Ballet in Vienna
The lights dim and the orchestra begins, violins rising on a burst of cello and flute. There are 27 violins, 8 cellos, 4 French horns and a bell ringer. I feel a bit sorry for the bell ringer, his moment to shine comes at the start of the second act and then he has to sit patiently for the rest of the performance.
Giselle rises and falls on the current of the orchestra, feet contorted impossibly as she extends her toes, and her body is a soundless, graceful blur of movement… she dies tragically and her lover mourns… the spirits of the graveyard seek revenge on the men who have wronged her. I am watching the pale forms of the dancers silhouetted like ghostly veils against the dark water of the stage.
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