Being a fairy tale expert and a psychologist I was always indulged by the strong female characters appearing in Grimm’s fairy tales. I appreciated their impact in the stories as an evil and intense element of the plot. One of my favorites has always been the evil queen of Snow White who is obsessed with her vanity to the point where she loses everything. Of course it was an absolute pleasure for me to have the chance to meet the first solo dancer of the Staatsballet Berlin Beatrice Knop who portraits the evil queen in the new Snow White ballet. In her backstage wardrobe she was applying the final touches of her make-up and posing for us in the gorgeous Jean Paul Gaultier costume she is wearing on stage. For more backstage pictures and my impression of the piece just go after the jump.
If I had to describe the style and the feeling the piece was giving me I would say that it is a great mixture between a stylish gothic music video and a really classical nice Midsummer Night’s Dream production. What perhaps sounds like an odd combination results in an emotionally touching balancing act between both styles. I could imagine that some of the grannies in the audience had hoped for more fairy tale magic and less dark goth fantasies. And I am sure that probably some of the younger visitors we spotted in the audience could have had less of the kitschy group choreographies. But I was completely happy with both parts and I appreciate the combination.
Most intriguing was obviously the charming Beatrice Knop who proved herself as an enormously powerful solo dancer. Especially in her mirror scenes I totally believed that she was doing real magic instead of dancing. Also the scene where she kills Snow White with the apple really had a disturbing intensity. I literally saw the poison entering the body through the movements of the witch.
Costume-wise Jean Paul Gaultier didn’t disappoint the high expectations creating vivid and floating gowns combined with his trademark leather corsets. I could imagine a lot of the costumes being a cohesive collection showing on a runway in Paris. There were some really fashionable pieces which I would like to call my own and of course wear. So it was also a great blend between costume and fashion.
photo: Enrico Nawrath
All in all we had a fantastic evening which I would repeat tomorrow if I could. So take the chance to visit, it’s absolutely worth it. Here are the dates for the piece.
17., 19. & 22.05.2009
12. & 13.06.2009
01., 10., 13., 16., 23. & 25.10.2009