REVIEW: Moscow City Ballet at Chichester Festival Theatre

Moscow City Ballet
Moscow City Ballet

There may be 6,500 languages in the world today but music and dance continues to speak with one tongue.

Transcending all barriers, ballet and the sweeping scores of the classical composers tell a story more effectively and beautifully than any uttered word.

So a joy, as ever, to welcome Moscow City Ballet to Chichester with the Hungarian Sinfonietta Orchestra conducted by Igor Shavruk.

Their visit has become almost as traditional as they works they perform.

This year, the double bill on different nights of the week, was Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker and Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet.

Television has rendered these great works more accessible through its use of fleeting excerpts in everything from advertisements for chocolate bars to the signature tune to Lord Sugar’s The Apprentice.

But nothing compares to the full performance with every step choreographed to the music.

The two ballets are contrasting pieces in more ways than one.

Romeo and Juliet is an epic three hours and two interval performance with the innocence of a young tragic love story imposed upon the pomp and might of two opposing families.

The Nutcracker is altogether more fairtytale, shorter, and lightly spun on the thread of woodland magic at Christmas.

There is an inevitable sense that this is touring ballet, but notwithstanding those constraints the cast delivers with synchronised beauty and performances - not least from Dzmitry Lazovic, Anna Kravtsova, and Kseniya Stankevich - which convey with powerful elegance and breathtaking skill the sheer intensity of their stories.