It doesn't get more ballet than Swan Lake, but that isn't a bad thing. You've got Tchaikovsky's signature score. You've got choreographers Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov's translation of the dramatic swoops and lines of the eponymous pond-dweller into a high-velocity revenge narrative. And, with Pacific Northwest Ballet's current production, you've got Kent Stowell's streamlined reconfiguration of all that, repackaged and redesigned by the great Ming Cho Lee. It's going to be hard to top Carrie Imler's version of the Black Swan's spacetime-defying fouetté series, but if there's anyone who can at least meet Imler's power and control, it's Lesley Rausch and Noelani Pantastico, both of whom absolutely nailed the challenging principal role in Balanchine's "Diamonds" in the fall.
Watch PNB's performance of Dance of the Small Swans—featuring dancers Carli Samuelson, Madison Abeo, Angelica Generosa and Leta Biasucci—from Swan Lake's second act in the video below.