SCHWANENSEE (SWAN LAKE)

Ballet in two acts - 1995 (from 8 years)

Choreography Ray Barra, Marius Petipa, Lev Ivanov. Music Peter I. Tschaikowsky.

Swan Lake is both a ballet classic and ballet mystery par excellence in equal measure. Although there is no “original version” and vis-à-vis the delivery we cannot speak of any fixed choreographic text or a clear dramaturgical structure, the St. Petersburg production by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov (1895) is the one that most choreographers orient themselves on, and which continues to influence new productions to this very day. The performances of a group of dancers in tutus, swan feathers and pointe shoes are inseparably interwoven with practically every version of Swan Lake.

Ray Barra kept Lev Ivanov’s magnificent choreographic delivery in his version for the Bayerisches Staatsballett, which he created in 1994/95. His composition of the second act became a milestone of ballet history and the precursor of all that we call abstract or concertante ballet in the 20th century. Decisive for Barra was the psychological starting situation, which he presented in the tradition of John Cranko and Rudolf Nureyev. Prince Siegfried is an unstable young man, who has no intention of complying with the political and social demands his position makes of him. He escapes to dream worlds where the swans, the beloved Odette, her evil double Odile and the sorcerer Rothbart become real figures for him, who ultimately cause his death.