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La Bayadère – Die Tempeltänzerin, Semperoper Ballett, 08.09.12

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On 08.09.12, I had the privilege to see La Bayadère at the Semperoper. A few thoughts:


The Semperoper is absolutely beautiful. The staircases, hallways and foyers contain painted mythologic scenes, faux-marble columns and walls (an interesting story about the marble), all lit by ornate ceiling and wall mounted chandeliers. The auditorium is just as grand. The seating is comfortable, the views of the stage are great, and the acoustics are fantastic.


The ballet was choreographed by Aaron Watkins after Marius Petipa. Watkins’ version is essential the same as Petipa’s, except for the ending which is much more dramatic. Natalia Sologub (Nikija) and Jirí Bubenícek (Solar) danced their parts beautifully, and the corps de ballet did an exceptional job with the Kingdom of the Shades.


The Saturday evening crowd was perhaps the best dressed I’ve ever seen at a ballet - Men in suits (and a few tuxedos) and women in gowns and evening dresses - all showing off in the foyers and hallways during the interval over a glass of champaign. During the performance, the audience remained silent from the first note to the last note, except where applause was appropriate. There was no talking, no insubordinate picture taking, no phones ringing, just a considerate audience giving its attention to a wonderful ballet company performing its art.


All in all, the beauty of the Semperoper, the gorgeous ballet, and the considerate audience combined for a perfect evening.

Edited by Willie
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