Lady Chocolat and I have a standing agreement that once per year, round about Christmas, we'll venture out to the ballet. I've determined that I can just about survive the crazy flailing about of the limbs, and other madness, associated with it all. Last year was Cinderella, and the year before was the legendary Squirrel Ballet.
However, it was the Lady's birthday recently, and as luck would have it, Swan Lake on Ice was on at the Theatre Royal. And so, since this allowed me to sort out her birthday present with a minimum of fuss, and since it also allowed me to pretend to be far more sensitive and caring than is usually my wont, off we went.
Turns out, it was awesome.
We had seats in the dress circle, just a few rows back from the front. This proved to have many advantages - slightly more leg room, shorter queues for the bar, and a much better view. This last was key, for obvious reasons. All in all, a vast improvement.
As for the performance... well. There were things that they did that, had they been described to me, I would not have believed they were possible. In fact, I'm still not convinced. Basically, they seemed to spend their time whizzing about, performing all sorts of jumps, and twirls, and spins, and lifts, most of which were completely insane, and all on a rink that was just far too small for what they were doing. And all that was before they set the ice on fire.
I think part of what set this apart from the ballet itself was that it was very obvious just how difficult and dangerous it all was. With the ballet, although I can appreciate that a hell of a lot of training has gone into it, the better the performers are, the easier they make it all look.
Anyway, all in all it was a great performance, and a good night.
And now I still have "The Sleeping Beauty" to look forward to in December...