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Ballet Cymru - Little Red Riding Hood & The Three Little Pigs


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What a hoot! Ballet with jokes. The sort of jokes children like; fart jokes, poo jokes, and knickers. This isn't an adaption of the traditional telling, rather an adaption of Roald Dahl's treatment, which are contained in the splendid Revolting Rhymes. This is a departure from the usual works by Ballet Cymru, who normally dance the works of Shakespeare, classic Welsh tales and Welsh authors. Perhaps it isn't too far a departure, as Roald Dahl was born in Cardiff.

 

Choreography is, as always, by AD Darius James. There are no surprises here. James delivers lots with very little, choreographing to the strengths of the dancers (now numbering 10, an increase of 2 from previous years). I've never seen a Ballet Cymru stage so full. There are four new dancers this year, and they seem to have fitted in well. The real test will be when they appear in The Tempest an established piece that is also on tour. Having said that, I don't think the company have danced The Tempest in a decade, so it will no doubt be adapted to the new cast.

 

The piece is danced to Paul Patterson's musical treatment, which is full of jokes too. The score was recorded by the Welsh Session Orchestra especially for the company. I'd love to see this danced to a live orchestra, if only to see that rarest of percussion instruments, the lions roar in performance.

 

As usual, the costumes are just the merest hint. A pink waistcoat, pink flat cap and a curly tail - voila! Instant pig. Only the wolf wore a mask. Well that's not entirely true as Zorro made a brief appearance and I have no ideal why. Mozart did too, which is very funny.

 

The narration is intact and delivered by Sam Bishop, who dances too. With lines like "The small girl smiles/Her eyelid flickers/She whips a pistol from her knickers/She aims it at the creature's head and BANG! BANG! BANG! she shoots him ... dead.", you really couldn't have not giggled along. The many children in the audience, especially liked the above rhyme.

 

Very short at 35 mins for Little Red Riding Hood and 20 mins for The Three Little Pigs, the large number of children in the audience managed to sit though it without too much interruption. Of course, they will no doubt be familiar with the stories and very probably these versions. They obviously enjoyed the show.

 

Emily Pimm Edwards was definitely enjoying herself as the heroine. She played Red as a haughty, upper class heiress, which is exactly as imaged by Dahl. Pimm Edwards is simply perfect.

 

If you do want to see this, you'll have to get your skates on as there aren't many dates left: http://www.welshball....uk/tour-dates/

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, here's another one from me too :)

 

It'd be great to hear some more of this company: I remember they got some very good reviews for previous works, but unfortunately I've never managed to see them.

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