Last Saturday, the Joffrey Ballet teamed up with Aleksandra Efimova, author of The Sleeping Beauty Ballet by Aleksandra, for a book signing tea and an all-ages production of the famous ballet.
It had the requisite sparkly costumes and a cast that ranged from
ages 4 or 5 to full-grown ballerinas, Aurora and the Lilac Fairy among
the best of them. To help the audience—mostly moms and their
daughters—absorb the storyline, the text and illustrations of Efimova's
picture book were projected over the Black Box stage as Tchaikovsky's
score trilled and boomed in the background.
Guest appearances included Little Red Riding Hood, a trove of fairies
and the cutest little flock of sheep you've ever seen, courtesy of the
Joffrey's youngest members. The dance effused sweetness and magic from
the start, but I have to say—the scene was stolen not by those onstage,
but by the little Aurora's in the audience, decked out to their tutu-ed
nines and pantomiming the dancers with their moms, dads, and older
sisters. Even the little boy sitting next to me in black Star Wars
sneakers (not exactly your typical ballet fan) kept asking when the
second act would start, because he really loved "the magic bits."
Post show, the author signed more than 65 copies of her book and the
ballet's younger fans made ballerina-themed crafts, snacked and
practiced their twirls and whirls. There wasn't one of us (adults
included) who didn't want to be Princess Aurora once the ballet ended.
© Joffrey Ballet. All rights reserved.