What a wonderful idea and way to save and serve portions of a festive favourite. The snowy serenity of the opening scene was an immediate immersion back into the deeply missed beauty and complexity unique to classical ballet. Crystaline clarity combined with shifting shimmer was reminiscent of Swan Lake, Giselle and Bolshoi Ballet’s Diamonds.
Principals, Victor Estevez and Camilo Ramos were resplendant as Prince and Snow Prince respectively whilst Lucy Green was an exquisite Snow Queen. Senior soloists, Mia Heathcote was a sweet Clara and Neneka Yoshida delighted as The Sugar Plum Fairy.
The Spanish Dancers brought a splash of Don Quixotic colour and vivacity. The Cossack Dancer brought energy as the Asian dancers and Fighters added exotic Oriental essence.
Seated beside Craig Cathcart, former Australian Ballet Principal and now Head of Artistic Operations at Queensland Ballet, I was surprised to learn that the Best of the Nutcracker was only two weeks in the making. Well done to all involved.
The Nutcracker in its entirety is a ballet bustling with bright scenes and busy characters. In the absence of sets and live orchestra, I was freed from some of my responsibilities when viewing a performance.
I became a ballet reviewer recognising the calibre of these company dancers.I realised that presented in this format, their abilities and beauty were clearly showcased as I followed fluidity of line and exactness of execution delivered in the context of live performance.
Li Cunxin and all those who could bring this about so suddenly are to be commended and congratulated and thanked by those of us who were delighted by the Best of The Nutcracker.
Best of The Nutcracker
Concert Hall – QPAC, Cultural Precinct, Southbank (Brisbane)
Performance: Friday 4 December 2020 – 7.30pm
For more information, visit: www.queenslandballet.com.au for details.
Image: Principal Artist Laura Hidalgo – photo by David Kelly / Creative Direction – Designfront
Review: Michele-Rose Boylan