Grand stage

STARRING Timofey Gerasimov, Elizaveta Anoshina, Nikolay Maltsev, Arutyun Arakelyan, Conductor Evgeny Volynsky

La Fille mal gardée

ballet in 3 acts
music by Louis Joseph Ferdinand Hérold

The perfomance is involved in the action
Student Wednesdays



Music: Louis Joseph Ferdinand Hérold
Music arrangement: John Lanchbery
Scenario: Jean Dauberval
Choreography: Frederick Ashton
Scenery and costume design: Osbert Lancaster
Lighting Designer: Alexander Kibitkin

Music Director: Evgeny Volynsky
Revival Supervisor, Production Manager: Douglas James Nicholson
Lighting score adaptation: Denis Solntsev
Ballet tutors: Anna Razenko, Evgeny Popov

The staging is supported by Birmingham Royal Ballet.
Performance of Ferdinand Hérolds music as arranged and orchestrated by John Lanchbery is authorized by Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers on behalf of Oxford University Press.

2 hours 40 minutes

two intervals

La Fille mal gardée is one of the oldest ballet classics that lived to see this day and age. This ballet created by a French choreographer Jean Dauberval is over two hundred years old, but its plot, told in the choreographic language still manages to amaze the audience with blazing emotions. La Fille mal gardée is a real comedy capable of triggering natural emotions with the audience, making people laugh and exult.

The action takes place in an English village. The story centers around a lovely girl Lise, who wants to be with her love, while her mother looks to marry Lise off to a rich, yet dim-witted neighbor. This plot made a great foundation for a ballet. Sparkling and merry narrative of La Fille mal gardée will positively win your heart.

NOVAT presents La Fille mal gardée ballet choreographed by Frederick Ashton, an acknowledged British ballet classic. This buoyant and vivid version was created by Ashton for Covent Garden Royal Theatre. La Fille mal gardée charmed the audience of all ages from the get go and thus became one of the best lyric comedy of the world ballet repertoire.

Lise, the only daughter of Simone, who is a widow and owner of a prosperous farm, is in love with Colas, a young farmer, but her mother has far more ambitious plans.

Act I
The farmyard

The dawn of a busy day on the farm is heralded by the cockerel and his attendant hens. Lise, disappointed at not seeing Colas, leaves a ribbon tied in a lovers knot as a token of her devotion. Colas finds it and binds it to his staff. The lovers meet, but are interrupted by Simone, who sets her daughter a task churning butter. Colas, hiding in the loft, joins her. The work is shared and then forgotten as they declare their love.

The farm girls summon Lise to play, but her mind is elsewhere. Her suspicious and ever-watchful mother catches hold of her and chastises her. Just then Thomas, the pompous and wealthy proprietor of a vineyard, arrives with his son Alain. Simone, aware of their mission, dismisses Lise, and Thomas asks her hand for his son. When Lise returns, Alain coyly and clumsy shows off his paces. She is amused and a little shocked by his antics, but not interested. They set off for the harvest.

Act II
The cornfield

It is harvest time, and after working in the fields the harvesters, led by Colas, relax in a joyful dance. Lise and Alain dance, but Colas intervenes, and the young girl makes it clear where her preference lies. One of the harvesters plays the flute, to everybodys general delight, and Alain thinks he will have a try; but the harvesters mock him and he is rescued from their horseplay by his indignant father.

The field is now left clear for the triumphant Colas, who dances with Lise. Simone joins in the merriment of the harvesters. Suddenly they are interrupted by a storm that drenches them, scattering them far and wide.

Interior of the farmhouse

Mother and daughter, soaked by the storm, return to the farmhouse. They sit down to spin; work, thinks the mother, should keep Lise out of mischief. But she is overcome by sleep, and Lise, who has seen Colas through the gate, tries to take the key from her. Simone wakes and, in order to remain watchful, plays the tambourine for Lise to dance. But the beats grow feebler, she begins to nod, and now she is fast asleep.

Colas opens the top part of the farmhouse door and leans towards Lise. She runs joyfully into his arms. The knocking of the harvesters, coming for their pay, awakens Simone. Simone tells her daughter to get on with her chores as she leaves to give the harvesters a drink. Lise, thinking she is alone, dreams of the delights of married life. Colas cannot resist and comes out from hiding. She is bashful at having been taken by surprise, but once again they declare their love, exchanging scarves as a token. As Simone reappears, Lise hustles Colas into her bedroom. The ever-suspicious mother suspects that the lovers have been meeting, and in her turn hustles Lise into the bedroom, locking the door.

Alain and his father now arrive with a notary to complete the contract. When it has been signed, Simone hands Alain the bedroom key. After a moment of idiotic indecision, he opens the door and, to everyones dismay, Colas and Lise come out. The lovers fall on their knees to ask Simone for forgiveness and a blessing. In spite of Thomas and Alain, she finally gives in amid general rejoicing.