I am such a lucky girl. If someone had told me back in July after my birthday that the best and most magnificent show of my summer was yet to come or at least a show to match my birthday present to myself, I would have laughed in their faces. After all, I’d just seen Aida performed in the Sydney Opera House no less. But I would have been wrong to laugh, because waiting in the wings – thanks to Renu and Shomik – was … (Orchestral crash rather than the usual drum-roll here please although the title of my post has given it away)…

Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. By the Russian Imperial Ballet no less.

For someone who has always been starry-eyed about ballet dancers since childhood, this in itself would be a major thrill  especially since despite said starry eyes the closest I’d ever gotten to a real performance was a kiddies performance of the Nutcracker. But this revelation was only the tip of the iceberg.

The next bonus was the venue for the show. Olympic enthusiasts would certainly be familiar with this picture from last year’s games in Beijing. imagesIt’s called the Water Cube and was the structure within which all the water sports – swimming diving etc were held. China has made a rather determined effort to not let their Olympian edifices turn into white elephants, and have been using them for all sorts of activities (including opening the pools for public use). Good on them. Anyway so without any active planning on my part I wound watching a show in an Olympic swim stadium.

Okay, so I got to see a famous ballet by a world-class troupe in a world-famous auditorium. But believe it or not, the piece de resistance is yet to come! Or to imitate those dreadful infomercials on TV for various products – “But wait ! There’s more...”

Still more? you may wonder. She’s just going into hyperbole. Well maybe but hold on just a little longer? And you’ll see why I’m indulging in such an orgy of ecstasy. You see, this was no ordinary ballet but a water ballet, making full use of not only the stage but the pools, there were synchronized swimmers and divers entering at key dramatic points of the story. Absolutely gorgeous. I was completely enchanted. As I said earlier, I really am a lucky girl!

P.S. Here’s a link to an article with pictures from the show here: