Nicolas Le Riche and Marie-Agnès Gillot star in the legendary Roland Petit and Jean Cocteau's pioneering one-act ballet Le Jeune homme et la Mort. This 2005 production at the Opéra de Paris stays true to Petit’s original scenic and choreographic conception, from the dark, dingy apartment of the Young Man to the disturbing yellow dress and jet-black coiffe of the villainess. A mesmerizing drama in dance as virtuosic as it is unsettling!
The ballet's libretto by the great Jean Cocteau tells the story of a young man whose faithless lover drives him to commit suicide. Set to Respighi’s orchestral arrangement of J.S. Bach’s monumental Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor for organ (BWV 582), the ballet functions as a dialogue between the two dancers and the music, which interface more or less indirectly until they unite for the heartrending climax.
Photo: © David Jensen
Marie-Agnès Gillot (Raymonda), José Martinez (Jean de Brienne) – Corps de Ballet of the Opéra national de Paris