Giselle: A magnificent production

In this unique interpretation of the iconic ballet, Akram Khan’s unmissable production imitates and simultaneously transforms one of the best-loved ballets from the classical repertoire into the 21st century.

‘Giselle’ – the collaborative project between the Manchester International Festival and London’s Sadler’s Wells – tells the story of love, betrayal, revenge and forgiveness in a visually compelling and breath-taking performance.
With Academy-Award winning designer Tim Yip (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) creating a stunning set design, the classic story of love, revenge and redemption is given a new interpretation and is executed with the utmost success.

Renowned composer, Vincenzo Lamagna, adapts the original score – which is performed by English National Ballet Philharmonic – but widely uses the original for the romantically timeless pas de deux. This intertwining of old and new, in a way, represents the production as a whole – a beautiful fusion of tradition and innovation.

With the original plot loosely based on its 1881 origins, the ballet – which is composed of two acts – follows the story an underprivileged girl, Giselle, who dies of a broken heart after discovering her love is betrothed to another.

In Khan’s modern twist – Giselle is one of a community of migrant workers cast out of their jobs in a condemned garment factory, forbidden to make an impasse of the giant wall that was built to exclude them.

After falling in love with Albrecht, a member of the privileged class in disguise, she experiences the most soul-destroying heart break imaginable. When he chooses Bathilde, the woman he is engaged to, Giselle is driven into madness and dies.

In a fusion of both the real and supernatural worlds, Khan’s use of dynamic movement and eerie music creates an almost frightening atmosphere with the Wilis figures – ghosts of factory workers who seek revenge for the wrongs committed against them.

Through the beautifully produced movements of the dancers, the emotions – which range from love to hateful revenge – that emanate from the stage are truly breathtaking.

Award-winning choreographer Akram Khan’s ‘Giselle’ is a masterful art piece that makes a nod to its origins whilst paving a ground-breaking and innovative way for modern ballet.

This production in its entirety is magnificent and is deserving of it 5 star rating from ‘The Nubian Times’.

TNT Arts and Culture Alexia Hendrickson


Photo Credit: English National Ballet

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