Thursday, 20 June 2013


First performed by the Birmingham Royal Ballet in October 1999, what producer David Bintley describes as a proper Giselle, is resurected once more. 

The curtain rises on a quaint little village in the mountains, complete with waterfall. As with all of their productions, BRB's beautiful sets (this designed by Hayden Griffin) are most magical. With the warm, fairytale feel of a pantomime but the realism and detail of the finest photograph you could stare for hours just at the scenery. 

Iain Mackay and Jenna Roberts (By Roy Smiljanic) 

It is of course the world-class ballet that you have ultimately come to see and Jenna Roberts who leads as Giselle has quite a story to tell. Giselle and Loys are deeply in love. Loys has not been truthful and is actually Count Albrecht, son of the local lord and is already betrothed to Bathilde - a lady and his social equal. When a jealous Hilarion (a rival for Giselle's hand) proves who Loys really is and Bathilde arrives to claim him, the heartbreak is too much for Giselle who takes her own life. 

Iain Mackay and Jenna Roberts (By Roy Smiljanic) 

Much more dramatic than BRB's last offering of Coppélia the first act passes at the blink of an eye. The intensity of both the story and dazzling choreography are more than enough to keep an audience fixated to the stage. Iain Mackay as the handsome Count Albrecht shows off his incredible elevation and more than once received applause mid-routine. Tyrone Singleton proves his versatility in characterisation - his Hilarion is a far cry from Coppélia's Hans but danced with equal passion. The Harvest Pas De Deux  of Momoko Hirata and Tzu-Chao Chou is also a definite highlight.

Momoko Hirata and Tzu-Chao Chou (By Roy Smiljanic) 

A beautiful production, even in death - the haunting and gothic second act is graceful and is something of a visual spectacle. Also, the presence of a magnificent white horse is but one example of the extreme lengths this company go to impress. World class company and orchestra - another unmissable classic ballet at the Birmingham Hippodrome until Saturday 22nd June 2013. Book here

(Information on booking for the 2013/14 season at the end of Coppélia review.) 

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