Yes, the score is dark. So that is probably what he was aiming to depict. I just think the cruelty that is part of the fairy tale can still be depicted without trying so hard to "be cool" which is what I think Ratmansky tends to do with costumes and sets. I lived through the 80s and New Wave and punk rock and green hair and mohawks and all that, so his costuming and hairstyles just seem so dated to me from a fashion standpoint although they never did creep into ballet probably until recently, so the look is probably "new" to ballet. And I notice that the 80s looks are back b/c they are "retro." But if he is looking to shock us old people and jolt us awake from classical tutus I have news for him. We all lived that time period and partied and lived it up, so it is not shocking or avant garde to us anymore! LOL
Cinderella's sets are so ugly (but maybe it is to depict the coldness and cruelty of Cinderella's situation....who knows?) and I hated the conga line also. I mean, you have one of the world's most incredible corps de ballet and you have them dance a conga line. That would be fine if it was for a minute and the rest of the corps dancing was exciting or breath-taking in some way. But it is not. It would be interesting to find out what he changes in the Australian version.