ROMEO AND JULIET
July 5 – 10 • Metropolitan Opera House
Sir Kenneth MacMillan's Romeo and Juliet sweeps audiences through Prokofiev's score as though Shakespeare's story were not familiar and the ending still in doubt. Against sumptuous sets and costumes that recreate Renaissance Italy, the beloved production entered ABT's repertoire in 1985, and dancers have vied for the leads ever since.
For many, performing the role of Juliet or Romeo is the ultimate test of dramatic ability. There are scenes that demand consummate artistry and roles that offer leeway for individual interpretation. When Juliet finally runs onstage, doll in hand, the ballerina can make her charming, teasing, innocent or self-aware. Romeo's transformation from swaggering young man to passionate lover offers a rich blend of virtuosity and nuance. "Romeo's roaming around
The breathtaking lifts and leaps in Romeo and Juliet's first pas de deux make technical demands that must disappear in performance. Principal Dancer Paloma Herrera says, "The audience shouldn't see the steps. It should look like we're making it up as we go along." Hallberg agrees, "You need to get the kinks out — you must embody the character."
Romeo and Juliet has earned a passionate following among audiences as well as dancers. "After I dance Juliet," says Herrera, "I feel fulfilled, but empty too. You have given so much of yourself to the role, and it has given so much to you."
Final Week of ABT's 2010 Season!
Tonight through Saturday
Go to Met Box Office,