Ballets de Monte Carlo brings dark tale to life

Artistic Director Jean-Christophe Maillot is taking his dancers to a dark place in his creation Oeil pour Oeil, a detective novella set in the gritty back streets and hidden depths of society.

The Ballets de Monte-Carlo’s Artistic Director and Choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot doesn’t shy away from the dark side. Known for his works based on fairy tales, which he often restores to their pre-Disney darkness, he goes one step further with Oeil pour Oeil (Eye for Eye).

Created in 2001 and based on a novella by Jean-Marie Laclavetine, who wrote it especially for the Ballets de Monte-Carlo, Oeil pour Oeil is the story of three inseparable friends – Iris, Adam and Loup.

Saved from a life in city slums by Iris, both boys fall in love with her. But when she chooses Adam, the trio falls apart with Loup withdrawing and falling into the clutches of a dangerous gangster nicknamed “The Octopus”. The Octopus reigns over the city’s monsters and holds sway over the police dogs, making her grip powerful and deadly.

Despite time going by, Loup cannot forget Iris and the memory of spying on she and Adam making love from behind a screen. Sick of being denied happiness, Loup decides to get rid of his old friend turned rival by setting a trap. As The Octopus hunts down Adam and Iris, the tale turns dark, leading to a tragic finale.

Using projected video images, the ballet “anchors itself in our society”, one marked by sex and violence.

Proceeds from the premiere of Oeil pour Oeil will go to the Monaco Red Cross to be used for the benefit of the people of Ukraine. The ballet will run from 28th April to 1st May in the Salle des Princes at the Grimaldi Forum.