Yuri Vámos
Scene photo Swanlake 1
© Eduard Straub
Scene photo Swanlake 2
© Eduard Straub
Scene photo Swanlake 3
© Eduard Straub
Scene photo Swanlake 4
© Eduard Straub


Ballet by Youri Vámos
Music by Peter I. Tschaikowsky (1840-1893)
Choreographical assistance: Joyce Cuoco
Stage and costumes: Michael Scott
Lightdesign: Klaus Gärditz
Duration: 2 ½ hours

World premiere 1986 Theater Dortmund

«Swan Lake« tells the tragic story of Prince Siegfried, who falls in love with a young swan, but is brought by the magician Rotbart to betray her and must finally die with her. For Youri Vámos the essence of the story is not the working of sinister mythical forces; his interest is in the workings of the Prince's mind, the reason why he strayed into a fantasy world on his way to adulthood, tracing the psychological motivation of the young hero.

Sensitive by nature, the Prince experiences the relationship between his mother and her lover Rotbart as an agonizing trauma. He flees into the world of fantasy and meets there the young swan Odette. In her he finds his ideal object of love, and yet at the same time recognizes aspects of his mother. He is finally forced to see that there is no place in reality for his vision of love.

Vámos's «Swan Lake« can be held to be not only one of the best achievements of the choreographer, but also one of the best readings of «Swan Lake« altogether in the history of ballet. In the sumptuous traditionalist settings of Michael Scott, Vámos integrates the classic ballet scenes into a narrative the inner logic of which is drawn from the depths of human psychology.

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Press reviews

[...] When it comes to choreography, music dramaturgy and dance the performance is formidable. [...] Especially the first act that hardly reflects the one by Petipa / Iwanov and which in most productions merely appears as if it were a tedious exposition of the work as such – the «white act” –, is successfully rendered in an enchanting way with its changing between the graceful amusements of the dancing youth and the at any time understandable attacks of melancholy of the prince. [...] When it comes to the music (with Martin Fratz conducting the Duisburger Philharmoniker) as well as the dancing you couldn't wish for more. Guy Albouy as the most mature of the three Siegfried actors is, in acting as well as dancing, as close to perfection as possible. Marina Antonova [...] masters the swan adagios of the second act with gentle elegance and the famous 32 fouettés of the third act with bravura. Ranging from well to excellent are the many solo parts of the third act. Altogether the new «Swan Lake” of the Rheinoper offers almost three hours of dance entertainment of the highest standard: the best interpretation of the masterpiece, that you will find anywhere and one of the best productions of a ballet classic in general.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Guy Albouy, conveying lyrical feelings in every movement, danced the part of the prince and his confusions in a moving way. [...] The famous »white act« by Petipa and Iwanov is rendered on stage in a loosely based version by Vámos' libretto adapted to the night at the lake: waving dream images in the ensemble, a magnificently danced classical form by Marina Antonova (as Odette).

Rheinische Post

Ballet maniacs will have a good time [...] watching what most probably is the most powerful classical ballet that Vámos ever put to stage. [...] Allures, softness and technical brilliance [...] are Guy Albouy trademark. The French Danseur Noble has [...] become even more mature and expressive. [...] The primo ballerino Albouy doesn't just dance and mime. He embodies the young man intoxicated by the white swan, who puts himself into a trance and as a consequence follows the illusion until his suicide. When it comes to technique and expressiveness, Marina Antonova, who renders the fate of the white swan in a brilliant and touching way, is at her best. [...] She probably [...] is one of the few ballerinas in Germany who manage to convincingly play both swan parts.

Neue Rhein Zeitung

The (grand) ballet of the Rheinoper offers pure classic dance with the romantic and elegant scenery by Michael Scott as backdrop as no other ensemble in NRW does. The respectful ovation of the audience at the premier was mainly earned by the ensemble in bouncing tutus and the straight formations. Marina Antonova's (Odette/Odile) dancing technique was brilliant, as was Guy Albouy as «her« prince. Alexander Rulkevich (His other ego and Redbeard) acts with great aura, Anna Vita (in Sissy-look) touches the audience in the part of the prince's mother.

Ruhr Nachrichten

[...] such a beautifully classic-romantic production of »Swan Lake« as it was recently premiered at the Rheinoper Düsseldorf/ Duisburg you will not find in any German programme at the moment. An enjoyment of pure ballet pure! [...] Set designer Michael Scott endows the fairytale with the necessary picturesque scenery in reduced and yet magnificent pomp [...] – a feast for the eyes!

Meerbuscher Nachrichten

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