Le Parc is a ballet created by Angelin Preljocaj in 1994, to music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, for the dancers of the Paris Opera Ballet. In this piece the choreographer wonders about the progression of passions and the opposition of the sexes. It invites the public to a trip to the land of The Map of Tendre (Carte de Tendre) which appeared as an engraving in the first part of Madeleine de Scudéry's 1654-61 novel Clélie. Le Parc is made of lyricism tinged with a strong sensuality showed through the complex technique.
The decorations contain the balance between the modern design and the atmosphere of the French royal gardens in XVII – XVIII centuries, the costumes were also inspired by the Age of Enlightenment. The story between a woman and a man is developing in one long Act with three “pas de deux”, where the emotions flow from resistance and sweet tension to the surrender and immersion in a whirlwind of feelings and passions.
Despite this season almost did not take place, Paris Opera Ballet made a broadcast of this ballet, where the audience could see the debut of the danseur étoile Mathieu Ganio in Le Parc in duo with Alice Renavand.
Ganio in this ballet demonstrated an exemplary technique and the depth of his character: a seducer, a chevalier, a beloved man, a human in love. His lightness and bitter-sweet charisma made the fresh and smooth fascinating cocktail. Every port de tête, port de bras were followed by the stream of emotions reflecting on his face. In all three “pas de deux” Ganio was different, his mood was naturally changing with the development of the plot. His character was playful and courageous in La Recontre, excited and impatient in La Resistance and in the climax, L’abandon he melted in the atmosphere of desire and seemed soaring above the stage with his partner.
Alice Renavand was made an «étoile» following a performance of Le Parc in 2013, in which she had performed the lead female role for the first time. In 2021 in duo with her celebrated partner (they danced together for the first time) she was accurate, noble and confident on stage.
All dancers demonstrated the clearness and the highest level of performance, at the same time, playing on stage, making their characters individual and charming. I would like to notice Sebastien Bertaud, Gregory Dominiak, Mickael Lafon, Charlotte Ranson, Marine Ganio for the beautiful and bright spectacle from the choreographic and acting point of view.
Le Parc is a French ballet with the truly French spirit, where the human relationships and feelings play the main role. The beauty of modern choreography based on the classical one and the elegance of the epoch of Louis XIV, the individual representations of characters make this ballet a treasure of the company’s repertoire.
Text: Julia Sumzina
Photos: Yonathan Kellerman, OnP
Video: Opéra National de Paris