Cult Cuts Life!

Coppelia at SM Seaside Nov. 12 and 13

MARCO Polo Plaza Hotel, Balletcenter Cebu and SM Seaside City Cebu present the full length ballet “Coppelia” on Saturday, November 12 at 6:30 p.m., and on Sunday, Nov. 13, at 3 p.m. at the Centerstage theater in SM Seaside.

The ballet has been choreographed by Balletcenter’s co-artistic directors Gregory Aaron and Nicolas Pacaña who appears in the ballet dancing, the role of Dr. Coppelius.

Principal dancers on opening night Nov. 12 will be Alyssa Limchiu Laico as Coppelia/Swanilda and Clinton Dignos as Franz.

On Nov. 13, the roles will be danced by Jamyma Aragon and Eddie Carl Garcia.

Tickets are priced at P500, P300, and P100, available from Balletcenter, tel. 232-2958, at Suite 302, 3rd level of Ayala Center Cebu.

Josh Romayla, Balletcenter’s company manager, has sent us the synopsis of “Coppelia” to better understand the story line. Here goes:

Act 1 – The curtain rises on the square of a small town in Europe several hundred years ago. A lovely young girl, Coppelia, is seen sitting in a balcony reading a book as Swanilda enters.

Swanilda looks up at the girl, tries to attract her attention, but receives no reply. Franz, Swanilda’s lover, comes into the square and blows a kiss to the beautiful Coppelia.

She ignores him, too, and continues unconcerned with her book. However, Swanilda has seen the attentions of her lover to another pretty girl, and Franz is a very busy man assuring Swanilda that he is not faithless and his affections are hers alone.

Still jealous, Swanilda refuses to believe him and runs away as a group of young people interrupts their quarrel.

The Burgomaster enters to announce that at a celebration the following day the Lord of the Manor will present dowries to all couples who wish to marry.

Asked if she will marry Franz, the pouting Swanilda puts a sheaf of corn to her ear. Thus, according to an old custom, the corn will tell her if her lover is faithful or not.

Sadly, she says the ear is silent. The other couples, however, are
delighted at the Burgomaster’s good news, and dance until night falls, when they must leave for home.

Dr. Coppelius comes out, looks his door, and is immediately swirled by a boisterous band of revelers. In the excitement, he drops the key to his shop.

Swanilda and her friends appear, and finding the key, they are filled with curiosity about the strange Doctor, and enter his shop.

Dr. Coppelius returns, sees his door open and darts in. Franz enters carrying a ladder which he uses to climb on to Coppelia’s balcony.

Act 2 – The curtain rises on the dimly lit interior of Dr. Coppelius’ shop, a room full of life-like life-size dolls. Swanilda pokes her head into an alcove to discover Coppelia.

Someone jars a Chinese doll which dances until its clock work runs down. The amazed young intruders then wind up all the dolls which dance as the friends watch, enchanted.

Suddenly, the furious Dr. Coppelius enters, and the culprits flee, except Swanilda. She runs into the alcove where Coppelia is kept.

At the same time, Dr. Coppelius apprehends the faithless Franz entering by the window. Franz pleads his love for the beautiful Coppelia.

Dr. Coppelius pretends to listen with interest while he entices Franz with several well-doctored drinks. When the unsuspecting Franz passes out, Dr. Coppelius brings what he thinks is his fabulous doll Coppelia from her alcove.

However, it is Swanilda who, overhearing Franz’s declaration of love for Coppelia, has changed places with the doll. The Doctor makes some magical gestures over Swanilda as she awkwardly rises to dance.

The deluded Dr. Coppelius believes his puppet has come to life. Swanilda dances on and on, creating havoc in the room and upsetting all the Doctor’s work. Franz, who has just revived, dashes out of the room chased by Dr. Coppelius.

Eluding the Doctor, Franz returns to watch the proceedings with glee until, finally, he and Swanilda run out, leaving the shop in shambles.

Dr. Coppelius returns to see the figure of Coppelia lying in her chair, divested of clothes, and realizes that he has been deceived.

Act 3 – The curtain rises on the final act which is again set in the village square. Franz and Swanilda, now reconciled, approach the Burgomaster to receive their dowries and be married. Dr. Coppelius storms in, accusing the lovers of destroying his life’s work.

Swanilda, realizing the justness of his claim, offers him her dowry, but the Burgomaster gives Dr. Coppelius a bag of gold, and sends him off.

The townspeople then participate in the fete which unites Swanilda and Franz in a happy marriage.

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TAGS: ballet, Balletcenter Cebu, Coppelia, Franz, Marco Polo Plaza Hotel, SM Seaside City, SM Seaside City Cebu, Swanilda
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