Giselle at the Aotea Centremore...
by BERNADETTE RAE for the New Zealand
published: December 8, 2006
A strictly classical work such as Giselle offers a company like the Royal New Zealand Ballet, whose forte lies at the contemporary end of the spectrum, every opportunity to get it wrong.
The first act is all rustic village on the Rhine, with happy peasants preparing for their harvest festival and first love blossoming. The second is set in a spectral forest, where the Wilis, the souls of betrothed girls betrayed before their weddings, lure young men, then dance them to death.
The answer to all those questions is yes. This is a fine Giselle, and with Yu Takayama in the title role on Auckland's opening night and Qi Huan as her prince Albrecht, rapturous.