Tuesday, September 25, 2012
He loves me. He loves me not.
One of my favorite moments in the ballet Giselle is within the first ten minutes: Giselle is falling in love with Loys, and she picks a flower and plucks the petals, one by one. She looks ecstatic with each "He loves me!" and tragically sad with each "He loves me not."
By the third petal or so, Giselle stops plucking and impatiently counts the remaining petals. When she finds the number is not in her favor, she throws the flower on the ground and runs away in tears.
Loys, who has been watching her carefully, picks up the flower, and while Giselle is not looking, he plucks one more petal. He then runs to her, as if to exclaim, "Look! You counted wrong! I do love you! See? I have proof!"
And then the two dance together joyously.
It's such a sweet and silly and happy moment, and I can't help but smile every time I watch it.
Of course, as the ballet proceeds, we find out that Loys is really Prince Albrecht disguised as a peasant, and that he is engaged to another woman. Then Giselle, who suffers from a heart condition, is so brokenhearted that she goes mad and dies of grief.
And then Albrecht visits Giselle's grave, begs her forgiveness, and dances with her ghost, but you know, whatever.
I like the part with the pretty flower.
(Photos are screenshots of the video production of Teatro alla Scala's Giselle, starring Svetlana Zakharova as Giselle and Roberto Bolle as Prince Albrecht)