Seeing her there at her place at the barre, I understood why we go to the ballet: it’s the desire to see ourselves – a similar hand gesture, a nod of the head, a slight fall. We go to see where we fit into grace. We go to remember that we have potential for it and to remember that it’s everywhere and to remember that it’s living.
The brief Chopin pieces exacerbated Ratmansky’s tendency to jam too much in, but here his biggest weakness was indecisive toying with narrative. His strength in creating an evocative atmosphere is also a weakness. He threw emotionally resonant hints into the ballet as color, but refused to assign them a meaning. In the program notes, he couldn’t give a straight answer to weather 24 Preludes was without a plot: “More or less.” Instead he seamed to subordinate the moods of his ballet to every twist and turn of the music. It gave him his marching orders, but that was no help from the seats. It didn’t read as abstraction or expressionism, but dilettantism.