The Nutcracker

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The Nutcracker

Postby Barry » Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:28 pm

Apollo Cinema 21st 2009

Well Christmas is certainly not complete without a Nutcracker, but this was an odd experience indeed. Our local cinema is trying to promote opera and ballet screenings, and full marks for them. When the rest of the cinema comples was chipmunks and blue aliens opera and ballet could be seen as a welcome alternative. Except I sat alone in the huge cinema watching a recording from two years ago of the Marinksy Nutcracker. I'm not sure I've hears such clear sound in a cinema - every instrument was there and it was conducted at a fair lick, which suited my tastes. Very exciting. The visuals in hi-def are something else. With a static camera and showign the whole stage I sometimes felt I was actually there, but when the camera moved on stage with cameramoves some of the movement just strobed. The image is so sharp that really fast movements become disconnected, not relating sufficiently to the previous frame, and it falls to pieces, but the wide shots were beautiful. The production was not....some inventive design, and some design that was gaudy and ugly, and looked as if they didn't try, the chinese dance especially. But as always there's a lot of faffing about but little coherent drama or real take on the piece. Food seemed to figure from the word go, but the didn't really do a big in vision transformation. Drosselmeyer was being hyperactive and melodramatic but there didn't seem to be a reason. Oh I would love to get my hands on this piece. This wasn't great or involving, and suffered from a few typically Russian production values, but the score came over triumphantly, and I loved that. I'll be interested to see how many people go to Cosi Fan Tutti, when the chipmunks are still next door.
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