The Sleeping Beauty - a classical fairy tale of good triumphing over evil is bought to stage by Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Birmingham Royal Ballet’s rendition of this iconic story rings as true to the original 1890 version as it can, showing another side of the fairy tale to audiences who are so prone to the modern day, warped Disney version. This classic rendition however includes such characters as Evil Fairy Carabosse and the good Lilac Fairy.

Birmingham Royal Ballet are currently at the top of their game in terms of classical ballet. Marius Petipa, Lev Ivanov & Peter Wright’s choreography is intense yet beautiful, with many feats of balletic prowess seeming impossible yet exquisitely executed. This particular dance discipline can often be perceived as stuffy or pretentious, but the company proves that it is one of the most beautiful forms of physical storytelling. It helps that The Sleeping Beauty is a well-known story, easy to follow with characters introduced and descrived early on, all of which sets the audience up for an enjoyable, if long, production.

The choreography in this version of The Sleeping Beauty fits wonderfully against the back drop of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s atmospheric score, performed by the outstanding Royal Ballet Sinfonia orchestra. Both the physical construction and musical composition work hand in hand to result in this particular spectacle on stage. Philip Prowse’s design brings the fairy tale aesthetic to life as if from an oil painting. Both set and costumes are sophisticated, visually beautiful and when combined add an additional layer of complexity to the production.

The audience at the performance is one the most varied I have been a part of for a while – all ages, from young children to elderly, can enjoy this universal art form of ballet at the Theatre Royal Plymouth. And that’s the beauty of this form – it can span generations and bring diverse groups together to marvel at the spectacle. Whether you’re a classical connoisseur, or just looking for a memorable night out, Birmingham Royal Ballet provide a great production that suits all.

 

 

★★★☆☆

The Sleeping Beauty ran at Theatre Royal Plymouth until 24 March 2018. For further information, please visit the venue website.