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Shanghai Ballet Swan Lake @ State Theater Jan, 2020


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Maia Makhateli of Dutch National Ballet and Dawid Trzensimiech formerly of Royal Ballet will guest 2 of the performances

"With forty eight swans on stage, the production was directed and choreographed by Derek Deane, formerly the Artistic Director of English National Ballet and currently Artistic Director of Shanghai Ballet, with his team. It has toured 96 successful performances in Europe and Australia since December 2015. Featuring principal dancers Wu Husheng and Qi Bingxue as well as international guest stars, the Grand Swan Lake, with more than 80 dancers’ participation, will follow the timeless tragic love story of Princess Odette and Prince Siegfried and feature the timeless music of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, played live by the New York City Ballet Orchestra, and conducted by Charles Barker from American Ballet Theatre."

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I presume this is a close relative of Derek Deane's production for English National Ballet. He initially did an in-the-round production for the Royal Albert Hall in 1997 which featured 60 swans, and it has been revived many times subsequently.  It is coming back to the Royal Albert Hall this summer - details here


Later on  Deane made a proscenium-arch version of Swan Lake for ENB  which was suitable for touring, with more standard forces. There are quite a few differences between the versions.  The "standard size" version looks as if it was drawn from his memories of earlier Royal Ballet productions. It's had various revisions over the years. At one point I think it had the Ashton pas de quatre in in it, but that went. The ENB version does have Ashton's Neapolitan dance.  Here's a review from last year - googling will find you more


I don't know exactly what version Shanghai Ballet are using. Perhaps Deane has made a further hybrid version.  If I had the chance to go and find out, I think I would. 






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I saw it on Friday night. There were a lot of things I liked about the staging and the performance. Aside from the 48 swans it was a pretty traditional production with a full 16-17 minute last lakeside scene and tragic ending.
The sight of the 48 swans was gorgeous and the swan corps was beautiful, very well synchronized, lovely positions and fluid in their movements. The corps scenes may have been my favorite part of the ballet. All of the dancers were good, particularly their O/O, Qi Bingxue. She had beautiful epaulment, strong balances and strong technique. I was less impressed by her Siegfried, Wu Husheng. He had elegant bearing but his arabesque wasn't great and nothing about his dancing was really outstanding.
The downside was that  I didn't find it very dramatic or emotionally engaging - not sure if that was due to the staging or the performances.
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37 minutes ago, nysusan said:
The downside was that  I didn't find it very dramatic or emotionally engaging - not sure if that was due to the staging or the performances.

I have experienced the same issue with probably all Asian troupes I've ever seen-( as well as with most individual performers). 

This might be a possibility...


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