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Thanks, Thalia. I had been to the Sadlers Wells website in an attempt to find a ticket for one of Matthew Ball's performances and the changes weren't showing there. So you've saved me considerable unnecessary expense.

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I may try to get a ticket for the very last performance then on the Sunday matinee ...the only weekend can be in London in January.

But I'm not sure....whether seeing Ball in this will make a difference as I only partially warmed to this when saw it on Friday.....with Bozier and Mower. Though am definitely in the minority as people in the First Circle gave it a standing ovation!!

Im not sure with these standing ovations whether people stand up because they really think the performance deserved it or whether they have to because otherwise they cannot see the dancers on the stage taking their curtain call because of the people in front of them standing up!! 

Ive left the Programme in London and cannot get it till Wednesday so may comment more them though my very first moan is that I spent £6 on a programme which has no details anywhere of the plot.

Well of course I do know the plot ...of the original... but I would like to have seen what Bourne had to say about the exact settings and storyline of his ballet. It just gave the scenes and Acts but no synopsis. 

Anyway I was really looking forward to this but left feeling vaguely disappointed.

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16 hours ago, Thalia said:

Some rearrangement of casting has been announced on Twitter for this week. If you’re going along to see someone in particular it might be worth checking. 

 

https://twitter.com/new_adventures/status/1082304391422578688?s=21

Thank you for posting - at least I know now.  I've booked for Matthew Ball twice and am now disappointed twice.  I have a ticket for the 10th - the only day he is NOT dancing (sigh)

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Hi LinMM, I haven't posted about this since I saw it on 30th December but until you just posted this I thought I was the only person who just didn't really get it!   (It was the first and only live MB show I've ever seen, though I did catch part of his Sleeping Beauty on TV.) I liked the idea of the Swan representing the Prince's desire for freedom, but (especially in Act 3) I found the plot really difficult to follow.  Interesting to find when I looked on Wikipedia afterwards that that's the act that seems to have been most substantially revised since the premiere.  I hadn't had any idea that the Private Secretary(?) was the Rothbart character, and didn't realise there WAS a Rothbart character and found it very confusing without one.

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I did pick that up but right at the end though!! 

I just didn't like the stage settings for any of the swan bits and I know it's different etc but just hated that glorious music at the end set in that bedroom. Both in the park and in the bedroom everything seemed so walled in.....probably reflecting the Princes doomed state of mind but I just didn't like the settings.

The only Act I felt really positive about was the Ballroom scene .....I really enjoyed that and thought Bozier was great as the menacing Stranger ....but I also didn't like the first Act much either .....really disliked all that "at the theatre stuff".....sorry ...I know it was supposed to be funny and I'm always up for a bit of humour etc ...even in Swan Lake ...but I just wanted it to move on I'm afraid.

I didn't want to comment as haven't got the Programme here and wanted to mention the two who played the Queen and the Girlfriend as I thought they were very good in their roles.

Probably revealing my ballet eyes here ....perhaps too much but Boziers feet bothered me as the movement in the air never seemed to quite reach his feet. Is this a deliberate choreographic thing on Bournes part? If so I didn't like it!! 

Mower is a lovely dancer but at times he was just a bit too melodramatic for me .....again not sure if this is a "directed" thing but it sort of took away the pathos a bit for me.....though I did like the final image ( though wish not in the bedroom) of the Swan holding the Prince like that.....he has stolen his soul away while the Queen grieves for his body. 

I am supposing as there was no synopsis that the final scene is in the Princes head and he is driven mad by these dreams and of finding this strange but at times rather nasty Swan he fell for!! OR Did all the other swans actually kill him physically ...for real? 

Nevertheless however clever it was to have the swans erupting out of the bed and walls practically in that final scene I just thought the setting was a mismatch with the music....for me. .....as the music is so powerful at this point. 

So that's my take. It wasn't awful or anything like that but for some reason I was expecting to be moved more by it all. 

I really didn't get the standing ovation thing! As more and more people began to stand up in front of me I couldn't see the dancers on the stage taking their calls but as I had had two wine coiffers next to me since the interval I think I just got into a contrary sort of mood and was probably the only one who didn't stand up in the whole of the First Circle!! 

My only excuse is I nearly didn't make it at all that night as I fell over on Christmas Eve ( completely sober I might add) and injured my back so had been in quite a bit of pain for the whole of the previous week though to be honest it was feeling a lot better by that Friday after an "emergency" visit to the physio paid off! 

Perhaps I should give it another go on the 27th ....if I can get a ticket! 

 

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13 minutes ago, LinMM said:

I really didn't get the standing ovation thing! As more and more people began to stand up in front of me I couldn't see the dancers on the stage taking their calls but as I had had two wine coiffers next to me since the interval I think I just got into a contrary sort of mood and was probably the only one who didn't stand up in the whole of the First Circle!! 

 

This might be a conversation for another thread but I never give standing ovations unless I am in the mood to do so.  And I get very annoyed by people doing so indiscriminately when they are directly in front of me.  There was actually one occasion at Covent Garden which was truly exceptional, and I was itching to give a standing ovation but chose to remain seated because I was at the front of my section and didn't want to block people's view behind me - only later did I realize that I was the only person sitting down :(

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I can understand the confusion in interpreting the 'meaning' of Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake. I sometimes think its best 'not' to overthink it.

As Matthew says himself in the book 'Matthew Bourne and His Adventures in Dance'  (Matthew Bourne/ Alastair Macaulay) the work is 'open to interpretation'.

It does seem to be a bit of a ' Marmite' piece, you either love it or hate it.  

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2 hours ago, RuthE said:

 I hadn't had any idea that the Private Secretary(?) was the Rothbart character...............

 

My thought was that Liam Scarlett might have been influenced by Bourne's take on this in bringing Von Rothbart into the Queen's close circle in his Swan Lake.

 

In the wake of Matthew Ball's injury and, now (happily), return as the Swan/Stranger, it is, I think, somewhat inconsiderate of the Company to reshuffle the casting (especially his casting) this week as well - whatever the reasons.

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1 hour ago, capybara said:

 

My thought was that Liam Scarlett might have been influenced by Bourne's take on this in bringing Von Rothbart into the Queen's close circle in his Swan Lake.

 

 

It's not a unique idea for "Von Rothbart" to be a member of the Queen's close circle.  Christopher Gable's production of Swan Lake for NB (which pre-dated the Matthew Bourne version) also had VR as a confidante of the Queen.

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2 hours ago, capybara said:

 

My thought was that Liam Scarlett might have been influenced by Bourne's take on this in bringing Von Rothbart into the Queen's close circle in his Swan Lake.

 

In the wake of Matthew Ball's injury and, now (happily), return as the Swan/Stranger, it is, I think, somewhat inconsiderate of the Company to reshuffle the casting (especially his casting) this week as well - whatever the reasons.

I believe that his performance on the 10th was changed because they are filming part 2 of the production;  as he was injured on January 4th when they filmed part 1, they couldn't really film on the 10th with him in it.  Such a shame;  as I have missed his performances it would have been great to have them committed to film (or whatever it is they use these days).

 

As far as tickets are concerned, it is definitely worth checking.  I know of people who got two tickets for Ball's performance on Sunday evening at Sunday lunchtime, and another who went along just before the show and got a return.  So it's definitely worth the effort of calling, looking online or going to the theatre if you can.

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Thanks for this explanation, Sim. I'm even more disappointed now as it would have been wonderful to have been compensated with a filmed performance from Matthew Ball. He must be feeling doubly gutted himself.

 

As I have already said, I was in the process of checking/booking yesterday and was a click away from buying for a performance Matthew will not now dance this week when Thalia's alert caught my eye.

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Posted (edited)

I really enjoyed Swan Lake on Sunday evening, with Matthew Ball as the Swan and Dominic North as the Prince.  I never tire of this version and ended up in floods at the tragic end.  It was really well danced by everyone and I was impressed with Matthew Ball.  It was  a pity that Max Westwell had a minor role in this performance but all the same he was good too.  Dominic North is a favourite of mine and he was as good as ever.  It was lovely to have a live orchestra for this run at Sadlers Wells and made a pleasant change from the usual piped music.  A few pics from the curtain call:-

DwaMgTxXQAAJSiO.jpg

Ensemble

DwaMpbVWwAAY3DT.jpgMatthew Ball - The Swan/Stranger

DwaMlQnWsAExIBX.jpg

Dominic North - Prince

DwaMySpWsAA6urr.jpg

Edited by Don Q Fan
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It's a well known fact that Dominic North walks on water!  Great pix DonQ!

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I booked tickets long before the casting came out.  I see I have James Lovell as the Prince.  I was astonished to see how young he is. 

 

Anybody else seen him yet?  

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Apparently there may be Second Circle gallery standing (presumably at right-angles to the stage) available for some of these performances, but they don't show up online.

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1 hour ago, Fonty said:

I booked tickets long before the casting came out.  I see I have James Lovell as the Prince.  I was astonished to see how young he is. 

 

Anybody else seen him yet?  

Yes, Fonty, I saw him with Will Bozier last Sunday matinee. He does look very young. In fact in the past when they had one dancer as the Young Prince and one as the grown up Prince he would no doubt have been cast as the Young Prince! Anyway he was very good. Not so balletic as Liam Mower ( a very fine Prince indeed)  but a very expressive dance actor. 

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40 minutes ago, alison said:

Apparently there may be Second Circle gallery standing (presumably at right-angles to the stage) available for some of these performances, but they don't show up online.

Yes, I managed to get some standing tickets in second circle for one of Matthew Ball's performances on 22nd Jan. I got them when I was at the box office. I'm hoping there may be a chance to get a return for a seat, on the day, as standing for all that time wont be nice for my back !

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if you are really quick the Sadlers Wells site is showing 3 tickets in the first circle right now !

 

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On ‎08‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 13:58, Sim said:

I believe that his performance on the 10th was changed because they are filming part 2 of the production;  as he was injured on January 4th when they filmed part 1, they couldn't really film on the 10th with him in it.  Such a shame;  as I have missed his performances it would have been great to have them committed to film (or whatever it is they use these days).

 

As far as tickets are concerned, it is definitely worth checking.  I know of people who got two tickets for Ball's performance on Sunday evening at Sunday lunchtime, and another who went along just before the show and got a return.  So it's definitely worth the effort of calling, looking online or going to the theatre if you can.

Yes, I had tickets for the 4th and the 10th --- aarrgghh

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I spy some returns on the website for the next few days.

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23 minutes ago, alison said:

I spy some returns on the website for the next few days.

Great, I’ve just rung up and nabbed one for Matthew and Dominic on Sunday night! 

The box office say it’s best to phone as there isn’t always a chance to put the returns online . 

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(And of course the booking fee is the same either way now)

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On 08/01/2019 at 19:37, Don Q Fan said:

...It was lovely to have a live orchestra for this run at Sadlers Wells and made a pleasant change from the usual piped music...

 

Can anyone comment on Don Q's comment? I'm in two minds as to whether to see this at Milton Keynes but if it's not a live orchestra I'll definitely not bother. Does anyone know what they usually do at MK for MB's Swan Lake re the orchestra? (Other ballet companies bring an orchestra to MK).

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Matthew Bourne's New Adventures don't usually tour with an orchestra.  They didn't have one at The Lowry.  The sound of the recorded score was fine there and it didn't detract from the performance.

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I seem to remember that the quality of the recording for Swan Lake was commented on very positively, certainly when it first opened.

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You could have heard a pin drop last night when Matthew Ball was dancing The Swan. That’s quite a statement at Sadlers Wells where people often have snacks and drinks with them and sit there rustling. His powerful presence, light high jumps and fast turns were captivating. But the highlight for me were his arms, or rather.. wings. The fluidity of movement from shoulder to fingertip and subtlety of expression were incredible. I’ve seen many dancers in this role but Matthew only compares to Adam Cooper who has coached the Swans this year. Dominic North brought passion and pathos into his role as the Prince and it was also good to see Will Bozier ( a very fine Swan) on stage as a Big Swan . A very special performance all round.

 

Edited by Mandy Kent
Typo
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