This is my favourite production along with the 1982 Anthony Dowell production. Swan Lake is one of the all-time great ballets, so expectations when it is performed are always going to be high. The costumes and sets are beautiful to look at, I particularly liked the Act 2 setting. Tchaikovsky's music is timeless(the story also), and the orchestra perform it with a lot of lushness and power, with honourable mentions going to the prominent oboe and also the violin and cello solos in the Pas De Deux, and the conducting is always solid as rocks. Alexander Bogatyrev has a dashing and quite youthful presence and has some nice turns and jetees, and there is a very imposing Rothbart, but there are two assets that make this Swan Lake particularly good. One is Natalya Bessmertnova's magnificent Odette and Odile, I just love how elegant and effortlessly graceful her dancing is, technically there is nothing to criticise and in both her roles she brings a certain dignity to them. The contrast in personalities is also done superbly, all tender and positively angelic for Odette and decisive and strong-willed as Odile. The other outstanding asset is the choreography of Yuri Grigorovich. It is traditional, sticking firmly to what we're used to, and very precise and intricate, yet at the same time it doesn't feel cold either. The Pas De Deux brought tears to my eyes, I got chills during the finale and the Dance of the Cygnets/Swans and the ethnic dances are really charming. In conclusion, a really gorgeous Swan Lake. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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