Spectacular dance show honoursRussian composer

PUBLISHED : Friday, 07 March, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 07 March, 2008, 12:00am

A local production will explore a variety of Tchaikovsky's compositions and pay tribute to the depth and beauty of his music through dance.

All Tchaikovsky, presented by Hong Kong Ballet, features five spectacular works - Grand Pas de Deux from The Sleeping Beauty by Marius Petipa, Theme and Variations and Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux by George Balanchine, Pas de Quatre from Swan Lake Act I by Hong Kong Ballet's artistic director John Meehan, and The Way Alone, a newly commissioned piece by resident choreographer of The Australian Ballet, Stephen Baynes.

If asked to name their favourite ballet composer, most people would say, 'Tchaikovsky'.

In reality, the Russian composer collaborated with choreographer Petipa, who is regarded as the 'father of classical ballet', to write only three ballet scores - Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker.

Ballerina Jin Yao said Tchaikovsky and Petipa are her favourite ballet composer and choreographer, respectively.

'Tchaikovsky's music is very well written. It is easy for dancers to fuse with the music,' said Jin, a principal dancer with Hong Kong Ballet.

All Tchaikovsky, to be held later this month, is also different from other ballet productions. It is neither classical nor contemporary, there are no story lines and dancers simply dance to the rhythm of the music.

'The skills and techniques needed to perform these songs are much harder than those required by classical ballet because the rhythm is very fast. The audience is able to feel the musical rhythm by seeing the body movements,' Jin said.

'Among the three dances that I will be performing [ Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux, Theme and Variations and The Way Alone ], I find Theme and Variations the hardest.

'It's got a lot of fast jumps, twists and turns, which are much harder than other steps. Dancers need to be fast and technical at the same time.'

All Tchaikovsky will be staged at Sha Tin Town Hall from March 28-30. Tickets cost HK$50, HK$80, HK$110, HK$280 for full-time students. For reservations, call 2734 9009.