A slightly later start today meant there was time for the Company to visit a few sights or do a little shopping before class. The Forbidden City and Summer Palace were popular destinations as well as the Silk Market where incredible bargains are said to be had! The NCPA is situated just off Tiananmen Square so we have had great views of the Great Hall of the People and the Forbidden City on our doorstep. Hironao Takahashi taught class today to give David Nixon a slight break from taking all the classes and rehearsals and watching all the performances as he is the only member of Ballet Staff in Beijing.
John Pryce-Jones had the final rehearsal with the orchestra prior to the Dress Rehearsal of Madame Butterfly tomorrow. The Drum solo is always a major challenge and it is vital that timing is perfect so John kept the percussionists working until he was satisfied that it would work for the dancers.
By the way, there are lots of things you can't do outside the NCPA!
Tonight’s performance was very well received from a much more vocal audience than we had experienced on previous performances which was great for Martha Leebolt dancing Juliet and YI Song dancing Romeo. It was particularly special for Yi Song as he was previously a student at the Beijing Academy.
Almost before the last curtain call, the Technical Team were standing by to get Romeo & Juliet off the stage and Madame Butterfly in place ready for tomorrow. It is major challenge to switch from one production to another over night and the team was split in two with one working through the night.
All photos: Neil Jarman