Shakespeare sulle punte. Drammaturgia del Sogno di una notte di mezza estate di George Balanchine – Domenico Giuseppe Muscianisi – Stratagemmi 27




Shakespeare on pointe shoes. Dramaturgy of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by George Balanchine

George Balanchine was a real artist, he really knew all the nine Muses. He read first Shakespeare’s Dream when he was a pupil at the Imperial Ballet School in Saint Petersburg. At the age of fifty-eighth the great choreographer remembered yet by heart entire parts of the drama in Russian translation, and staged a ballet in two acts and six scenes on the notes of Felix Mendelssohn Op. 61: Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  The ballet performed by La Scala Theatre Ballet in 2003 “with Alessandra Ferri and Roberto Bolle as the ruling couple from the Italian dancing aristocracy […] recalls a Sogno di una notte di mezza estate as a truly global Midsummer Night’s Dream, conceived by a British playwright, evoked by the sound of a German composer, portrayed in dance from a RussianAmerican choreographer and performed by an Italian corps de ballet and its soloists” (Horst Koegler).  In the present paper, the paralleled reading of Shakespearean comedy with a technical and dramaturgic analysis of Balanchine’s ballet leads to the conclusion that, if on one hand the Balanchine’s Dream is a totally new creation – as the choreographer himself desired – it is at the same time extremely Shakespearean, as only a fine conoisseur of the Bard’s work could do.