What a thrill! My sister played Cleopatra this weekend in a marvelous spectacle, a dance theatre version of Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, a production of Columbus Dance Theatre, at the restored Lincoln Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. The interior of the Lincoln is itself spectacular in Egyptian Revival style.
All text was Shake-speare, pulled to the essential story in scenes with Cleopatra. The rest of the story was told in dance and video projected onto a huge screen, with costumes and painted columns dropped in on panels, and so much to look at. The asps were danced by lithe children.
My sister is magnificent.
Here she is, not too happy with the messenger and his news that Antony is remarried in Rome.
And here is Dancing Antony, aloft! The dancing Antony and Cleopatra were a husband-wife team, and so were the talking Antony and Cleopatra.
Here they are together, the dancing ones, with my sister Chris still pleased behind them, in her white sheath of a dress. She looked like the pictures of the willowy youthful Cleopatra, a Macedonian Greek. Her dancing equivalent wore the characteristic serpent headdress and very little else, perfect for the athleticism, passion, and eroticism of her dance.
This was a wonderful thing, like opera, with scene-by-scene synopsis provided in the program.
Original music by Charles Wetherbee, performed by Carpe Diem String Quartet.
You can read the rave review here and a summary account here, with all the credits!
"You must change your life," said Rilke. So that's what I keep doing. I've been an encyclopedia editor, a poetry editor, an actor and director, a library clerk, and an assistant professor of English. Now I'm a freelancer, work part time in a library, blog "eight days a week," study the random, tend perennials, and listen to birdsong.