Ballet on an Italian fairy tale

Tuesday, 23 April 2013 12:02

Based on popular 20th century Italian fairytale, the ballet left the audience awestruck.An international team of child artists from 12 countries presented a colourful ballet ‘Chipollino’, guided by Russian choreographer Galina Lyakhova, recently in the city.

Based on popular 20th century Italian fairytale, ‘Chipollino’ by Gianni Rodari, is a ballet that revolves around the life of the Garden Kingdom and a victorious fight of a Little Onion-Chipollino-and his companions, fellow vegetables, against the ill-treatment executed by the fruit royalty, led by Prince Lemon and Senior Tomato.

The ballet enchants you from the very first minute of its performance. The harmony of the melodic, ear-catching music by Karen Khachaturyan, and costumes and vivid choreography by Galina Lyakhova made it a real blockbuster as the entire auditorium was packed to its capacity.

The plot is set in a fairy tale town where its inhabitants - various fruits and vegetables are dancing. Their happiness couldn’t last long as one day the Prince Lemon issues a new law that everyone must now pay for their share of the sunshine, the rain and the wind.

Annoyed with new laws, Chipollino steps on the Prince’s foot. Now, in a bid to take the umbrage, the Prince’s bodyguards arrest old Chipollone. The young Chipollino along with his friend Little Radish, go to the palace in order to look for the dungeon in which the old Chipollone has been incarcerated by the Prince.

On the way, they meet Count Cherry and become friends. During their search, they fall into the trap of Signor Tomato. They manage to escape his clutches and set old Chipollone free. 

As Prince Lemon’s bodyguards are searching everywhere, Chipollino manages to hide his father and Little Radish, but he himself is taken prisoner by the guards and thrown into the dungeon. Count Cherry and Magnolia set him free.

The prince becomes furious and orders that the town be bombarded with cannon fire. But Chipollino and his friends stuff Prince Lemon into the cannon. Once the smoke from the shot evaporates, neither the Prince Lemon nor the cannon nor the bodyguards are anywhere to be seen.

The ballet which was created especially for young people, never lacked the ‘serious’ choreography of classical ballet.

The principal dancers enjoyed themselves turning into ‘vegetables’ and ‘fruits’. The rhythms of dance, the portrayal and humour of the characters, and the exceptional performances kept everyone enthralled.As a ballet for children, Chipollino is a delight, clear in the construction of its action. It tells its tale simply and, (presumably in the manner in which it was intended),it speaks its “message” didactically.

Archana Mishra, April 23, 2013

Deccan Herald

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