Swan Lake

Silly but stellar: Bolshoi Ballet’s Spartacus reviewed

10 August 2019 9:00 am

It’s togas-a-go-go as the Bolshoi bring Yuri Grigorovich’s 1956 ballet Spartacus to the Royal Opera House. Oh dear, I did…

La Bayadère was first staged by Marius Petipa at the Bolshoi in 1877, to the music of Ludwig Minkus

Where would ballet be without Marius Petipa?

27 July 2019 9:00 am

Should the man on the Clapham omnibus ever turn his mind to ballet, he is bound to envisage the work…

January as you would wish it: Royal Ballet’s Les Patineurs reviewed

5 January 2019 9:00 am

The Royal Ballet’s Les Patineurs is January as you would wish it. No slush, no new-year sales, no streaming chest…

Artists of the Royal Ballet against the easel-worthy backcloths of John Macfarlane’s ravishing designs for Swan Lake

Proper tutus, gorgeous designs, first-rate dancing: Royal Ballet’s new Swan Lake reviewed

26 May 2018 9:00 am

The Royal Ballet’s 2016 Frankenstein was a masterclass in how not to make narrative dance and the news that Liam…

The nymphs are hit and miss, but Osipova is a witty, multifaceted Sylvia: the Royal Ballet’s Sylvia reviewed

16 December 2017 9:00 am

You can pay homage to a ballet classic or you can tear it up and reinvent it. Both approaches were…

Company Wayne McGregor — Autobiography at Sadler’s Wells

Dancing the genetic code, big girls’ blouses and a ballroom bitch: Sadler’s Wells roundup

28 October 2017 9:00 am

Ballet would have been an obvious revenue stream for Sadler’s Wells when it reopened back in 1998 but straight-up classics…

The Mariinsky’s first British principal looked nervous – would his legs carry him through Swan Lake?

5 August 2017 9:00 am

Tall, handsome boys with long legs and beautifully arched feet do not grow on trees (if only). Every ballet director…

This is England: Paris Fitzpatrick and Daniel Collins in ‘Town and Country’ from ‘Matthew Bourne’s Early Adventures’

A warm-beer-and-bicycles take on all things English: Matthew Bourne’s Early Adventures reviewed

15 April 2017 8:00 am

‘Modern’ dance was no laughing matter in 1987. Harold King, director of the now-defunct London City Ballet, cattily typified it…

The secret of the Bolshoi style will always be safe

10 December 2016 9:00 am

In 2013, Pavel Dmitrichenko, disgruntled principal dancer of the Bolshoi, exacted a now infamous revenge on the company’s artistic director,…

At times utterly gripping: Crystal Pite at the Edinburgh International Festival reviewed

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Crystal Pite, the Canadian dancemaker who combines intellectual, emotional and physical intelligence in rare degree, is classically trained, but her…

Maria Alexandrova as Kitri in ‘Don Quixote’

Stylistic conformism worse than it was under the Soviets: Bolshoi’s Don Quixote reviewed

6 August 2016 9:00 am

For almost 60 years, whatever the political weather, Russia and Britain have maintained mutually assured respect as far as ballet…

This Creation puts brain before heart: Rambert at Garsington Opera reviewed

23 July 2016 9:00 am

Mark Morris, the most musically communicative and naturally lyrical of choreographers of the past 30 years (and an absentee from…

The opera for opera sceptics: Jenufa at Longborough reviewed

23 July 2016 9:00 am

What’s the best first opera for a sceptical adult first timer? It’s a favourite topic among opera buffs, and once…

Was this spectacular performance at the Royal Albert Hall Tamara Rojo’s final Swan Lake?

18 June 2016 9:00 am

Was Tamara Rojo, when she danced Swan Lake last Saturday at the Albert Hall, thinking as she shaped each phrase,…

Predictably meh: Scottish Ballet’s new Swan Lake reviewed

7 May 2016 9:00 am

Every ballet company wants a box-office earner. But why Scottish Ballet’s leader Christopher Hampson kept on at David Dawson until…

Dance from Edinburgh: a flamenco master who could tell classical ballet a thing or two

29 August 2015 9:00 am

Every August when London dims, Edinburgh calls, promising nothing less than ‘the greats of the arts’ at the International Festival.…

Wings of desire: film still of Natalia Makarova and Anthony Dowell in ‘Swan Lake’, 1980

Will the real Swan Lake please stand up

21 February 2015 9:00 am

Ismene Brown unpicks the great enigma of ballet theatre

ENB’s Swan Lake: the rights and wrongs of ballet thighs

17 January 2015 9:00 am

There’s been heated disagreement over the past week about what’s right and wrong. Is the rocket-propelled ex-Bolshoi enfant terrible Ivan…

Plisetskaya in ‘Romeo and Juliet’, 1964. She was one of the supreme trophies in the Soviet display case, the most garlanded, the most suspected

Maya Plisetskaya and Rodion Shchedrin: ‘The KGB put a microphone in our marriage bed'

25 October 2014 9:00 am

Ismene Brown talks to the Russian super-couple Maya Plisetskaya and Rodion Shchedrin about ballet, opera and the KGB

Romeo and Juliet: a Mariinsky masterclass

9 August 2014 9:00 am

According to some textbooks, one thing the fathers of Soviet choreography hastened to remove from ballet was that awkward-looking language…

A swan to die for at Sadler’s Wells

28 June 2014 9:00 am

Swans, swans, more swans. If the lifespan of a dance critic were calculated by the number of performances of Swan…