Monday, October 31, 2011

Cervantino 2011: Petroushka lives!

      Stravinsky's Petroushka with new choreography by Diego Vasquez had me on my feet clapping at my final Cervantino event.

     For anyone wondering about the future of the High Arts in Mexico, this new contemporary dance piece, ostensibly for children, confirms that they do. Don's let the label put you off. With support from four national government entities, the Laleget Danza-Ballet de Camera of Morelos State have together created a colorful dance event that ran for three months in Mexico City before gracing our festival.

     First off, the dancers move like marionettes come to life. Dressed in colorful costumes, they dance in front of and in a cube-shaped giant jungle gym on a revolving stage, as they reach the audience with this story full of emotion and action set to Stravinsky's brilliant score.

     But there is always more to come when the narrator invites children in the audience to dance onstage with the cast. Believe me, there was no shortage of takers! And I could see that the children had followed the dancing so carefully, they knew just how to mimic the pros.

     I left the Principal energized and with tears in my eyes.

     Disclaimer: Not only because I've loved this ballet since I saw it danced and heard the music when I was in my impressionable twenties.