ballet, you might face a similar conflict: Do you prefer the young, spirited Aurora decked in rose pink from Act I? Or the cool yet lovely dream princess from Act II? In … More »
Mark your calendars! This Sunday, the Bolshoi Ballet, in partnership with Fathom Events, kicks off its 2016-17 Bolshoi Ballet in Cinema Series. Between now and April, seven Bolshoi productions will be high-beamed to movie theaters around the world (400 in the U.S. alone), giving ballet lovers a chance to see the legendary company on the … More »
The Fountain of Youth might be in Italy. Alessandra Ferri, 53, is defying all preconceived notions about the length of ballet careers. But she isn’t the first Italian to do so. Carla Fracci, a former prima ballerina at La Scala Ballet and international guest artist, who started her career in the 1950s, didn’t stop when … More »
Ah, Aurora—the dream role of budding ballerinas and the milestone of professionals. (It’s on the horizon for our June/July cover girl Cassandra Trenary, who makes her New York Aurora debut on June 29). Nearly every prima has performed the role, and Italian dancer Viviana Durante, former principal with The Royal Ballet, is no exception. With … More »
Paris Opéra Ballet étoiles have to be more than exquisite dancers: They must have all the poise, authority and elegance it takes to command the Palais Garnier stage. As Aurora in this excerpt from a 2000 taping of The Sleeping Beauty, Aurélie Dupont radiates with quintessentially French classicism. Even before she starts dancing, she enthralls … More »
In Sleeping Beauty’s Act III wedding pas de deux, the spotlight beams unwaveringly on dancers’ technique; Petipa’s choreography offers little to no reprieve in softening embraces, no rest in loving caresses. In this clip, Dame Antoinette Sibley—a principal at The Royal Ballet from 1956-1989—and Danish-born international star Peter Schaufuss rise to the occasion. Regal and … More »
Act III of The Sleeping Beauty celebrates the resolution of Princess Aurora’s dramatic curse with her wedding to Prince Florimund, with a cast of fairytale characters in attendance. Two of the most notable are Bluebird and Princess Florine, who dance a call-and-response pas de deux to Tchaikovsky’s sprightly music.
Aurora’s Act I solo in The Sleeping Beauty captures the young princess’ girlish exuberance. But from a technical standpoint, its four long minutes almost feel like multiple variations. New York City Ballet principal Sterling Hyltin discusses how to master its many moods and tempos. Calm down In most productions, Aurora’s solo follows the Rose Adagio—one … More »
Matthew Bourne has made a choreographic career out of reimagining classic ballets and giving them dark, contemporary twists. His Sleeping Beauty, described as a “gothic romance” complete with vampires and fairies, is no exception. You can see for yourself tonight: PBS will air Sleeping Beauty as part of its Great Performances series on April 25 at 9 pm EST. Check your local listings and catch a preview below.
Sometimes it seems like Alexei Ratmansky is remaking the classical canon, one ballet at a time. He restaged Le Corsaire and Flames of Paris back when he was director of the Bolshoi. Dutch National Ballet premiered his take on Don Quixote in 2010. He gave The National Ballet of Canada a new Romeo and Juliet in 2011. He took a risk with his unconventional Firebird for American Ballet Theatre in 2012. And ABT has made his delightful Nutcracker an annual New York tradition.