While our local arts groups take a summer break, it's still possible to get a fix of ballet or opera, thanks to the Enzian Theater in Maitland. Each summer, the theater presents series of films showing opera and dance productions by world-renowned companies.
The screenings take place at 11 a.m. Saturday mornings during the next few months. Tickets are $20 per show, with substantial discounts for buying season passes. Call the Enzian, 407-629-1088, for more details or go to Enzian.org.
The Enzian is at 1300 S. Orlando Ave., Maitland.
Here's a schedule of what's ahead:
Ballet on the Big Screen
• ROMEO & JULIET (Bolshoi Ballet): Sat. July 6, 11 a.m.
"One of the greatest of all love stories…and one of the most brilliant ballet scores ever written" (Moscow Times). "Romeo & Juliet" is presented with fresh passion in Yuri Grigorovich's version from the Bolshoi, which he originally staged in 1978 with his wife, the prima ballerina Natalia Bessmertnova, as Juliet. After her death in 2008, he revisited "Romeo and Juliet"; today's revival reflects Grigorovich's tender remembrances for his own beloved Juliet, accompanied by Sergei Prokofiev's passionate score.
• LA BAYADERE (Bolshoi Ballet): Sat. Aug. 17, 11 a.m. "La Bayadère" ("The Temple Dancer"), from the Bolshoi Ballet, tells the story of impossible love between the dancer Nikiya and the warrior Solor, set against the backdrop of lush, exotic India. Marius Petipa's choreography, here in a new scenic version by Yuri Grigorovich, is exquisite; especially noteworthy is the scene known as The Kingdom of the Shades, one of the most celebrated excerpts in ballet, and one of the first examples of "abstract ballet." Bolshoi's prima ballerinas Svetlana Zakharova, as Nikia, and Maria Alexandrova, as Gamzatti, appear in the all-star cast.
• NOTRE-DAME DE PARIS (La Scala Ballet): Sat. Sept. 21, 11 a.m. "Notre-Dame de Paris," inspired by Victor Hugo's novel, with music by Maurice Jarre, sets by René Allio and the renowned costumes of Yves Saint-Laurent, returns to La Scala after more than 10 years since its last performances. Once again it will be celebrating choreographer Roland Petit and the triumph of his vision of performance as a total creation: dance, sets, costumes, music, theatricality…with two of the international ballet world's brightest stars: Roberto Bolle and Natalia Osipova.
Opera on the Big Screen
• Kenneth Branagh's THE MAGIC FLUTE: Sat. July 20, 11 a.m.
On the eve of the first global war a magical drama unfolds as Tamino sets forth on a perilous journey in pursuit of love, light and peace in a world afflicted by darkness, death and destruction. An eerie quiet descends over a landscape still untouched by conflict as Tamino waits anxiously with his fellow recruits for the command to go into battle. In the ensuing chaos he is transported to a twilight world caught between dream and nightmare where a trio of field nurses rescues him from certain death. When Papageno (keeper of the canaries employed to detect the presence of gas in the trenches) stumbles onto the scene and attempts to take credit for saving Tamino, the Sisters dispatch the two soldiers on a deadly mission. The duo must rescue Pamina, the lovely daughter of the Queen of the Night, who has been kidnapped by the dark lord, Sarastro. What follows is a spectacular musical adventure in which the destiny of a pair of young lovers may help determine the fate of nations and the lives of millions.
• CALVALLERIA RUSTICANA and PAGLIACCI (Teatro alla Scala): Sat. Aug. 31, 11 a.m. Opera fans' favorite double bill, "Cavalleria Rusticana" and "Pagliacci," are two brief operas that pack a big punch. The Wall Street Journal raves, "It wasn't just good — it was magnificent." As the betrayed clown Canio, tenor José Cura has "a thrilling voice and charisma to burn…a supercharged performer." (The Telegraph)