It is difficult to review a show that is here for a week-end only as by the time I get the information to you, the show is gone. The Joffrey Ballet, however, is local and we are fortunate that they continue to thrill us with their amazing productions. Theater is my specialty, so when it comes to dance, I attempt to find people who are truly INTO dance to cover the events as they see it with an eye that is keen on the steps and movements that the performers are doing, while I just look at the over all production. My “grand niece” Ellie Wise, who is only twelve, but has been dancing since the age of three and is truly a dancer herself, took her daddy, my nephew Rick to last Thursdays production of “Stories in Motion” and here is what she had to say- in her own words:
I had the opportunity to see the Joffrey ballet production of Stories in Motion. Stories in Motion consisted of three different stories: Prodigal Son, Lilac Garden and RAkU. They were all very good, but I think RAkU was the best out of the three.
The Prodigal Son was a heart-warming story that was very easy to follow. The father had arranged a marriage for his son, but that was not who he wanted to marry. So he ran away in search of a girl to be his wife. When he found who he thought was that girl, it wasn’t true love so he returned back home to his father.
This story shows me how important family can be. Sometimes we think we can do things on our own, but we may need some help. The story was performed well. Not only was the dancing excellent, but so was their acting. At the end when the son returns home to his father, I could really feel the emotions surrounding their reunion.Lilac garden is a ballet that takes place in one scene, a garden reception. The performance had beautiful costumes and a beautiful set. Although it was short it was very meaningful. A woman was about to get married to a man that she didn’t love. She then realized who she really wants to marry, but it was too late. The woman and the man she wanted to marry danced across the stage trying not to be seen by her fiancé. At the end, the woman leaves on the arm of her fiancé with a sad and hopeless look on her face. I felt bad for her not being able to marry the person who she really loves.
RAkU is a Japanese ballet. It was very powerful and emotional. It was about a married couple and the husband had to go to war. When the soldiers returned, she found out her husband had died and all she had was his box of ashes. The wife was very angry and sad; you can definitely see it through her dancing. She throws her body around and just let’s go. The story has many emotions, including love, loss, anger, and despair. The story captivated me and the dancers made it impossible not to love. RAkU was inspirational for me. The way all the dancers moved, made me want to be like them.
Choreography: Yuri Possokhov
Music: Shinji Eshima
Possokhov uses the burning of the Golden Pavilion in Kyoto, Japan, as the point of departure for a story of love, treachery, separation and tragedy. Set in Japan’s past, a warrior and his beloved princess are pulled apart by the schemes of a jealousy-crazed monk.
To learn more about the upcoming season including two favorites “Swan Lake” October and “The Nutcracker” December, visit www.Joffrey.org