Blogpost: Giselle @ State Theatre

Posted by T • September 9, 2018

Posted by T • September 9, 2018

Giselle

State Theatre

Melbourne, Australia

September 3, 2018

For the uninitiated: Giselle is a romantic ballet in two contrasting acts, which was first performed in the first half of the nineteenth century in France. In essence, Giselle’s storyline is comprised of the passions and dramas that make humans tick, i.e. the cycle of love, deceit, heartache and ultimately forgiveness. What sounds like what could be a cliché-laden exercise is one of the most iconic and hauntingly beautiful performances on this earthround and even if you perceive ballet to be “not your thing”, it shall prove hard to not be won over by the story of this classic tale, which has never lost relevance.

Two acts are juxtaposed: What starts off in a naturalist forest environment is followed by activity within the confines of an otherworldly cemetary.

Maina Gielgud’s production is traditional in the best sense as it puts the focus firmly on the expression of the dance and has both characters and the story clearly identified, so no effort is needed to follow the narrative.

Gielgud’s meticulous choreography is outstanding and at times the dense accumulation of formations is almost overwhelming, which prompts more than once spontaneous applause as the  

The sharp yet subtle and evocative stage sets of the two acts is detailed and rich courtesy of Peter Farmer, which in both cases is embedded by William Akers’ lighting which adds nuances on the dancers performances, highlighting their features, which adds another dimension specifically to the second act.

Adolphe Adam’s score reinterpreted courtesy of Orchestra Victoria under the guidance of conductor Simon Hewett frames Australian Ballet’s incarnation of Giselle in a lively and engaging context that does not let up throughout both acts and supports the narrative succinctly.

Australian Ballet’s reimagined Giselle is a tour de force of visually compelling and physically thrilling dance theatre group work fuelled by passion and visceral, life affirming energy, which finds its most impressive expressions in the vividly acted romantic duets and fluidly danced pas de deux.

Thanks to powerful and theatrical performances that have both depth like this and radiantly convey the passions the main protagonist are driven by, Giselle shall keep shining undimmed.

---

Photo courtesy of Australian Ballet

T • September 9, 2018

More recent blogposts

Beethoven and Wagner vs Nietzsche

Posted by T • July 26, 2021

Beethoven: A life University of California Press   There is no shortage of books dedicated to the life of a composer whose legacy has never ceased to reverberate and impact music at large. Released to commemorate the two hundred fiftieth anniversary of his birth, what sets this biography apart in terms of authority is partly due to the unprecedented access … Read more

Water of Life – Limeburners and Earp Distillery

Posted by T • July 25, 2021

Water of Life – Limeburners and Earp Distillery   Over the last ten years, Australia has firmly established itself on the map of nations that produce quality malt whiskies. Slowly but steadily, rye whiskies created on terra australis have been making a splash on the scene with quite a few distilleries crafting their own incarnations of American style rye whiskey. … Read more

The Formative Years – Rugby and Canterbury

Posted by T • July 24, 2021

The Formative Years – Rugby and Canterbury I’ve covered the mecca that Washington DC proved to be as a hotbed for hardcore and punk as part of this series before, however, missed to shed light onto one of my favourite releases from the 1980s era, i.e. the vitally important split LP of the short-lived bands The Faith and Void.  While … Read more

The Formative Years – Hardcore Classics, pt. 1

Posted by T • July 23, 2021

The Formative Years – Hardcore classics pt. 1   With ZAP magazine playing a pivotal role in promoting and covering everything New York Hardcore related in a pro-active and prominent manner, Europe and specifically Germany have always been prime markets for hardcore emanating from the Big Apple.  The result was that “NYHC” became a veritable label and trademark and almost … Read more

The Formative Years - Ebullition Records

Posted by T • July 22, 2021

The Formative Years - Ebullition Records  The first time I heard about Ebullition Records was when there was talk around the campfire of that a gentleman that was known to me as a Maximum Rock’n’roll / No Answer zine contributor, i.e. Kent McClard, was planning to release a full length of one of my favourite bands from Orange County, California, … Read more

Thus Let Us Drink Beer - Holgate and Six String

Posted by T • July 18, 2021

Thus Let Us Drink Beer - Holgate Brewhouse and Six String Brewing   As we have outlined with our previous coverage of Holgate Brewhouse, over the last twenty years the Victorian brewery has established itself firmly on the forefront of innovative quality producers of ales that honour both the classic styles from the old world and the ever expanding and … Read more

Water of Life – Hellfire / Larrikin Distilleries

Posted by T • July 15, 2021

Water of Life – Hellfire Distillery / Larrikin Distillery   If you have followed this series with a modicum of interest and harbour a weak spot for fantastic, artisanal spirits, Tasmania would be doubtlessly be have made it on your to-visit list quite a while ago. Visiting the southernmost state of Australia twice a year, I never cease to discover … Read more

Water of Life – The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

Posted by T • July 12, 2021

Water of Life – The Scotch Malt Whisky Society   There is certainly no shortage of whisky clubs and subscription services these days and for anyone remotely into discovering new flavour nuances and variations of their favourite bottlings, joining one can prove to be a viable option. The experience those services offer ranges from basic monthly tasting kits that might … Read more

Water of Life – Milton Rum & Mad Monkey Distillery

Posted by T • July 11, 2021

Water of Life – Milton Rum and Mad Monkey Distillery   Rum has a long and at times chequered history reaching back more than six hundred years to the times dominated by Colonialism, where it did not only serve to make pirates drunk but as a means for trade. Fast forward to the present day and the renaissance that the … Read more

The Formative Years - Kill Rock Stars

Posted by T • July 10, 2021

The Formative Years - Kill Rock Stars  It would have been around 1992 that I first came about a new label that seemed to have its focus firmly set on releasing its friends’ records and the underground scene centred around Olympia, Washington. It did not take long for the label, its credo and overall outlook and aesthetic to manifest via … Read more