Saturday, 28 April 2012

Manon. RB. 2008.

Watch Part 1. Here:

Watch Part 2. Here:

In this Royal Ballet production, costumes, scenery and lighting feast the eye. 
MacMillan’s genius shines everywhere, in his acute observation of character and 
traits transformed so sharply into dance. Take the evolution of the relationship 
of Manon and Des Griex. As they meet they are young and rather naïve and innocent. 
In Act 1 their dancing together, with tender ‘travelling lifts’ has the freshness 
and exhilaration of new-found love. In the next scene in their love nest, the 
intimacy and ecstasy of their dance movements leaves no doubt that they are now 
consummated lovers blissfully aware of each other’s bodies. After Des Grieux leaves, 
and her brother Lescaut and her rich admirer, G.M., come to entice her away with 
jewels and furs, the mood and movements descend to degradation as Manon abandons 
love for riches. In this amazing pas de trois, Tamara Rojo’s figures here are so 
elastic and snake-like sinuous, that one would imagine she is made of india-rubber. 
In the end Manon’s rapaciousness catches up with her and she descends through remorse 
to ruin when she is deported as a prostitute and a thief to the New World. Her final 
dance with Des Grieux with whom she has run off into the Louisiana swamps after his 
victorious duel, graphically declares her weakness and despair in Rojo’s heavier 
mournful movements. 

Cast List:
Carlos Acosta (Des Grieux)
Tamara Rojo (Manon)
José Martin (Lescaut)
Christopher Saunders (Monsieur G.M.)
Laura Morera (Lescaut’s Mistress)
Genesia Rosato (Madame)
Thomas Whitehead (The Gaoler)
Paul Kay (Beggar Chief)
Philip Mosley (Old Gentleman)
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House
Conductor: Martin Yates
Choreography: Kenneth MacMillan

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