After the success of Swan Lake, presented in the opening season of the LAC in 2015, Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo (The Monte Carlo Ballet company), one of the most prestigious artistic expressions of the Principality of Monaco, is back in Lugano. Romeo and Juliet is the choreography that best represents the complex creative world of Jean-Christophe Maillot, the ballet company’s artistic director.
The French choreographer revisits Shakespeare's work from an original point of view, taking us into the tormented soul of Friar Laurence who, eager to do good, instead precipitates the death of the two young lovers: the plot is presented as the flashback of a man of the church who is very upset and asks himself how such a tragedy could ever have happened…
From a choreographic standpoint, Maillot's work disrupts the codes of classical ballet in its most traditional form, while at the same time maintaining its momentum, energy and timeless grace. This Shakespearean tragedy is interpreted not as a social conflict or a struggle between clans regulated by a code of honour, but rather as a fortuitous drama that leads to the death of two young people who are more absorbed in the games of love than those of hate. Romeo and Juliet is a strong point of Jean-Christophe Maillot's repertoire: a classical vocabulary brought up to date through a contemporary narrative, and always at the crossroads of multiple artistic disciplines. In particular, the choreographer uses processes borrowed from the cinema, not only flashbacks, but also freeze frames or slow motion. Even the ballet dancers' movements are reminiscent of the seventh art: they move diagonally, never facing the audience, like actors who never look at the camera, and each of them has their own (second) role.
An elegant and understated staging in which the strength of Prokofiev's music accompanies an impeccable corps de ballet of fifty elements, infusing expressive energy into their movements, oscillating between eroticism and humour.