More than one hundred years ago magic was created on
stage when Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty was performed for the first time.
Sleeping Beauty is still fascinating even for those who claim that ballet is
boring. After staging the Nutcracker Suite last year, Chiangmai Ballet was
back with a brilliant array of dancers, two new stories, new choreography
and again simply stunning costumes and dancers.
and Princess Florina (Tirolarn Kritykieme) during their final spectacular
Grand Pas de Deux.
The first item was a musical dance play entitled Manohra
Fantasy, an energetic contemporary rendition, combining western music with
traditional southern Thai melodies. A story of true love that brings
together Phra Suton, the Prince of Panchala and Manohra, the Kinnaree, a
beautiful half human-half bird mythical creature.
When the devastated Prince went on his dangerous journey
to search the forests for his true love where evil waited for him in form of
tigers, lions and a fierce dragon, not only Manohra was under his spell, but
so was the audience, and when he finally made the right choice to make his
wish come true to select the real Manohra out of seven look-a-likes, the
performance would not have looked out of place on any ballet stage in the
Desire and his beautiful Aurora.
ML Preeyapun Sridhavat brought Chiang Mai dignitaries,
parents, children and members of the diplomatic corps as a spellbound
audience to this double bill production, including HSH. Prince Bhisadej
Rajani, Dr. Chao Duanduang na Chiang Mai, Khunying Dr. Chao Ravipan
Sucharikul, CG Katsuhiro Shinohara and CG Bea Camp.
The second item began with the singers from MS Studio and
Maneenuch Samerasuit, the Asian Amateur Singing Award winner, and on stage
the christening celebration of Aurora, the princess of the mythical kingdom
of King Florestan XXIV. The Sleeping Beauty plot is well known, and in the
hands of the local producer, it turned out to be a tale of skill, strength,
poise, grace, and elegance. It was a colorful performance, with graceful pas
de deux, the cutest children, innocent birthday gifts, lovely flowers,
divine little lilac fairies and evil Carabosse’s members.
As co-chairperson Cheryl Penney put it, “It was a huge
opportunity for young dancers to experience the excitement of being part of
the gift of artistic story telling. They gained confidence in their own
achievements in front of an audience and contributed towards helping the
community in which they live.”
The proceeds will be donated to the orphanage housing tsunami victims,
the Northern Mentally Retarded Welfare Center, under the patronage of Her
Majesty the Queen, the Thai Red Cross and other orphans from the tsunami
between the shows.
small part of the 350 participants at the Kad theatre.
Tigers on the loose.
Samerasuit, the Asian Amateur Singing Award winner, and the vocalists from
single dancer was artistic. (From left) King Florestan (Anucha Sumaman), the
Queen (Karin Nicholas), kneeling in front the Lilac Fairy (Pareya
Netrawichien), while the generous fairy (Rafaela Kraushaar), the gentle, the
playful, the audacious and the carefree fairies stand behind.
are older we will also dance ‘en pointe’, for now we are just cute.
see my Manohra? I can only see a huge forest.
were the ‘birthday gifts’ for Princess Aurora. They were received with
cheers by the audience.
grand finale together with producer and artistic director ML Preeyapun
Sridhavat in the midst of Prince Desire (left) Peera Phanlukthaow and
Bluebird, Tirolarn Krityakierne, a male dancer from Mahasarakam University.
Suton, the Prince of Panchala and Manohra, the Kinnaree.
Karin Nicholas (left), Ballet Mistress for the Chiang Mai Ballet Performing
Group and dance teacher at APIS kindergarten, watches over the little ones.
tigers from Manohra relaxing with other cast members.