Like an actor’s monologue, a ballerina’s solo must achieve the difficult balance between drama and ostentation, controlled technique and theatrical abandon. In the ballet rendition of Rossini’s play, Guillaume Tell, Alessandra Ferri dances the character of Mathilde, an Austrian damsel whose love for a Swiss man is reminiscent of the forbidden love in Romeo and Juliet.
It takes the work of a ballet dancer to embody the words of Shakespeare. With the help of Sergei Prokofiev’s masterful score, the Royal Ballet's Alessandra Ferri and Wayne Eagling approach this task with heartbreaking beauty. They perform the iconic balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet in this recording of the company’s 1984 production—and their movement speaks.
Few things in life are more beautiful than Alessandra Ferri. Personally, I could watch old videos of her for hours on end. And it turns out I'm not the only one still in love six years after her retirement: This Friday, the Italian International Dance Festival will present the former prima with the IIDF A Heart For Art Extraordinary Dancer Award at the festival's gala performance in New York City.