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Solor

Question: The Prince of the Pagodas

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I have never seen this ballet by McMillan, I was thinking of buying it off of Amazon.com (through ballettalk of course!) but figured I'd ask questions about it first.

Is this a ballet in the classical 19th century sense with classical grand pas, variations, ballet blanc, big ensembles etc., (in the tradition of Petipa: Sleeping Beauty, Bayadere, etc.)?

I have no doubt its a masterpiece. :)

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Welllll, I like it. I don't think it would be classified a masterpiece, but I like MacMillan. Bussell is very young and shows it, but she's great to watch. It's in the classical sense but not with tutu's, etc; it's typical MacMillan classical. If nothing else it's a piece of ballet history.

Giannina

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It's set up in the tradition of the Romantic story ballet, with formal set-pieces and variations, but MacMillan's choreography and Britten's music are a bad mismatch. There are still people who say, "Ah, what Fred could have done if he'd only liked the music!"

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Depending upon the state of your pocketbook, I'd say it's worth purchasing. As Mel says, MacMillan and Britten are not a match made in heaven (although in MacMillan's defense, the plot doesn't really lend itself to ballet). Bussell is worth seeing, too, and in a role made for her.

I have the ballet in a 2-VHS version, and that set includes an interesting documentary of MacMillan's career, with interviews and old footage of Seymour, et al. If the DVD includes it, that's definitely a plus.

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