Ballet Philippines is set to restage the all-time great classic ballet “Swan Lake,” beloved for its haunting tale of love under siege, music by the master Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky, and bravura dancing highlighted by Odile’s 32 pirouettes, a challenge for any prima ballerina.
The show will open on Feb. 24 at Cultural Center of the Philippines’ (CCP) Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo at 8 p.m., and will run for two weekends. Restaged by BP’s Nonoy Froilan, “Swan Lake” will have three pairings for the main characters Prince Siegfried and Odette (the sweet swan)/Odile (the nasty swan): Candice Adea and Joseph Phillips; Denise Parungao and Garry Corpuz; and Jemima Reyes and Victor Maguad.
This was announced at a recent press conference at CCP, which featured sparkling performances by Reyes as the White Swan and Maguad as Siegfried, and Parungao as the Black Swan and Corpuz as Siegfried.
March 4, incidentally, will be the 140th anniversary of the ballet’s premiere in Russia, and multi-awarded guest stars Adea and Phillips will perform on that date at CCP.
During the open forum, younger dancers Reyes and Parungao recounted the challenges they faced by playing innocent Odette and then shifting to scheming Odile in the next act. “It’s not normal being a swan,” quipped the more experienced Adea, back home after a four-year absence. “You’re a half-woman and a half-swan. So I just simplified.”
“I just take it step by step,” noted Phillips, whether he was dancing in a classical or contemporary ballet.
Ballet Philippines has staged many full-length productions of “Swan Lake” since 1980, featuring luminaries foreign and Filipino, like Yukio Morishita and Maniya Barredo. The company has not produced the work in more than 20 years “and that is why we have put a lot of effort into this production,” said BP artistic director Paul Morales.
Gala of Ballet Philippines’ “Swan Lake” on Feb 24, 8 p.m., at CCP in an international gala featuring guest stars Candice Adea (formerly of Hong Kong Ballet and BalletMet) and Joseph Phillips of the Primorsky Stage of Mariinsky Theatre. —CONTRIBUTED
Other schedules: Feb. 25 at 2 and 7 p.m.; Feb. 26 at 3 p.m.; March 3 at 8 p.m.; March 4 at 2 and 7 p.m., and March 5 at 3 p.m.