Thursday, 17 March 2011

Alice #2

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, the Royal Ballet - reviewed on 15th March
Photo: Johan Persson, courtesy of ROH
A second viewing of Alice validated my initial observations. It is an enchanting ballet but lacks magic in the choreography. Whilst Christopher Wheeldon has made a reasonable attempt, the tale of Alice in Wonderland, which is filled with wordplay, doesn’t translate into non-verbal dancing. It just doesn’t make sense to watch, scenes don’t flow into one another and the action drags on until it becomes tiresome.

Marianela Nuñez as Alice provided a different flavour to Sarah Lamb. She portrayed the character as a spoilt child – blissfully happy when enraptured with the wonderland’s magic, or grumpily stamping her feet when unable to go through a door that’s too small. This one-dimensional interpretation may well be faithful to the book (which regretfully I haven’t read) but wasn’t to my taste. Normally I am a huge fan of Nuñez and love her spirited facial expressions, but here she seemed like a typical moody teenager. An interesting point muttered in the interval questioned Nuñez’s casting as Alice. A fellow audience member commented that she was just too sexy to play the part of a child. And even in her temper tantrums, I admit she did ooze a sensuous charisma.
Aside from Nuñez’s comment-worthy performance, everything else was much the same - the myriad of wonderful costumes and sets from Bob Crowley, including tartan pointe shoes, and beautiful music by Joby Talbot that had me humming in the interval (let’s hope they make a CD recording). If only the choreography could match up...

No comments:

Post a Comment