Wednesday, November 4

The Indiana Ballet Company: Phantom of the Opera

Phantom of the Opera was performed this past weekend at the Madame Walker Theatre by The Indiana Ballet Company. Converting Phantom to a ballet production was an interesting concept, and accepting the invitation, I was sitting dead center.
The love triangle between Christine (Tuesday Mayhew), Raoul, Ballet Master (Ogulcan Borova) and Phantom (Sergey Sersiev) begins in Act I with only Christine aware of the masked one’s presence. Unable to resist his charm, a spell is cast upon her, causing confusion for Raoul, who cannot understand the power of the Phantom. In a moment of weakness, Phantom allows Christine to remove his mask, horrifying her by the sight of his disfigurement, and she runs.
In Act II, the three principals dance through a Spanish Masquerade Ball, and Phantom declares his love for Christine. Making her decision to stay with the Phantom, the ballerina is left alone as
Phantom vanishes, unable to face his fear of love, leaving behind only his mask and cape.
Powerful and moving are the best descriptors to this switch in the familiar story. Sersiev wraps the Phantom character in his own cape of dark sensuality. Watching him dance is an intense assault of the senses, holding your attention raptly, breathlessly waiting for his next move. Able to sense his vulnerability, fear and desire, the audience members are left feeling awakened in their own frailties.
Alyona Yakovleva, IBC’s founding director, has set a mission for the classically trained company to connect with the Indy community, with each of its artists living and working in Indiana, year round.
Nutcracker will be the next venture for the company on December 11 and 12 at the Madame Walker Theatre.
Photos: Polina Pesherov
This post was originally published under "Gotta Go" in the West Side Community News in Indianapolis, and the West Indianapolis Community News.

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