Post by crabtree on Oct 4, 2016 19:05:37 GMT
I do adore the works of David Bintley (finding them more intelligently thought through than the gaudy showbiz of MB- though it's wrong to admit that) and have seen nearly everything, and confess to seeing Still Life at the Penguin Café probably about thirty times, and have cried every time. I love his narrative ballet's such as Edward II and Hobson's Choice, and went to the premiere of The Tempest, and it is good, very good, but rather safe and exactly what a stage production of the Tempest would be without words. Boy, does Prospero's blessing of Ferdinand and Miranda go on and bring everyone in, including characters not mentioned in the play - OK, I understand gods can appear and bless people but heck there were suddenly a lot of dancing shepherds on a deserted island - though part of me seems to remember that they are mentioned, so I will shut up. It is very literal, but for all it's predictability it rewards us with a sensational last five minutes and an unbearably touching final piece of business. The music is not as lush or as mysterious as perhaps it could have been and did not seem to flow, but the sound of waves topping and tail the show was lovely. For a piece about transforming magic, the magic was rather missing - it's not short on spectacle and is very, very easy to follow - even if there is no central character. Prospero is a little sidelined here. The design is a bit dull, and the costumes are glittery period costumes - though I was confused by Caliban wearing court pantaloons - maybe they were cast offs from Pospero. Some great flying, and odd sea creatures, and a spectacular storm, but it didn't leave me drained or with my mouth of the floor as his ballets such as Cinderella, King Dances or Carmina Burano have. It does have it all, but it just seems, using appropriately watery images, a little flat and diluted.