A Review by Melissa Compton.
The emotive and heartfelt Ballet Victoria opened at New Theatre, Cardiff this evening. The story of Queen Victoria has often been told but never quite in this way. The Ballet is centred around a series of events in Victoria’s life rather than beginning to end, told through the eyes of her daughter Beatrice. The Ballet opens with the queen making her final diary entry shortly before her death. The choreography is simple and paired with live music provided by Northern Ballet Sinfonia which increases the emotional impact on the audience. Both Abigail Prudames (Victoria) and Pippa Moore (Older Princess Beatrice) gave outstanding performances throughout the ballet. The Northern Ballet more than delivered on their goal to make ballet accessible for all as no prior knowledge is needed to understand and enjoy the ballet. The story is written out in the programme which is on sale for £5.00.
The ballet leads us through events such as Victoria’s relationship with John Brown her servant leading to his death, denying her daughter Beatrice permission to marry, Beatrice as a widow, Victoria’s courtship with Albert including their wedding and Victoria’s Coronation, with the ballet ending on Victoria snatching a young Beatrice up and retreating with her after Albert’s death, we feel as if we have come full circle with this stunning performance.
Beatrice edits her mother’s diary during the ballet leading to some entertaining moments the ripping out of pages during the wedding night scene gave the whole audience a giggle. And the freezing technique of the dancers as Beatrice tears pages up and edits or switches from one diary to another added atmosphere to the ballet. You can’t help but to feel empathy with each scene, and a cast of very gifted dancers gave a great performance. The Queen’s personality shone through from her intense feelings of love for Albert to her frustration and playful nature.
The ballet connects scenes with circular choreography to give a flawless transition and maintaining the focus on emotion throughout, the one thing you will take away from this ballet is how heart-moving the story is, as Beatrice Rediscovers her mother, finding peace with Victoria’s actions towards her in the process.
Venue: New Theatre Cardiff
Dates : 21 – 25 May 2019
Price : £14 – 34
See www.newtheatrecardiff.co.uk for details