A Swan Lake by Alexander Ekman, music by Mikael Karlsson

The Norwegian National Ballet

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Cast Program notes Composers & works Appears in More info


Alexander Ekman — Choreographer, set designer, Voice-over, Sound Designer

Henrik Vibskov — Costumes

Tom Visser — Lighting designer

Mikael Karlsson — Voice-over, Sound Designer

Jan Gunnar Røise — The Artist

Fridtjov Såheim — The Producer

Elisabeth Teige — The Diva

Camilla Spidsøe Cohen — White Swan

Melissa Hough — Black Swan

Philip Currell — Siegfried

The Norwegian National Opera & Ballet

The Norwegian National Opera Orchestra

Per Kristian Skalstad — Conductor

Program notes

"Why let reality get in the way of a good story?" exclaims one of the characters of this artwork that lies somewhere between stage play and ballet—a fitting question with which to approach A Swan Lake by Alexander Ekman.

In the first act, reworked excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s beloved score mix with scathing, absurd, and witty dialogues to depict the genesis and realization of a ballet (Swan Lake). With bold irreverence and touches of parody, Ekman's brilliant, self-reflective work takes a tongue-in-cheek look at today’s ballet scene.

In the second act, the awe-inspiring dancers of the Norwegian National Ballet perfectly embody all the physicality and energy of this ballet-within-a-ballet. Their artful athleticism is complemented both by Mikael Karlsson’s effective music—alternating between and occasionally mixing humor and darkness—and by a unique scenic feat: an actual onstage lake of 5,000 liters of water that serves as both backdrop and musical instrument. Actors of great magnetism, a stunning soprano, and the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra add their talents to the most surreal Swan Lake you will ever see!

A closer look: composers and works

Mikael Karlsson

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Appears in

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