Mythos and Passion in Dance by Mirka Psaropoulou
AUGUST 12, 2010
“Mythos and Passion in Dance”
From Mirka Psaropoulou
We were introduced to Renato Zanella last January when the Lyriki Skini Ballet together with famous international dancers presented his elegant choreography “Alles Walzer” at the Athens Megaron Concert Hall (January 15, 2010). This time he was, for the second consecutive year, the organizer and choreographer of the ‘Ballet Nights’ in Syros (July 23-26) which concluded the annual Festival of the Aegean (which was established by the Greek-American conductor Peter Tiboris, who resides in New York).
Renato Zanella was born in Verona and for a decade (up to 2005) was the head of the ballet of the Vienna State Opera. For the ‘Ballet Nights’ in Syros he assembled four couples of internationally acclaimed dancers to illuminate with their presence the “Mythos and Passion in Dance”. Syros is an excellent choice for the venue to take place as the lucky inhabitants of Hermoupolis can brag they have the older and most beautiful theater in Greece called “Apollon” or “La piccolo Scala” in reference to the bigger opera theater in Milano.
The program comprised of 10 pieces, excerpts from the traditional as well as the modern ballet repertoire. Though as a program it was indeed very attractive, the focal point of it was the world premiere of the ‘pas des deux’ from Medea by Mikis Theodorakis in a passionate and emotionally charged choreography by Renato Zanella. Maria Kousouni was the ideal interpreter of Medea and she managed to stun the audience with her unique body movement and wide spreads which were immensely more expressive compared to speech. She was like a felid teaching us the magic of motion. We all wish “Medea” can be completely choreographed.
Later on Maria together with Milos danced a whirlwind and dynamic “Slingerland” in an exciting choreography by William Forsyth (music by Bryars). The “Lacrymosa” from the Mozart Requiem was incomparably danced by Reiner Krenstetter (Vienna State Opera soloist) in a choreography by Gyula Pandis. Reiner was heart-breaking in the beauty of his interpretation, the expressiveness of his soul and the plasticity of his body.
Ana Chalendard from France danced excerpts from “Gigelle”, “Manon”, “La Bayadere” in classic purity followed by Beatrice Knopp who danced an extremely sensitive “Death of the Swan”. Finally, the bewitching balcony scene from “Romeo and Juliet” was a hymn to love in its tenderness and allure as danced by Esina and Eno Peci in the neo-romantic choreography by Renato Zanella.