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Adam: Giselle [Blu-Ray]  [Region Free]
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Giselle is the quintessential Romantic ballet. Its title role, one of the most technically demanding and emotionally challenging in the classical repertory, is here danced by Alina Cojocaru, partnered by Johan Kobborg as Count Albrecht. This tale of the transcendental power of love over death is evocatively portrayed through Peter Wright's sensitive staging and John Macfarlane's designs, which beautifully contrast the human and supernatural worlds – mastered from a High Definition recording and true surround sound.
"Cojocaru's interpretation, everyone seems to agree, is one of the greatest of all time, and she continues to refine it with every performance...One of the things which makes Cojocaru so poignant in this role is a quality that one senses in the dancer herself. Something in the emotional charge of her performances, some fragility beneath the ballerina steel, emphasises the ephemeral nature of the art form. It reminds us that we must seize the day." (The Observer)
"The Royal Ballet's recent triumphs continue with this exquisite Giselle. Beguiling actress-dancer Alina Cojocaru embraces both Act I's sweet rural girl and the tragic ghost of Act II." (BBC Music Magazine ★★★★)
"There is nothing new or revolutionary about this Giselle from the Royal Opera House but it is a beautiful production, superbly danced by a young, fresh-faced cast that dedicate themselves with heart and soul to the performance. It is expertly filmed and edited. The picture is liquid and clear, with contrasting colours, capturing the moonlit forest of Act II perfectly, wonderfully enhancing the ghostly atmosphere." (Musicweb International)
"[Cojocaru and Kobborg] are a touching pair and the remaining roles [are] no less brilliant and as strongly characterized. The Royal Corps de Ballet is superb. A compelling performance, with fine supportive playing from the Covent Garden orchestra under Boris Gruzin and expert video direction throughout.
" (The Penguin Guide)
CastAlina Cojocaru (Giselle)Johan Kobborg (Count Albrecht)Marianela Nuñez (Myrtha (Queen of the Wilis))Martin Harvey (Hilarion)
The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House; Boris GruzinChoreographer: Marius Petipa
Catalogue Number: OABD7030DDate of Performance: 2006Running Time: 112 minutesSound: 2.0 & 5.0 PCMAspect Ratio: 1080i High Definition / 16:9Subtitles: FR, DE, ES, ITLabel: Opus Arte
'Cojocaru's interpretation, everyone seems to agree, is one of the greatest of all time, and she continues to refine it with every performance… One of the things which makes Cojocaru so poignant in this role is a quality that one senses in the dancer herself. Something in the emotional charge of her performances, some fragility beneath the ballerina steel, emphasises the ephemeral nature of the art form. It reminds us that we must seize the day.' --The Observer --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
One of the most celebrated ballets ,perhaps the best known and represented one,suffered various revisions - Marius Petipa,as in the present Giselle, (he was the elder brother to Lucien Petipa who had also been the first Albrecht),Nureyev,Grigorovich,etc., but never lost its luminous aura with the ingredients so dear to Romanticism(Death,the Night ,Fate ,doomed Love and Madness (Walter Scott,Goëthe,etc).
Every ballerina's dream(as in last year poignant documentary on a "corps de ballet" dancer - Véronique Doisneau),has been the glory of several dancers such as Essler, Chauviré, Karsavina, Spessivtseva, Fracci,Ulanova,Markova...
This said,romanian Alina Cojocaru,star of the Royal Ballet,brings it a new life.There are two Giselles in this 2 act ballet:In Act 1,Giselle is an innocent,"naïf" peasant girl ,full of joy ,who tragically finds a treacherous love and dies.In Act 2 she belongs to the world of the dead,integrating the legion of the Wilis( cruel,translucent virgins ),confined to the magic of the night,under Myrtha's command - their queen.
The gracefulness of this portrayed 17 year-old and moving Giselle is completely brought out by this lovely ,highly gifted ballerina.But it is in the complexity of Act 2 choreography that Cojocaru makes all the difference:Slow movements,an extremely beautiful "developpée" (Zakharova's is slightly more impressive ,at la Scala,but totally absorved in her refined technique,expressing in the face either a smile of joy or a rictus of grief throughout the whole performance,thus forgetting to bring out Giselle's inner feelings), her arms being a vehicle of expression as important as the leggs (Russian School).
She becomes aethereal ,the perfect illusion of bearing no weight as a spirit would,on "pointes" or when lifted by Kohborg.Her splendid techique,used with intelligence makes this Giselle deserving to be remembered along with the best ones.Kohborg is a wonderful Albrecht ( his variation beautifully executed) Marianela Nuñez a haughty ,convincing Myrtha and Marin Harvey a very good Hilarion.The "corps" bears the recognised quality of The Royal Ballet,live from Covent Garden,Boris Cruzin conducting with "panache".A most brilliant event.
Let me start off by saying that Giselle is my favorite ballet; I love the story, the music and the dance.
This performance was recorded in 2006 at the Royal Opera House, Covent Gardens, London and stars Alina Cojocaru and Johan Kobberg in the principal roles.
This is probably the best danced and finest interpretation of this magnificent ballet I've ever seen. I initially saw this at a movie theater with about 200+ people; you could have heard a pin drop during many of the pas de deux between Cojocaru and Kobberg, they were that stirring to watch.
There was so much to like about this performance...let me elaborate,
1.)The costumes for the peasants, the Royal hunting party and Wilis were sumptuous; the sets for both acts were nicely conceived to display the rustic theme for the village in Act I and then the marsh scene in Act II.
2.)The principal dancers, Alina Cojocaru and Johan Kobborg gave the performance of a lifetime. Cojocaru has such skill and grace...an easy effortlessness that holds her audience spellbound. Kobberg attains such height with his leaps and jumps that it appears as if he can defy gravity.
3.) The emotion displayed, through facial expression and body language, by both leads was perfect for the situation; their dancing techniques and skills when together, were simply breath taking. Some of the famous lifts in the Act II were, without a doubt, the best I've ever seen in any performance of Giselle.
4.) The conductor, Boris Gruzin, interpretation of Adophe Adam's music was beautifully rendered, complimenting the tone and mood of this ballet that covered both ends of the emotional spectrum.
About the only concern (albeit minor) for this interpretation of Giselle was with regards to the Corps de ballet. Although the dancing through out the entire ballet was excellent, some of the timing of movement and dance steps was slightly off between some couples, particularly in Act I.
Simply the loveliest Giselle I've ever seen; a Giselle that literally moved me to tears. The emotions shown and skills displayed by Cojocaru during this performance were as close to perfection as anyone could ask.
Interestingly, the program accompanying the theater performance I saw stated, 'Legend has it that she (Cojocaru) was promoted to principal at the end of the first performance'. You'll understand why when you've seen this DVD.
I must admit to a grievous error on my part with my initial review, in which I criticized some of the camera shots and angles. This initial review was based on my viewing of this performance in a movie theater. The home DVD video was much better visually than the performance seen in the movie theater; better because of a much sharper picture as well as less 'close-up' camera shots. I suspect the enlargement that took place to fill an entire movie screen caused some distortion in perception of size and movement, giving the movie house performance a less than perfect visual presentation.
My apologies go out to the producers and editors of this fine DVD for my initial review based on my movie theater experience.