Houston is getting its second look at Stanton Welch's lavish 2009 epic ballet Marie, based on wild life of Marie Antoinette. More of a pyscholigical portrait than the history channel in pointe shoes, Welch drew from the myth, the hype, the tabloids of the day and lore of France's iconic queen, who ended up on the wrong side of the revolution.
Welch's Marie opens Thursday night and runs through March 6 at Wortham Center. The part of the famed queen was originally set for Houston Ballet principal Melody Herrera. The petite ballerina found much to relate to in her own life and is excited to be back dancing the role, bringing with her a bit more life experience.
Welch's tale traces Marie's life from her teen days as an Austrian archduchess to her sexless marriage to the future King Louis XVI to her death by guillotine at the height of the revolution in 1793. Wtih sets and costumes by Kandis Cook, a lush devised score by Dimitri Shostakovich and lighting by Lisa J. Pinkam, it's a feast for eyes, ears and heart.
Plus, there's about the best party scene in a ballet ever. Think Sex in the City circa 18th Century.
Do enjoy my "Art and About" debut: