Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Sleeping Beauty|
Actors: Sofiane Sylve, Gael Lambiotte
Director: Peter Wright
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Tchaikovsky and Petipa's timeless ballet - acknowledged as the most pure and demanding piece in the classic romantic repertoire - is a stunning example of the sparkling virtuosity of Petipa's rich dance vocabulary. Recorde... more »
A common man's point of view.
Richard Rawls | Dublin Ga USA | 06/30/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In my humble opinion, no better version of this ballet exists. That is, at least, in the six versions I own. I've only been collecting ballets on DVD since February of 2008, so I will not claim to be an expert on ballet, and Sleeping Beauty in particular. However, I already know what I like in ballet, and this one I LIKE. Next on my favorite "Beauty" list is the Australian Ballet version, w/Christine Walsh and David Ashmole.....Sleeping Beauty / Christine Walsh, Australian Ballet.....They are the couple who got me started in my love affair with this beautiful art form. Though I have seen a few live performances of ballet, it never dawned on me how beautiful it could be.
The Het National Ballet (hereinafter to be called the Dutch version) has the most sumptuous sets and costumes of any version I've seen, although the Australian Version comes close. Sir Peter Wright explains in the bonus material, just how important mime is in Ballet, and that the roles of the Lilac Fairy and Carabosse (care a boss) should be mime roles, which they are in this version. Even though Carabosse is in a full length gown befitting an evil Fairy Queen, she does a bit of dancing and twirling. This Carabosse is played by a women though my Russian versions use men. I think a woman playing a female character simply works better. An example of a man in that role is...Tchaikovsky - The Sleeping Beauty / Semizorova, Fadeyechev, Speranskaya, Kopilov, Bolshoi Ballet.
Aurora is played by the brilliant Sofiane Sylve and the Prince is played by Gael Lambiotte. They are fabulous dancing partners and their dancing is spectacular. An added dance, which I have not seen in any other version, is danced just after the Prince wakes Aurora with his kiss. The music used for the PDD is also used in the New York City Ballet production of Balanchine's "The Nutcracker" during Marie's dream sequence...... The Nutcracker......I believe it is from Sleeping Beauty. I have never heard it in any "Beauty" except this one, however, and it is ultra beautiful. This PDD adds immensely to the the second act, which is usually very short and the finale after the kiss is not so abrupt. Sylve is a very convincing young Aurora, and enters the first act with youthful vigor and vitality, with bounding leaps and fast turns. She wobbled slightly in the Rose Adagio, but her balance was very good and she was able to get her arms into the very graceful fifth position after each of the eight hand exchanges with her suitors. Her acting was also very good in her finger pricking scene as she shows her mother and her ladies in waiting the blood on her hand. When She faints and falls to the floor, her mother gives the best performance of a bereaved mother I've seen in any "Beauty" to date. She actually believes her daughter is dying and pleads with the Lilac Fairy to help her. One of the best things Peter Wright does in this Dutch version is to leave Aurora on stage as she enters her hundred years sleep. All of her retinue are put to sleep on stage also, as the vines begin to cover the palace. She should be left on stage and awakened one hundred years later in the same place with all her family and friends present. That was well done.
The second act, where Aurora appears as a phantom they keep her in a tutu, which I don't think works as good as a filmy more ethereal gown. The woodland Sylphs are also in skirt-like tutus and they are very beautiful. The interaction between the Prince, Carabosse, and the Lilac Fairy was well done but all the power was in the Lilac Fairy and not much Bravado coming from the Prince.
The third act shows what can happen in a hundred year time period, from candelabras to electric chandeliers, for instance, but what opulence in the ballroom, what a regal ambiance. Of course, there are the typical divertissements of a "Beauty" third act, with a wonderful pas de quatre and four beautiful variations, Puss-n-Boots, Red Riding-Hood, an exceptional Blue Bird and Princess Florine with their variations, followed by the grand PDD by the bridal couple with their beautiful Adagio and variations, and of course a fabulous finale.
The very best "Sleeping Beauty" to be had. Though I will admit the visual quality was slightly fuzzy, but close ups were very sharp. Don't be afraid to buy this ballet. It is wide screen, several sound formats on two discs with 25 minutes of bonus material and a very nice full color booklet......Richard."