The Bolshoi’s Bellyflop

The Bolshoi fell off its shoes in London this week. “One began to regard the dancers with the sort of pity onlookers must have felt at the Charge of the Light Brigade, though this affair was certainly not magnificent. Now, we all cherish the concept of an artistic right to fail. But it sometimes seems astonishing how, in the development of a piece which costs a vast amount of money to stage, nobody at any point takes a look from the empty stalls and cries out: ‘Hang on, this is a disaster’!”