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Your reaction: The Winter's Tale

What did you think of Christopher Wheeldon's Royal Ballet adaptation of Shakespeare's play?

By Chris Shipman (Content Producer (Social Media and News))

11 April 2014 at 10.20am | 45 Comments

Press reviews:
Telegraph ★★★★★
Guardian ★★★★
Evening Standard ★★★★
Arts Desk ★★★★

What did you think of The Winter's Tale?

The Winter's Tale runs until 8 May 2014. A limited number of tickets are still available.

Generously supported by The Monument Trust. With additional philanthropic support from Mrs Susan A Olde OBE, Celia Blakey, Sarah and Lloyd Dorfman, Lady Ashcroft, Simon & Virginia Robertson, The Taylor Family Foundation, Mr and Mrs Edward Atkin CBE, the Metherell Family, Richard and Delia Baker, John and Susan Burns, Sir Roger and Lady Carr, Kenneth and Susan Green, D W Hancock, Randa Khoury, Doug and Ceri King, Gail and Gerald Ronson through The Gerald Ronson Foundation, Victoria Sharp, Lindsay and Sarah Tomlinson and The Winter’s Tale Production Syndicate.

By Chris Shipman (Content Producer (Social Media and News))

11 April 2014 at 10.20am

This article has been categorised Ballet and tagged by Christopher Wheeldon, Production, review, Social Media, The Winter's Tale, twitter

This article has 45 comments

  1. Tracey responded on 11 April 2014 at 11:05am Reply

    Act 1 gripping, dramatic dance. Act 2 beautiful depiction of the playfulness and passiion of adolescent love. Wonderful set. A privilege to be there.

  2. bill worley responded on 11 April 2014 at 11:55am Reply

    One word - fabulous!! Congratulations to all. One of the best things I've seen anywhere for many months.

  3. Lucy McCaul responded on 11 April 2014 at 1:07pm Reply

    Absolutely stunning. Dancing, music, design all fitted together in a scintilating whole.

  4. Did anyone not feel offended when the pregnant Hermione was brutally pushed by the guards during Act 1? I do understand it was a part of the ballet, but that violence completely shut me down.

    The dancers were fantastic! Their ability to clearly demonstrate how the psychological drama was deepened was absolutely amazing.

  5. Sarah responded on 13 April 2014 at 1:03am Reply

    So Disappointed rehearsal for Winters Tale was Cancelled so,quickly bought tickets for tonight's perf. Sublime. Literally poetry in motion. Accompanied by an unlikely companion who was moved & completelynconverted to the Art of Dance! Thank you to everyone involved in this unique production.

  6. Liz responded on 13 April 2014 at 11:19pm Reply

    Wow! Congratulations to Chris Wheeldon, Joby Talbot, Bob Crowley and Natasha Katz plus all the creative team. What a fantastic ballet. Wonderful production, and fantastic cast. Can't wait to see it again!

  7. Manon1753 responded on 13 April 2014 at 11:48pm Reply

    Highlights: the dancers, the dancing, the TREE, the sea chase, the bear-wave, the end. A bit more dancing in Act III - much time was spent on setting out the madness an injustice in Act I, a litlle more dancing in ActI to show reconciliation? But please do not change the end - so sad, so original (for a three act ballet) : Paulina alone with the dead boy. It is a true winter's tale

  8. k8 responded on 14 April 2014 at 4:29am Reply

    So excited to see this but can't as the cinema relay was cancelled for Canada. Just wondered why that was. I thought it might be because The Winter's Tale is a co-production with the National Ballet of Canada, who could be expected to, as with Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, bring out their own production. However, they don't have it scheduled for the upcoming season, so I'm curious as to why we no longer get the cinema broadcast.

    Also, I was wondering if DVDs of The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, The Winter's Tale and the other recent cinema broadcasts would be made available for purchase. Thanks!

    • Ellen West (Head of Online Content) responded on 15 April 2014 at 11:16am

      Hi there

      Unfortunately our distribution partner in Canada and the US has only agreed to take a limited number of titles from our cinema season and The Winter's Tale is not one of them. Very sorry if that is disappointing.

      Best wishes

      Ellen

  9. k8 responded on 15 April 2014 at 9:40pm Reply

    That's too bad! Thanks for explaining! All the more reason to hope it comes out on DVD!!

  10. I came to see The Winter's Tale on Wednesday evening (16th) and was overwhelmed by the whole performance! - totally stunning in every respect. I thought King Leontes angst in Act I was perhaps a little bit OTT, but a wonderful ballet over all. Great to see Bennet Gartside in such an outstanding role and all the dancers to be commended. Also delighted to see Luca Acri in a 'headlining' role! Has Carlos Acosta's "Don Quixote" started a fashion to have musicians on stage?! To my mind, a worthwhile venture again! The tree was amazing. ..... And I had tears running unashamedly down my cheeks at the ending!!

  11. Caroline Rand responded on 18 April 2014 at 5:06pm Reply

    Saw this on 16th April when Bennet Gartside replaced Thiago Soares. We were completely absorbed in this wonderful production. The whole cast was superb, the scenery and effects outstanding, and the music glorious. Many congratulations to all concerned.

  12. Utterly beautiful. Beautiful choreography, beautiful music, beautiful tree, clever stage effects. I loved it all.

  13. Angela Hurlstone responded on 22 April 2014 at 6:50pm Reply

    This afternoon's performance of The Winter's Tale was truly special. I was captivated from the start. Marianela Nunez and Bennet Gartside were wonderful as Hermione and Leontes, and watching Vadim Muntagirov and Beatriz Stix-Brunell dancing the rolees of Perdita and Florizel made me wish I was a young girl of 18 again falling in love. Act II was such a joyous spectacle. The concluding act was deeply moving - I can't really put into words how special the dancing was - suffice it to say I used rather a lot of tissues. Chris Wheeldon, this must be your finest hour. Thank you to all for this wonderful production.

  14. Anna responded on 23 April 2014 at 11:59pm Reply

    Modern, fresh, complete. This is the full package - the music, the choreography, the story telling, the scenary, all of it. One of the best performances I've seen.

  15. May responded on 28 April 2014 at 7:30pm Reply

    The ballet sounds brilliant and we can't wait to see it. Unfortunately tickets sold out for the nights we were available almost immediately and the cinema screening is on a Monday night with a Tube strike going on! Hope the ballet can be put on again next season and that you can consider doing live cinema relays on a Friday or Saturday in future (I accept weekend may not be the most easy to coordinate for technical considerations but hopefully a Friday perhaps).

    • May responded on 28 April 2014 at 7:33pm

      PS I mean the season 2015-2016 as the programme for 2014-2015 has been decided already!

  16. Just come home after watching the screening in Altrincham, Cheshire. Totally amazing. I want to watch it again from the beginning now. The dancing was to technical, seemed effortless and so tender and beautiful. Christopher Wheeldon is a genius, Joby Talbot a master. Edward Watson was unbelievable, his anger, passion; every feeling we could feel through every fibre of his being. Thank you for an amazing experience. Please screen it again at the cinemas. #ROHTale

  17. michael mcmichael responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:14pm Reply

    just seen winters tale 28/04/2014 at the live relay performance at the light new brighton. WOW it blew me away.Fantastic performance by EDWARD WATSON as Leontes, what an exciting dancer andd actor. Stephen McRae as Florizel brilliant and all the other principals. Well done guys you gave me a night i will never forget. Also saw the production of Sleeping Beauty Stephen in that one also. What a star. CALNT WAIT FOR THE NEXT ONE.

  18. Wayne H responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:30pm Reply

    Perfect balance of light and shade. Set, music and dance in total harmony. Well done.

  19. Marilyn Holyoake responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:39pm Reply

    Congratulations to all.This was a most beautiful ballet in every respect..Winters Tale is set to become a classic.
    I so look forward to seeing it again.

  20. Diana carmichael responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:50pm Reply

    Wonderful production only negative comments are that men should not be wearing tights for the big screen close ups, they did not fit in with the otherwise great costumes, and 2 sweating left a couple of costumes very noticeably wet

  21. penelope simpson responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:51pm Reply

    Superlative everything except Darcey Bussell doing a completely amateur commentary for the cinema audience. She apparently doesn't even know where to hold the microphone so most of what she said was muffled. Pathetic beside so much perfection

  22. Wendy Manock responded on 28 April 2014 at 11:51pm Reply

    Just arrived home having watched A Winter's Tale at Cineworld, Bolton. A dramatic ballet, powerful music, choreography spectacular, exquisite dancing by EVERYONE, Act II tree setting was beautiful. A wonderful evening for a sell out audience.

  23. Alyson Herbert responded on 29 April 2014 at 12:19am Reply

    Saw live relay this evening 28/4 in Chelmsford. Absolutely stunning. I only knew the slightest outline of the story until last week, but it was so clearly conveyed in the choreography that I don't regret not having studied it before. The principals were all so good, but Edward Watson is amazing. The music was excellent, scenery & costumes were extremely effective, with possible exception of Perdita's dress in Act ll. Not the best fabric for such strenuous dancing, perhaps? Of the other soloists, Valentino Zucchetti is clearly one to watch out for. I am now desperate to see it again!

  24. Regina Kaufmann responded on 29 April 2014 at 11:22am Reply

    We saw the ballet last night live in a cinema in Bern/Switzerland. It was simply outstanding, great dancers, wonderful scenery, congratulations!

  25. chris topintzis responded on 1 May 2014 at 11:53am Reply

    I missed the Bear but the Ballet was amazing .and the set design, incredible..the way the silks moves to create the sea and the ship were so realistic...Loved all of it , such hard work..thought the music was a tad complicated and overworked...

  26. Josephine Marle de Cera responded on 2 May 2014 at 12:47am Reply

    Very pleasant evening, exquisite dancing,
    fantastic scenery / set design,
    innovative score and....... a truly magical tree

  27. Helen Champeau responded on 2 May 2014 at 8:22pm Reply

    I was blown away, along with my (usually quite ambivalent) other half. The emotions were conveyed so perfectly in a way I had not imagined. We felt we were on a roller-coaster of emotions throughout, sometimes sharing very personal impressions. This was an amazing and splendid production, boundary pushing for our amazement. I will never forget this 60th birthday treat on a special day. I passed Christopher Wheeldon by that evening, and saw him again the next day. I wanted to hug him.

  28. Last night of Tale - don't want the story to end - but at least this means we can look forward to its return.

    Both casts made the beautiful choreography their own, in ayes there were variously intense, dark, uplifting, joyous, redemptive.

    I loved the score - and the involvement of the music within and around the ballet.

  29. Gerald Milch responded on 15 May 2014 at 3:54pm Reply

    I enjoyed the performance immensely despite watching it in a cinema where the sound disappeared briefly on a few occasions in Act III. (There was a similar problem with "The Sleeping Beauty") If I had to make any further comment it could only be that the recognition scene between Leontes and Perdita was too brief and needed some more emotion to be displayed.

  30. Lesley Malnick responded on 15 May 2014 at 4:29pm Reply

    Outstanding ballet, beautiful danced with incredible emotion but absolutely HATED the music!v 2nd part was my favourite. Edward Watson was spellbinding: what stamina!

  31. Margaret Stewart responded on 15 May 2014 at 7:26pm Reply

    Brilliant, I loved every minute of it. An unbelievably sinuous Ed.

  32. Paul Wailen responded on 15 May 2014 at 9:27pm Reply

    I thought this was a stunning performance and was danced amazingly well. I am sure it will become a classic part of the House repertoire and deceives to be so. It is a ballet i would like to see many times over.

    I saw the performance at a local cinema and was overjoyed to see the close ups of perfumers and their dancing and acting abilities; they certainly have to be on their best for the silver screen.

    However, there was also a downside to being in a cinema. At Covent Garden, I choose always to sit in the Amphitheatre for ballet so I am above the dancers and can see their steps and ability to be part of the corps de ballet. On the screen this is not possible unless one camera is sited in the Amphitheatre to see the whole stage from above when the whole-or majority-of the corps is dancing. I hope this can be rectified and acted upon for future performances screened for cinema. I felt that was missing and was one defect in a stunning performance.

  33. Giovanna Tomacelli responded on 16 May 2014 at 9:24pm Reply

    A million congratulations to Christopher Wheeldon for having given us such a wonderful ballet, which we all hope to see again. It seemed highly difficult choreography and with such a cast of primos and primas, will there be good enough dancers in the future? These were all so fantastically good that it is going to be hard to repeat it! I feel so very lucky at having been able to see the screening in a very large cinema, so enjoyed every moment of it, and very much hope to see it again. Thank you, thank you Christopher Wheeldon for having given us such an exciting and exhilarating evening.

  34. Airlie Staveley responded on 16 May 2014 at 11:12pm Reply

    Loved the ballet. So much energy and wonderful dancing. We were all blown away by it.
    Darcey Bussell must learn to be more confidant and professional in her 'interviewing' she looks awkward and never holds the mic still so her words get lost.
    Has she watched herself I wonder?

  35. valerie monaghan responded on 18 May 2014 at 11:13am Reply

    so cross the rehearsal cancelled but picked it up at the Odeon Guildford. Surprised and delighted by all except the volume of sound which is obviously ok for the House but far too much for a small cinema space! Yes a new classic for the repertoire, well done.

  36. I persuaded six friends to view the performance at the cinema in Winchester. We were all thrilled, enchanted and excited by the brilliant choreography of Christopher Wheeldon and the music by Joby ? We liked the costumes enormously, particularly the swirling jackets worn by the men . We felt we had seen a ballet which will be a classic in one hundred years time. Excellent ROH production.

  37. Denise Carrs responded on 20 May 2014 at 5:12pm Reply

    I saw it on 26 April and loved the whole production. Excellent dancing from all the cast, beautiful costumes - a joy from beginning to end. Well done Royal Ballet.

  38. David Stephen Riley responded on 20 June 2014 at 5:24pm Reply

    I saw the live relay of The Winter's Tale almost two months ago not expecting to be too enthusiastic but couldn't have been more amazed. It was I thought one of the finest ballet productions to have been created in the last 25 years. Would have loved to have seen it on stage but couldn't get tickets so will have to rely on my memories of this wonderful occasion.

    I do hope it will return to The Garden in the near future and also hope there will be a DVD available very soon. I'll be first in the queue!

  39. christine Tibbetts responded on 4 July 2014 at 6:09pm Reply

    From start to finish it was breath taking. Live screening is giving everyone a chance to enjoy these wonderful productions as it is not always easy to get to London to see live, although preferable to be seen live. Please say that this will be released on DVD as it is far to good to be lost once the live show is finished.

  40. Flo Forgerit responded on 18 October 2014 at 1:32pm Reply

    I enjoyed the ballet at the cinema in my hometown and expect soon to buy a DVD to watch it again.
    Very soon hopefully

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