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DVD Spotlight

A Virtuoso Performance

Adolphe Adam's
'Giselle' -
reviewed by
ROBERT ANDERSON

'... irresistible appeal.'

Giselle. © 2003 TDK Recording Media Europe SA

The Wilis of central European folklore are a thoroughly unpleasant lot. Of course one sympathises with anyone who has been heartlessly jilted, but for such an army of potential ballerinas to have nothing in their posthumous heads but vengeance is merely unedifying. Musically Adam has suffered the consequences. His Act 1, packed with action, and with human emotion so intense that not only Giselle is driven towards distraction, is vital and moving. Act 2 seeks vainly to curb our impatience with the monomaniac corpses, under the baleful leadership of Queen Myrtha, demanding the destruction of any male object unfortunate enough to cross their path.

Maria Bylova as Myrtha, Queen of the Wilis, at the start of Act 2 of Adam's 'Giselle'. DVD screenshot © 2003 EuroArts Music International GmbH
Maria Bylova as Myrtha, Queen of the Wilis, at the start of Act 2 of Adam's 'Giselle'. DVD screenshot © 2003 EuroArts Music International GmbH

 

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Copyright © 23 August 2006 Robert Anderson, London UK

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