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La Fille du Pharaon (The Pharaoh's Daughter) [Blu-ray]

4.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

To celebrate the centennial of the death of Marius Petipa (1818-1910) for the first time in Blu-ray (High Definition), Petipa's extravaganza,'The Pharaoh's Daughter' , in a stunning production by Pierre Lacotte. Recreating the spectacular sumptuousness of the original, the ballet tells the tale of a young Englishman who dreams he elopes with a Pharaoh's daughter.

Despite a desert storm, a lion hunt and an attempted suicide, the couple finally wins the Pharaoh's blessing to their marriage.

From its creation in 1862, Petipa's grandiose ballet was a sensational success; its stupendous costumes and striking scenery, its exotica, romanticism and drama appealing to audiences as much as the virtuoso choreography.
The Bolshoi Ballet and the two soloists Svetlana Zakharova and Sergei Filin are at their best in spite of the difficulty of Pierre Lacotte's choreography.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Bolshoi Ballet, Pugni, Zakharova, Filin, Aleksandrova
  • Directors: Pierre Lacotte
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Classical, NTSC, Surround Sound, Widescreen
  • Language: English (DTS 5.1)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Bel Air Classiques
  • DVD Release Date: May 25, 2010
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0038ZGLRA
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,658 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Chhan Thuan Kiat on December 29, 2010
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
History sometimes plays strange tricks on musical opuses....some fare badly during the lifetime of their creators and then became established standards posthumously, others, like Marius Petipa's ballet La Fille Du Pharaon began life with a magnificent fanfare in the 1860's and then virtually disappeared from the repertoire by the turn of the last century. Lacotte's adaptation of Petipa's lavish Egyptian fantasy should be warmly welcomed by ballet aficionados jaded by the umpteenth performance of a Swan Lake or a Giselle. Granted, Cesare Pugni is no Tchaikovsky and his music for this ballet, albeit with some passages of brilliance, is for the most part not memorable. I can't imagine anybody wanting to listen to this music on its own. But in the context of the wonderful choreography of this opulent ballet,it is more than passable, even enjoyable really , as one gets carried away by the grand spectacle of the whole production. And indeed this is ballet on the grandest scale, ballet as an epic of spectacular dances, exotic sets, and extravagant costumes, and this blu ray disc from BelAir captures the riot of colours and textures with stunning clarity with the audio DTS HD 5.1 up there with the best of them. This is arguably one of the lushest audio/video recording for a ballet that I've seen. But lest you get the impression that this all but eye candy, let me hasten to add that the Bolshoi Ballet is the Bolshoi ballet and my goodness, what performances their corps de ballet are capable of....the ensemble pieces are many and enthralling, especially the 2 grand pas d'action in the Pharaoh's palace, the grand pas of the huntresses, of the fishermen and of the rivers...Petipa's genius as choreographer shining through.Read more ›
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I think the other reviews here are pretty much on the mark. It is a 5* production of a 3* ballet. Adding a bit to that, this is more fun than I expected. It is a complete story which holds interest, and there is something beyond pleasant, almost delightful about watching this. There is such depth in the sets, costumes, stagecraft and dancing that makes this a most pleasant evening of viewing. The performers seem to be having a good time, a showcase for revealing what the Bolshoi is all about. If the music had been of higher quality, and more fitting with the story and settings, this could have been among the top ballets in the classical repertoire. Although, saying great except for the music about a ballet, is damning with faint praise! It's hard giving an accurate review about something that is fundamentally flawed, yet at the same time delightful and worth seeing!
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The Bolshoi Ballet Company is known as one of the greatest company of dancers in the world, as can be seen by the performances in this wonderful Ballet. If there is any shortcoming, it is the sky camera which often seems so far above the performers. However, it was apparent that they were dealing with a very large stage, and through this method could capture the entire company at times. The performances and the sets were magnificent. The music is beautiful!
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The lead dancers are stunning. The production is lavish. The music is good. The dancing is divine. The blu-ray production is technically very good. The supporting corps dancers are excellent. I would say that even the POB would be proud of such overall perfection. This is of course a classical ballet with classical music. Although the title sounds egyptian the themes are in the main mostly greco-roman classical. The Neptune undersea dance is gorgeously done. This blu-ray can be watched once a month without getting repetitous.
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OK, I don't know a whole lot about ballet. I've seen a couple live, and I've owned a couple on DVD for a while. But that, and reading some stuff here and there, is about the extent of my knowledge. So, now that we've got that out of the way ... :)

I got this based on the reviews I read here and elsewhere. And I agree with most of the reviews, in that this is light on story and drama, but heavy on spectacle and really wonderful dancing. The sets are beautiful, the corps seems to dance wonderfully, and Zakharova is amazing. Sometimes, it really does seem like she's floating just above the floor. I know that people have said that she isn't the most "perfect" dancer in the world, but her movements and grace are stunning.

The image just pops off the screen in HD. Wow. I couldn't believe how bold the colors and how clear the details were.

This is just a lot of fun to watch, and while I also agree that the music is a bit repetitive (let's face it, it's no Tchaikovsky), it makes the story move, and gives all the dancers a good deal to work with.
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Format: Blu-ray
This is a very sumptuous production of this romantic period ballet originally created in 1862 by Petipa. This particular version is by Pierre Lacotte and the current recording was made in HD in 2003. No effort has been spared to produce a completely magical entertainment out of what is a story of pure escapist fantasy. The audience is increasingly very enthusiastic and rightly so.

Essentially the story concerns an English Lord who shelters from a desert storm in a nearby pyramid. He takes opium and thus starts the story of the ballet. In his dream he imagines a mutual love affair with the princess who is entombed in the pyramid. This takes both of them through various adventures which enables a series of fanciful scenarios to be enacted leading to their final union. At this point the storm abates, the opium wears off and he is left with fond memories as the final curtain falls.

Throughout this production every means possible is grasped to have maximum visual effect. The costumes for the dancers in all scenarios are simply beautiful without exception. The stage props and general settings are as generous as space will allow and completely appropriate to the story as it unfolds. The dancing by the corps de ballet is effortlessly graceful as indeed is that of the star roles of Svetlana Zakharova as Aspicia, Sergei Filin as Lord Wilson, Maria Aleksandrova as Ramze and Gennady Yanin in the double role as John Bull/Passiphonte.

The camera work is totally sympathetic and fully captures all the changing moods and settings with a nice blend of close and panoramic shots. The imaging is crystal clear and of good colour rendition throughout.
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