the Ballet
Ballet Encyclopedia


Ylia Makhalina and Evgeny Ivanchenko

Act I: Raymonda, who is betrothed to Jean de Brienne, is celebrating her birthday. Jean, who is expected to arrive the next day, has send some presents in advance. One of these presents is an embroidered portrait of himself. First, however, Abderman arrives and tries to court Raymonda. Raymonda then dreams that Jean comes down from his portrait to dance with her, however, when she wakes up she finds that Abderman is there again to "renew his amorous proposals." Act II: The festivities continue, and Abderman asks Raymonda to dance. Then, he and his accomplices attempt to abduct her. However, at that moment Jean arrives with his brother, the King of Hungary. There is a duel and Abderman is killed. Act III: There is a feast at the castle to celebrate the marriage of the two lovers, and much dancing.

of note:

This ballet is the last with any staying power that Petipa choreographed. It can be very difficult to follow as it is more like a chain of divertissements designed to show off the talents of the soloists of the time than it is like a pantomime with a smoothly flowing plot line. However, for a dancing showcase it is excellent and shows a wide variety of styles.