Dutch National Ballet presents Swan Lake this Spring, to celebrate here are some stunning images and a video trailer:
Over the past sixty years, besides presenting successful international productions, the Dutch National Ballet has also produced its own interpretations of the classics. One of the most important ballets is Rudi van Dantzig’s Swan Lake from 1988, which is still regarded worldwide as one of the most beautiful versions of this ‘ballet of ballets’.
For his adaptation of the famous classic, the former artistic director was inspired mainly by Tchaikovsky; not just by his music, but also by his letters and diaries. Van Dantzig respected the surviving sections of the ‘standard’ version by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov from 1895, while choosing for a less superficial, more human interpretation of the other sections, thus lending his production an extremely emotional power of expression.
Love and deception
Love and deception are the keywords in Swan Lake. Siegfried, a young prince with the soul of a poet, meets a white swan, Odette, at the lakeside one night, and he promises to be faithful to her (and thus also to his ideals). Back in the palace, however, Siegfried allows himself to be seduced by the sorcerer’s daughter Odile, who is disguised as a black swan. Too late, Siegfried realises his mistake.
Toer van Schayk
In the way that Petipa received assistance from Ivanov for Swan Lake, so Van Dantzig called on the multi-talented Toer van Schayk. Van Schayk choreographed the colourful folk dances that add lustre to Siegfried’s birthday party in the third act. He also designed the impressive sets and costumes, taking inspiration from the ‘golden’ paintings of the seventeenth-century Dutch Masters.
Rudi van Dantzig
2023 is the ninetieth anniversary of the birth of Rudi van Dantzig (1933-2012). For over twenty years, he was the artistic director of Dutch National Ballet, which he forged into a united family. His ballets demonstrate great social engagement and a perpetual ‘quest for the unattainable’. His most famous works include Four Last Songs, Monument for a dead boy, Onder mijne voeten and his acclaimed versions of the full-length classical ballets Romeo and Juliet and Swan Lake.
In total, seventeen performances of the production will be given in the period from 22 March 2023 to 18 April 2023. For more information visit: Dutch National Ballet
Featured Image: Principal Dancer Olga Smirnova, photographed by Marta Syrko