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The Pros and Cons of the Ballet--but mostly Cons.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Everything might be beautiful at the ballet, but the truth is...

...we'd rather hear the song about it.

There wasn't enough singing along with all that dancing. Granted, it was beautiful, well-controlled dancing. Yes, we were only fifteen rows back, in almost the dead-center of the hall, so we could practically see the dancers' pimples underneath their make-up (Jason really scored on those seats!). But, there were a few things that made us decide that we probably wouldn't do a ballet again:

  1. This paragraph in the synopsis: "Siegfried enters a clearing near the lake. Through the trees he sees the beautiful Swan Queen Odette. He immediately falls in love with her. She is terrified by his presence, but he assures her that he will never shoot her and pledges his undying love. As dawn approaches, the swans are compelled to return to the lake. Von Rothbart appears and beckons to Odette. She is helpless and must obey. Siegfried is unable to stop her from leaving and is left alone in despair." Um...they call that "love" nowadays, eh?
  2. As exciting as that sounds, it took nearly twenty minutes of dancing. Die Hard, this was not. We like plots that move along at a little better pace. Think Moulin Rouge, Phantom of the Opera, or even The Sound of Music, for Pete's sake!
  3. It seemed that the so-called "story-line" was only a framework to give an excuse to show off a lot of dancing, even if it was really good dancing. Because of this, the plot is extremely simple. For instance, we are never told why von Rothbart feels the need to keep twenty-odd girls enslaved to him by a form-changing enchantment with no apparent purpose. Maybe he just really likes white birds. Or maybe he was just a dirty old man who liked to watch them transform from swans to girls, before they could get their clothes on. (There was no nudity on the stage, don't worry. But if it were to really happen, I am sure the girls would not transform fully clothed, don't ya think?)
  4. Mighty convenient that the only way the spell could be broken was if a young man makes a vow of undying love and faithfulness to the Queen of the Swans, and who is the first person that the hormonal Prince Siegfried should light upon but she? (Phew! Thank goodness he didn't see one of the chorus girls first--although it might have made the plot more interesting!)
Okay, enough ragging on the world's most popular ballet. It had it's good points. Besides the great dancing, I would have to say that of all the ways to tell a story about swan-girls, a ballet is probably the most suiting medium to do it in. Watching eighteen beautiful girls in stiff white tutus prance around the stage in unison is really something to behold. Also, absolutely everyone on stage has a really great arse. (Well, except maybe the Queen Mother.) You can easily tell, because ballet tights leave absolutely nothing to the imagination.

And any excuse to dress to the nines is a good one!

Alright, alright, enough about that. Jason and I managed to squeeze in a few other fun things in our "off hours" on this whirlwind trip.

Our deluxe hotel room, which we got free with Aeroplan miles. Nice!

We splurged on Prime Rib for supper. So melt-in-your-mouth delicious! This was Jason's meal, after he'd already eaten his Yorkshire Pudding and started on the meat.

Jason and I goofing off in a self-portrait at West Edmonton Mall--just after our "breakfast" Texas Scramble wrap at 1 p.m. (We weren't in any hurry to leave the hotel room this morning.) I dropped a piece of hash brown on my jeans, and the word-of-the-day came from Jason's mouth: "You're doing good, there! Are we going to have to call in a HazMat team to clean that up?" The real score was when he got to use HazMat team again not half an hour later when "he had to call a HazMat team to find a stall that could be used" in the men's washroom. Sadly, he missed the opportunity to use it a third time when we both spilled burger fixings on ourselves whilst eating our supper in the dark in the van on the way home.

Jason and Maximus Aurelius. (We have no idea who this is supposed to be, so that's what we decided to call him.)

Pirates in the mall!

We made it home, safe and sound. I've now ignored the flashing "messages waiting" light on my phone and put off looking at my e-mail as long as possible, so I better get to it.

So, if you are more of a musical buff like me, you might want to pull out The Swan Princess instead of subjecting yourself to the more costly and less-talkative Swan Lake. Or you might not. Just sayin'.

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  1. Mom - Thanks for being my sole commenter on this post. If it weren't for the counter, I'd think you were the only reader I have most days. :-)


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