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Swan Lake

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Dutch National Opera and BalletWaterlooplein 22, Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
2019 March 16, 20, 23, 24 14:00, 26, 28, 30, 31 14:00, April 02, 04, 05, May 09, 11, 12 14:00, 14, 15, 17, 18, 19 14:00, 22, 23, 25, 26 14:00, 29, June 02 14:00 (at 19:30 unless shown)
Programme
Swan LakeMusic: Tchaikovsky, Pyotr Ilyich (1840-1893)
Choreography: Marius Petipa (Original), Lev Ivanov (Original), Rudi van Dantzig (Choreography), Toer van Schayk (Choreography of the character dances of Act 3)
Performers
Dutch National Ballet
Boris GruzinConductor2019 Mar 16, 20, 23, 24 mat, 26, 28, 30, 31 mat, Apr 02, 04, 05
Andrew MogreliaConductorMay performances
Toer van SchaykSet Designer, Costume Designer
Het Balletorkest

Swan Lake is often called the ‘ballet of ballets’, and no version captures the emotional eloquence of the story like this one by Rudi van Dantzig.

Like Tchaikovsky’s famous music for Swan Lake, Van Dantzig’s choreography continues to capture the hearts of each new generation. This first and only Dutch production of the ‘ballet of ballets’ has been almost unanimously hailed by critics not only as a milestone of dance history in the Netherlands but also as far surpassing most other interpretations of Swan Lake.


TCHAIKOVSKY

For his version of Swan Lake (1988), Van Dantzig mainly drew on not only Tchaikovsky’s score, but also his letters and journals, interpreting the ballet’s premise of a young man who must acquire a bride but fails as a direct reflection of the composer’s own life and supposed homosexuality.

SIEGFRIED, ODETTE AND ODILE

In this reinterpretation of Swan Lake, the story’s male protagonist, Prince Siegfried, has more depth and character than in other versions. Odette, the White Swan, is no longer a woman transformed into a swan and held captive by an evil sorcerer, but a symbol of the purity and sincerity of Siegfried’s ideals. However, by giving in to material, sensual temptations – symbolised by Odile, the Black Swan – Siegfried betrays those ideals.

EMOTIONAL ELOQUENCE

Swan Lake (1895) is one of the triad of great nineteenth-century Russian ballets, alongside The Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker, in which the composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and choreographer Marius Petipa elevated both ballet music and dance to the highest level. Van Dantzig’s choreography respects the surviving parts of Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov’s original ballet of 1895, leaving the second act and several other famous scenes – including the spectacular ‘Black Swan pas de deux’ with its 32 fouetté turns – virtually unchanged. However, his own choreography’s emphasis on the story as a human struggle gives this version a profound emotional eloquence.

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