Watch: Sarah Lamb on The Royal Ballet's Onegin
The Principal dancer talks about playing the role of Tatiana and why John Cranko’s choreography gives her chills.
Ahead of the return of John Cranko’s Onegin, we caught up with Royal Ballet Principal Sarah Lamb as she rehearses for her debut in the role of Tatiana – a part she aspired to dance since first seeing the ballet at the age of 13.
We asked Sarah about some of her favourite roles in ballet, what intrigues her about the character of Tatiana and what is special about John Cranko’s choreography.
For Sarah, one of the pivotal scenes in the ballet is when the young and idealistic Tatiana meets the dashing Onegin for the first time: ‘When she sees Onegin, she’s enthralled – he’s mysterious, he’s out of a novel for her. That’s really the first time she’s made herself known to someone else.’
One of her favourite moments is the famous ‘Mirror’ pas de deux, when Tatiana imagines dancing with her longed-for lover: ‘I think Cranko makes incredible pas de deux. It sings out – it’s wordless – it has an exhalation that gave me chills the first time I saw it. I just love it.’
Cranko’s Onegin is based on Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin – one of the most famous works in the Russian language. Find out more about the verse-novel that inspired the ballet.
Sarah is renowned for her performances as Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty; Juliet in Romeo and Juliet; a number of works by Wayne McGregor, most recently Carbon Life and Infra; and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.