There was a buzz of excitement about the fuller than usual concourse to Horsecross on November 10.
It was going to be a packed house for the Russian State Ballet and Opera House of Astrkhan with their live orchestra for Tchaikovsky’s magical Swan Lake.
This company of young dancers did not disappoint. There was some rewriting of the Swan Lake storyline: some clever, some you wondered why they had replaced the far-fetched with the equally unbelievable.
The Prince, Artem Pugachev, tall, with very long legs so his lifts appeared incredible, was given a negative role, languid and a little bored.
Symmetry amongst the large corps de ballet was generally good, particularly later when the 18 swan maidens gracefully filled the wide Perth Concert Hall stage.
The change to the lake was effectively and almost instantly managed by pulling away the curtain backdrop of the gothic court - the fatal final waves also showed good stagecraft.
The Prince falls in love with Odette, a svelte Marina Nomyrova. The swans and the duets were entrancingly done, as, to the delight of the audience, the four little swans.
Often Odette and Odile are danced by one ballerina. Here in a convincing re-write the good and the evil pair (Rothbart, Maxim Melnikov, and Odile, Anastasia Turchina) mirrored each other in dance with a more modern feel.
The costumes of the retinues were sumptuous: red velvet for the Hungarians and pale blue and white for the Poles.
In total it was a superb performance, both enjoyable and well capable of awakening interest. On December 9, Friends of Perth Cathedral Music (FPCM) will once again welcome the Perth High School Musicians performing an 11.30am concert at Perth Cathedral St Ninian’s. Tickets at the door £7 and £5 concessions and members, accompanied children free. Proceeds to future musical training .
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