Queen Victoria’s irrepressible love for Albert sparked a royal dynasty, but his untimely death brought the world’s most powerful woman to her knees with grief. Now, the amazing story of this incredible monarch is brought to life in a production that will be eagerly anticipated by fans of dance, romance and history.
Northern Ballet’s reputation for outstanding narrative works has been sealed by their sensational streak of award-winning and critically acclaimed productions. Choreographed by Cathy Marston (Jane Eyre), their latest creation Victoria reveals the life of one of history’s most intriguing women – a life so sensational that her daughter Beatrice tried to rewrite history. Retold 200 years after Victoria’s birth, this major new production features dramaturgy by Uzma Hameed (Wayne McGregor’s Woolf Works) and an original score by Philip Feeney (Jane Eyre).
Victoria tells the story of the monarch and matriarch through the eyes of her daughter, Beatrice. Over the years Victoria had written 122 diaries detailing everything in her life which she had passed to her youngest daughter Beatrice while on her death bed. Reliving her mothers memories Beatrice tries to rewrite history by tearing out pages in the diaries. Sharing the important moments in Victoria’s life with husband Albert, daughter Beatrice and her servant John Brown the performance is filled with emotion.
A fantastic performance, Pippa Moore’s adult Beatrice watches as her own life as well as her mother’s unfolds on stage. On stage throughout the 2 hour performance Pippa did not fault once showing a great stage presence.
Northern Ballet’s Orchestra, hidden under the stage provided an amazing symphony composed by Philip Feeney and directed by John Pryce-Jones.
The performance begins with Victoria played by Abigail Prudames writing her final entry in her diary, before her death has has the audiences full attention. With the first half of the performance showing Beatrice’s life through her mothers eyes, from their close relationship, to her meeting Liko (played by Sean Bates) for the first time, their marriage and inevitably his death. While the second half showed more of her mothers life in the earlier years, from meeting Albert (played by Joseph Taylor) and having 9 children, to her relationship with servant John Brown (played by Mlindi Kulashe) and Albert’s death leaving Queen Victoria, the most iconic women, mourning her husband.
I did take my 8 year old daughter along for the evening which of course she was thrilled about. She managed to keep up with most of the story lines, though she was a little baffled when the audience erupted in laughter at the scene from Victoria and Albert’s wedding night! I managed to convince her it was part of the ballet and people were laughing at Beatrice ripping the pages from her mothers diary in horror. By the end of the evening she was a budding ballet dancer filled with enthusiasm.
A fantastic performance with a cast full of extremely talented ballet dancers, Victoria is a show not to be missed.
A well deserved standing ovation from the audience at the end of the performance and a fantastic evening at Grand Opera House as always.
Although my tickets were gifted all views and opinions are my own.