In her ‘Romeo and Juliet’, first created in 2013 and starring the Bad Boys of Dance, Adrienne Canterna breaks the rules of traditional ballet. This fresh and exciting version of Shakespeare’s tragedy reaches out to a wide audience, combining classical ballet with modern dance and even hip-hop. Continue reading
Before attending St Petersburg’s State Academic Yacobson Ballet’s performance of ‘Sleeping Beauty’, I spoke to three principal dancers: Alla Bocharova (Aurora), Darya Elmakova (the Lilac Fairy), and Andrey Sorokin (Prince Désiré), as well as Lidia Zernova, the company manager.
Alla and Darya both studied at the Vaganova Russian Ballet Academy in St Petersburg, and Andrey studied at Perm State Choreographic College. Andrey has been dancing with Yacobson Ballet for six months, and Alla and Darya are both on their fourth season. Continue reading
‘Sleeping Beauty’ was created and first performed in St Petersburg in 1890 – it was lovely to see it revived by a St Petersburg ballet company, and staged by French dancer and choreographer Jean-Guillaume Bart.
Russian ballet is often seen as the best, most prestigious ballet there is, and at the performance I saw, you could just feel the high expectations in the audience… Which were not disappointed. Continue reading
During my week with the Ballet, I got to see all the different departments that are involved in making the performance possible…
I visited the sewing workshop, where dancers try on the costumes and the seamstresses make/modify them.
I also got to spend some time with Alexandra Henocq, one of the theatre’s 7 prop managers. Their job is to design, create, make or buy all the props needed for ballets, operas, or any performance given at the Théâtre du Capitole. Continue reading
I was lucky to be able to speak to the Ballet’s two ballet masters, Vietnamese Minh Pham and French Emmanuelle Broncin. These interviews were intriguingly different, as you will see.
First I spoke to Minh: “What is your role exactly as ballet master?” He explained to me that he runs the classes, the rehearsals, and assembles ballets as the choreographer’s assistant. And how does he motivate the dancers? “It’s complicated! There isn’t a method, you just have to sense how they are feeling every day: whether they need pushing more, or if they’re tired and they need to go more slowly.” Continue reading
During my work experience at the Ballet, a few of the dancers very kindly answered some questions for me:
The answer to my first question “Why did you choose the Ballet du Capitole?” was always pretty much the same: it’s a smaller ballet company with a very interesting and varied repertoire (a good mix of classical, neo-classical and contemporary); some of the dancers just wanted to try something new. They all love dancing here, and say there is a very good atmosphere.
I asked them whether they usually work more with the ballet masters or the choreographer. Continue reading
Last week, I was lucky enough to do four days of work experience at the Ballet du Capitole, our regional ballet company. The first thing I noticed the morning I arrived, and absolutely loved, was the international atmosphere… Everyone was speaking different languages, and this is definitely one of my favourite things in the exciting world of dance! In fact, the 35 dancers at the Ballet come from 12 different countries.
I learned so much during my week at the Ballet about what life is like working for a dance company – I thought I would share some of it with you! Continue reading