Star performance from Ballet

Angelina's Star PerformanceEnglish National Ballet, Ipswich Regent Wednesday May 28, 2pm and 6pmThis was a charming bringing to life of the classic story of Angelina Ballerina by the English National Ballet in their bid to reach out to a younger audience.

Angelina's Star Performance

English National Ballet, Ipswich Regent

Wednesday May 28, 2pm and 6pm

This was a charming bringing to life of the classic story of Angelina Ballerina by the English National Ballet in their bid to reach out to a younger audience.


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The performance certainly drew a crowd of almost exclusively young girls in their best frocks for a half-term treat, and having stocked up on Angelina paraphernalia including ears, light-up tails and T-shirts, they settled down for a performance of pure delight.

The ballet, choreographed by Antony Dowson - who is well-versed in the ways of Angelina by his eight-year-old daughter - follows the story of the familiar pretty white mouse in her pink tutu as she puts on her own ballet, The Sleeping Beauty, with (recorded) music by Tchaikovsky.

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The characters in the books are clearly identifiable - including naughty Henry, Angelina's best friend Alice, who is also an excellent dancer, and Valentine - who still has a lot to learn.

Dowson says: “The characters need to by very clear, and I have to make their characteristics obvious.

“I'm doing that through their movements, because their faces are hidden behind mouse masks. This makes it more difficult for the audience to read the dancers' expressions and also makes it more difficult for them to dance.”

The costumes are a key part of what makes the performance so enjoyable. English National Ballet's Head of Costume Wizzy Shawyer achieves the perfect balance between “mousy-ness” and ballet dancer with mouse heads, judicious padding and enchanting dresses and outfits..

The performance within the performance of The Sleeping Beauty gave added scope and dynamism, with the handsome prince taking on the evil Carabosse to reach his sleeping princess..The finale with Angelina held aloft in a shower of silver confetti was enough to inspire any budding ballerina in the audience.

Angelina's Star Perfomance is touring until June 8. Visit www.ballet.org.uk.

Susannah Robirosa

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