This superb collection of stunning pas de deux from many of the best loved classical ballets features some of the most celebrated partnerships of recent times. There are stunning perfomances choreographed by Sir Kenneth MacMillan Marius Petipa Sir Frederick Ashton and Yuri Grigorovich from productions by The Royal Ballet The Kirov Ballet The Bolshoi Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. Also including a pas de deux from Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake (danced by Adam Cooper and Sc
It's easy to see why The Nutcracker, Tchaikovsky's perennially popular ballet first performed in 1892, has such enduring appeal. As Patrice Bart's 1999 production shows, it is always beautiful to look at, lending itself to the Christmas season where it has a permanent place in the schedules of the major dance companies. And Hoffmann's tale of the troubled child who must go on a wonderful (and occasionally terrifying) journey of discovery has a universal and timeless appeal. Bart's production for the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin builds on Petipa's original choreography and develops the context of the child Marie's (Nadja Saidakova) anxiety into a strong narrative. The godfather Drosselmayer (Oliver Matz) is initially a sinister figure, forcing her to confront past events before leading her into the glittering land of the Sugar Plum Fairy. Here, all expectations are exceeded. The familiarity of Tchaikovsky's intricately woven themes works in total harmony with sumptuous production values. The dancing is sublime. As the Prince, Vladimir Malakhov evokes the spirit of a young Nureyev. His pas de deux with the Sugar Plum Fairy should challenge even the most cynical tear ducts. Sit back, share the frisson of anticipation as Daniel Barenboim enters the conductor's box and let the whole experience engulf you. On the DVD: There are no extras. In addition to the 16:9 picture format, which enhances the authentic theatrical atmosphere, the Dolby Digital 5.1 sound helps make this Nutcracker an aural feast. Under Barenboim's masterful control, the orchestra draws you into the heart of the music. Booklet notes provide historical background as well as performer biographies, but a more complete cast list would have been useful. --Piers Ford
Since its performance by The Royal Ballet in 1965 Sir Kenneth MacMillan's masterpiece Romeo and Juliet has been one of the greatest successes in the repertory winning world wide acclaim. His powerful and sensual choreography thrillingly captures the passion and agony of Shakespeare's tragedy alongside Prokofiev's glorious score. The classic performance filmed at Covent Garden in 1984 stars Wayne Eagling and Alessandra Ferri as the lovers both of whom dance their roles with tremendous intensity.
Three of the most enchanting Ballet's brought together for the first time as a specially packaged gift for any aspiring ballet dancer
Ballet Favorites is a spectacular compilation of sequences from some of the world's best loved ballets - La Fille mal Gardee The Nutcracker Giselle The Sleeping Beauty Romeo and Juliet La Bayadere The Prince of Pagodas and Don Quixote. On display are the talents of some of the greateset dancers of recent years with the world's top ballet companies: American Ballet Theatre The Royal Ballet The Kirov Ballet The Paris Opera Ballet.
Learn how to be a real ballet dancer with this magical video. We follow the basic steps for absolute beginners to those preparing for their first Presentation Class.Twin sisters Grace and Evie are preparing for their first lesson by going shopping for their dance outfit and ballet shoes.We meet their older sister Mia as she excitedly prepares for her first Royal Academy of Dance Presentation Class. We also see 11 year old Polly as she practises for her part of Clara in her ballet school's performance of The Nutcracker and follow her visit to a ballet school for older girls.Featuring dancers of different ages and experience viewers will be enthralled as they learn the basic do's and don't's of ballet from Good Toes - Bad Toes to Demi Plie and Saute.Teacher Sally-Anne Hodge is a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Dance and an Associate of the Royal Academy of Dance.
Three features from choreographer Christopher Bruce including: 'Silence Is The End Of Our Song (1983)' 'Rooster (1994)' and 'Swansong (1989)'.
The Irish hard-shoe sensation Riverdance underwent its second incarnation with Live from New York City, a 1996 performance filmed at Radio City Music Hall. The dazzling choreography and energetic score remain, but Michael Flatley was replaced by less-flamboyant Colin Dunne, a superb technician who works well with Flatley's former colead, Jean Butler. About half an hour longer than the 1995 original, Live from New York City expands upon the second act's theme of the Irish leaving their homeland for other parts of the world. In the most engaging new number, "Trading Taps", a trio of Irish dancers faces off against two urban American tappers. While much of this show will be familiar, it's different enough to be enjoyed on its own terms. It's also more stylishly shot, but that's also its biggest drawback--frenetic editing that allows only brief glimpses of the dancers and leaves the viewer dizzy. --David Horiuchi
First performed at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow in 1954 this ballet draws on the rich heritage of Russian folklore to tell the tale of the young stonemason Danila who must choose between his village sweetheart Katerina and a magical temptress. It is based on fairy tales from the Urals collected by Pavel Bazhov and set in the middle of the 19th century.In Stone Flower you can feel Prokofiev's resignation after the hard struggle with the political situation but nevertheless he hasn't lost his brilliance and the music of his last ballet still is full of catchy tunes and joyousness.However with the completion of his composition it took four years before it received its premiere in Moscow and was not a great success at all. It was only three years later with the choreography of Yuri Grigorovich that Prokofiev's Stone Flower finally come to a glorious resurrection. The young choreographer simplified the story and focussed on nothing but the dance. The ballet became his first major success. The presented version shows a reproduction of this choreography from 1957 which has become immortal.
Lord of the Dance and Riverdance sensation Michael Flatley in his third show displaying once again the magic of his dancing style This DVD contains all of Michael's greatest hits plus sneak previews of exclusive dances recorded especially for this programme. Also features 5 brand new dances new versions of his classics and the story of his phenominal career in his own words.
Michael Flatley's Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games - a spectacular new staging of the traditional masterpiece; a magical adventure of sight and sound that transports its audience to a mythical time and place lifting the spirits and capturing the hearts of all who experience it. Based on Irish folklore this classic tale of Good vs. Evil expressed through the universal language of dance has thrilled audience's worldwide and catapulted Irish dance to a new dimension and unprecedented worldwide acclaim. With all the visceral precision and thrills of the original Lord Of The Dance: Dangerous Games features new staging new costumes and choreography and 40 of the world's most outstanding young performers directed by Michael Flatley. With new music by composer Gerard Fahy this latest iteration combines the best of tradition with all the excitement of new music and dance!
The story of Raymonda takes place in the Middle-Ages and is set in the south of France. Raymonda is a young noblewoman waiting for the return of her fianc Jean de Brienne a knight who is on a crusade in the Holy Land. Meanwhile however the Saracen knight Abderachman appears on the scene and first of all pays her court but then uses force to try and make her bend to his will. Thanks to the warning and help of a ghost who is thought to be an ancestor and patron saint of her family
La Sylphide which first appeared in the 1830's was the world's first Romantic ballet. The story of James a young Scottish farmer enchanted by a sylph or tree fairy on the eve of his wedding combines reality and fantasy. The great Danish choreographer August Bournoville created a version of La Sylphide for the Royal Danish Ballet in 1836 and it remains his most famous and enduring ballet. The Royal Danish Ballet rightly regards its interpretations of the Bournoville classics as being in the purest and most faithfully maintained tradition. This production recorded at the Royal Theatre Copenhagen in 1988 features Lis Jeppesen as La Sylphide. She is of the most famous interpreters of the role which requires lyrical interpretation as well as superb technique. Nikolaj Hubbe and Sorella Englund also star as James and Madge respectively.
Alolphe Adam's Giselle is the first of the great classical ballets and this production was choreographed by Patrice Bart and filmed at La Scala in Milan.
This special studio recording of David Bintley's three act ballet is an enchanting portrayal of life in a northern English town at the turn of the 19th century. It is based on Harold Brighouse's much-loved play of the same name.
Aram Khachaturian's Spartacvu The Bolshoi Ballet. Performed by Soloists and Corps de ballet of The Bolshoi Theatre Of Russia.
Choreographer Kenneth MacMillan created some of the most popular ballets of the late 20th century drawing inspiration from impassioned and complex relationships from music and from young dancers whose talent he nurtured. This boxed set includes Romeo and Juliet and Manon two of the most frequently performed works in The Royal Ballet''s repertory and Prince of the Pagodas in which the role of Princess Rose was created for the young Darcey Bussell. Romeo And Juliet Prokofiev Since its first performance by The Royal Ballet in 1965 Sir Kenneth MacMillan''s masterpiece Romeo and Juliet has been one of the greatest successes in the repertory winning world-wide acclaim. His powerful and sensual choreography thrillingly captures the passion and agony of Shakespeare''s tragedy alongside Prokofiev''s glorious score. Nicholas Georgiadis'' designs colourfully evoke Renaissance Italy and provide a magnificent setting for the unfolding drama from the splendour of the Capulet ball to the cold bleakness of the vault in the last tragic moments. This classic performance filmed at Covent Garden in 1984 stars Wayne Eagling and Alessandra Ferri as the lovers both of whom convey the intensity of young love. Prince Of The Pagodas Britten Sir Kenneth MacMillan's glorious ballet The Prince of the Pagodas provides a fascinating and magnificent spectacle of classical dance on the grandest scale. Nicholas Georgiadis' enchanting oriental designs complement Britten's only ballet score inspired by the sounds of the gamelan establishing a fairy tale ambience. This production by The Royal Ballet filmed at Covent Garden in 1990 stars Darcey Bussell in dazzling form as Princess Rose and Jonathan Cope as the Prince. This is the role that launched Darcey Bussell''s career. Accompanying The Prince of the Pagodas is Out Of Line a documentary portrait of Kenneth MacMillan with extracts from many of his ballets including The Burrow Romeo And Juliet Gloria Manon and The Prince Of The Pagodas. Manon Music of Massenet orch. Lucas Kenneth MacMillan''s tragic lyric ballet is a moving tale of corrupted innocence in early 18th Century Paris in which the lovely Manon finds both happiness and grief at the hands of men who love and abuse her. Manon is one of MacMillan''s best-loved ballets and this acclaimed 1982 performance from The Royal Ballet at Covent Garden stars Jennifer Penney as Manon and Anthony Dowell as Des Grieux with David Wall as Lescaut.
Tchaikovsky's 'The Nutcracker' performed by The Kirov Ballet and Orchestra conducted by Viktor Fedotov. Dancers include Viktor Baranov and Larissa Lezhnina. Filmed at the Maryinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg.
The strength of the Kirov Ballet's Giselle is also, in a sense, its principal weakness: this is a no-gimmicks, no-frills production in a performing tradition that goes back to the introduction of the work to Russia in the mid-19th century. The advantage of this is that, after all, Adam's ballet is a work of deliberate naiveté, in which a village maiden dies of a broken heart over the mere fact that her lover has deceived her about his social class; there is no subtext here nor any need for any. Galina Mezentseva is more or less perfect, both in the delicate simplicity of her every gesture and movement and in the overall sweetness and devotion that they convey; Konstantin Zaklinsky is an equally fine Albrecht--for once we entirely believe in his absence of malicious intent and welcome his salvation from her vengeful fellow ghosts. Of the others, Gennadi Selyutsky is a slightly melodramatic Hilarion, whose death in terror is a fine piece of high Victorian theatre, and Tatyana Terekhova makes the spirits' leader a figure in whom terrifying justice and vengefulness are united. On the DVD: The DVD has no frills either except for a link to the NVC-arts Web site; the booklet provides a synopsis and, criminally, no other information about either ballet, production or stars. --Roz Kaveney
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