Experience the tale of Sleeping Beauty like you’ve never heard it before with Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo and Jean-Christophe Maillot’s award-winning reinterpretation of the famous fairy tale this April.
From 26th to 30th April, the dancers of Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo will partner with Prima Ballerina Olga Smirnova for a series of performances of La Belle, a “ferocious psychoanalytical interpretation” of Sleeping Beauty that has won numerous awards since its first conception by Jean-Christophe Maillot in 2001.
“Jean-Christophe Maillot taps into our childhood memories, fears and desires. The feats that mark Sleeping Beauty’s story mirror the rites each woman must go through throughout her life. Perrault understood this only too well, and in turn, the choreographer has managed to break through the sugar-coated casing Disney previously used in handling the tale,” says the company. “The lesser-known second half of Perrault’s story is brought to the fore, in which Sleeping Beauty awakens from her slumber and her marriage to the Prince leads on to further exploits. The second part of the fairy-tale is dark and terrifying: now Queen, the Princess and her children are threatened by her wicked stepmother, the Ogress Maleficent.”
We all know of Sleeping Beauty, but in Maillot’s creation, Maleficent is one of the most emblematic characters and “the perfect embodiment of the sheer terror contained within this story”.
“Maleficent is like a magnet, sucking in all of our fears and taboos,” says choreographer Maillot. “I created an androgynous, ambiguous being that is far from a straightforward symbol, and that might be a potential partner for Sleeping Beauty. Although the character embodies evil, evil is nevertheless difficult to define. My ballets always reject Manichaeism, the concept of evil versus good.”