Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet fills a peculiar place between the historic pomp of Leonid Lavrovsky’s original and the very dancy minimalism of Grigorovich’s later classic. The brown and black costumes seem a little dusty and remind me of the seventies. But the seventies unbelievably enough are back in fashion so perhaps the retro brown look is already trendy again.
How does Staatsoper handle this middle of the road Romeo from 1962? With relative aplomb. The orchestra did seem a little undermanned or thin for Prokofiev’s magnificent score in comparison to performances I’ve heard in Moscow and St Petersburg.
On the dance front after two years of Harangozo’s whip hand, the corps de ballet handles their part without a false step. Standardising on the Russian norm has left a very svelte and elegant corps.
Rafaella Sant’Anna, Ketevan Papava and Liudmila Trayan are all fun as the Montague good time girls. Thomas Mayerhofer and Alexandra Kontrus were fine as the Capulet parents but not extraordinarily stately. Still when Alexandra Kontrus is carried away with her son Tybald one’s heart breaks for the bereaved mother.