Wednesday, March 7, 2012: Staging the Joy of Life

Javiér Torrés

Guest choreographer Javiér Torrés currently in rehearsal for The National Theatre Ballet's Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty: Staging the Joy of Life

This backgrounder article by Václav Janeček is sponsored by The National Theatre Ballet as a service for Opus Osm readers. You can read the entire article, which is continued in our Re:Source section, by clicking on the black “Re:Source” tab at the top of the page.

Sleeping Beauty is one of the most-often staged ballets (besides Swan Lake and The Nutcracker), appearing frequently in the repertoire of (not only) major ballet companies worldwide. Moreover, Sleeping Beauty has a unique position in the work of the legendary ballet-creator team Tchaikovsky-Petipa.

Yuri Slonimsky, a well-known Russian journalist, critic, and librettist recalls that when preparing his ballets, Marius Petipa was able to visualise the dance sequences even before a note of music had been composed. Petipa planned the ballet in the most minute detail, suggesting not only the rhythm, orchestration, dramatic character, and exact length of each number, but even breaking them up into bars. …

Photo Credits: Hana Smejkalová, The National Theatre Ballet

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