Ismene Brown

Black magic

Plus: Royal Ballet's enthralling 30-year-old production of Giselle remains a living treasure, especially now that a thrilling partnership has emerged between Muntagirov and Nunez

Ballet’s romantic mantra could be summed up by John Keats’s ballad ‘La Belle Dame sans Merci’, in which a young man remembers his terrible encounter with a supernatural ‘fairy’s child’. Beguiled to sleep with this ravishing fantasy creature, he dreams of a ghostly corps of other chaps similarly beguiled, who warn him that she was a witch who would leave him forever haunted, sick and bereft.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Keep reading with a free trial

Subscribe and get your first month of online and app access for free. After that it’s just £1 a week.

There’s no commitment, you can cancel any time.


Unlock more articles



Don't miss out

Join the conversation with other Spectator readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Already a subscriber? Log in