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Saturday, March 7, 2009

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The all-new production of Tchaikovsly’s immortal Swan Lake, choreographed by the artistic director Helgi Tomasson, is a technologically advanced show with a “liquid” curtain, visually grandiose structures, and flying swans (scenic and costume design: Jonathan Fensom, lighting design: Jennifer Tipton, projection and video design: Sven Ortel). It’s innovative and precise in its polished choreography, streamlined stage solutions, and tasteful costume and hair designs (hair, wigs and make-up: Michael Ward).
The last performance on Sunday, March 1, showcased the crown couple of San Francisco Ballet principals, Yuan Yuan Tan and Tiit Helimets. No matter how many grand famous roles Yuan Yuan Tan performs and perfects, she always manages to deliver an unforgettable impression of a newly discovered treasure, a fresh take on a well-known and familiar. Her Odette’s broken movement of hands-wings at the end of Act II ought to be studied and preserved for future generations. As Odile, she IS a different person, seemingly taller, viciously pliable. Her moves are bold and confident; she casts her spell upon unsuspecting Siegfried with an irresistible magic force of her dark demand for his noble meek soul. Tiit Helimets’ natural talent, sharpened acting skills, and envious physique perfectly match Ms. Tan’s stellar performance. All principals and soloists, and the famously spectacularly synchronized San Francisco corps de ballet complete the new production of the most important ballet in the history of dance with their own greatness. For more information and to reserve tickets for the remaining Programs 4-8 of the season, visit


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