L’heure exquise

Variations on a theme by Samuel Beckett (Oh, les beaux jours)

Touring production
©Silvia Lelli

Alessandra Ferri celebrates forty years of career by performing in the role of Winnie, the âgée ballerina created by Béjart. In her melancholy loneliness, she looks back over her happiest memories. Willie is her ex-partner, while the dune that she is buried in is represented here by a mountain of old ballet shoes.

Piccolo Teatro Strehler

With L’heure exquise, based on Oh, les beaux jours (Happy Days), one of the highlights of the theatre of Samuel Beckett, Alessandra Ferri celebrates her forty-year career in the role of Winne - the âgée  ballerina created in 1998 by Maurice Béjart - who, in her melancholy loneliness, looks back over her happiest memories. Willie, played by Thomas Whitehead, is her ex-partner, and in this performance, it is not the famous hill of sand that she is buried in, but rather a mountain of old ballet shoes. In the wake of Virginia Woolf, Eleonora Duse and Léa from Chéri, this is another exceptional female character for Alessandra Ferri in this chapter of her life. As Béjart writes: “All the great musicians have written “variations” on one great theme or another... I have chosen to work on one of the most important pièces of the twenty-first century. In reality, this is not an adaptation in dance, but rather a composition that remains faithful to the spirit of the author while belonging to a context of a purely abstract and choreographic form of creativity. The music is a montage on themes by Webern, above all, as well as Mahler and Mozart. The few words spoken are those of a ballerina as she dances or rests. Lastly, there is SILENCE, the main element in this liturgy”.

Duration: 70' without interval

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The Playbill

L’heure exquise
Variations on a theme by Samuel Beckett (Oh, les beaux jours)

directed and choreographed by Maurice Béjart
restaged by Maina Gielgud with the kind permission of the Fondation Maurice Béjart
performed by Alessandra Ferri and Thomas Whitehead

Five pieces for orchestra by Anton Webern - London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Antal Dorati
Symphony n. 4 III movement  (Poco Adagio) by Gustav Mahler - Berliner Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Herbert von Karajan
Fantasia DO Minore K.475 by W.A.Mozart - piano Glenn Gould
Heure exquise qui nous grise from the operetta The merry widow by Franz Lehár 
Tea for Two from the musical No Nanette

sets Roger Bernard, lighting Maina Gielgud, Marcello Marchi, costumes Luisa Spinatelli, shoes Freed of London Official
New staging an AF DANCE , Ravenna Festival, The Royal Ballet
Ministry of Culture, “Progetti Speciali” co-production
Project supported by Intesa Sanpaolo

With thanks to
Oriente Occidente Dance Festival - Passo Nord and the Municipality of Rovereto for accommodating the creative residency, Royal Ballet London, Hamburg Ballet John Neumeier, Balletto del Teatro alla Scala, English National Ballet London for supplying the shoes used for the sets created by Laboratorio Scenografia Pesaro.
Compagnia Italiana della Moda e del Costume for creating the costumes for Alessandra Ferri 
Royal Ballet for creating the costumes for Thomas Whitehead
Distributed in Italy by International Music and Arts

Category of performance International Hosted Shows
Stalls full price € 40 | Discounted (under 26 and over 65) € 23
Balcony full price € 32 | Discounted (Under 26 and over 65) € 20

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