Exploring The Music of 'Swan Lake'

May 30, 2018

Pasquale Laurino and the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra
Credit Nathaniel Davauer

While the dancers get most of the notice in a performance of Swan Lake, the music they dance to is no slouch either.

Written by Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky in 1875-76, the score for Swan Lake is still one of the most popular classical pieces of music in history. The music is lush, passionate, and Tchaikovsky at his most romantic.

The Milwaukee Ballet presents Swan Lake this week, beginning Thursday evening. Pasquale Laurino, the Ballet's associate conductor, talks with Bonnie North about the timelessness of Tchaikovsky's music as well as the challenges a conductor faces when leading an orchestra that is playing for a troupe of dancers.