REVIEW: Russian State Ballet of Siberia, La Fille Mal Gardee

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The Russian State Ballet of Siberia brought three shows to Norwich last week, including this light-hearted romance which roughly translates as The Wayward Daughter.

It is one of our oldest ballets, dating back to the 1700s.

It is a charming piece, with plenty of humour as farmer’s daughter, Lise, beautifully played by Elena Svinko, falls for a young farmer, Colas, played by the highly energetic Dmitry Dyachkov,

as her rather more ambitious mother, Widow Simone (Alexei Balva), has other plans.

It is a great introduction to classical ballet, with the Widow’s clog dance and the rich idiot’s butterfly performance getting us chuckling, but there is a lot of highly technical work on show, too.

Indeed, what you get with this company is a celebration of the tradition and heritage of classical dance. The lines are pure, there are some wonderful pas de deux, and the timing and staging are spot on.

The dancers, the majority of whom seem very young, feel every beat of the Hertel music and clearly work hard to achieve this faultless performance which was very well received by ballet lovers in Norfolk.

Sarah Hardy