An epic work, Alexei Ratmansky abstracts a comical 19th-century story ballet into a highly-stylized series of animated dances for seven featured performers and over 20 supporting cast members.
Mystery, wit, drama, and romance share star turns in Alexei Ratmansky’s original and aptly named “grand divertissement.” With Édouard Lalo’s lively score from a 19th Century French ballet about a slave girl named Namouna as inspiration, Ratmansky has used what he calls “the clichés of classical ballets” in a new, endlessly inventive, and light-hearted way. A large corps, intriguing dance patterns, and virtuoso soloists fill out the playful plot involving a young man searching for his love. Using the props detailed in Lucien Petipa’s original 1882 production, alluring women dance for the young man as cymbals clang and a seductress tempts through a fog of cigarette smoke. Many distractions and whimsically-wigged look-alikes confound, confuse, and stand in the way before boy finally finds girl for a joyful, athletic, and romantic climactic pas de deux.
VIEW A SLIDESHOW OF IMAGES FROM NAMOUNA, A GRAND DIVERTISSEMENT >