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Sleeping Beauty, Russian National Ballet, Theatre Royal Brighton

The Russian National Ballet

The Russian National Ballet

Some people can walk into a room and be sure all eyes are on them - take Nigella, Sir Alex Ferguson or Dame Judi.

They light up the space they are in and the rest of us can only look on and observe the magic.

When Eldar Sarsembaev leapt onto the stage at the Theatre Royal, Brighton on Monday night there was a synchronised intake of breath from every female in the auditorium.

He glowed - rather like the ready-brekked child in the TV ad.

He out entrechat-ed Wayne Sleep, his smile alone would have wakened the sleeping princess.

The audience were on their feet to cheer the sensational Russian National Ballet company who paid an all-too-short visit to Brighton to perform The Nutcracker (Wednesday December 11) Swan Lake (Tuesday December 10) and The Sleeping Beauty on Monday December 9.

Dancers were stunning and the word ‘talented’ is underwhelming when applied to their level of performance.

Princess Aurora was dark-haired and delicate beauty Maria Sokolnikova and the tall and elegant Maria Klyueva displayed an effortless grace.

This beauty, we now know, is achieved at huge physical cost, but is all the more admirable for being cloaked in serenity and concealed beneath a dazzling smile.

Tchaikovsky’s recognisable and distinctive music underpinned the good-versus-evil classic tale of the baby, cursed by a wicked fairy to die from a prick to the finger but saved by a kiss from the glorious prince.

Of course they lived happily ever after. Who wouldn’t?

Difficult to single out performers - Russian ballet companies do not tolerate anything less than perfection.

But Anton Baglikov’s Puss in Boots won deafening applause; as did Alexander Daev’s evil Fairy Carabosse who delivered a high quality French-style mime quality to the role of the traditional baddie.

Pavel Bochkovsky was an athletic MC and I would have practised my own curtsey to Dmitry Romonov’s King Florestan and Natalia Ivanova’s imperious queen.

On a cold night in Brighton - a performance you wanted to go on for ever.

If you get the chance to see them, go now.

 

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