Last night I experienced what I can only explain as witnessing real magic of the purest form. This was in the guise of Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty at The Lowry Theatre, in Manchester.
Thus I am going to to start how I usually end, why? Because quite simply put, I have NEVER been so blown away by a performance. If you read my theatre reviews you will know theatre is a passion for me. But The Ballet is fast becoming my favourite form of performance. It seems to hit senses, others, although spectacular performances, just can’t reach.
However, Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty, hailed as A Gothic Romance, set a new bar. It brought everything I love about the Ballet, ok I love everything about Ballet what’s not to love? But this spellbinding production and made it brighter, shinier and more intense.
Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty Review, The Lowry Manchester
Penned by Tchaikovsky and having been told in many forms over the years, there are many variations of this much loved tale. But dare I say this? Especially being a HUGE Disney fan, this is my favourite so far.
What Is Sleeping Beauty About?
King Benedict (Danny Reubens) and Queen Eleanor (Kayla Collymore) can not have the child they so desperately desire. In desperation they turn to the dark fairy Carabosse (Paris Fitzpatrick) who blesses them with a child. However they fail to pay the thanks Carabosse feels she deserves.
Princess Aurora (Ashley Shaw) grows up with visits of fairies and vampires who adore her. But Carabosse who is discouraged from seeing Aurora casts a curse on her, stating that when she comes of age she will prick her finger on a rose and sleep for a 100 years. Only true loves kiss can wake her from the spell.
And That Is Where This Magical Tale Comes To Life!
Its different from any version I have seen or read before, but truly wonderful and has you on the edge of your seat. Not one minute did I wish that the story had kept to the versions I knew or loved, as this Gothic reimagination was so much more exciting. I am not going to tell you what happens, you have to see it to really appreciate the beauty of the piece.
My Review Of Sleeping Beauty
I think you can guess how I feel about Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty? But let me tell you, if I can do it justice, just what makes this Ballet so spectacular? This presentation not only brings the story of Sleeping Beauty into the modern age, but also the whole idea of The Ballet.
Its subtle things that do this, thus creating a modern edge, but…. without taking the presentation away from what’s wonderful about The Ballet. The costume are simply exquisite, what I wouldn’t give to spend an hour in that wardrobe department just taking in every single detail?
Plus also, the set is magical, the forest felt real with the moon shining through the trees. All of these elements put into one magical pot with a truly talented cast, spectacular orchestra and Tchaikovsky just create a whole new level of magic and wonder.
Oh and I haven’t mentioned the genius that is Baby Aurora, I couldn’t stop watching her every movement. She is so lifelike, artistry at it’s best, adding humour and cuteness in abundance.
Where Can I See It?
You can see Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty at the Lowry Manchester until the 26th November, tickets are from £17.
- Sadler’s Wells London, 29th Nov – 15 Jan 2023
- Milton Keynes Theatre – 17 – 21 Jan 2023
- Theatre Royal, Nottingham 24 – 28 Jan 2023
- Wales Millennium Centre Cardiff, 31 Jan – 4 Feb 2023
- Birmingham Hippodrome, Birmingham,7 – 11 Feb 2023
- New Victoria Theatre, Woking,14 – 18 Feb 2023
- The Alhambra Theatre, Bradford, 21 – 25 Feb 2023
- Bristol Hippodrome, Bristol, 28 Feb – 4 Mar 2023
- Liverpool Empire, Liverpool, 7 – 11 Mar
- Mayflower Theatre, Southampton, 14 – 18 Mar 2023
- The Marlowe, Canterbury, 21 – 25 Mar 2023
- Norwich Theatre Royal, Norwich, 4 – 8 Apr 2023
- Festival Theatre, Edinburgh 11 – 15 Apr 2023
- Newcastle Theatre Royal, Newcastle upon Tyne, 18 – 29 Apr 2023
Please note I was gifted the tickets in return for an honest review, but you can’t argue with pure genius and spellbinding talent.