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Most of us are music lovers. Music inhabits our lives. Surreptitiously, boldly, evidently or discretely. Music usually floats in the air in my place at various hours.

I like it when it is romantic, swing, bop, baroque, rock, pop, Johnny Cash -and Creedence Clearwater-style-country.  Amidst many others. In any case, it has to be swinging and being able to be hummed or sung (shower or car, no preferences).

Among the classical composer, Tchaikovsky is a favourite of mine.

A middle-aged man with grey hair and a beard, wearing a dark suit and staring intently at the viewer.

The Russian composer is the immortal  creator of “Nutcracker”.  Each musical piece of that ballet is so perfectly amazing, it’s hard to pick just one. The whole masterpiece carries the audience away in a land of fairy-tale dreams and search for the self through courage and the poetry of grace.

I do not know if you remember  the Arabian Dance (The “Coffee Dance”), with its languorous rhythm. I saw a performance by the Houston Ballet last December, in a choreography by Ben Stevenson, OBE.

Houston Ballet perfoms The Nutcracker

Ballet: The Nutcracker
Dancer: Nozomi Iijima
Photo by: Amitava Sarkar

Overall, the ballet choreography is masterfully developed, the Scenic and costumes designs are striking and inventive.

My  imagination just flied away as the dancers perform the Coffee Dance. Tightly draped in their silky coral costumes, the performers  are as light and voluptuous as the aromas and flavours one can find in a cup of black coffee.

The ethereal fabric of the costume floating around them evoked the sinuous lace of the dense foam that tops an espresso. The intricate moves of their arms intertwined in a delicate sensuality matched the music so well, it was frustrating to see it end and be replaced by the  stronger and bolder “Tea dance”.

The previous Snowflakes and Angels dances were by no means less interesting, and the Arrival at the Sugar Plum Fairy palace prolonged the magic.

Thinking of the performance I saw, as I am just listening to Tchaikowsky’s music now, brought all those images and souvenirs. And the most vivid is the Coffee Dance.

Strange, maybe. Or maybe not, given my taste for the brew…

Thanks, Mr Tchaikovsky. I thank Mr Stevenson and the performers of the Houston Ballet for the magnificent moment they gave to their audience as equally as I praise their talent.

(I’ll post later on Oldelaf and the funny song “Le café”. visible on Youtube).