by Anna Yule
Alberta Ballet’s production of Alice in Wonderland is a creative and magical twist on the already classic Lewis Carroll story. It was a creative delight with its non-traditional choreography and beautiful set display.
The performance included a full menagerie of characters from the original story, including my favourite, the whole mad tea party. The dancers transport you into Wonderland with their variation of ballet mixed with clogging (a folk dance where dancers create percussive rhythm with their heels) and an added bit of contemporary dance. Although some of the clogging segments don’t quite capture the audience as the rhythm of the shoes is sometimes lost in the music, Edmund Stripe’s choreography showed an entertaining switch-up between different dance styles while providing the classical pas de deux and group sequences that I have come to adore.
This quirky rendition included a very graceful and dynamic performance showcased by Luna Sasaki as Alice. My personal favorite was the performance by Alan Ma as the white rabbit, whose dancing exhibited amazing foot work and stunning fluidity.
The performance is definitely suitable for all age levels, although the plot might be harder to follow for those who are not as familiar with the story. The ballet’s plot is sometimes hard to follow but it includes some great components from the original story. The set design, lighting and set-effects were well executed and very reminiscent of the fantastical.
Overall this was an imaginative journey into one of my favorite narratives and a must-see if you wish to get lost in Wonderland. The performance runs one more night on March 25th at the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.
Banner photography courtesy of Alberta Ballet.