The king was quick to point out that it was the master of ceremonies, not himself, who had made the error of not inviting the Fairy of Darkness. The king, of course, never makes mistakes. Despite such a colossal screw-up the master of ceremonies still had his job 100 years later. Echos of the present day, perhaps?
At any rate. I would classify the Saturday afternoon performance as enjoyable. Sadly, I cannot call it great becase there were a few too many glitches (and I am pretty forgiving on the whole).
Tina LeBlanc was lovely. And totally in character. When she entered the stage, she looked exactly like a 16 year old birthday girl, curious, yet both shy and excited, about her suiters. The Rose Adagio was the high point of the ballet. When she finally met the right man (these things take time sometimes) she was totally sure of herself.
Also on the plus were the princesses, with Nutnaree Pipit-Suksun as a melting Fairy of Tenderness and strong performances from the others as well, all corps women whom I had not previously seen in solo roles. I especially liked Jennifer Stahl as Courage.
And the cats. Puss in Boots (Benjamin Stewart) sniffing and rubbing the White Cat (Alexandra Meyer-Lorey) looked EXACTLY like how my cat Rudy acts with my other male cat Orlando. It was really funny.
Men in female roles is problematic. Usually it is comic, such as Cinderella's ugly stepsisters. But the Fairy of Dakness is not a comic role. I was apprehensive, but Lance Parrish did well. He did not really look like a woman, but did not look like a man in drag either. Bluebird PDD was also worth seeing.
On the other side. Sarah Van Patten as Lilac Fairy danced extremely well, but her characterization needed work. Had I not known that Aurora would be awakened with a kiss, I would not have been able to tell from her mime. I read in a review that when Muriel Maffre told Carabosse "no" you could tell she meant it; I did not get that strength from Van Patten. It was also not a good afternoon for the Little Lilacs; one women was noticeably out of step with the others and another woman lost her balance and nearly fell. There were times when the stage seemed too crowded. The pages were in the way of the fairies.
Gennadi Nedvigin was very strong, in fact fabulous, in solo, but partnering showed a few glitches. At one time he was too far behind LeBlanc, who had to streeeeeeeeeeeetch to get to his supporting hand. And timing was off on the 3rd fish lift. She was in position before he picked her up.
So, a mixed review. Sorry if I step on any toes, that is my honest opinion as a non expert audience member.
RE: costumes. The idea of updating is fine. But the fairies are outside time and should not be stuck with powdered wigs. It just did not look right. Their costumes did not really change, why the wigs? And a powdered wig on Puss in Boots? Please! Cats have beautiful fur coats on their own. I also think that Aurora's costume in the final scene should be a bit more "bridal".
Not to change the subject, but I wonder, has anyone ever done a take off of this ballet from Carabosse's point of view? One could make a case. The outsider, snubbed again by the in crowd. After all, movie-goers rooted for Carrie, not the popular girls who tormented her. I wonder if the young women expelled from an Indiana sorority for being the "wrong" color, "wrong" weight, or just "not hot" would like to get revenge?
OK, I'll shut up before someone throws a virtual shoe at me.