ATTENTION!!!

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61 Larapinta Drive or by calling them on 8951 1122.

Please help us by booking in groups as we can fit more into the Theatre.

Presents

Swan Lake

Proudly supported by

Duprada Dance Company is proud to stage this truely beautiful classical Ballet after four years. 

Dancers dream of performing Swan Lake, portraying the story of a young Prince who experiences true love for the first time. 

For a list of all performance dates click here

Swan Lake, one of the most famous ballets of the world, is being performed in Alice Springs by Duprada Dance Company in 2020. We would like to share with you a brief snippet of the history behind the ballet and some of the variations to the story that different companies have made. We hope you enjoy this little bit of information about the ballet and hope that if you come to see us perform, that it will give you a better insight to the ballet itself.

 

A Brief History of Swan Lake

Swan Lake was first performed in 1877 at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow. The music composed by Pyotr Tchaikovsky was not taken well with very few critics recognising the virtues of the score. Most critics thought it was too complicated for ballet, too 'noisy' and too 'symphonic'. The original choreography was also considered unimaginative and unmemorable. Surprisingly Swan Lake was performed over 6 years with 41 performances even after all of its bad reviews. The ballet masters successor attempted to restage the production many times in those years but ultimately failed having the ballet dropped from the repertory for good.

In the early 1890's, the possibility of reviving the ballet was discussed with Tchaikovsky. But before it could come to fruition, Tchaikovsky died on the 6th of November 1893. After his death, Riccardo Drigo an Italian composer, completed a revision of the score in 1877 with the permission of Tchaikovsky's kin. Today most ballet companies use this revised score and not the original music composed by Tchaikovsky. 

Alternative Endings

Fun Fact

On the 26th of April 1877, when Anna Sobeshchanskaya made her debut in Swan Lake, She was completely dissatisfied with the ballet. Sobeshchanskaya asked Marius Petipa, a prestigious ballet master, to choreograph a pas de deux for her instead of a pas de six. The pas de deux music was composed by Ludwig Minkus, a ballet composer for the St Petersburg Imperial Theatres.

Tchaikovsky, furious by the change stated that whether the ballet was good or bad, he alone should be held responsible for its music, and agreed to compose a new pas de deux.

Soon after, Sobeshchanskaya said that she wanted to keep the choreography that Petipa had made for her.

Tchaikovsky agreed to compose a piece that would match to such a degree, the dancer would not even need to rehearse.

Sobeshchanskaya was so impressed with the result that she later requested an additional variation.

It was thought that this pas de deux was lost until it was rediscovered in 1953 alongside some orchestral parts in the archives of the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow.

Unlike most ballets, Swan Lake is probably the most well known with a variety of endings. Most ballet companies will have a particular ending they like to embody, each with a slightly different spin.

In the revised story, created in 1877, Odette forgives Prince Siegfried, but the curse cannot be undone. Not wishing to be a swan forever, she chooses to die. The prince not wishing a life without her chooses to die as well. They throw themselves into the lake and drown together. The death of Odette breaks Rothbart's spell on the swans, causing him to lose all his power and die. After his death the swans return to maidens and Price Siegfried and Odette can be seen drifting up to heaven.

Some of the other endings include:​

  • A happy ending; where the prince wins the fight, causing Rothbart to die, breaking the curse. The prince and Odette live happily ever after.

  • A displeasing ending; where Rothbart wins the fight killing the Prince and takes Odette together with him up to heaven.

  • A sad ending; Prince Siegfried realises he can never be with Odette and decides to drown himself. His friends find his body later and they carry him back home.

  • An accidental ending; Prince Siegfried aims his crossbow at Rothbart but misses killing Odette. He carries her human form into the lake and drowns.

Duprada Dance Company's Swan Lake has been staged several times by Lynne Hanton OAM, who keeps in mind that our audience has young children and ballet students who see Baron Von Rothbart as evil, and she believes a happier ending is more appropriate. We know that parents will bring their children to the ballet and we try to inspire the young dancers to be involved with the story and experience the wonders of ballet, mime and music. Lynne has restaged Anne Woolliams version of Swan Lake, choreographed for the Australian Ballet Company in the early 1990's. Although this version of the ballet is no longer in the Australian Ballet Repertoire, it is perfect for Duprada Dance Company who first staged it in 2003-04, again in 2008, 2011 and 2016. The ballet has been staged in the Northern Territory with Australian Ballet Costumes and Guest Artist, Mark Brinkley from The Australian Ballet, has danced the role of Prince Siegfried in Darwin and in Alice Springs.

 

Our ending, is more romantic than happy. Odette forgives Prince Siegfried for his mistake knowing he had been tricked. The Prince decides to battle Rothbart to break the spell he holds over the white swans and for his love of Odette. He loses the fight, but moved by the Princes love, the swans separate the two and fight back against Rothbart, leading to his demise. The curse is broken and Prince Siegfried and Odette happily hold each other in their arms once more.

Fun Fact

In 1981, Toei Animation, in partnership with Soyuzmultfilm, published an anime of Swan Lake. The anime follows the story with the use of Tchaikovsky's music.

The anime was later dubbed in English twice. Once by Celebrities and the other by Golden Sync Studios. It has been recently re-released on DVD by Discotek Media in 2017 which includes all copies of the anime (Japanese and English).

The anime's story is very different from the ballet's, with characters like Odile & Rothbart getting extra time and the reductions of events like the ball which runs for an entire act and has been reduced to 8 minutes.

They have also added Hans and Margarita, two squirrels who can be seen throughout the entire movie.

Key moments have also been kept from the ballet, such as cygnets. This piece is iconic to the ballet and has been adapted into a cute dance by 4 cygnets, some still in their shells...!

The anime ends by a one sided battle between Rothbart and Prince Sigfried where the Prince chooses to stab himself, rather than giving up Odette to Rothbart. The act of true love breaks the curse, causing Odile and Rothbart to perish, reuniting Prince Sigfried and Odette, and Hans and Margarita.