First love, betrayal, heartache and forgiveness... We’ve all been through them, and that’s what makes Giselle resonate so deeply in our hearts. This iconic Romantic ballet has stood the test of time, not just because of the otherworldly beauty of its “white” act, with its ethereal ghosts floating through the forest, but because of the universal passion and drama of its storyline.
A young girl falls for an aristocrat in disguise. When she realises his deception, the shock sends her mad and she dies. Raised from her grave by the vengeful Queen of the Wilis, she must summon all her tenderness and strength to save her lover from destruction.
Maina Gielgud’s celebrated production, with Peter Farmer’s atmospheric designs, brings out the emotional nuances of this poignant story and the purity of its Romantic technique.
As the choreographer George Balanchine said, “Like Hamlet, Giselle is a classic: it is not only important historically, it also happens to be good.”