Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Little Humpbacked Horse

This is a great DVD of the Russian Ballet:

The Little Humpbacked Horse

The primary role of the Queen-Maiden is danced by Maya Plisetskaya. The music is a refreshing score written in the '50s so it's not so heavily formal as classical music in the 18th or even 19th centuries tended to be. The composer Rodion Shchedrin is Plisetskaya's husband (what a life they must have together !).
The story is based on a Russian Folktale and features a pure, guileless proletarian hero and a bumbling, inept aristocracy. Just the thing for a politically correct '50s era Soviet production. Thankfully, the ballet is un-political and utterly delightful with such novelties as:
a dancing horse (the cute heroine Humpedback Horse),
dancing jellyfish !
dancing anemonies !

Plisetskaya shines in the role of the Maiden-Queen. She, like all great artists, has marvelous technique, but is able to transcend the physical to give us something that we get lost in as we are drawn to it.

Filmed in 1961, the DVD simulates the experience of going to the Ballet in Soviet Russia: starting with reading the performance announcement in the paper, going to the theatre, watching the ballet acts and wandering around the foyer during the intermissions and finishing with the curtain calls...

Nice and recommended !

from Video Artists International: www.vaimusic.com

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