Friday, October 1, 2010

The Four Seasons by Vivaldi - as Ballet!

 I went to see a ballet a couple of days ago, in Oslo, at the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet.  The performance was The Four Seasons by Vivaldi, choreographed by the Norwegian Jo Strømgren.
It is a ballet like you've never seen before, and Strømgren has interpreted the seasons in his own way, with humour, seriousness and absurdity.  Here you have a concentration camp (fall) and a huge,"living" pig (winter)...  

There are four tableaus, showing different aspects of our time, and of our recent history.  In between these chapters, there are a couple, dancing in front of a curtain made of almanac pages.  They tie the whole performance together, and they observe the different scenes with us, until, in the end, they are alone on the big, darkened stage, with only illuminated, silverly snow falling down around them.

The Norwegian newspaper reviews were not kind to this performance, so, I didn't go there with a whole lot of expectations.  Well, I enjoyed it!  I laughed, I was startled, and I was moved by the beauty of the music and the dance.
Maiko Nishino is divine as the "red thread dancer", and Gilles Berger has done an insane job with the scenography.
Congratulations on a very special  show, and even though the older 'regulars' of the opera/ballet house came with disapproving sounds here and there, I loved it, and so did my daughter, who has been taking ballet classes since she was 3.  She has previously seen The Nutcracker (at least 3 times) and Swan Lake, and she was amazed over how different this was.  She was so excited from the show, that she literally danced while walking to the train station that night.

For more information about this production, click here.  

1 comment:

  1. I love ballets in which the older and more conservative crowd is disapproving, it usually means that they are great. My daughter and I went to one such ballet at PNB called 3 by Dove, it was amazing. It was also very encouraging to her in dance as well.


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