I’m still in awe after last night’s premiere of the Swan Lake by the Shanghai ballet. It was a night to remember. The impressive ballet production was brought to the Netherlands and produced by Stardust Theatre, and English choreographer/artistic director Derek Deane. Until January 17, 2016, the Shanghai ballet company will entertain us in 8 different cities: Amsterdam, Groningen, Enschede, Rotterdam, Heerlen, Apeldoorn, and Den Haag. So this Christmas season the Netherlands can be proud to have the European premiere of this impressive and beautiful ballet epic. Other European countries will follow soon.
What makes this production of the Swan Lake unique, is that instead of the usual 16 swans, there are 48 swans in this production. The choice of ballet maestro Derek Deane was also the most obvious. Derek Deane, renowned for his work with the English National Ballet, has a tremendous reputation in the field of big arena productions. His Swan Lake production was among others to see at The Royal Albert Hall.
The performance was so moving and really gave me goose bumps. The 48 swans graciously and in sync fluttered around the stage as being lightweight and moving like real swans. It was a spectacle I have never witnessed before on a stage, with beautiful lighting adding an enchanting atmosphere to it. In this premiere show, the principal dancers were award-winning Iana Salenko, originally from Kiev and principal at the Staatsballett Berlin, and Steven McRae, who is principal at the Royal Ballet and originally from Sydney. Most impressive were the story lines at the swan lake (act 2 and 4), as well as the part of the 3rd act where the black swan left us with our jaws dropped after making numerous (I lost counting) pirouettes.
For the choreographer Deane it was a real challenge to translate a hall production into a theater production. Deane says: “The result is truly magnificent! It is much more touching and poetic than I had ever imagined. The premiere early this year in the total sold Grand Theatre, Shanghai was a world sensation – which ignited international interest.
The Shanghai ballet company consists of 100 dancers, and it is an enchanting, magical performance. Without compromising the authenticity of the Swan Lake the beautiful Chinese ballerinas form a glamorous, homogeneous whole, which in appearance and perfection is not inferior to the Mariinsky or Bolshoi Ballet and The Royal Ballet in London.
For more information and tickets visit the website.
Watch the promo video below: