Maybe the reason your
boyfriend sometimes disappears is that he is being enticed away
to the woods.
～The Fantasy World of the Dancing Sylphs～
La Sylphide, one
of the most popular Romantic ballets, premiered at the Paris Opéra
in 1832. Dressed in diaphanous white tulle, Marie Taglioni
danced the leading role solely on the tips of her toes, springing
lightly in the air and taking the audience to the unearthly world
of dreams. Impressed by this performance, August Bournonville
wanted to take it back to Denmark, but certain conditions could
not be met, and the ballet was performed at the Royal Danish Theatre
in 1836 with new music and choreography. This was the version
favored in Denmark after the original Paris version fell into disuse
and has continued as such to the present day. The Bournonville
version of La Sylphide, a precious legacy from the period
of Romantic ballet, will take the stage again at the New National
Theatre, Tokyo for the first time in three years. Enjoy the
fantastic world in which sylphs dance along with the beautiful Scottish
scenes which are faithfully recreated based on meticulous historical
～A Story of an Ephemeral Love Lost the Moment It Was Gained～
The setting is a village in Scotland. James
is going to marry Effie, but he has been somewhat restless since
the morning, perplexing her. The truth is that a sylphide
(sylph) has fallen love in with him, enchanting him with her dance.
As preparations for the wedding go on, the evil witch Madge comes
before James and claims that it is not he whom truly loves Effie,
but a disappointed suitor, Gurn. Infuriated, James drives
away the witch, but he cannot resist the charm of the sylph and
eventually follows her, leaving for the woods just before the wedding.
Dying to possess the fluttering sylph, James accepts a magic shawl
from Madge. When he puts the shawl around the sylph’s
shoulders, however, her wings instantly fall off as a result of
a curse placed on the shawl by Madge and she dies. As the
wedding procession for Effie and Gurn passes by at a distance, James,
who has lost everything, falls into despair and dies also.
(To be presented after La Sylphide)
Set in Spain, the ballet Paquita tells
of a love story of a gypsy girl. Like La Sylphide,
the ballet was first performed at the Paris Opéra, in 1846, the
period when Romantic ballet was extremely popular in Europe.
But today it is best known through pieces of Marius Petipa’s
revised version which will be performed in this double feature.
Centered on the Grand Pas in the last scene in which the heroine
Paquita and the French officer Lucien are happily wedded, a series
of splendid dances featuring the soloists’ beautiful performances
will be presented. For this new production, Mr. Makharbek
Vaziev, director of the Ballet Company of the Mariinsky Theater,
and Ms. Lubov Kunakova will give choreographic guidance to the dancers.