While dance for dance's sake is not new in ballet, neoclassical works, such as Millepied's, typically make the body an instrument of the music.
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With material like this, seasoned dancers have to act up a storm to prevent the whole thing from degenerating into a circus.
American Ballet Theatre's 2007 production of The Sleeping Beauty hasenough gorgeous dancing, 19th-century mime characterizations and fairy tale glories to satisfy even the most curmudgeonly among us.
Performed by ABT or not, Sleeping Beauty makes no pretense toward something new or innovative. It is a classic story ballet now more loved by audiences filled with first-timers and little boys and girls dreaming of their own days on stage.
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