Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece Swan Lake tells the story of Odette, the Princess turned into a swan by a curse cast by Von Rothbart, only able to regain her human form at night. Of course, like all good tales, the curse may be broken if Odette finds love with a young man who will remain faithful to her for eternity – enter Prince Siegfried.

In a classic tale of good versus evil, Odette must find love against the challenge of Von Rothbart’s own daughter, Odile, the black swan, who is disguised as Odette to trick Siegfried into breaking his vow of love to Odette and condemning Odette to life as a swan forevermore.

The Manchester City Ballet, the classical performance company of the Northern Ballet School in Manchester, put on a wonderful display at the Dancehouse Theatre on Oxford Road, which left the audience enthralled.

Wonderfully choreographed, and featuring excellent and enthusiastic performances from the whole cast, this certainly was a crowd-pleaser.

Cast in the main role(s!) was Sahya Ohshima, who put on a fantastic display both as the emotive and endearing White Swan and as her bewitching temptress counterpart, the Black Swan. Displaying a wide range of emotions and capturing the hearts of the audience, her dancing showed incredible poise, character and strength, in winning the heart of her Prince.

Not to be outdone, Bernardo Ribeiro, put on an equally dazzling display of power and emotion, particularly noticeable in the phenomenal third act, which featured fine virtuoso and ensemble pieces, particularly with fantastic fouettés which were met with hearty applause from the audience, with special commendation to the Princesses trying to win the heart of Siegfried.

Overall, a fine and enjoyable performance. Next up comes Jazzgalore in March 2014 performed by the Northern Ballet School’s Jazz Dance Company.