It’s almost time for Bangkok’s International Festival of Dance & Music again! This carefully curated six-week long festival, now entering its 21st year, features a wide range of artistic dance and music performances from acclaimed international troupes. This year, the festival brings the best in opera, ballet, music and more, including two ice dancing productions by UK’s The Imperial Ice Stars: Swan Lake on Ice (26-27 September) and Cinderella on Ice (28-29 September).
Ice Dancing Magic
Presenting ice dancing in a full theatrical setting, the shows involve a company of ice dancers with unrivalled skill and athleticism who blur the line between dance and skating. Enjoy powerful storytelling and creative choreography from 35 skaters. In their ranks are 20 World, European and National Championship skaters, and they live up to their reputation for pushing the boundaries of ice dance with their creative talent. It is interesting to note that this is the only ice-skating company to have won a theatrical award.
Naturally, when ballet takes to the ice rink in the form of ice dance, inspiration comes from the magical world of fairy tales. Princesses and magicians, wicked witches and nymphs, the handsome prince and the fairy godmother all provide boundless enchantment. In the case of Swan Lake, such artistry is set to Tchaikovsky’s musical highlights while Cinderella benefits from dramatic interpretation, beautiful sets, dazzling costumes and a score that breaks new ground, written specifically for ice dance.
Founded in 2003 by James Cundall, one of the leading producers of live entertainment in Asia and Australia, and Tony Mercer, regarded as the world’s foremost creator of contemporary theatre on ice, The Imperial Ice Stars have garnered worldwide acclaim for their innovative and sophisticated productions. Their shows are also known for their magnificent sets, opulent costumes created by Russia’s leading designers, spectacular lighting and stunning special effects, including flying, acrobatics, magic, projection, snow, fire and rain, as and when the story demands.
Both of the productions that are coming to Bangkok are massive, requiring shipping in container loads of equipment and sets — turning a theatre stage into a temporary ice arena is no easy task and requires 14 tonnes of ice. These shows are simply not to be missed!
Tickets for these (and other) performances are available online at Thai Ticket Major, via the Hotline at 02 262 3191, and at Thai Ticket Major counters. For more information, visit the festival’s website or Facebook page.
Venue: Thailand Cultural Centre, Bangkok
Ticket prices: Baht 3000 / 2,500 / 2,000 / 1,700 / 1,200
Additional Family-Friendly Performances
The entire festival runs from 11 September to 23 October 2019, with shows taking place in the Main Hall of Thailand Cultural Centre.. Other family-friendly shows you can expect this year include:
- Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (16-17 September): Hailing from New York, this company of professional male dancers performing classical ballet and modern dance has enjoyed decades of success thanks to its satirical take on the dance form. Affectionately called The Trocks, they have delighted audiences of all ages at packed houses across the globe. An evening with the Trocks as New York Times put it is all about “daft diva antics… [The show is] brilliant, unsettling, riveting – the epitome of Trocks style!” It’s hard not to laugh when male dancers balance delicately en pointe as swan princesses, delicate sylphs, ethereal water sprites, and Victorian ladies while their impressive technical skills underline the traditions of classical ballet.
- 3 Classical Ballets: The Hunchback of Notre Dame or Esmerlada (15 October), A Thousand and One Nights (17 October) and Swan Lake (19 October). All are performed by Kremlin Ballet. The Hunchback of Notre Dame or Esmerlada is based on Victor Hugo’s romantic tale of the hunchback of Notre Dame; the second is an Arabian folktale; and the third marks Tchaikovsky’s most famous ballet and the ultimate symbol of the Russian ballet. All three ballets will be accompanied by an orchestra.
Again, tickets for all performances are available online at Thai Ticket Major, via the Hotline at 02 262 3191, and at Thai Ticket Major counters. For more information, visit the festival’s website or Facebook page.