Lisa Macuja-Elizalde Debuts First Full-Length Choreography with Ballet Manila’s Cinderella
The country’s premier classical dance company, Ballet Manila, marks another milestone this season as it debuts another original production—Cinderella.
A production that combines theatrical comedic elements, modern live special effects, and romantic classical scores, Ballet Manila’s version of Cinderella puts a lighter comical spin on the well-loved classic, whilst keeping intact all the elements that make it so magical.
“Modern, witty, romantic, very funny, but still every bit magical. It’s Cinderella as you’ve never seen before,” shares Lisa Macuja-Elizalde. “I want to create a ballet that appeals to all audiences. I want it to be a really light and happy ballet where kids will laugh out loud and the grownups will have a great time listening to children’s laughter. I also want the romance and magic of this story to come to life and make the audience remember the power of love.”
Set to be staged on November 25, 26 and December 3 at 8:00 p.m. and November 27 and December 4 at 3:00 p.m. at the Aliw Theater, the ballet marks an important milestone for Ballet Manila, the Philippines, and the ballet world, as it sees the first major choreographic work of prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde go on stage.
(READ: Revisiting Ballet’s Most Timeless Tales with Ballet Manila)
“I have always focused on the technicalities behind every show we do; making sure that the ballerinas and danseurs get all the right movements, that their bodies’ angles are precise so that they don’t injure themselves, and that every move they do go with the rhythm of the music. This has always hindered me from doing much choreography. However, for this one, I really made time to make sure we put together a ballet that is world class. When I actually started creating the choreography, Osias said that I looked so on fire in rehearsals that he decided to let me run with it– giving me the opportunity to run the show.”
“It took time. But to be honest, I had such a ball choreographing this ballet. We know what we wanted from the very beginning, and that is to create a magical experience that’s light and entertaining,” Elizalde adds.
In addition to seeing the first major choreographic work of the country’s most celebrated prima ballerina, audiences should also look forward to the many magical moments that Ballet Manila has infused in its production of Cinderella. Included in these scenes to watch out for is the transformation of Cinderella, which called for Ballet Manila to tap international live special effects specialists to create. There is also the Spring Ball, which according to Lisa, will be “everything a royal ball should be”.
“I wanted to tell the story of Cinderella and make the audience laugh and love. What better way to celebrate Christmas?”
Cinderella is co-presented by the Manila Broadcasting Company, Star City, and Aliw Theater. Other sponsors include ACS Manufacturing Corporation, First United Corporation, Papa John’s Pizza, Hot Star Chicken, Oasis Paco Park Hotel, Microtel Wyndham Hotels, Marco Polo Hotel Ortigas, City Garden Suites Malate, Island Rose, and Philcom. Official ride partner is Grab Philippines.
You can buy tickets here!
For more details about what’s happening in the Manila theater scene, please view our Theater Calendar.
About Ballet Manila
Founded in 1995 by Prima Ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and Osias Barroso, Ballet Manila is the country’s premier classical dance company. With the mission of connecting both ballet and the people, the company, which puts education at the forefront of its priorities, is well-known as the only Philippine dance company to adopt and strictly adhere to the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet style of dancing, which is well-regarded the world over as the most disciplined and technically-superior style. The company currently has 65 artists under its wing, all of whom have been trained in the Vaganova Academy style of dancing. The company boasts of a solid repertoire that consists of some of the most technically challenging and timeless ballet favorites.