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Swan Lake

Music by Tchaikovsky

Moscow City Ballet

Palace Theatre, Manchester

9 February 2017

All the courtly gang are here.

We have king, queen, prince and princess; Harlequin and Raven; swans white and chequered and black. One royal scene had gone astray, mind, we missed the one where the prince is toking a crossbow and goes a-hunting. But that was more than made up for by the performance of Oryekhova Liliya as the swan princess. Her Black Swan had a serpentine quality: insinuating, seductive and subtly diabolical. She was worth the damnation of your soul.

There were so many white swans, a munificent profusion. The corps de ballet performed admirably, as one can see above. You saw a dazzling phalanx of swans arrayed like an heavenly shield.

I won’t give away the ending but it was a happy one and the bad guy – a hooded and cloaked Raven, a sinister figure – got his comeuppance. We need as many happy endings as we can get nowadays…

For those who need to see Swan Lake regularly as soul food, a form of spiritual renewal, this one was a pretty good fix, another excellent production from Moscow City Ballet, who are currently touring the UK.  Further details can be found here.

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