Sleeping Beauty Matthew Bourne
Ballet to most people is like Marmite.You either love it or hate it..
Last night at The Lowry,this brand new version of Sleeping Beauty sees Bourne return to the music of Tchaikovsky to complete the trio of ballet masterworks that started with Nutcracker! and the international smash hit, Swan Lake.
This timeless fairy tale, about a young girl cursed to sleep for 100 years, was originally turned into a legendary ballet in 1890.
We meet our heroine, Aurora, at her Christening, when fairies and vampires feed the gothic imagination, before the story moves forward a century to the modern day.
Featuring the stunning designs by Olivier Award winners Lez Brotherston (Set and Costumes), Paule Constable (lighting) with sound design by Paul Groothuis, we are taken into the heart of Tchaikovsky’s magnificent score in specially recorded surround sound.
Matthew Bourne’s haunting new production is a Gothic Romance for all ages; a supernatural love story that even the passage of time cannot deter.
Returning to the Marmite theme,the other issue with ballet has always been traditional or modern interpretation?There is no question that there is room for both.My only worry with modern, is that occassionally the narrative can be lost at the expense of staging, which tends to be an issue with the first timers to ballet performance.Several of the audience we spoke to felt that this was partially the case here.
For others,more familiar with the wonderful score, the storyline and its characters,the many lavish elements of this production,more than compensated for any such interpretation of a classic tale.
Some lovely performances too by the Principals,helped us all to engage with the ultimate romance that is Sleeping Beauty.
This production runs until Saturday.