Have you ever wondered what has troubled rudolf ? I wondered . I thought his headache was from an unwilling marriage – but then he would be happy when he’s with Mary – but even Mary was present – he didn’t want to live more – he wanted to die – with Mary (he could have said hey mary let’s go have some icecreams). Maybe rudolf’s headache was from how the world was like at that time – he looked so painful seeing his mother having an affair when others are watching fireworks . I liked countess Marie larisch in this story – from the beginning to the end – she still loved rudolf – she tried to revive their past relationship – but she realised that rudolf didn’t love her any more – she had sympathy of rudolf when rudolf was having a headache seeing his horrible mom – altho larisch loved rudolf – altho she could be jealous – she delivered Mary’s letter to make rudolf happy – but before she delivered the letter – she had a little dance with the prince rudolf – she looked happy in that dance – that dance felt like the way she could be close to the prince again because of Mary – so you know when she delivered the letter – she actually still loved the prince . Princess Stephanie was a very innocent girl – she was a pet of rudolf – on their wedding night – rudolf grabbed her from the floor with her legs struggling in the air as if grabbing a scared rabbit out of the cage (why is macmillan’s choreography always this animal-like ? as the gorilla dead body dance in the romeo and juliet) – then rudolf threw her onto the floor . Mary has two sides – one side is bright and in love when she was listening to her fortune telling and imagining one day being with the prince and gazing at his photo (the music was also suggesting it) – the other side was dark – surprisingly – and you only see that side when she interacted with the prince privately – she took off her jacket – she saw a skull and a pistol on the desk – she wasn’t scared – she picked up the skull and played with it – as dark as the prince – she picked up the pistol and pointed it at the prince – she really got it – she really got the prince’s mental disease and she played along . Rudolf grabbed her in the same way he grabbed other girls – but Mary was able to dance in the same mental disease style like the prince . It’s such a beautiful production – the costume was so pretty and the acting was real that I was only focusing on the story and thinking about the character instead of appreciating the jumps and turns as in other ballets – after the performance my heart was as heavy as after watching a long opera – and i was as puzzled as after watching an opera – normally a ballet doesn’t make me curious about the story like this one only the operas make me think about life – the staging has many surprises – such as fireworks on the stage for the party – and a piano and an opera singer on the stage – the beginning of the second act was like how does a pub looks like when it’s filled with ballet dancers – the curtain opened up and the tavern was filled with smoke in red lights – in this ballet it’s a side of Steven McRae that you usually do not see very often (except Frankenstein) – very out of his character of a handsome and naive prince on a white horse – under his craziness was fatigue – i especially feel it in the last act when rudolf was drinking on the table alone – he put down the cup , dropped his head , then he tiredly turned his head around to look back – such vivid acting and he looked so tired – Sarah lamb added many cuteness to Mary before they met at hofburg palace – I loved her way of walking into the palace in the beginning – everyone was looking seriously straight – but she was looking around the palace like a little girl – she knew the prince was ill – but she wasn’t scared – when the prince was injecting morphine to himself – all she had in her movement was sympathy – but why did rudolf kill her ?
besides countess larisch – i think the queen is a very good dancer (not so into the queen as a character in the story) but she’s a very good dancer – i can feel a sense of royalty in her movement of arms .
i thought it a fake story – but the place is real – the story is real – it’s a real incident – and you know the gunshots in this ballet always came when you are fully not prepared … when rudolf and mary was stalking around with a pistol i was so nervous that they are gonna shoot at us audience (phew they didn’t)
i hope to visit mayerling soon – i have visited vienna a long time ago for a week – but not mayerling yet
the real mary and real rudolf
the ballet started with a funeral (i would use mahler’s funeral march if i choreograph this) – the ballet also ended with a funeral – the middle part was to explain why you are watching a funeral . only if dancers – no i mean artists – like steven mcrae and sarah lamb tell the story – i would think the ballet in london in as good as the music from the pit orchestra .