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Curtain closes for Sleeping Beauty in Artscape Theatre

SABC News Dance P - Curtain closes for Sleeping Beauty in Artscape Theatre

The popular ballet theatre production “Sleeping Beauty” is concluding its running at Cape Town’s Artscape Theatre on Saturday evening. With an international flavour, two of the world’s top dancers are sharing the stage with professional South African ballerinas.

Sleeping Beauty is a timeless story of Princess Aurora’s 100-year sleep and magical awakening.

It’s a classic fairytale of evil defeated and love triumphant in the 19th century.

The role of Prince Florimund is played by Principal Vadim Muntagirov from the Royal Ballet in London and that of Princess Aurora is played by Principal Tatiana Melnik from the Hungarian National Ballet in Budapest.

The two friends, who’ve trained at the renowned Perm Ballet School in Russia years ago are uniting on stage in this special production.

“We’re very privileged to have them here, especially because during the summer months in the northern hemisphere, they’re in great demand all over the world doing various gala performances and as guest artists with other companies in the world. It’s wonderful to have Vadim and Tatiana here, Vadim has been here before, and its Tatiana’s first time. They were at school together at the Perm school in Russia, so it’s wonderful that they can do Sleeping Beauty together as old school mates and now fully established in their careers,” says CEO of Cape Town City Ballet, Debbie Turner.

Muntagirov says Sleeping Beauty is his favourite ballet boasting amazing music and choreography and  he just could not turn down an invitation to return to the fairest Cape.

“I’ve been in Cape Town three times dancing with the Cape Town City Ballet. I just couldn’t say no because I had such a great time here, it’s been five years since I last danced here, it’s been a long time, I couldn’t say no. I’m looking forward to perform tonight, I hope the audience will enjoy the performance because it’s a joy for me to show my art,” says Muntagirov.

Muntagirov has the greatest respect, admiration and praise for South Africa’s ballet talent.

He says local ballerinas are hard workers.

“I think the dancers are very talented, they work hard. Even now that the ballet class is finished, they still keep practicing and rehearsing, you don’t see this in may companies.  I was amazed with that. I think the company level is growing, the most important is that the dancers want to get better, no matter how good your are, some dancers could be really good, but if they don’t wanna work, they will never be good dancers”.

He says classical ballet as an art form is growing internationally, with most venues being continuously sold out.

Younger people are also attending shows and audiences getting more educated about the art form.

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