The Cape Town City Ballet visits the Maynardville Theatre
What makes Maynardville a unique venue for a ballet performance?
The Maynardville Open-Air Theatre is situated in Maynardville Park, Wynberg. The spectacular green wooded park has earned it a reputation for being one of the best-loved outdoor theatre venues in the Cape region. Enjoy a picnic in the park before watching the ballet under the stars! Pure magic.
Could you please give a brief synopsis of this year's ballets, Solitaire and Graduation Ball?
Solitaire was first seen in 1956, danced by the Sadler's Wells Ballet in London. The ballet was described by the choreographer, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, as "a kind of game for one", in which a girl tries repeatedly to join in the activities of her friends, but always finds herself alone. Danced to the music of British composer Sir Malcolm Arnold, this ballet will be taught and staged by the Artistic Director of the Royal Academy of Dance, Lynn Wallis.
Graduation Ball, the second work on the programme, was created in 1940 by the Russian choreographer David Lichine for the Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo. Using music by Johan Strauss II arranged by Antal Duráti, the ballet is set in a Viennese boarding school, where the young girls put on a ball with the cadets of the city's military academy.
Why did you decide to pair these two?
They are both international works of outstanding character. These ballets show the company off in different ways: Solitaire for the technical abilities of the dancers and Graduation Ball for its whimsical and comic character portrayals. Both ballets are suited to the magical atmosphere of the outdoor theatre.
What tips would you give people attending Maynardville for the first time - what "essentials" do they need to bring along?
Bring a blanket to put over your legs, in case there is a chilly breeze. Pack a picnic and enjoy the beautiful weather in the park before the performance.
What else is Cape Town City Ballet planning in the next few months?
The Cape Town City Ballet - the South African National Ballet Company - presents Giselle at the Artscape Opera House from 13 to 22 April, accompanied by the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra and featuring guest artists from the English National Ballet, Daria Klimentova and Vadim Muntagirov, as well as rising international star Maxim Quiroga, currently with the Vienna State Opera Ballet company.
Performances are in the Artscape Opera House from 13 to 22 April, 2012. Ticket prices range from between R100 and R300. Book at Computicket, Shoprite and Checkers outlets, www.computicket.com, or Dial-A-Seat: 021 421 7695. Booking opens on 6 February. .