Star-Cross’d Soviet Strangeness

An old Soviet imagining of Prokofiev’s ballet version of Romeo & Juliet, as realized by Korea’s Universal Ballet and choreographer Oleg Vinogradov, is an interesting historical exercise, but not much of an artistic one, says Tobi Tobias. “If the dancing seems to have no impulse, no drive, no phrasing, it’s because the choreography doesn’t demand such things—indeed, appears to have no idea they exist. And the dancers haven’t been encouraged to make up for the deficiency. The music keeps issuing urgent reminders on the subject, but no one, apart from the audience, hears them.”