"The Winter's Tale"
National Ballet of Canada
David H. Koch Theater
New York, NY
July 29, 2016
by Mary Cargill
copyright © 2016 by Mary Cargill
Shakespeare's "The Winter's Tale" is a play about jealousy, madness, grief, regret, and redemption, combined with a complicated plot and questionable geography (the sea cost of Bohemia plays an important role). The National Ballet of Canada, as part of the Lincoln Center Festival, appeared in Christopher Wheeldon's 2014 co-production with the Royal Ballet and Canadians; the choreographer tells the story with imagination and verve. The sets (by Bob Crowley) and the special effects (by Basil Twist) are stunning, while the music (by Joby Talbot) is effective as a cinematic score, reinforcing the moods and story without revealing any depths, though the very long folkish music of Act II ambles along with few hints of rhythm or melody. Talbot is no Minkus.
Corps in Act II of "The Winter's Tale". Photo © Karolina Kuras.