Tonight, the 1st of 2 nights of South African Ballet Theatre at the Royal Opera House Muscat was an incredible show! Classic ballet and sensational African drumming made for quite a feast for the eyes and ears. Their performances in Oman (Feb. 10th and 11th) are in perfect timing as a celebration of their 11th anniversary of operations which occured on Feb. 2nd, 2012. Here is an article from EliteDance about SABT’s visit to Oman.
This season, my wife and I got some incredible seats under the “Flexpak” special offer. We were on the 2nd level and this was our view from our seats:
Last season all our seats were on the groundfloor. We really enjoy our seats on the 2nd floor this season as it gives us a great bird’s eyeview of the stage. My wife does miss being close enough to see the expression on the dancers’ faces though.
ACT ONE was 45 minutes long and consisted of: 1) “Welcome” drumming by Drum Cafe, 2) Excerpts from “Kopano”, 3) Excerpt from “Swan Lake” (Act II), 4) Excerpt from “The Nutcracker” (Act II), 5) Excerpts from “La Esmeralda”, and 6) Inkululeko (Freedom) My favorite part from ACT ONE was the section from “Las Esmeralda” inspired by the novel “Notre Dame de Paris” written by Victor Hugo. The dancers (first one primary dancer in red and then 6 others in cabaret-like-dresses) were so impressive as they smacked their tamborine with their feet in perfect timing to the music.
This is the main lounge looking down from the 2nd level. It’s good that they have a snackbar on the 2nd level so people don’t waste time going to get food on the groundlevel.
After a 20-minute intermission it was back to an even more exciting ACT TWO which lasted 37 minutes. ACT TWO’s entertainment included: 1) “Amakhonokhono” 2) Drumming Interlude, 3) Excerpt from “La Bayadere” (Act III), 4) Excerpt from “Spring Waters”, 5) Excerpt from “Le Corsaire”, and 6) Finale
The drumming in the 2nd act was energetic, fun and intense and the audience cheered enthusiastically. This part of the performance along with the finale received the most applause from the audience. Another wonderful evening out at the opera house! At first I was disappointed that the music was recorded; this was the first ballet we attended at the opera house without an orchestra. After time, I realized that it might have been even better that there wasn’t an orchestra as it allowed the audience to focus completely on the dancers on the stage. A big thanks to the South African Ballet Theatre, Drum Cafe and staff at Royal Opera House Muscat for an unforgettable evening!