How do you like your Swan Lake?
23 replies to this topic
Posted 17 March 1999 - 11:42 PM
Question of the week: I'm curious about what people think of when they think of "Swan Lake." What does a production have to have to satisfy you? What do you expect when you go to see a production that you don't know anything about? I'll happily stipulate that there isn't an "authentic" production around, but there are still things -- images, steps, parts of the story -- that mean "Swan Lake" to people: 24 swan maidens, 32 fouettes, love, betrayal, death, owls. Benno or a Jester? Happy ending or sad? All or none of the above.
Posted 18 March 1999 - 01:58 AM
My expectations of a proper SW include the basic 4 acts, with Act II and Act IV the "White Acts." Female swans. No psychological re-interpretations. NO JESTER!!! A Black Swan pas de DEUX, not a pas de trois including Rothbart. And they jump in the lake at the end; the score was not written for a happy ending. See the video of the ABT production with Makarova/Nagy to see how to do it right.
Posted 18 March 1999 - 09:23 AM
I basically agree with Steve, especially NO JESTER. But when I saw Makarova, she used to leave out the 2nd act mime, which to me is essential. Without it, the ballet become more abstract and less tragic. I also really like the Drigoesque last act that ABT does. I think it has a nice flow and variety. And I think Rothbart should be a vaguely menacing evil, not run around the stage in red tights and shadow box. And it should be set in Medieval Germany, because that is the period of the myth. Basically, it shouldn't look anything like the current Royal Ballet production.