This refreshing take on the fairytale has as much to offer adults as it does children.
Capturing the story of Rumpelstiltskin in a new way, BalletLorent’s imaginative and hypnotic production is filled with many fascinating elements that allows the audience to see the characters and story in a different light.
Much of this is down to Carol Ann Duffy’s new version that re-examines Rumpelstiltskin as not an old bearded man but rather an abandoned prince whose grieving father who deserts him in the wake of the Queen’s death. What unravels is a story that is filled with grief, magic and of course the idea that what makes us different makes us special. The narration is wonderful poetic, enhancing the magic of the story being told with a hint of mystery about that keeps the audience intrigued.
While initially the choreography is light, fluffy and elegantly performed by the cast, there is of course elements of darkness which are equally intriguingly brought to life. In particular, the way in which the King (John Kendall who performs with great intensity) treats his son and then handles his grief are two standout sequences in this regard.
The choreography as well as Murray Gold’s charming and always interesting score, help capture the varying emotions that the characters themselves go through as the story unravels. This is shown to great effect as Natalie Trewinnard as the Shephard’s daughter dances out her despair at being unable to spin straw into gold.
Visually, the way in which the story is presented is equally as fascinating, with Phil Eddells’s charmingly playful and imaginative set design is made full use of as the dancers scamper and weave over and through it. Mean, while Michele Clapton’s costume design is striking in terms of colour and how it helps to interpret the characters.
Every performance from the cast of talented dancers is delivered with great intensity and emotion. From Gavin Coward’s playful and awkward Rumpelstiltskin to Natalie Trewinnard’s thoughtful and emotional performance as the Shepherd’s daughter there is a beautiful elegance to be found in every movement.
Overall, this is a lively and magical production that is sure to enchant audiences of all ages from start to finish.
By Emma Clarendon
BalletLorent’s performance of Rumplestiltskin at Sadler’s Wells is available to view here until Friday.