The compelling musical score of Adolphe Adam, set to dance by Theophile Gautier after Heinrich Heine, and the choreography of Marius Petipa after Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot, have made Giselle a ballet-goers favorite for over a century and a half.
The Israel Ballet's successful production of Giselle relies completely on two Bolshoi guest artists in the leading roles - Marianna Ryzhkina and Dmitry Gudanov.
Both premier dancers were strong enough to hold the production tightly together, and Ryzhkina with her superbly stylized grace, gentle fluidity, and versatile range of expressions, endowed the evening with many moving moments. The pair of guests was a blessing for the Israel Ballet, delighting the audience.
Hopefully in the future, the company will have artists of its own on the same caliber.
Despite its overall success, the group dancing in the village scenes from the first act, and some sections of the second act were merely adequate. Striving for excellence remains imperative in the cutthroat world of ballet.