Tours en l'air organizes ballet-themed escorted holidays to see the best companies perform great ballets in beautiful places. You can join a trip from anywhere. A highly knowledgeable balletomane who has enjoyed 100s of performances in over 20 cities around the world,I speak English, French, and German, and am a Travel Industry Council of Ontario certified Travel Counsellor. I also teach ballet appreciation courses. Twitter: @thewordlady Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/katherine.barber.37
Tours en l'air Ballet Holidays are offered in partnership with CWT Victor Travel, TICO # 1892647

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A boon for ballet fans in Tokyo

I am in Tokyo for two performances of a mixed program by Noriko Kobayashi Ballet: MacMillan's The Invitation and Elite Syncopations, and Ashton's Les Rendezvous. A very British program and I am looking forward to opening night tonight.
Meanwhile my Japanese friend introduced me to a great resource at the Library of the New National Theatre. They have a fantastic video archive of their performances which you can search by title of the ballet, date of the performance, or other key words (in Japanese, I'm not sure if it works in English). We spent a fun afternoon watching Asami Maki's Lady of the Camellias, which has some beautiful pas de deux and solos for Armand, and lovely costumes, but doesn't have the same dramatic impact as Neumeier's take on the same theme. Partly I think this was because the music chosen wasn't as intensely romantic as the Chopin that Neumeier uses to such effect. Also on our program were Raymonda, which unfortunately just seems to be an irremediably silly ballet, and Roland Petit's Die Fledermaus.
If you visit Tokyo, be sure to visit the New National Theatre (at Hatsudai station on the Keio new train line). It is also a beautiful building making remarkable use of wood and stone in an elegant Japanese way.

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