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Rare ballet music on Radio 3 this week


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Radio 3 has a series of "Music for the Theatre" in its 2 pm afternoon slot this week. It includes today, at 2 pm, Walton's "The Wise Virgins" and tomorrow, probably some way in, Lambert's "Horoscope".

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Sitting here, listening to the Walton (after JS Bach), trying to imagine what Ashton's ballet might have looked like and wondering what different choreographers like Liam Scarlett and Cathy Marston might make of it today! And there will be "Firebird" later in the programme, apparently.

 

Edited to add this link, just found, and I fancy it's the recording mentioned that's being played (BBC Concert Orchestra under Barry Wordsworth):

 

http://www.williamwa...se_virgins.html

 

For anyone who missed the start, Philip Lane had to reconstruct 3 of the 8 pieces as the original score (+ costumes etc etc) was lost when the Sadler's Wells Company fled from Holland in 1940 ahead of the German invasion.

 

More! Click on the 'Wise Virgins' link for further details, where I see that Ballet van Vlaanderen used the suite in 1970. What an educational afternoon!

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Concerning "The Wise Virgins", there is a lengthy description of this ballet, including the set and costumes, in Cyril Beaumont's book "The Sadlers Wells Ballet", and the Bride's solo still survives: I saw Margot Fonteyn dance it at a gala in the Coli - the last time I ever saw her on stage - and I think it has been danced not too long ago by one of the younger members of the RB - Romany Pajdak, I believe.

 

Edit to add. There is a clip on youtube of Fonteyn dancing part of this solo.

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The Wise Virgins solo was revived for the dedication of the Ninette de Valois memorial in Westminster Abbey in November 2009. Danced then in tandem by the Royal Ballet's Natasha Oughtred and Romany Padjak. Some details towards the bottom of this page: http://www.balletass...es/company.html

 

Wouldn't Oughtred have been with BRB by then?

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