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Video on demand: Giselle

OperaVisionRecorded at Teatr Wielki: Moniuszko Hall, Warsaw, Poland
Free to view
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On demand until Monday 26 June 2023 12:00

Giselle is the ghost-filled tragedy about a beautiful young peasant girl who falls in love with a disguised nobleman named Albrecht. When his identity is revealed by his rival, Hilarion, Giselle loses her mind and dies of heartbreak. After her premature death, Giselle’s ghost protects her lover from the vengeance of a group of evil female spirits called Wilis.

Giselle, which was first performed in 1841 in Paris (and in Warsaw in 1848), is the ultimate romantic ballet, a product of the French romantics longing for an idealised female presence on the ballet stage. This vision set a standard for all the romantic ballets to come. Having women dance en pointe was meant to serve this very purpose; an impressive dance technique inspiring great art, putting the revered female figure at its centre. For this 2022 production, Polish National Ballet have meticulously recreated their designs from 1968 and 1976 by the late Andrzej Kreutz Majewski, whose sets and costumes excellently convey the romantic atmosphere of the French masterpiece. Based on the canonical choreography by Marius Petipa, the production is overseen by Maina Gielgud, once a star of European ballet stages, later the head of the Australian Ballet and Royal Danish Ballet. Danced by some of the greatest ballerinas of all time, Giselle is pastoral charm, touching drama, and ephemerality to savour at Christmas on OperaVision.

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