Blog Site by Appointment to His Regal Majesty the Maalie King

He who would be a Leader, let him be a Bridge

Crown Copyright: The Royal Maalie Court

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Tamara

On Saturday 17th February I felt privileged to see Principal Artiste of the Royal Ballet, Tamara Rojo, dancing Odette/Odile in Sir Anthony Dowell's production of Swan Lake in the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (choreography after Petipa/Ivanov, music by Tchaikovsky, conducted by Martin Yates).

Tamara joined the Royal Ballet in 2000, having already danced in a number of illustrious companies, and she has performed all the major roles of the classical ballets.

Tamara Rojo, Principal Ballerina with the Royal Ballet

In this performance she was breathtaking. The contrasting roles of Odette and Odile are demanding, calling for rapid change of style and personality between acts. The ballerina must transform her hair, makeup and costume, with only a few moments left for thought. As principal dancer Sarah Lamb describes in the programme notes, she must fully embody the white swan and then change everything - her face, her movements, the physical attack to the choreography, and most importantly, the use of her eyes in order to convey the exact opposite of Odette in the role of Odile.

As Odette, Tamara was the vulnerable, frightened swan, locked in an everlasting spell by the wicked Von Rothbart to be released only if she found a man who would swear undying love, never to betray her. Her slow pirouettes were perfectly poised, her developpés immaculate, her balanced arabesques motionless. Her warming to Prince Siegfried (danced by Carlos d'Acosta) as he tenderly declared his love was truly moving.

Tamara Rojo as Odette

A grand ball held by Siegfried's mother in a forlorn attempt to get him to pick a bride (he must have had something on his mind to show such disinterest in the six beauties parading before him) was interrupted by the arrival of von Rothbart and his entourage, including his daughter Odile, disguised as Odette.

In this role, Tamara's dazzling virtuosity was shown to superb effect and at the end of her solo variation in the grand pas de deux, in which her 32 fouettés were executed to perfection, the applause was thunderous.

Tamara Rojo as Odile, with the Prince Siegfried

When Siegfried was finally beguiled by Odile and her father to swear his hand in marriage, they mocked him as the distraught Odette appeared in a vision, and I doubt that Siegfried's despair at realising the deception left a dry eye in the House. Of course the betrayal meant that the spell cast by Von Rothbart could now not be broken except by mutual sacrifice of their lives by drowning themselves in the lake, resulting on the death of von Rothbart (danced by Gary Avis) and allowing the remaining captive swans to resume their lives as mortal girls.

Heavy stuff. I still haven't really come down to earth.

37 Comments:

Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Did they have that wonderful bit at the end when the two lovers were transported across the lake in a boat to everlasting bliss? The missed that bit out in the last production I saw.

3:17 am  
Blogger simon said...

fantastic review mate... frankly I am jealous!

4:36 am  
Blogger Maalie said...

Yes, they sailed off to paradise 'oldin' 'ands in the swan boat, thus forfeiting the opportunity to replicate their DNA in their mortal lives.

8:12 am  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Carlos d'Acosta too, what a bonus, he is fabulous too. I know how delightful and exquisite this ballet is, having seen Tamara dance Swan Lake before, she probably knows it so well that she dances it in her sleep.

4:04 pm  
Blogger Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Wow - you are very lucky to have seen it and thanks for sharing the review on the blog - sounds amazing. michelle

9:16 pm  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

I think sharing dna with a swan could get some dodgy results. Glad they included the bliss bit though. You can't have a good weep if it just ends a'leapin and a'creepin into the lake.
Once in Giselle they left out the bit at the end when he starts a crawlin' and a sprawlin' over her grave trying to follow her back in, and I felt really cheated of a good cry.

3:43 am  
Anonymous Ellee said...

I think we are all jealous. No more ballet shoes then, I wouldn't mind a pair of Carlos' - preferebly with him still in them!

1:21 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

No news from Carlos then, oh well...

3:22 pm  
Blogger Maalie said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:57 pm  
Blogger Maalie said...

Ellee, nah, missed on the pointe shoes this time, I didn't feel up to taking on her bull-fighter partner...

5:58 pm  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Two lovers that were transported across the lake in a boat to everlasting bliss?

That's what happened to me and Miki when we caught the ferry to Yokohama.

Jack

12:15 pm  
Blogger Maalie said...

But Jack, unlike the hapless Siegfied and Odette, you have at least been able to replicate your DNA in your mortal lives...

1:15 pm  
Blogger Tortoiseshell said...

What about the thighs?

4:53 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

I did like watching Strictly Come Dancing too, not quite the same, but very amusing.

7:22 pm  
Blogger simon said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:53 am  
Blogger simon said...

Carlos is the best male dancer since Rudolf. That is why Sylvie does not dance with him.....

5:54 am  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Simon, where did you see Carlos, wasn't he a former street dancer in Havana? What a wonderful find for us.

7:22 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Simon, where did you see Carlos, wasn't he a former street dancer in Havana? What a wonderful find for us.

7:23 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Good morning Maalie, hope you are having a good weekend bird watching.

11:07 am  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Why doesn't Sylvie dance with Carlos? Surely the better dancer, the better partner. Or does he steal her thunder?

5:58 am  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Maalie, I guess you are away on another trip, you lucky man, but may I be first to wish you a happy St. David's Day/Dydd Dewi Sant.

9:57 pm  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

Shucks Elle, I wanted to be the first one to say Happy St David's Day. It's Four in the morning here. My brain still thinks it is in Japan.

4:01 am  
Blogger TCA said...

Let me be the first to wish you a happy RAAS season!

W

9:21 am  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

What does RAAS mean?

8:31 pm  
Blogger Tortoiseshell said...

Or, as I understood it over the phone - Happy wrasse season!

Back to blogging after over a week of being too busy!

3:15 am  
Anonymous Ellee said...

WEll it's been and gone now, maybe Maalie is still celebrating St David's Day, I know he likes to party.

8:01 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

WEll it's been and gone now, maybe Maalie is still celebrating St David's Day, I know he likes to party.

8:02 pm  
Blogger Maalie said...

Hi everyone, sorry I've been Rassing 24/7 for the last few days, will blog as soon as I can...

6:50 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Maalie, Good to hear from you, I expect your next post is going to be a cracker, I look forward to it.

7:52 pm  
Blogger Davy said...

"Thighs, thighs, whiskey and thighs, Jim hit a lorry he couldn't get by....", I've done the dram this weekend, but not got in the motor.. lol.

Swan Lake, that's the one for me, the one on His Majesty's video..

It's interview month for me, starting this week, corncrake, owls and eagles.

I treated myself this weekend for my birthday, bought a pair of Leitz binoculars for Jim's Spanish Party... and the fieldwork this season.

Jim, I'll only ever enjoy ballet in your company, I guess.. unless you send me links to the best ones..

Regards Davy!

2:25 am  
Blogger Davy said...

Apologies to my other friends, via Jim, but not online so much, just reading papers and reports, preparing for interviews this week/month.


Love to all my fans! Visit me and sign the Eagle Re-Introduction petition!

Slainté and Solangé

Davy

2:30 am  
Blogger lorenzothellama said...

What does rassing mean and where have you been? Grenoble maybe?

7:16 pm  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Maalie, you are missing all my debates on climate change and nuclear power, where are you?

6:29 pm  
Blogger TCA said...

The trauma of our idiotic, cowardly, hypocritical MPs voting to update our own weapons of mass destruction will probably keep maalie away for some time to come...

11:03 am  
Blogger simon said...

Maalie has had a complete computer crash and has lost most of his information... I phoned him the other day, I think he has only just got the computer back from the repairers...

TCA I would have thought an upgrade would have been appropriate ( not ideal but we do not live in an ideal world)..

12:03 am  
Blogger TCA said...

Upgrade, why?

(1) It's not like nuclear-free countries in the EU are getting nuked every day e.g. Germany.

(2) The UK government is telling the youth of today that carrying knives (even in self defense) only increases one's risk of being stabbed. Surely nuclear weapons are just big boy's flick knives?

10:52 am  
Blogger simon said...

MMnnnn.

I think there is more to it.

I am enjoying the debate mate...

Can we save it for Spain and a few beers? :o)

10:55 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home