Monday, June 20, 2011

Steak and Ballet: It Doesn't Get Better Than That!

Yesterday I met a new friend at the O2 Arena in North Greenwich for lunch and a performance of Romeo and Juliet by The Royal Ballet. I had never been to the O2 before and I have to say, it's pretty amazing! The venue is HUGE and every possible restaurant is present within the complex. With the Jubilee Line stopping right at the door, it's also extremely easy to access via London public transportation. If you're considering booking tickets for something at the O2, I'd say do it! It's a fabulous venue! Go early and have lunch or dinner at any of the amazing restaurants inside. And for you homesick Americans reading, you'll be happy to know they even have a T.G.I.Friday's!

I met my new pal at a restaurant called Gaucho. I had heard of this restaurant before and I was so excited for our lunch! Gaucho is an Argentinian steakhouse and though the steak was one of the best I've ever had, the decor is what really did it for me! The chairs are covered in furry, spotted cowhide matched with sparkly crystal chandeliers and it's just an adorably chic place for lunch or dinner! The table bread is amazing and definitely worth cheating on your no carb diet for! I chose the Churrasco Caudril, a 400 gram rump steak marinated for 40 hours in olive oil, parsley and garlic and then grilled to perfection along with chips (aka fries). It was all delicious! My steak was HUGE, and though I didn't finish the last couple of bites, I really wanted to! It was the most delicious steak and I would highly recommend it!

We then saw Romeo & Juliet and I must say, even though it was performed in such a large venue, it was breathtaking! Prokofiev's score for the ballet was played by an orchestra located above the stage and it was just beautiful!

Tamara Rojo played Juliet alongside Carlos Acosta as Romeo and they were nothing short of amazing! Their chemistry really filled an entire arena and during each romantic pas de deux I felt the chill bumps rising all over my body.

Carlos Acosta (Romeo) is a renowned Cuban ballet dancer who joined The Royal Ballet in 1998 and in 2003, he was promoted to Principal Guest Artist which reduced his commitment with that company so he could fill his schedule with guest appearances elsewhere. It was a treat to see him. He is quite possibly the finest dancer I've ever seen in person.

Tamara Rojo (Juliet) is just as accomplished and is a Spanish ballerina. She joined The Royal Ballet as a Principal in 2000. She has danced such coveted roles as Clara in The Nutcracker, Giselle, Cinderella and Odette/Odile in Swan Lake.

Romeo & Juliet, choreographed by Kenneth MacMillan has some of my favorite choreography! I have previously seen this ballet on dvd and seen live performances of excerpts from the piece. The first pas de deux between Romeo and Juliet is breathtaking, but my favorite part of the ballet is when Romeo believes Juliet has died. He performs a pas de deux with her limp corpse and it's one of the most creative pieces I've ever seen. He performs all the moves he used in Act 1 to woo her, but this time she doesn't respond. Her body is lifeless as he slings her around. It is truly something to see, even if only on dvd.

The costumes were lush and beautiful! The party scene was so bright and colorful as were the fight scenes.

Bringing this performance of The Royal Ballet's Romeo & Juliet was an effort to bring ballet to the masses and expand the audience base by offering tickets as low as GBP 10.00. Having worked in the arts before, I have to say, there's nothing more important than cultivating new audiences and many times, offering lower priced tickets to younger audiences insures the future of an arts institution because people in their 20's who don't make much money might turn out to be CEO's, therefore becoming major patrons later in life. If you establish a relationship with them now, they will take care of you later. It's common sense really. Click here to read more about the event in a great article from the New York Times.

All in all it was a great day out and I can't wait until I get to see The Royal Ballet again in the future! Are you a fan of the ballet? What's your favorite? I'm always looking for good recommendations of things to see!

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1 comment

  1. adore this post. and your steak sounds amazing. almost made me miss meat. lol. hope you had an amazing weekend. Stop by to see pictures from my weekend in Laguna Beach. xoxo

    Don't forget to follow on twitter for all the latest celebrity fashion news from an LA stylist.!/fashboulevard


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