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Your Reaction: What did you think of Balanchine's Jewels?

Audience reactions and reviews of The Royal Ballet's performance of the sparkling three-act ballet.

By Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media))

4 April 2017 at 11.39am | 16 Comments

Press reviews:
Financial Times ★★★★★
Arts Desk ★★★★
Independent ★★★★
Guardian (no stars, positive)
London Dance (no stars, positive)

What did you think of Jewels?
Share your thoughts via the comments below.

Jewels runs until 21 April 2017. Tickets are still available.

The production will be broadcast live to cinemas around the world on 11 April 2017. Find your nearest cinema and sign up to our mailing list.

The production is staged with generous philanthropic support from Hans and Julia Rausing, Sarah and Lloyd Dorfman, Lady Ashcroft, Lindsay and Sarah Tomlinson, Peter Lloyd and The Royal Opera House Endowment Fund.

By Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media))

4 April 2017 at 11.39am

This article has been categorised Ballet and tagged by George Balanchine, Diamonds, Emeralds, Jewels, review, Rubies, Social Media, your reaction

This article has 16 comments

  1. Valerie Knight responded on 4 April 2017 at 7:21pm Reply

    Thoroughly enjoyed Saturday matinee performance of 'Jewels'. Loved the contrast of styles and music. Lauren Cuthbertson and Vadim Muntagirov were a dream in 'Diamonds'. Looking forward to Live cinema relay on 11th.

  2. Bridie Macmahon responded on 4 April 2017 at 9:43pm Reply

    Magnificent. A feast of brilliant choreography and superb dancing. Thrilling to see Tierney Heap dominating the stage as the solo girl in Rubies - glamorous and technically assured. I also loved Alexander Campbell's wit and energy and was amazed at some of his leaps and turns. And Cuthbertson and Muntagirov dazzled in Diamonds. Jewels has everything - and the dancers gave it their all.

  3. Michael Sharpe responded on 5 April 2017 at 9:36am Reply

    Three joyous performances so far with nearly everyone new to their roles.Bravis to the dancers and to mesdames Elyse Borne and Patricia Neary for their expertise. My only complaint is that the programme does not give a credit to the 4 'boys' in Rubies as it does to those in Diamonds.

  4. Paul Bridgwater responded on 7 April 2017 at 12:40am Reply

    Jewels is a stunning ballet, and the dancers did it real justice with some superb performances. Unfortunately, when the curtain rose on Emeralds I was horrified by the set: a very badly drawn drape on the backcloth/projection, glittery lights growing from 'window boxes' in the wings, which were topped by a heavy, architectural border, which seemed to bear no relation to the rest. The whole thing was crowned by a supposed art nouveau chandelier which was heavy and cumbersome. What was the designer thinking? What was the Royal Ballet thinking?
    Rubies and Diamonds were a slight improvement, but there was still far too much going on: the unnecessary architectural wing flats in Rubies and the grey drape in Diamonds, whilst none of the chandeliers added anything to the performance.
    This is a piece where the music, choreography, dancing and costumes sparkle. Very little scenery was needed, and Puissant's heavy handed and egotistical designs detracted from the performance instead of adding to it.

    • Ellen responded on 12 April 2017 at 12:17am

      I didn't even notice any background except some beautiful chandeliers in Diamonds. But then, I was there for the ballet.

  5. Sarah Tipping responded on 7 April 2017 at 3:08pm Reply

    I took my 10 year old daughter to last Saturday night's performance of Jewels and wondered initially if I'd made a mistake in not booking tickets to a recognisable 'story' ballet. However, all my fears were allayed and we both loved it - the three contrasting parts, the stunning costumes, the synchronised movements - all of it was just beautiful, even (or maybe, particularly) from the amphitheatre. Already planning my next trip to the ROH...

  6. P Holt responded on 9 April 2017 at 12:03am Reply

    Emerald was dull! Rubies and Diamonds had some finer moments with great dancers but still the blandest ballet I have seen here, out of many.

  7. ML responded on 9 April 2017 at 6:56pm Reply

    Gorgeous performances by Morera, Hirano, and Hay, (Emeralds), excitement and charisma from McRae, Lamb and Hamilton (Rubies), and sublime, elegant dancing from Nunez, Soares and the soloists and corps (Diamonds). One of the most fun and exciting performances of Jewels I've seen (I've seen 5 different companies in this work), which included chuckles and spontaneous applause in Rubies! It was such fun that my guest and I will be coming back for other shows. I think it's also worth seeing Jewels from a seat where you can see the action in the orchestra to get the full experience of the ballet - something with a slightly sideways view or from the Amphitheatre - unless you want to focus just on the choreography.

  8. alex responded on 10 April 2017 at 7:47am Reply

    We went to see the Saturday evening performance on 8th April and Emeralds was by far our favourite: beautiful music and exquisitely danced by the principal couple Yasmine Naghdi and Matthew Ball. They absolutely captured the essence of Emeralds: class and elegance. Naghdi's expressive dancing and beautiful arms took Emeralds to a whole new level. Akane was also superb in Rubies as were the corps dancers. Icing on the cake was Vadim Muntagirov in Diamonds. A stunning evening, thank you Royal Ballet!

  9. Patricia responded on 12 April 2017 at 1:15pm Reply

    Saw Jewels last night 'live' at Knutsford Curzon cinema. A fantastic evening. For me, Diamonds was spectacular. Class, elegance and exquisitely danced. The music and the ballet were so well orchestrated it was difficult to know which came first. Rubies was also extremely good. Many congratulations to all the dancers for such a fantastic show. They truly showed their talents. I;ve seen many ballets in different countries and this transcended everything I have ever watched. The hard work, discipline, attention to detail, and love of their role was carried all the way through the event. A pure pleasure. Thank you to everyone involved.

  10. Sarah responded on 15 April 2017 at 10:24pm Reply

    Rubies brilliant. Loved Mayara Magri and Marcelino Sambe, wonderful to watch.

  11. Brian responded on 16 April 2017 at 6:10pm Reply

    Yuhui Choe was marvellous in Emeralds and it was easily the best performance I've seen. The Faure sounded most beautiful.

  12. Anna responded on 20 April 2017 at 9:33pm Reply

    So wonderful to have Jewels to watch. Please......Symphony in C!!!!!!

  13. Ashley J. Armstrong responded on 21 April 2017 at 10:50am Reply

    Thursday April 20 performance: How much they enjoy performing Jewels came across very strongly, and the applause, cheering and whooping from the audience was testament to that!
    I'm a ballet novice, much more of an opera buff, so this evening was something of an experiment for me, and I loved it! The technical-appreciation aspect I can swot up on before my next ballet. Well done all! It was magical!

  14. Jennifer Jones responded on 23 April 2017 at 5:45pm Reply

    Just wanted to say that Olivia Cowley sparkled like a true diamond on Friday night. She clearly enjoyed herself and brightened up the stage, if only in not the most prestigious role. I believe Mr Balanchine would have taken a shine to her.

  15. ML responded on 2 May 2017 at 1:36pm Reply

    We came back to see other casts and it was a rewarding experience each time:
    - the orchestra played beautifully at each of our shows
    -one of the best ever quartets in Emeralds (apart from New York City Ballet's original dancers) I've ever seen was Yasmine Naghdi & Matthew Ball, Itziar Mendizabal & Nicol Edmonds. Such grace, control and musicality from the women and such fine partnering and elegance from the men.
    - enjoyed the finesse and elegance from Choe and Hristov at another cast, and marvellous elevation and partnering from Calvin Richardson in the pas de trois
    - the third cast of Rubies was weaker than one would expect from the Royal Ballet - the lead women needed much more work (more rehearsal time perhaps?) on the strength of their feet in the fast sections, but Marcelino Sambe impressed with his speed and elevation, ably supported by all four men in the quartet of soloists
    - Tierney Heap was impressive and the revelation of this season with her jumps, precise footwork, ebullience and musicality in the Rubies solo woman's role, never overdoing the emotion by trying to "act" a plotless ballet, and also delightful as one of the quartet of women in Diamonds
    - Salenko, McRae, Cuthbertson and Muntagirov made Diamonds a magnificent occasion of elegance and virtuosity

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