Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Royal Opera House
Monday, 9th October 2017
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – 10/09/2017
Alice: Lauren Cuthbertson
Jack / Knave of Hearts: Federico Bonelli
White Rabbit: James Hay
Mad Hatter: Steven McRae
Mother / Queen of Hearts: Laura Morera
Father / King of Hearts: Christopher Saunders
Alice’s sisters: Beatriz Stix-Brunell, Meaghan Grace Hinkis
Caterpillar: Fernando Montano
The Duchess: Gary Avis
I was so looking forward to being back at ROH after summer break and a hard first week at university, and I have to say nothing will ever reach the same level of the wonderful thrilling buzz you get whilst entering the House for the first program of the season!
It’s been my first Monday off of my entire school-career: it started with a good ballet class at the Pineapple Studios in Covent Garden and it ended with a fantastic night at the theatre, as I absolutely loved the performance: I had seen Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland several times thanks to the DVD, but seeing it live is a completely different experience.
It was a test filming performance (in order to set everything for October 23rd’s cinema relay, for which I cannot wait already) and I so hoped to see Zenaida performing the Queen of Hearts that I was quite disappointed seeing Laura Morera’s name on the programme, as she’s suffering of a knee injury.
Anyway, the cast was great: Lauren Cuthbertson, who actually creates the title role, danced so elegantly and she really gave a great interpretation of Alice, with her lyrical talent and fluid moves. I loved how much she was into the character as she went down the rabbit hole entering Wonderland and encountering countless strange creatures (a big well done to the artists playing Wonderland’s characters as well), mixing curiosity and confusion as she continued to bump into the charming Jack/Knave of Hearts (Federico Bonelli), on the run for stealing tarts from the Queen of Hearts (actually Alice’s mother played by Morera).
Set up as a vivid journey through Wonderland, this production is a sophisticated explosion of magic, with all its colours, stage effects and gorgeous choreography – a true Royal gem. The score as well (by Talbot) is a masterpiece in its own right, combining modern and classic lines, perfectly matching with Wheeldon witty ballet.
All the characters are so well portrayed that Wonderful seems actually real: the hilarious Duchess by Gary Avis has been such a treat, and what a great performance given by the amazing Steven McRae – he was so good tap dancing like a boss!! Good White Rabbit by James Hay and Caterpillar by Fernando Montano as well, even though I preferred Eric Underwood’s version in the former production.
Steven McRae as the Mad Hatter
Coming to the Queen of Hearts, as I previously said I am not a fan of Morera’s, I’m really not into her, even if she gave a good performance with her fun send-up of The Sleeping Beauty’s famous Rose Adage. I feel like it’s been too grotesque even for such a strung evil role like the Red Queen’s.
I really liked the playing card corps de ballet, and the three gardeners as well – the whole Royal Ballet was at its best, bringing a deliciously enchanting production to the stage. I would say it’s such an amazing show I’d go seeing it several times, but I actually am so… don’t miss the cinema relay on the 23rd!