The Australian Ballet
Arts Centre Melbourne / State Theatre
July 06, 2023 (livestream)
by Ilona Landgraf
Copyright © 2023 by Ilona Landgraf
David Hallberg, artistic director of the Australian Ballet, has a knack for presenting his company in a complimentary light. Of the many troupes which streamed their performances live during the pandemic, only the Australians have maintained and enhanced this practice. The most recent livestream proved their ability to produce a compelling digital program. Livinia Nixon, who gave her debut as presenter alongside the ever-smiling Hallberg, kept me glued to the screen during the intervals, offering a steady flow of interesting interviews and behind-the-scenes clips. Each of them revealed the warmth and camaraderie within the company that has so often been mentioned in previous livestreams.
Celebrating their sixtieth anniversary this season, the company presented a sparkling new acquisition – Balanchine’s “Jewels” (1967) complete with Barbara Karinska’s sumptuous original costumes. One year of painstaking handicraft was spent on the latter’s recreation, requiring many volunteering hands and two months to sew and glue more than 29.500 beads, crystals, and pearls to dresses, tops, and tiaras. (more…)