Macmillan's ballet (1978)came to life again in this lavish production of the Royal Ballet faithful to its original creators Gillian Freeman (scenario) and Nicholas Geordiadis (costumes) exactly as in 1994, Mukhamedov in the leading role then. Now,another generation of dancers gives us a somehow different pleasure,but equally with outstanding quality.If Mukhamedov portrays a tormented, pathetic twisted character and displays a formidable russian technique (high jumps, commanding arabesques) Edward Watson excels in perversion and lust, somehow a fragile Rudolf, aided by his fair complexion and golden hair. He dances beautifully, flawlessly, throughout the three acts and in his duets with Mara Galeazzi/Vetsera,an explosion of sensuality takes place.If Mukhamedov and Durante/Vetsera are sublime in their symbiosis, dancing with their souls as they do (one can actually feel their passion and tormented love in Act 3) Watson and Galeazzi are flesh and blood in fire, Rudolf's almost dementia embracing,eating away Vetsera's will,leaving her with no choice.The other dancers are first rate, the orchestra conducted by Wordsworth, brilliant.A superb production not to be missed also due to the glitter and precision offered by the blu-ray.
This said, the 1994 Mayerling (Mukhamedov, Durante, Collier and Bussel) remains a reference given the fabulous acting .Like in a silent movie, their eyes, their faces,each little gesture are full of meaning and detail,as if the principal dancers had attended Actor's Studio.For that reason this older production should be given a 6th star. Comment | Permalink