In the enchanting realm of ballet, where movements become poetry and stories are told through graceful pirouettes and elegant leaps, Ballet Philippines’ latest production, “Christmas Fairytales,” serves as an odyssey – a magical gateway for those venturing into this artistic world for the first time. With a unique blend of classical tales and a modern twist, this production offers an accessible and engaging experience, inviting newcomers to immerse themselves in the captivating beauty of ballet.

  • Christmas Fairytales
  • Christmas Fairytales
  • Christmas Fairytales
  • Christmas Fairytales

Choreographed and written by Ballet Philippines Artistic Director Mikhail “Misha” Martynyuk, the heart of “Christmas Fairytales” lies in its narrative. Led by the endearing character of Little Tala, who, under the guidance of the mysterious Master of Time, embarks on a quest to restore joy to beloved characters from classic tales. Ali Baba, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, the Nutcracker, and more come to life on stage, inviting audiences to witness the magic of their stories through dance.

fluid movements and expressive storytelling serve as a visual language, allowing audiences to connect with the emotions and narrative unfolding on stage

If you’re not too familiar with ballet, no worries – this performance would make it easy to get into. Ballet Philippines takes classic tales and gives them a modern twist that’s not only refreshing but also perfect for people diving into ballet for the first time. The way they thread the narrative through different acts makes it a seamless experience for viewers who are both seasoned and would-be enthusiasts.

As a first-timer myself, and despite my initial lack of context and background in this artform, Christmas Fairytales definitely did not disappoint. The only disappointment I felt would probably be the feeling of regret why I didn’t start watching ballet earlier. 

Act One unfolds with the adventures of Ali Baba and the Thieves, a tale of cunning and bravery. The expressive performances of the dancers effectively convey the essence of the story, allowing audiences to follow the narrative even without a deep understanding of ballet terminology. Each movement becomes a brushstroke, painting a vivid picture of the characters and their journey, making the performance accessible and enjoyable.

Following Ali Baba’s exploits, the timeless tale of Cinderella takes center stage, enchanting the audience with its magic and romance. The production skillfully combines choreography, set design, and costume to create a visually stunning experience. As the story unfolds through the language of ballet, the audience is treated to a feast for the senses, with each movement and gesture contributing to the overall narrative tapestry.

Act Two continues Tala’s journey, introducing the iconic characters of Sleeping Beauty and the Nutcracker. The anticipation builds as the audience wonders which character Tala will encounter next and how she will bring resolution to their stories. The seamless transitions between tales, accompanied by a mesmerizing classical musical–some of which would be at the very least familiar even to the untrained ear–enhance the immersive atmosphere, keeping first-time attendees engaged and enthralled throughout.

What makes “Christmas Fairytales” particularly remarkable for first-timers is its ability to maintain a sense of wonder and excitement. The production successfully bridges the gap between the unfamiliarity of ballet and the enchantment of classical tales, creating an accessible entry point for those who are virgins in the art form. The fluid movements and expressive storytelling serve as a visual language, allowing audiences to connect with the emotions and narrative unfolding on stage.

extends beyond the confines of the theater

The choreography, executed with precision and grace by the dancers, becomes a window into the storytelling aspect of ballet. For those unaccustomed to the world of pliés and arabesques, the expressive dance becomes a universal language. The result is a performance that not only entertains but also educates, subtly introducing newcomers to the language and artistry of ballet.

At its core, “Christmas Fairytales” is a celebration of the universal themes found in classic tales—themes of love, bravery, and the triumph of good over evil. Through the medium of ballet, these themes come to life in a way that transcends cultural and linguistic barriers. For those experiencing ballet for the first time, this production becomes a gateway to understanding the emotional depth and storytelling capacity of this timeless art form.

The impact of “Christmas Fairytales” on first-time attendees extends beyond the confines of the theater. It serves as an introduction to a world that may have seemed inaccessible, demystifying the art of ballet and inviting individuals to explore its beauty. As the final curtain falls, it leaves the audience with a newfound appreciation for the artistry, dedication, and sheer magic that ballet encompasses.

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