Tense, edgy, moody and sparse; modern ballet should stretch the boundaries, and these pieces of dramatic dynamism will do just that. Two choreographers, Czech Jiří Kylián and Swedish Johan Inger, present four pieces that showcase a Hungarian première, “Rain Dogs” by Inger. The other three consist of “Walking Mad”, “Falling Angels” and “Sarabande” (which contains a warning about unsettling sound effects).
Good, as I like something that comes with a health warning. That is the best part of modern theatre; to unsettle, to jar, to plunge us into darkness and to question the world we inhabit through the medium of the elastic shapes the dancers throw across the stage.
Less of the tame, the traditional and more of the experimental. The only downside to this modern ballet recital is that it is only showing for a week in Erkel Theatre.
In contrast to the dance in Erkel, the Opera House begins its season this Saturday with the delicate-as-crystal “La Traviata”, and one of its star performers, Erika Miklósa, has the graceful long lines and fragility of a finely trained ballerina. This Hungarian première is one of Verdi’s most popular and accessible operas, never failing to captivate audiences across the world.
This production was highly acclaimed when it opened at the Margitszigeti festival in June, and now it will be as polished as a precious stone complete with flawless scene changes and that extra special confidence stemming from its summer success. The ticket sales speak for themselves; the run is long and yet many performances are near to selling out.
“La Traviata” is indeed the beauty queen of Verdi’s operas; opulent, lavish and dramatic like Violetta herself. Its tender, carefully crafted love story and joyful beginnings belie the sadness and tragedy that follow. The glitter and glamour of Violetta’s society balls fade out to darkness and sorrow, angry painful vengeance and eventual heartbreak.
There are echoes of Puccini’s “La bohème”, not just in the orchestral score but with the consumptive Violetta dying in her lover’s arms in a similar fashion to Mimi. Now, transferred to the Opera House stage, “La Traviata” is a sensational way to open the season.
Erika Miklósa and Polina Pasztircsák alternate in the role of Violetta, with Alfredo Germont performed by Péter Balczó and Attila Fekete. With Gergely Zöldy as set and costume designer and director Ferenc Anger’s trademark touches of the sinister and the macabre, expect nothing short of perfection.
Saturday September 24, 7pm
until Sunday October 16
(times and casts vary –
check information for details)
Opera House, Andrássy út 22, District VI
Tickets and information: