Meeting Karpovsky

Went along to during the week to see Meeting Karpovsky with Apple Girl. The blurb for the show is:

Sylvia used to travel the world and its famous ballet theatres. Now she spends time alone in her wisteria covered attic filled with her daughter’s unwanted possessions and photographs of her favourite ballet dancer, Alexander Karpovsky – she has seen him dance 127 times. One day the silent Karpovsky mysteriously appears and begins to teach the stumbling Sylvia to dance…and to live.

Sir Jon Trimmer plays Karpovsky and he effortlessly dominates the stage. The fact he does it, despite only one word of dialogue, is a tribute to his acting and dancing.

Helen Moulder also excels as Sylvia. It takes a special skill to be able to pretend you can’t dance, when you can. Both Moulder and Trimmer give performances impossible to criticise.

The set is an essential part of the play. Proudly displayed in her attic are paintings of her silent companions – Petrouchka, Widow Simone, Albrecht & Giselle and Herr Drosselmeyer – all of them being the great Karpovsky. Also are boxes and boxes of her daughter’s unwanted belongings.

Sylvia is stuck between reality and fantasy, and you can sense there is some reason she has ended up that way. Karpovsky leads her down a path of self-realisation, to a point where she can accept the real world.

While the acting and dancing, set and lighting were all excellent, overall the play though didn’t quite resonate with me. While enjoyable to watch, I didn’t feel any emotional grip, and the “secret” of the finale was all too obvious. I just didn’t quite find there to be enough of a plot to dig into. However the play won many awards and plaudits the first time around, so others have had a much better experience with it – I suspect my lack of knowledge of ballet disadvantaged me.

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