Let me just make it clear before I start on this - this is in no way a review. I know very little about ballet and I am, it is fair to say, much more at home in a dark, dirty bar drinking warm lager and watching some hairy people making noises with guitars than I am in a quiet theatre watching people dance.
That said, I have to confess that I did quite enjoy the first hour. As a sometime musician myself, I couldn't fail to be enthralled and impressed by certain elements of the orchestra which was, surprisingly, a refreshing change from a jacked up Marshall. I also found the dancing, perhaps even more surprisingly, very watchable. For the first hour.
After that I have to admit to losing some focus on the spectacle being played out on Lowry Lyric Theatre stage. The story, from what I'd read of it on Wikipedia, was a pretty simple affair that one was vaguely able to follow via the movements of the dancers. It was just a bit drawn out for my liking. The purpose of one dance, for example, was to convey the fact that a party was taking place. 20 minutes later they got on with the next bit of the story. 20 minutes! I was well into the structure of the acoustic engineering of the room by then.
I'm perhaps too much of a product of the modern, impatient generation to ever fully appreciate a full three hours of Swan Lake but I am able to say now that I am glad I went. There's lots of stuff going on in this city, some of which you might not ever consider going to but I would say try it. You never know what you will find. As for me, I'm off to find a nice dark, dirty bar.