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If you're looking for up-to-the-minute modern ballet, look no further than this production of Christopher Wheeldon's new version of 'Cinderella'. This is the first time the production will have been performed on a stage outside the Netherlands and is...Ballet Wednesday July 8 2015 - Saturday July 11 2015Read more
Ardani 25 Dance Gala
A two-night show featuring some of the world's top dancers. Natalia Osipova, Edward Watson and Ivan Vasiliev come together with a host of other stars to present a series of pieces. Osipova and Watson dance in the world premiere of Alastair Marriott's...Ballet Friday July 17 2015 - Saturday July 18 2015Read more
Ballet Folklorico de Mexico
It's been 20 years since Mexico's national dance company have performed in London. July 2015 marks their return to the capital, with 40 dancers in tow and a line up of pieces which draw on Mexico's rich history and heritage. Ballet Folklorico de Mexico...Contemporary and experimental Wednesday July 22 2015 - Saturday July 25 2015Read more
Having danced for over 35 years, the French ballet and contemporary dancer, is hanging up her pumps and retiring. Her swansong is this final dance programme, a UK premiere, which features new and existing work and will be the last chance to catch her...Contemporary and experimental Tuesday July 28 2015 - Sunday August 2 2015Read more
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Review of Eifman’s Ballet – “Anna Karenina”
Last Saturday, on the 19th of April 2014 I visited the London Coliseum to see a Russian Modern Ballet from St. Petersburg, “Anna Karenina”, created by Boris Eifman.
The hosting theatre – the London Coliseum, is full of that charming Art Nouveau atmosphere making much smoother this Time Passage from the Present to the 19th century tragic Russian story, created by Leo Tolstoy.
The ballet is based on the famous novel, “Anna Karenina”, and predominately concentrates on the love triangle between Anna, her conservative husband Karenin and the dashing Vronsky. It opens up in a burst of psychological energy making an indelible impression upon its viewers.
Every twisted and extremely expressive movement of Anna Karenina’s body leads the viewer from the peak of her love passion to the gradual degradation of her inner world, crushed by the same passion. Lovers’ souls and bodies are entwined in incredible harmony. The building up of their passion is expressed through the light and colors. Black, golden-grey and creamy white colors dominate the ballet’s pallet helping to communicatethe emotional mood of heroes together with the dark and the light sides of Anna’s soul.
Two beds: Anna’s marital couch and her lover’s “retreat” act as “supportive actors”, witnessing the development of the tragedy.
Anna and her husband’s acting is saturated with poses of rejection, prayers, grief, sorrows and anger. At the same time Anna and Vronsky’s bodies are entwined like branches of trees in complicated and amazingly smooth transformational poses. Lovers are in white, reminiscent of love doves. Anna’s silky night dress makes the gravity disappear under the ballerina’s feet, leaving her entirely in the power of her lover, whilst her black, mourning outfit pulls her to this “sinful” earth. Every gesture, turn or movement of the dancers is full of meaning. Their suppleness and flexibility are tested to the limit of a human body’s capability.
Condemning society, Anna’s husband, together with the male group of dancers, smeared in fuel oil and dirt represent the churning and rattling wheels of trains, , even her little son, all are dressed in black, mourning Anna’s destroyed inner world, anticipating her madness and sacrifice.
All this highly charged emotional performance is well accentuated by the minimum use of light, mostly spotlights combined with the ever moving music of Tchaikovsky.
This classical drama goes so well with the innovative, creative and very talented modern choreography of Eifman. It slowly reveals itself against the background of the romantic surroundings and the luxurious vintage interior of the London Coliseum, leaving the audience with an absolutely unforgettable experience. By Nadine Platt