Paris Opera: the gala of dance

After many months of closure the Paris Opera it opens up again virtually and makes its dancers dance in the traditional Gala d’ouverture, recorded without an audience and broadcast from the theater website. An extraordinary event this year, made possible, among the donors, by the two loyal patrons: Rolex, the watch of the Opéra de Paris, and Chanel, patron of his Ballet and the inauguration Gala, in the wake of the link with dance initiated by Mademoiselle Coco.

Available for free online at this link starting from Saturday 30 January and for six months, we have previewed the show, with the enthusiasm and emotion of finding the ballet company in such exceptional circumstances.

In the magnificent shots that you give majestic staircase of the Palais Garnier they enter the gilded and scarlet hall of the theater, impressing the emptiness and the silence: only the hum of the orchestra is heard, ready to play in the pit. Before the opening of the curtain, the director of the Alexander Neef Theater and the director of the Ballet Aurélie Dupont address the strangers to a deserted audience but to the immense digital audience, encouraging each other in presenting a program that testifies to the resistance of the theatrical world. Four titles on the poster, examples of declinations of ballet: classical, neoclassical, post-classical, the musicality to bind them.

The ritual of opening

And here the curtain opens for the ritual that opens every gala evening: the famous Défilé du Ballet by Serge Lifar on Brands Troyenne by Berlioz: majestic parade of the entire corps de ballet, which advances from the back of the stage to the proscenium, greeting the audience with a bow. From the “petits rat” pupils of the école to the ranks of the company, from the quadrilles to the sujets to the premiers danseurs to the étoiles, this year it is impressive to see all 250 with the blue mask on their faces. Ballet fans will recognize their favorites, however, from their gait and gaze the nine female étoiles in white tutus and tiara on the head and between the six male étoile in white shirt tights. Finally all arranged in an effect tableau, the columns and golden chandeliers of the famous appear in the background Foyer de la danse, portrayed in many paintings by Degas and period prints. The grandeur, the style, the history of French ballet are reaffirmed, this year more than ever.

Valentine Colasante and Hugo Marchand

The program

For ballet lovers the Grand pas classique by Victor Gsovsky on music by Auber, will be the most anticipated piece of the program: a step by two of heated virtuosity to be performed flawlessly and with a cheeky smile. Reserved for champions, this year two étoiles among the most prominent of the company perform it: Valentine Colasante and Hugo Marchand, balances and points of steel her, majestic the elegant strength of him, excellent in an authentic demonstration of French technique and style. But it will be difficult not to be distracted by them splendid costumes created this year for the couple by Maison Chanel, which describes them as follows: “The feminine silhouette consists of a midnight blue silk velor bustier and a black rigid tulle tutu, printed for the occasion in a shade of deep blue, then embroidered with a constellation of sequins, pearls, sequins and rhinestones that evoke the enchantment of a starry sky. Each element has been delicately hand embroidered in the heart of the ateliers of the Lesage maison that belongs to Métiers d’art by Chanel. These celestial and poetic motifs equally illuminate the masculine outfit, characterized by an elegant embroidered velvet pourpoint “.

Ludmila Pagliero and Mathieu Ganio

Alice Renavand and Stéphane Bullion, In the Nigh

It is a title dear to the Opéra In the Night, by the American master Jerome Robbins. The piano on stage to play i Nocturnes by Chopin, three pairs of étoiles dance the feeling that unites or distances them under a sky of stars. In mauve costumes, Ludmila Pagliero and Mathieu Ganio interpret romantic love, in a choreographic symphony of holds and lifts. The musical and choreographic atmosphere of the second couple, Léonore Baulac with Germain Louvet, is tinged with character, the amber tones of the costumes sign of a placid mood. The feeling of the amaranth couple, Alice Renavand and Stéphane Bullion, is a contrasted feeling, a choreographic battle of skirmishes and rapprochements. In the coda of the waltz that unites the three couples, between treacherous glances and imagined exchanges, the protagonists finally recompose the initial balance.

The American choreographer is also linked to the Opéra William Forsythe, which appears at the Gala with the exalting quintet The Vertiginous Thrill of exactitude, on an Allegro by Schubert. The étoiles Amandine Albisson, Ludmila Pagliero, Paul Marque and the Principal dancers Hannah O’Neill and Pablo Legasa, in a composition of solos, twos, trios, ensembles that breaks up and reassembles the classical language, with dizzying speed and extreme risk. The fluo yellow graphic tutus of the dancers and the fuchsia onesies of the dancers by Stephen Galloway enhance the brilliance of the choreography. An injection of energy and optimism for tomorrow.

Pablo Legasa and Amandine Albisson

Léonore Baulac and Germain Louvet, In the Night

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