Laura Morera and Frederico Bonelli as Elizabeth and Victor in Frankenstein. Photo credit Bill Cooper.
Every essence of gothic horror fiction conjured up by Mary Shelley in her world famous novel Frankenstein has been beautifully captured by the creators at the Royal Opera House’s Ballet version of the same title.
Whether you are well versed with this famous novel or a novice the story has been brilliantly captured and through the casts amazing dancing and acting abilities it has been bought back to life.
Nehemiah Kish as the Creature in Frankenstein. Photo credit Bill Cooper.
Nehemiah Kish’s costume which is pictured above as the creature in this adaptation was far removed from the version created through the film industry. Minus the awful gimmick bolt is often seen through his neck. I feel this creation would have been closer to the image Shelley would have created in her mind’s eye when she first told this tale during 1816 and later published in 1818 on January 1st.
There are parts of the novel absent from the Ballet. However, with the performance already 3 hours long it was inevitable that this would have to be the case. This doesn’t take anything away from understanding the bittersweet tragedy of Frankenstein.
John Mcfarlane vision is highly commendable in his creation of the stage scenes and striking costumes used in this ballet. It certainly has been an incredible achievement. The dark gothic emercing colours, snowy mountain terrains, bare wintry trees and the superbly detailed medical lecture room complete with pyrotechnics were in the keeping of its period.
Liam Scarlett’s incredible stage design pictured above. Nehemiah Kish and Frederico Bonelli at the start of the creature’s awakening. Photo credit Bill Cooper.
Liam Scarlett’s choreography for the male ballet dancers assembles created some amazing configurations as their tail coats span while they danced which we invariably see from the ladies tutus as the iconic vision for a ballet. This, in my opinion, was a wonderful touch that added depth to this fantastic performance.
The musical score conducted by Barry Wordsworth was outstanding. The musical score could not fail to have evoked emotions from within the auditorium.
Sadly this run has now come to an end. However, I would urge anyone who has not seen this production to go and see it if it is held at an event cinema or the Royal Opera House return this moving ballet to the stage.
Victor Frankenstein-Federico Bonelli
Young Victor-George Ring
Elizabeth Lavenza-Laura Morera
Young Elizabeth-Paris Street
Alphonse Frankenstein-Bennett Gartside
Caroline Beaufort-Itziar Mendizabal
William Frankenstein- Ptolemy Gidney
Madame Moritz-Elizabeth McGorian
Justine Moritz-Mayara Magri
Young Justine-Chloe Bone
Henry Clerval-James Hay
The Professor-Thomas Whitehead
The Creature-Nehemiah Kish.
Director-Kevin O’Hare CBE
Founder- Dame Ninette De Valois OM CH DBE
Founder Choreographer- Sir Frederick Ashton OM CH DBE
Founder Music Director- Constant Lambert
Prima Ballerina Assoluta- Dame Margot Fonteyn DBE
Music- Lowell Liebermann
Lighting Designer-David Finn
Projection Designer-Finn Ross
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.
Associate Concert Master Ania Safonova.
A co-production between The Royal Ballet and San Francisco Ballet.
The Royal Opera House,
London, WC2E 9DD.