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 Post subject: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2003 7:13 am 
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Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Review from the Times.

Quote:
DARKNESS lurks at the heart of most fairytales, but David Bintley’s new production for Birmingham Royal Ballet is possibly the darkest fairytale ballet ever to grace the stage. Literally. The lighting for his Beauty and the Beast is so subdued that the scenery is barely discernible in parts and characters fade into the black like ghosts. This suits Bintley’s narrative style, which dwells on the gloomy. Murky supernatural forces that strike fear in mortal hearts; the agony and isolation of overwhelming physical disfigurement: it doesn’t get much grimmer than this
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And from The Guardian.

Quote:
There's a daunting amount of story to tell in the complete narrative of Beauty and the Beast. And one thing you have to admire in David Bintley's new production is the neatness with which he packs every stray detail and symbol into the plot.
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<small>[ 03 December 2003, 08:15 AM: Message edited by: Joanne ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:14 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Beauty and the Beast Birmingham Hippodrome CLEMENT CRISP
By Clement Crisp for The Financial Times


It is not easy to know what to make of David Bintley's new two-act, six-scene Beauty and the Beast, staged for his Birmingham Royal Ballet, and having its first performance on Monday. It is, of course, an entry in the must-see-for-Christmas stakes, a rival to dear Nutcrackeras a box-office darling. It boasts, and will do well to boast, superb design by Philip Prowse, which excites the imagination, delights the eye, performs prodigies of dramatic stimulation (which, alas, the other elements fail to do.) The Beast's domain is ripest Louis XIV, the Beauty's Charles X. Costuming is brilliant. It is well lit by Mark Jonathan.

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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:14 am 
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On reflection I am moving this topic to our "Holiday Performances" forum


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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2003 4:19 am 
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Stop the plot, get on with the dance
Ismene Brown reviews Beauty and the Beast at the Hippodrome. From The Daily Telegraph:


David Bintley has courageously set aside his sure-fire Christmas hit Nutcracker this year, and created a big new Beauty and the Beast for Birmingham Royal Ballet. One can applaud his bravery, at least.

Plus points: the story is very good, the stage looks gothically splendid and the music is just fine. It starts alluringly with soft, orientalist forest sounds in the orchestra, rain-drips, bird-calls, insect-hums, and Belle looking for a book in a fine, gold library. As she reads it, the characters appear around her. A fox-hunting Prince is turned into a Beast, the hunted Vixen into a puckish girl, by a green wizard of the woods. Meanwhile, Belle's family provide a stock panto, with hard-up dad, two ugly sisters and a piggy suitor, and her loving father trades his favourite daughter to the Beast.

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<small>[ 04 December 2003, 05:20 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2003 5:16 am 
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Location: London
Royal Ballet
Royal Opera House, London WC2

Beauty and the Beast
Birmingham Hippodrome

Quote:
There's no need to comb the globe for new choreography - we have our own innovators right here. Monica Mason has commissioned premieres from three British choreographers for the Royal Ballet's last brave bill before Christmas, when Cinderella takes over.
more...

His dark material
Bintley's Beauty and the Beast is a stunning gothic fairy tale — but as a ballet, it falls flat, says Clifford Bishop

Quote:
Anyone expecting dancing teapots should stay well away from David Bintley’s new Beauty and the Beast. Just because it’s a fairy tale and opened in December (at the Birmingham Hippodrome) does not make it a kiddy-pleasing Christmas jape. I have seen more larks and sunshine in adaptations of Edgar Allan Poe than in this gothic, symbol-littered ballet (Bintley even includes a raven as his master of ceremonies — a cross between Swan Lake’s Rothbart and the shoulder-rolling crows from Dumbo). There are some comic turns and the story has the usual happy ending, but there is a lot of very gloomy stage to be peered at before we get there — the lighting designer Mark Jonathan often uses no more than a chilly glow to single out some character or prop, leaving the rest of Philip Prowse’s richly detailed set to loom suggestively in the background
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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2003 3:55 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Beauty And The Beast, Hippodrome, Birmingham
When opposites attract
By Zoe Anderson for The Independent

I wish I could applaud David Bintley's ambition. The director of Birmingham Royal Ballet has planned his Beauty and the Beast as both a Christmas show and a real classical ballet. It has a commissioned score, handsome designs and opportunities for dancing. Philip Prowse's sets and costumes carry the evening; everything else crumbles. Glenn Buhr's music is a mixture of crude scene-setting and sugary pastiche. Bintley's dances are dutifully academic.

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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2003 3:06 am 
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Beauty and the Beast
By Pat Ashworth for The Stage


This strange tale lends itself so much better to ballet than to panto, which never knows quite what to make of it. Birmingham Royal Ballet gives it a magnificent baroque setting that captures all the mystery surrounding the Beast, passionately danced by Chi Cao.

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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2003 2:07 am 
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Classic fairy story brought to life
By Diane Parkes, Evening Mail


This Christmas sees the battle of the beasts as two blockbuster shows premiere in the Midlands - opening on the same day and based on the same story.

The classic fairy story Beauty and the Beast is brought to life by Birmingham Royal Ballet at the Hippodrome and it has also been turned into a musical by the Royal Shakespeare Company.

But both companies are confident there are room for two beasts over the holiday period -and that both shows will be a success.

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 Post subject: Re: BRB's Beauty and the Beast
PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2004 12:45 am 
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Bewitched by the beast
Preview by Kevin Bourke for Manchester Online


The award-winning director has worked with internationally recognised designer Philip Prowse, creator of Birmingham Royal Ballet's sumptuous productions of The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake, as well as Canadian composer Glenn Buhr, to create a magical new ballet of this enchanting fairy tale.

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Beauty and the Beast @ Lowry
Review by Robert Beale for Manchester Online

BIRMINGHAM Royal Ballet's new piece is an enchantment in itself - a fairy story ballet designed as family entertainment and perfect for the holiday season.

It has ambitions to be more than that but, thankfully, David Bintley and his team have kept their potential audience clearly in focus, and its strengths are in a brilliantly-created set (Philip Prowse), atmospheric lighting (Mark Jonathan), an ingenious score, newly composed by Glenn Buhr, and straightforward classical choreography.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 11:19 am 
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Beauty and the Beast
By Pat Ashworth for The Stage

David Bintley’s acclaimed Beauty and the Beast exudes mystery and awe right from its shivery start. The Beast’s castle is a lofty fragment of baroque magnificence. It appears out of the mist like something half-realised, with candelabra that self-ignite, flagons that tilt themselves and an armchair that comes alive to both enfold and imprison the Merchant.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2005 3:48 am 
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What could be more seasonal than a Christmas Belle?
By Jann Parry for The Observer

David Bintley's revival of his Beauty and the Beast, created for Birmingham
Royal Ballet two years ago, is one of a cluster of Christmas dance shows
about ugly outsiders redeemed by true love: Edward Scissorhands, Pinocchio,
The Nutcracker. The Beast is the most fearsome of them all, for he wields
power over mere humans, even as he longs for them to pity his suffering.

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