Review: Sleeping Beauty, Moscow City Ballet

BALLET has never been more en vogue than in recent weeks, due to the much acclaimed dance thriller, ‘Black Swan’, which is based on the classic story of ‘Swan Lake’.

Although wider audiences are re-discovering this beautiful art form, traditional older ballets, have always remained a firm favourite with steadfast ballet fans.

Moscow City Ballet takes ballet back to its classical roots with a lavish production of Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty at Brighton’s Theatre Royal.

Accompanied by their own orchestra, dancers from the Russian company bring Charles Perrault’s classic love story to life in a family friendly production which features stunning costumes and opulent scenery.

Divided into three acts with a prologue, the ballet unfolds as King Florestan and his Queen are celebrating the Christening of their daughter princess Aurora.

But the joyous occasion is short lived when the almost pantoesque evil fairy Carabosse played by Kiril Kasatki, places a curse on the princess and predicts she will prick her finger and die on her 16th birthday.

However the good fairy softens the curse, promising that Aurora will not die but instead sleep for 100 years until she is awoken from the spell by the kiss of a handsome prince.

Alevtina Lapshina made an elegant and ethereal princess Aurora, but seemed to struggle with some of the more difficult balances.

She was partnered by a confident and charismatic Sergei Zolotarev as Prince Florimund who brought a sense of energy and fun to the role.

But while younger audience members will be enchanted by the undeniably beautiful production, ballet buffs may be left disappointed by Victor Smirnov-Golovanov’s latest offering, which lacked the passion and perfection synonymous with Russian ballet companies.

Th performance was on Thursday January 27, at Theatre Royal Brighton,