Beneath a canopy of wild roses and columbine, the dancers of the Pacific Northwest Ballet wove an enchanting spell last weekend in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” A remount of the 1962 choreography by George Balanchine, staged for PNB 14 years ago by Francia Russell, this PNB favorite is still replete with charm, featuring a delightful children’s corps and some excellent dancing and acting from the principals to complement the fairy-tale sets and costume.
One of Balanchine’s most famous ballets, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is unusual for this Russian-born American choreographer, the lavish kind of story-ballet he mostly despised. But it’s also one of his best. The choreography combines nimble, creative vocabulary with Balanchine’s perfect eye for tableaux, which the PNB dancers executed in perfect alignment – Puck and the fairies in pyramid, Titania’s retinue laced like a cobweb across the stage, the butterflies collapsed in a heap.
Balanchine also tells this well-known Shakespeare story with clarity, and here the PNB soloists also shone. Read more »