Saturday, February 20, 2010

Everything is beautiful at the ballet

This afternoon, I saw Ballet West's production of Swan Lake. I went with high expectations and was not disappointed. I loved the prologue that shows how Odette was cursed. Her captured sister swan dancers rise out of the mist on stage, arms and hands fluttering like wings. I don't think I've ever seen the corps so precise and so bird-like.

I hate a stumbling corps of dancing swans. I needn't have worried.

There were other stumbles in the afternoon that had nothing to do with the production. I arrived at "Will Call" where they didn't have my ticket. I pulled out my internet copy that Tom had printed for me, and the woman in the booth, said, "Oh, your ticket is for this evening at 7:30."


The woman huffed and puffed with her superior who gave me a new ticket in box F, seat number 4 where I was cut off from one third of the left side of the stage and could see back stage on the right, including bare light bulbs. I could also see the heads of the orchestra members.

My original seat had a full view of the stage and was well above the orchestra pit.

Grumpy, grumpy, grumpy. Really grumpy.

And yet the production was so beautiful, the two-thirds of it I could see. It took me twenty minutes to decide that two-thirds was better than not seeing it at all, and that I could ignore the action back stage and the orchestra pit.

It was a good decision.

Strangely, the one aspect of the production I didn't like was the circular projection on the back wall of the stage of Prince Siegfried and Odette united in heaven at the end. Please. They martyr themselves to save others. We cry. That's why we go to Swan Lake--to see beautiful lovers parted in death--so we can cry our eyes out at the loss.

A resurrection in Swan Lake? A happy ending? That's just wrong.


Ann said...

i love it when i discover you have standards about unexpected things such as dance corps being birdlike. well done!

BBB said...

They should make some sort of law against selling seats like that.

When I was in New York this last summer we went to WEST SIDE STORY. Couldn't see anything from our seats, truly. And then, 'I Feel Pretty' was sung in Portuguese. It was a bust.

BUT, Maria and Tony were not pictured in heaven at the end of the play. At least, I don't think they were, though I could not see for sure...

Allysha said...

The ballet was wonderful wasn't it? I was there Friday night.

I don't mind the lovers reunited after death stuff. But I've seen it in other versions more subtly done.

One year I went to see it and the curtain opened at the very end and there was no Odette and her Prince; just pleasing scenery and lovely music. It was a tad awkward. But maybe you would have liked that ending better!

Angie Larkin said...

I love to hear about your adventures. The ballet is beautiful... if I can get over the feeling of hating my thighs when I watch those women. I laughed at the "bare light bulbs" description. Good for you for getting over the bad part and enjoying the good.