Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake, Theatre Royal, Norwich. November 2013.
Last year I tried opera for the first time and found that, at least the one I saw, wasn't for me. Since then I've been thinking about ballet and trying to find one to see. The version of Romeo and Juliet choreographed by Macmillan has been recommended but I'd also heard a lot about the Matthew Bourne's staging of Swan Lake, thus when I found out it was coming to Norwich I knew I had to see it.
Now before seeing it I knew nothing about the ballet or the story at all (I've not even seen Black Swan) and I decided that I wouldn't look it up. I wondered if a whole story could be told completely through music and dance only.
I'm pleased to say that it really can, well at least in this version it really can. From curtain up in act one right through to the end I was spellbound, and by the end I did have tears rolling down my face. How talented are the dancers that I really forgot I was watching men on the stage but just saw swans gracefully moving and then violently reacting?
I know that some people who read my blog are going to see this later in the tour and so I'm not going to say much more - I want the impact for them to be as great as it was for me, but I am looking forward to talking with them about it afterwards!
I shall be eagerly scanning the theatre guides looking for more Matthew Bourne productions and equally really searching for a ballet to see at the Coliseum in London complete with live orchestra. Suggestions of what to see gratefully received.