24 Feb 2006
What Opera Owes to Dance
BY JOEL LOBENTHAL [NY Sun, 24 February 2006]
Sometimes lost amid critical appraisals of opera is the art form's movement quotient, which involves both set-piece ballets and the ways that directors and singers use movement to interpret character and situation. It was de rigueur in most 19thcentury grand operas for at least one, and frequently multiple ballets to be interpolated into the evening's pageantry. Today these ballets are often considered gratuitous and cut, but a case can be made that they have a vital role to play in the operas for which they were composed.