Following the incredible success of Gerardo Francisco’s Ibong Adarna, Ballet Manila brings in another ballet classic for their 22nd Performance Season “Flights of Fantasy”. The country’s premier ballet company soars yet again with the re-staging of Swan Lake. Ballet Manila’s production is both a part of the company’s commitment to produce at least one classic ballet in every season’s repertoire and to bring in brilliance and grandeur.
The ballet that started it all.
Ballet Manila’s CEO and artistic director, Lisa Macuja-Elizalde, becomes personal with the re-staging of the classic. She saw, at the age of 14, Prima Ballerina Yoko Morishita as the Swan Queen in all her might. The encounter sparked the drive inside the little girl to pursue her dreams. And as they say, the rest is history.
She is now training a younger generation of swans for the upcoming production. She adds that there is no other way to perform Swan Lake than the original Lev Ivanov choreography for the first act. The second to fourth acts, however, will be featuring choreography by Russia People’s Artist Sergey Vikulov and Tatiana Udalenkova, whom Lisa regards as her second family.
A new generation of ballerinas and danseurs will bring the story to life. Katherine Barkman, Abigail Oliveiro, and Joan Sia, who makes her debut as the black swan, will be alternating the dual role of Odette/Odile, while resident guest artist Joseph Phillips, Elpidio Magat, Romeo Peralta, Rudy de Dios, and Mark Sumaylo will be alternating the role of Prince Siegfried.
Ballet Manila proves to be the perfect home for the classic tale. As the Filipina Prima Ballerina puts it herself, “We have the numbers and the history which no other ballet company in the Philippines does. Our Vaganova training has made us into the perfect company to perform a truly world-class rendition of Swan Lake.”
The magic of motions will be accompanied by the original score by Peter Tchaikovsky which will be played live by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Russian conductor, Maestro Alexander Vikulov of the Mariinsky Theater. Audiences will be up for a magical evening with new sets, enchanting music, and magnificent costumes.
The story of Swan Lake is one that connects with the heartstrings of the family, as it revolves around the universal theme of good triumphing over evil. From romance to the sheer beauty of ballet, it is all here.
Through Ballet Manila’s rendition of Swan Lake, Lisa hopes that the company can inspire young children to work on their dreams too—just like how she did when she first saw the ballet.