Written By | Bianca Theodore
The Atlanta Ballet bought traditional Spanish culture to life in the Cobb Energy Centre for the opening night of Don Quixote
The ballet was as grand as the culture it stems from; as vibrant as the bright reds and oranges of the Riviera inspired tutus, and as lively as the Flamenco like dancing.
As the show took us on an artistic journey into 16 th century Spanish culture, we simultaneously followed Don Quixote’s adventures as he battled dragons and saved damsels in distress.
However, his comical heroism was a sideshow to the true story being told: Kitri and Basilio’s forbidden love. The romance between the beautiful Kitri and the humble barber stole the show, capturing the audience’s hearts. With every coy bat of Kitri’s fan and cheeky flip of her tutu, Basilio fell just a little more in love, and so did we.
Atlanta Ballet newcomer Sergio Masero played Basilio with expert precision, nailing every dramatic dip and rapid aerial turn. Erica Alvarado was equally as charming as Kitri, the perfect counterpart to her star-crossed lover.
Don Quixote himself, played by Nathan Griswold, held his own, providing both comedic relief and daunting routines. The choreography itself was a star of the show, an electrifying blend of traditional Spanish dance and bold ballet, from folk dance like fandango to daring leaps and lifts.
The CGI background and acrobatic stunts ushered the Cervantes classic into the 21 st century, modernizing an otherwise classic rendition of the well-known ballet. The dance sequences kept the show firmly anchored in its ballet roots, interspersed throughout Quixote’s heroic endeavors and wild adventures.
Whether they were there for the romance or Quixote’s quest for knighthood, the audience loved every bit of it. From the floor to the balcony, practically every seat in the house was full.
The echo of bouts of laughter and applause rang throughout the theatre the entire night, and the cast took its final bow to a standing ovation and bouquet of roses.
There’s something for everyone in the Atlanta Ballet’s Don Quixote. Be it love or laughter, the show is full of life, as all great art should be.