Hey, “Beauty”: Wake up!


sleeping beauty historic wikiAh, “The Sleeping Beauty” ballet.

Tchaikovsky, its composer, was lucky. They wrote his stuff down.

The Russian Imperial Ballet choreographer, Marius Petipa, less so. No video cameras in 1890. So following Petipa’s original “Beauty,” a century of quibbling ensued over the grand spectacle’s staging, intentions, and shoot, its steps!

A huge eye-glazing gob of ink has been devoted to academic and critical discourse — all for gillian murphy sleeping beautya ballet I never found as compelling as other 19th century full-evening works.

But the aesthetic mish-mash of American Ballet Theatre’s “Beauty” production dating to 2007– now on view at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion — gives me greater appreciation for those who care for the historic accuracy of the lumbering full-evening pageant.

Read my Los Angeles Times review here.

photo: Carlotta Brianza as Princess Aurora and Pavel Gerdt as Prince Désiré, costumed for the Grand Procession of Act III in Petipa’s original production of The Sleeping Beauty. (Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg, 1890) Gillian Murphy photo: Gina Ferrazi, Los Angeles Times

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