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  • Writer's pictureJulia Sumzina

Australian Ballet: Kunstkamer

On 10 June, the audience around the world had a chance to see the Kunstkamer by Australian ballet. The program, symbolizing the 18th-century cabinet of curiosities with its own emotions, humor and intimate touching atmosphere, was created by the most famous contemporary choreographers Paul Lightfoot and Sol León, Marco Goecke, Crystal Pite. Commissioned for the 60th anniversary of NDT, it's presented for the first time outside of the Netherlands. The stylish and fascinating ballet was marked by the return of David Hallberg to the stage. The audience could also notice the first performance with Australian Ballet of Maxim Zenin, one of the newcomers of this season.

The atmosphere of Kunstkamer, the ballet cabinet of curiosities, where the character intricately and charmingly acted and danced by Hallberg reminds Herr Drosselmeyer but he has no dolls… All the dancers make the feeling very vivid by their charisma and the palette of emotions. Each piece flows into the next one, creating the image of the modern choreographic interpretation of the pictures by Hieronymus Bosch.

David Hallberg looks as if he has no break in dancing, light, with his special stature, perfect lines and radiant energy. Each of the dancers of this very elegant but demanding program was very interesting and individual in solos. My attention was attracted by the plastique of Lucien Xu and the movement of Jill Ogai, the power and grace of corps de ballet.

The orchestra conducted by Nicolette Fraillon brilliantly coped with the most complex score, including works by Beethoven, Schubert, Arvo Pärt, Purcell, Ólafur Arnalds and other outstanding classical and contemporary composers.

Generally I look at and write about European ballet: Russia, France, the Netherlands etc., but I have been waiting for the chance to get acquainted with David Hallberg’s company. I can say that it’s very curious to see this cohesive and bright team. Looking forward for the Harlequinade revival by Alexey Ratmansky Live Stream on 24 June, the love story based on commedia dell’arte firstly choreographed by Marius Petipa.

Photos and video: Australian Ballet

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