David Bintley’s remarkable adaptation of Cinderella was brought to the Lowry Theatre in Salford offered a night of enchantment and escapism. A large lopsided clock dominated the stage as the audience took to their seats and settled down for the first act. There were three acts, with two twenty-minute intervals during the ballet providing plenty of time for refreshments and toilet breaks.
The auditorium was filled with a mix of young and old waiting to be captivated by this sensational classic tale of Cinderella the rags to riches fairy tale where poor Cinderella (Jenna Roberts) who is tormented by her two ugly stepsisters Skinny (Samara Downs) and Dumpy (Laura Purkiss) and wicked stepmother (Marion Tait) finally meets her Princess Charming (William Bracewell).
Cinderella is made for the ballet as it’s every girl’s dream to watch this stunning fairy story be told in such elegance, David Bintley’s version from its dark opening played out in silhouette at the graveside of Cinderella’s mother, to the happy ending when the Princess and Prince walk into the dawn arm in arm of a new day filled with their love for each other does not disappoint.
Bintley’s choreography mirrors Prokofiev’s score; played by the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, the music carries the exceptional dancers mind blowing through their plié, releve, sauté, Pirouette, Tour en l’air, Allegro and Adagio moves .
Cinderella in her bare feet and glittery Pointe shoes danced in a symphony of elegance throughout the evening. Whilst her ugly stepsister offered slapstick comedy throughout the production, during the evening there was a healthy mix of classic traditional ballet and a very modern interpretation pleasing the mixed audience.
The setting provided an incredible visual display of glitter and captivating scenery from its simple basement kitchen with its terrific open fire, awesome starry sky backdrops to the magnificent grand ball room with the iconic clock that strikes midnight and where Cinderella and the Prince dance encapsulated by their attraction for each other.
The outstanding costumes dazzled us with colour and glamour and delivered the beauty expected at the ballet, with particular attention paid to the ladies tutus and intricate season’s costumes created the ambience that only the ballet can provide because ‘everything is beautiful at the ballet’.
The stage transformations were amazingly slick and well thought out ensuring that nothing was taken away from the fantastic dancer’s performance.
This outstanding beautiful modern interpretation of Cinderella offered a wonderful evening for all with an exquisite mix of old, new and traditional ballet.
The only distraction which comes with ballet is that it is played out with musical direction only, allowing the disturbing interruption of modern theatre goers constantly munching their way through the evening of an array of sweets, crisps and anything they can find with noisy packaging.
The BRB Cinderella remains at The Lowry, Salford until 4th March then continues to Plymouth’s Theatre Royal 8th – 11th March 2017.
Tickets are still available at www.thelowry.com/event/birmingham-royal-ballet-cinderella
The production requires between two and three days for each build or ‘get in’ and following the final night of the ballet the technical crew work straight on through the night to break down and load up before leaving for the next venue on the tour.
- 10 articulated lorry trailers in total
- 5 scenery trucks
- 1 flooring truck
- 3 lighting trucks
- 1 costume truck
- 31 rails of costumes
- 8 baskets of shoes
- 78 wigs
- 250 hair rollers
- 1000 hair pins
- 174 complete costumes
- 20 fat suits
- 44 tutus
- 2 washing machines and dryers
- 25 core technical staff
- 20 venue staff
- 64 orchestra musicians
- 39 dancers
Music: Sergei Prokofiev
Choreographer: David Bintley
Conductor: Philip Ellis
Designs: John F. Macfarlane
Lighting: David A. Finn
Reviewer: Katie Leicester
Reviewed: 1st March 2017
North West End Rating: ★★★★