JOY SABLE

The Jewish Chronicle - - LIFE - DANCE La Bayadere is

Royal Opera House

EX­OTIC DANCERS, sa­cred fires, a dead tiger and a drug-in­duced vi­sion of myr­iad beau­ti­ful women… yes, Natalia Makarova’s pro­duc­tion of La Bayadere back at the Royal Opera House. The orig­i­nal bal­let was first per­formed in 1877, when there was a grow­ing fas­ci­na­tion with all things from In­dia and the Far East. The chore­og­ra­phy is a cu­ri­ous mix of ori­en­tal ges­tures — up­turned hands and hand-to-head obei­sance — with pure clas­si­cal dance. The bal­let reaches its apogee in the fa­mous King­dom of the Shades scene, when the war­rior Solor, seek­ing so­lace in opium, sees a vi­sion of his beloved Nikiya, mul­ti­plied again and again.

On the open­ing night, the Royal Bal­let’s corps de bal­let drew cheers for the seam­less qual­ity of their danc­ing. Fill­ing the stage with arabesque af­ter arabesque, the dancers moved in per­fect uni­son — breath­tak­ing.

Vadim Mun­ta­girov as Solor and Mar­i­anela Nunez as Nikiya. first, the mu­sic, by Lud­wig Minkus, may not ap­pear ori­en­tal enough for the story, but it is so melodic and hummable that it re­ally doesn’t mat­ter. Natalia Makarova re­ceived her own ova­tion at the end, and rightly so.

A live per­for­mance will be broad­cast at se­lected

cin­e­mas on Novem­ber 13

PHOTO: BILL ROCK­MAN

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