In all my previous classical music selections, I’ve tried to choose works or pieces that were relatively short, so they fit into the limited attention spans of most of us on the Internet – generally not seen as a medium for long, uninterrupted listening to music. However, some musical works demand a visual as well as an auditory experience to be fully appreciated; and they’re seldom short.
In that category I include one of my favorite ballets, Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. I’ve loved it ever since I heard an orchestral suite from it in my youth, and I’ve seen it half a dozen times over the years, most memorably in London, England a long time ago.
Here’s the whole thing, as performed by the Kirov Ballet in Leningrad, Russia (that was its Soviet-era name, by which it’s still called, but it’s since been officially renamed the Mariinsky Ballet). It’s been in existence for almost 300 years, giving it a priceless tradition and an enormously rich musical and balletic heritage. I hope you have (or can make) time to watch and listen to the entire performance. It’s worth it.
Musical artistry in motion.