This classic Kirov production of Swan Lake by Oleg Vinogradov filmed at the Kirov Theatre in Leningrad in December 1990 includes the familiar happy ending in the final act where Siegfried fights and ultimately defeats the evil magician von Rothbart and at dawn is reunited with Odette. Yulia Makhalina stars as Odette/Odile and Igor Zelensky now an international star is Prince Siegfried.
Filmed on stage in London featuring extracts from Swan Lake Ondine and The Firebird.
The ballet is set in legendary India. Solar the noblest and braviest warrior of the land returns with his comrades from hunting the tiger. On the pretext that he wants to pray at the holy fire he asks his friends to leave him on his own. In reality however he hopes to meet his secret lover the Bayadere or temple dancer Nikiya. After they have left Solor calls the fakir Magdayeva whom he wants to help him arrange a secret meeting with Nikiyal they are however interrupted by the arrival of the high Brahman and the priests. The Brahman orders Magdaveya to call the other fakirs and to light the holy fire for the celebrations. The Bayaderes appear and begin their ritual dance. When they have finished their dance Nikiya appears; she has been chosen to be ordained as their leader and is taken to the Brahman who lifts her veil and is overwhelmed by her beauty.
A ballet in three acts by Rudolf Nureyev from the Palais Garnier. The story follows the doomed love affair between a warrior and a bayadere who is later killed by her rival...
The Bolshoi Ballet 2 contains performances of:- Ivan The Terrible- The Stone Flower- Spartacus- RaymondaPerformances recorded at the Bolshoi Theatre, 1989, 1990.
Over 13 million people worldwide have now seen Riverdance since its premier in Dublin in 1995. It is still the most successful and biggest dance show in the world. This latest recording filmed live in Geneva captures the show in its newest production. With its ground-breaking numbers new costumes and dance routines this DVD proves why Riverdance is the world's most popular dance show!
Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake, performed at the Mariinsky Theatre by the Artists of the Mariinsky Ballet and the Orchestra of the Mariinsky Theatre, and conducted by Valery Gergiev.
A deluxe edition DVD set comprised of the best-selling fitness videos New York City Ballet Workout Volume 1 and 2. These workouts are designed to help you develop the strength grace and poise of a dancer. An excellent alternative to fast paced high-energy workout routines this unique exercise program balances art life and fitness into the perfect workout for any age or fitness level. Whether you love ballet or are simply searching for an alternative workout regimen designed to produce a strong graceful body this program will deliver exceptional results.
""Billy Elliot in Havana"" is how the Evening Standard described this sensational dance and music extravaganza featuring 19 dancers and a live Cuban band. The Daily Telegraph enthused ""Soaring sexy and spontaneous.."" and certainly Carlos Acosta the star and creator of this brilliant new production filmed live at London's Sadler's Wells is considered by many to be the greatest dancer in the world right now. Some even describe him as the new lord of dance! All the soul and passion o
La Fille Mal Gardée ("The Unguarded Maiden"), perhaps the best-known work of composer Ferdinand Hérold, is here presented in a Royal Ballet production freely adapted, arranged and conducted by John Lanchbery. The unquestioned centre of attention is Royal Ballet superstar Lesley Collier who plays Lise, the beautiful farm girl whom her widowed mother (Brian Shaw) plans to marry to the eligible Alain (Garry Grant) despite Lise's love for young farmer Colas (Michael Coleman). This is a colourful pastoral romp with pause for tender and lyrical moments and plentiful opportunities for Collier to enchant her many admirers. Royal Ballet principal conductor Lanchbery--himself composer of the well-loved Tales of Beatrix Potter (1971)--brings all his flair for this sort of carefree entertainment to play and the result is delightful. Filmed for BBC television at Covent Garden in January 1981, the witty, energetic and romantic choreography is by Frederick Ashton (his dancing chickens are hilarious, as is Shaw's "clog dance" in Act Two) and the stage design by Osbert Lancaster, whose legacy adds charm to a much more recent BBC Royal Ballet film of Coppélia (2000). Hérold's score is filled with playfulness, melody and laughter, making this a very superior pantomime. --Gary S. Dalkin On the DVD: Presented at the original 4:3 TV ratio, the focus is soft throughout and details lacking in long shots are reduced to a formless blur. The image looks washed-out, with colours missing any sparkle or depth. The live stereo sound is much better, being detailed, full, and free of the hiss one might expect from a TV soundtrack of this vintage. The disc offers one page of credits, a three-page synopsis and a web link. The drab black and white booklet repeats this information in more detail in various languages, but offers nothing on the performers, composer or conductor. --Gary S. Dalkin
This Swan Lake was the unexpected popular hit of 1996, when radical choreographer Matthew Bourne took Tchaikovsky's traditional ballet by the scruff of the neck and reworked it with a myriad of modern influences and themes to astonishing effect. Seldom have the dark psychological riptides at the heart of so many classical ballets been so brilliantly exposed. The Prince (Scott Ambler) is a wretched and dissolute young man dominated by his mother, the Joan Collins-like Queen (Fiona Ambler). Shades of Tennessee Williams, indeed. Von Rothbart becomes a press secretary, more sinister éminence grise than hissable villain. Most startling of all, The Swan (Adam Cooper) is a muscular, emphatically masculine male. Bourne has stressed the universality of his interpretation, which proved such a success for his Adventures in Motion Pictures dance company. And indeed this is never an overtly "gay" Swan Lake, although the electricity of the pas de deux at the height of Act 2 delivers a palpably homoerotic charge. Its universal threads--as Bourne suggests, the need to be held and understood is common to us all--are synthesised in the utterly moving conclusion as the Swan cradles the lifeless Prince and raises him to a better place. Swan Lake becomes a human, rather than simply romantic, tragedy. On the DVD: Swan Lake is presented in full screen 4:3 video format and this version would certainly have benefited from widescreen to show off the dazzling court and night club scenes as well as the lake and the impact of the all-male swan corps de ballet. But the lush Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound serves the rich interpretation of Tchaikovsky's score from The New London Orchestra to handkerchief-wringing effect. Extras include menu-driven resumes and a synopsis. --Piers Ford
Two very different Stravinsky ballets are here presented by The Royal Ballet: the traditional, colourful designs perfectly suit the opulence of The Firebird, contrasting with the later, more austere, ritualistic scoring and choreography of Les Noces ("The Wedding"). Firebird is a traditional fairytale: the Prince gets his girl (a princess, naturally), with a little help from a magical Firebird, by defeating the evil Kostchei, who's holding the Princess and her fellow maidens captive. The devil notoriously gets all the best tunes, and with the riveting presence of David Drew's Kostchei it's apparent that baddies get the best moves in dance, too. Leanne Benjamin is an immensely athletic Firebird and Jonathan Cope, as the Prince, dances with style and personality. Les Noces is, by contrast, a genuine ensemble piece, with the principals (the bride and groom) being almost less important than the corps de ballet itself. There are a few moments of less-than-perfect ensemble here, but these pale into insignificance in the face of the raw power of Stravinsky's angular music (scored for four pianos, percussion and chorus with solo voices). A third item finds Stravinsky conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra in his own Firebird Suite. The date was 1965 and he was a frail 83 at the time, but the concentration of the reading is compelling, as is his own stern visage, only breaking into a smile at the very end of the performance. This is an excellent filler for a first-rate ballet release. On the DVD: The Firebird & Les Noces on this disc are presented with terrific technical values, both visually and in sound quality (the Stravinsky archive performance is in mono, however, but it's perfectly respectable). This is a real feast for the eye, backed up by solid documentation in the booklet and excellent additional features--David Drew's arch and entertaining "Nijinska's World" and behind-the-scenes rehearsal footage--that will appeal to both seasoned ballet fans and those who are new to the art form. --Harriet Smith
Scintillating" is the word which comes to mind to describe this performance of Delibes' Coppélia. Both the story and music (here presented in 2.0 Dolby stereo only, which is a shame) are among the most robust in the tradition, and here Oleg Vinogradov's choreography gives us the most extrovert depiction of an already extrovert subject. Highlights abound, but Irina Shapchits's Swanilda and Petr Rusanov's Coppelius are particularly delightful. The former is a boisterous, tomboyish interpretation, providing an additional dimension of contrast with the soullessness of Coppelius' dolls, while the latter eschews the bumbling eccentricity sometimes imposed on the role and instead depicts the dollmaker as an almost wraith-like, Mephistophelian figure. The disc carries one multi-angle option plus a DVD-ROM article by Harlow Robinson which includes a Web link to the label's home page, which is just as well given the drab, parsimonious nature of the accompanying black-and-white booklet. However, just buy this disc for the spectacular performance--you'll be glad you did. --Roger Thomas
Ten years ago the Spanish flamenco dancing sensation Joaqun Corts took the UK by storm with his famous show Gypsy Passion. Now after a two year absence from the UK Joaqun is back with a fabulous new reworking of his show 'Mi Soledad' (My Solitude) at the Royal Albert Hall. The show captured on this DVD sees the superstar returning to his roots as a solo performer a flamenco dancer par excellence. He is supported by 18 musicians representing the cream of contemporary talent in flamenco music. Through the vehicles of the music and of his unmistakable trademark 'zapateado' Corts takes us straight to the soul of his art using a rich palette full of the colours of flamenco. The DVD is presented for the first time in a limited tour edition (digipack with special effects)
Baryshnikov, Harvey and Don Quixote is a combination which could hardly fail to be a crowd-pleaser, but in an era when armchair ballet audiences have a huge selection of sure-fire winners to choose from it's worth reflecting on just why this production is so good. This is the 1983 Quixote from the New York Metropolitan Opera House, full-length and, indeed, full of merit. The staging is traditional and over-designed in the best possible way, with Brian Large's video direction capturing the whole apparatus with consummate skill (this is one of the few canned ballets which won't have you fretting over there being too many or not enough close-ups, tracking shots, wide-angle panoramas and so on--they're all there, and they're all uncannily where they should be) and with the cast seemingly having an enormous amount of fun, particularly Baryshnikov himself, whose twinkly eyed Basil is totally engaging. The most intriguing performance, however, falls to Richard Schafer as Quixote. Rather than allow the character to degenerate into buffoonery, Schafer depicts the elderly knight as mysterious and, indeed, almost mystical in his delusions; here, Quixote is not so much a clown but a seer, bearing a strange dignity which contrasts poignantly with the rumbustiousness around him--an elegant twist within an already very pleasing interpretation. --Roger Thomas
If Christmas is an elusive, childhood state of mind, Peter Wright's 1985 Royal Ballet production of The Nutcracker, recorded at Covent Garden, is just the thing to recapture it. The delicately symmetrical choreography of Wright and Lev Ivanov ensures that the stage is constantly filled with the mesmerising enchantment demanded by Tchaikovsky's perennial favourite. The ballet's success will always lie, in part, in its familiarity and its intrinsic status as Christmas entertainment, but the best productions, like Wright's, give equal weight to the dark forces of Hoffmann's original tale, which must be overcome before good and innocence can prevail. Here, the sadness of Drosselmeyer is a potent thread in the ballet, resolved in a moving, well-judged moment as the curtain falls. There is real magic in the dancing, from Julie Rose's charming, constantly involved Clara to the irresistible images of the divertissements. But rightly, the laurels go to Lesley Collier as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Anthony Dowell as the Prince for a pas de deux that seems to hover above the stage without making contact. And, like Wright's production, the splendid sets of Julia Trevelyan Oman--combining traditional Victorian Christmas images, a delicate filigree flower garden and pre-Raphaelite angels--steer the right side of sentimentality. On the DVD: The Nutcracker has no extras on this DVD, although the booklet provides adequate production notes. The 4:3 format also provides adequate picture quality for a mid-1980s television production, although no amount of colour adjustment improves a slightly washed-out look. The sound, Linear PCM Stereo, makes the orchestra sound robust and solid at the occasional expense of subtlety. --Piers Ford
The awesome technique and strength of the Bolshoi Ballet is shown to great effect in Yuri Grigorvich's legendary Spartacus the epic story of a Thracian slave's fight for freedom. Grigorvich's choreography fills the huge Bolshoi stage with dynamic scenes of tension and conflict. This 1984 performance was directed for video by Preben Montell and stars two of the greatest artists of the Bolshoi Ballet of recent years. Irek Mukhamedov brings his stunning technique to the role of Spartacus and Natalya Bessmertnova gives a deeply moving performance as his wife Phrygia.
The first performance of Sleeping Beauty at the Marinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg in 1890 choreographed by the legendary ballet master Marius Petipa was doubtless the pinnacle of classic Russian ballet tradition.Tchaikovsky's score composed in 1889 was created based on a scenario from Petipa that took the composer's wishes into account from the outset. It was a 'number' ballet score which was a homage to the baroque 'ballet de cour.' The premiere of Sleeping Beauty was not gr
Tap Dogs the all-male Australian dance troupe have taken the world by storm becoming an international sensation with their sell out tour..leaving packed audiences gasping and howling for more! Tap Dogs put power humour high velocity and raw energy into tap. This is a show that hypnotises audiences with the thunder of synchronised feet. Aussie guys stomp their way through a dynamic succession of pulsating routines. This is testosterone tap!
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