The power of Giselle at San Francisco Ballet

San Francisco Ballet’s current season contains a good helping of world premières and 21st century creations, but perhaps no work that addresses contemporary issues as urgently as the 174-year-old Giselle.

San Francisco Ballet in GISELLE (Photo: Erik Tomasson)

San Francisco Ballet in GISELLE (Photo: Erik Tomasson)

 

In the first Act, an entitled member of the 1% screws over a decent, ordinary girl, sending her to an early grave. Act II takes place in a dystopian forest policed by a gang of ghostly feminists who seek revenge on men who betrayed them. Tragically, the wrong guy is punished, while the one-percenter lives to see another day – thanks to some heroic filibustering by the dead girl whom he had screwed.

Maria Kochetkova and Vitor Luiz in GISELLE (Photo: Erik Tomasson)

Maria Kochetkova and Vitor Luiz in GISELLE (Photo: Erik Tomasson)

 

Opening night saw the elfin Maria Kochetkova cast as Giselle opposite the dashing Vitor Luiz, with the formidable Sofiane Sylve reigning over the spooky glade in the role of Myrtha. More convincing as a ghost than as an innocent peasant girl, the revenant Kochetkova dances with an eerie abandon that redefines beauty in ballet.

– For more on Helgi Tomasson’s heart-stopping production, fly on over to: Carla’s review on Bachtrack. –

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