Saturday, February 18, 2012

Ballet: The Most Incredible Thing by Hans Christian Andersen

The above is a video of a ballet, The Most Incredible Thing, scored by The Pet Shop Boys and based on the tale by Hans Christian Andersen of the same name. It is really quite fascinating, but then I adore dance and find this mesh of modern music and an Andersen tale works more than it doesn't for me. You may read the tale here. And I love how Andersen's papercuts were included in the visual design of the ballet.

You can read more about the music at Wikipedia and the production's press release on the Pet Shop Boys site (where I found these images) and the first 10 minutes of the video above discuss the development of the ballet before showing the actual performance. So far it has only been performed in the UK, but according to Wikipedia:

After four public preview performances, "The Most Incredible Thing" had its official opening on 21 March 2011 at Sadler's Wells in London. Performances continued until 26 March, and all tickets were sold out. "The Most Incredible Thing" will return to Sadler's Wells in 2012 for two weeks prior to going on tour. The entire production was filmed by the BBC and broadcast on BBC Four on 1 July 2011.

I don't imagine it will come to the US soon, not near me at least, but it at least did well enough to be performed again this year and go on tour.

The Most Incredible Thing: Complete Ballet Score soundtrack is available here in the US and the UK.

Here's a brief description:

Limited two CD release in special packaging. 2011 release from Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe (AKA Pet Shop Boys) , the music for their first ever full-length ballet, The Most Incredible Thing is a collaboration with choreographer Javier De Frutos and Britain's leading contemporary dance theatre, Sadler's Wells. Based on the Hans Christian Anderson story of the same title. Tennant and Lowe proposed Andersen's story as the basis for a new ballet to Sadler's Wells in London in 2007 after a friend, the then Royal Ballet principal, Ivan Putrov, asked Neil Tennant if Pet Shop Boys would consider writing a piece of music for him to dance to at Sadler's Wells. The story is about a competition in a mythical kingdom where the King announces that whoever invents the most incredible thing will win the hand of the Princess in marriage and half of the Kingdom. What follows is creative, destructive but ultimately happy.

1 comment:

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed this, thank you so much for posting it.