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The Magic of Ballets

 
This festival sees the ballet take on a contemporary hue beginning with Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company which on Sept 18 presents Upon Reaching the Sun, taking its cue from an excerpt from Woyzeck, the fragmentary play by 19th-century German writer Georg Büchner. The excerpt describes the imaginary journey of a lonely orphan girl. The Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company is one of Israel's most prominent dance companies identified with the works of its artistic director Rami Be'er. Expect a cutting-edge contemporary dance performance.
Compagnia Aterballetto, Italy goes into more familiar territory with Romeo and Juliet (Sept 27). This is the first full performance of Romeo and Juliet as a contemporary ballet. At the helm of the company is Artistic Director Mario Bigonzetti one of Italys most critically acclaimed and famous contemporary choreographers. Expect a striking, eclectic performance with spectacular sets and costumes, both designed by the world-famous installation artist Fabrizio Plessi. The next instalment in ballet takes a classical detour with Swan Lake (Sept 29-30) followed by a neo-classical Pedro & Inês (Oct 2), both ballets are by Portuguese National Ballet.
Every one in Bangkok is familiar with Swan lake but this version has an unexpected twist in the tale. A staging that just has to be seen. Pedro & Ines is based on a true story. The ballet centres around Pedro, the son and heir of King Alfonso IV, who was forced to marry Princess Constanza even though he was in love with Inês. After his wifes death Pedro fled to be with Inês. Inês, however, is murdered on the orders of the king. On succeeding to the throne Pedro had Ines corpse exhumed and crowned. The court was forced to acknowledge her as queen by kneeling before her and kissing her decomposed hand.
Never has Thailand seen such a dramatic and shockingly true story told on stage. The use of huge water tank on stage as the performance arena adds to the drama. Following this dramatic staging is another one, that of A Midsummer Nights Dream by Zurich Ballet (Oct6-7). A ballet in two acts it is based on William Shakespeares romantic comedy that portrays the adventures of four young Athenian lovers and a group of amateur actors, their interactions with the Duke and Duchess of Athens, Theseus and Hippolyta, and with fairies who inhabit a moonlit forest. Classified as Zurich Ballets biggest production, this ballet has the most amazing sets ever seen yet. Consider the fact that they are shipped to Thailand in four 40ft containers by sea and over 65 cubic metres by air and you can begin to understand the size of the production.

At the helm of this, one of Europes foremost ballet companies, is Artistic Director Heinz Sporeli, the continents most celebrated choreographer. Adding their might to the production are actors (Anthony ODonnel and Bill Alexander) from Royal Shakespeare Company, London and an orchestra led by well-known conductor James Tuggle from USA.
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