Swan Lake: A passionate review


Photo Credit: Allison Lillestol '23

The beautiful ballerinas, that changed my life for the better, taking their final bow.

Allison Lillestol, Copy- Editor

On Friday, September 16, my life changed forever.

My friend Chloe Larson ’23 and I forced my parents to drive us down to Long Beach to see the World Ballet Series’ performance of “Swan Lake.” An item on my bucket list for a long time, the performance was definitely one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen.

At this point, Chloe Larson ’23 still thought we were watching Barbie Swan Lake.
(Photo Credit: Allison Lillestol ’23)

Chloe and I arrived at the Long Beach Terrace Theatre and were immediately blown away.

I made sure we got there an hour early just in case and took that time to explore the theatre.

We met a very nice lady whom we purchased matching tote bags from. I am still jealous of how she could say ‘Tchaikovsky’ with such ease. As more people showed up, we saw how the adults strolled to the bar and stood at the tall tables with their fancy outfits. Naturally, Chloe and I ran to the bar to get the best non-alcoholic beverage the bar had to offer: a Shirley Temple.

Not long after, bells rang. A mass exodus from the bar became a flood of people at the doors. We followed the crowd into the theatre.

Since I bought the tickets at 11 p.m., I forgot how much I splurged on tickets until I saw how close we were to the stage. It was definetly the best impulse purchase I have made since my mini trampoline.

Allison Lillestol ’23 ten minutes before the best two hours of her life. (Photo Credit: Chloe Larson ’23)

There have been many versions of “Swan Lake” throughout the years ranging from family-friendly to completely outlandish. I honestly had no idea which one we were seeing, but after seeing all the kids walk in, I was hoping we got the one with the fairytale ending.

Once the music began, I knew I would never be the same.

The lights. The costumes. The effortless pirouettes. I was kept in complete awe by it all.

I listen to the “Swan Lake” playlist all of the time while doing homework, but doing math is not the same experience as seeing ballerinas portray a character with no words. I feel bad for making Tchaikovsky play while trying to figure out geometry.

I dreaded the curtain coming to a close because I never wanted the show to stop. The dancers took their final bow, and I think moving away for college will be a lot less emotionally impactful than having to walk out of that theatre.

Chloe and I didn’t say anything for a long time after. Because what can you say after seeing something so breathtaking?

I can confidently confirm two truths from that experience: I have not been the same since, and post-ballet depression is so real.

Chloe Larson ’23 and Allison Lillestol ’23 smiling through post-ballet depression (Photo Credit: Allison Lillestol ’23)

I couldn’t fathom having to go back to reality after watching “Swan Lake.” All of my problems felt so far away. I mean, how could college applications be as stressful as falling in love with a beautiful prince while being cursed by an evil magician?

Although the drive back home was silent, I could still hear the beautiful melodies of “Swan Lake” ringing in my ears. It was a night I will never forget.