Asleep for 100 years

There comes a time when you feel more like the witch that doomed Sleeping Beauty and her family and retinue than you do like Beuaty herself.

Ironic, since Sleeping Beauty, thanks to the witch’s majic, is older (and younger) than I am or can ever expect to be.

Identifying with the old crone is not a choice but a reflex. She is bent and churlish. Beauty has aged far too well to be a role model for elderly women. Her story has always troubled me. ( See for instance how I’ve explained the Princess Aurora’s tale in

All that said, her ballet is ecstactic and liberating. In Alexei Ratmasky’s reimagined old-school tribute to the Petipa original, the gorgeous music and beautiful movement is stupefying and stunning.

The Sleeping Beauty is part of American Ballet Theatre’s 75th anniversary celebration at the Met Opera House through June 13th.

For more information about performances, visit


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