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Mathew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty

April 15, 2013

Mathew Bourne’s ballet “Sleeping Beauty” at the Curve in Leicester was very enjoyable. His style is to take the classical ballet and to conjure though design a more modern intricate representation of the story. In his Sleeping Beauty the highlight’s include a wonderful puppet of the baby Princess Aurora and a more overt exploration of the sexuality deep within the story. I have a vivid imprint of the story full of colour in my mind.

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I have seen classical productions of “Sleeping Beauty” by the Royal Ballet at Covent Garden, by the Dutch Royal Ballet in Amsterdam and by the Birmingham Royal Ballet at the Birmingham Hippodrome and I have to say I much preferred all three of them.

There are two main reasons. Three wonderful orchestras playing the incredible score by Tchaikovsky live were an integral part of the experience for all three classical productions whereas Mathew Bourne’s ballet is accompanied by a recording played through speakers. Secondly Mathew Bourne’s ballet just lacks the phenomenal choreography of the classic versions which all built into a crescendo of dance which literally lifts one emotionally. I missed being drawn into the story from the delicate and crooked movement of the wicked fairy Carabossa to being emotionally uplifted by the triumphant solo dance of the Prince in the final.

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