The Spindle Scene, Act I
Posted 25 July 2005 - 08:19 AM
The way most ballet companies handle this scene is to have Carabosse simply hand Aurora the spindle. Aurora, not having seen one before, is enchanted with it and dances about as the courtiers try to take it from her until she pricks her finger. I don't like this approach as the courtiers have to sort of halfheartedly snatch at the spindle (it would be rather embarrassing if one of them successfully took it from her...I wonder what would happen in that case!) while standing in a nice neat semicircle, and it never looks very realistic.
The Kirov takes a different approach--Carabosse hands Aurora the spindle hidden in a bouquet of flowers, so the courtiers don't suspect anything until Aurora pricks her finger and Catalabutte finds the needle. However, my problem with this version is that Aurora has just been given a total of eight flowers during the rose adagio, which she either handed off to her mother or tossed on the ground. Why then would she be so enamored of a bouquet given to her by some old lady she doesn't know?
Has anyone seen this scene done more effectively?
Posted 25 July 2005 - 08:24 AM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 08:34 AM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 09:21 AM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 09:30 AM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 10:15 AM
Helene, I agree with your viewpoint as well, but at the Kirov, Carabosse appears to be handing Aurora...roses. However, I will file away your wildflower suggestion for When I'm an Artistic Director. I also like that it shows how Aurora has grown up to fulfill the gifts of her fairy godmothers--she appreciates sincere generosity (well...it's not actually sincere, but she thinks it is ).
Posted 25 July 2005 - 10:39 AM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 11:02 AM
i find that an actual spindle, with lambswool twining around it, more to the dramatic point and aurora's little manege has a succession of 'wound around the spindle' movements in most versions of the choreography for this moment.
true there is the act's opening knitting scene but as wiley's book makes clear - i THINK - it's a distaff that causes the prediction to come true not a knitting needle.
Posted 25 July 2005 - 11:14 AM
Oh, it's sincere all right! Has anyone wanted more avidly than Carabosse here that their gift be "enjoyed"?
I also like that it shows how Aurora has grown up to fulfill the gifts of her fairy godmothers--she appreciates sincere generosity (well...it's not actually sincere, but she thinks it is ).
Posted 25 July 2005 - 11:21 AM
Good point, Carbro.
This may be another thread entirely, and I know that there's no realistic point in asking a fairy tale to be logical. But for the sake of talking about it: Why a spindle? Surely Carabosse could have thought up a nastier way for Aurora to die. (Maybe she intended for Aurora to get gangrene. )
Posted 25 July 2005 - 01:13 PM
Well, not always, but, . . . you know.
Posted 25 July 2005 - 02:27 PM
I also prefer the productions where Aurora hands over the flowers (both times) to her mother. It's not that she doesn't like the flowers, but that it is easier to dance without them.
Posted 25 July 2005 - 03:03 PM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 04:05 PM
Posted 25 July 2005 - 05:44 PM
Dale, I'm pretty sure that in the original libretto, Aurora throws them on the ground the second time, so I don't mind it so much.
b1, I like that explanation.
And mel, thank you for the history so I suppose that pretty much dictates that we're stuck with the courtiers trying to take away the spindle but not trying too hard lest they succeed?
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