Friday, January 31, 2014

Hump Day

From the 2011 SFB production
Wednesdays are usually referred to as “hump day” but this last Tuesday evening (1/28/2014) it was Hump Day on stage at the San Francisco Ballet. The company was performing the classically romantic story ballet, “Giselle.” This tragic dance of seduction and betrayal is about a peasant girl named Giselle who dies of a broken heart after discovering her lover is betrothed to another. The Wilis, a group of supernatural women who dance men to death, summon Giselle from her grave. They target her lover for death, but Giselle's love frees him from their grasp. Overall, the performance was just about as perfect as one could imagine.

EXCEPT >>> Halfway through the first act, a hunting party of noblemen and women arrive on stage seeking refreshments and entertainment. The group includes the betrothed princess, Bathilde, the female rival to Giselle. Bathilde enters with two beautiful, full-size white Russian Wolfhounds (or Borzois).

As she sits down amidst a stage full of dancers, villagers and the royal entourage, one dog mounts the other and starts to VIGOROUSLY humping it.  All focus is now on the dog-on-dog action. The orchestra begins playing some 'pause' music. The stage full of dancers and actors are doing all they can to 1) not lose character and roll on stage in laughter, 2) get the dogs apart, and then 3) finally drag the still-humping dogs off stage. The audience members, in the meantime, were rolling in the aisles in laughter. What a scene to be remembered!

Three year-old twin Borzois, Roman and Genesis.

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