The Red Shoes in Brooklyn

I stumbled upon a review in the New York Times last month, methodically filing it away for a future post. Alas life and school intruded.

It was a review for a new production of Hans Christian Andersen’s very macabre The Red Shoes , this production appears particularly gruesome.

Kneehigh Theatre production of the Red shoes

Through Dec. 12th 2010

I’m not sure what dear Han’s would think of this staging; but it isn’t at all surprising that this dark tale found such a bloody expression.

Although Andersen may have preferred a less confrontational interpretation,

the Kneehigh production certainly seems engaging. I wish I were on the East Coast, for I certainly would attempt to grab a seat before it closes on Sunday.

Hans Christian Andersen

b. April 2nd 1805

d. August 4th 1875

painting by Christian Albrecht Jensen


You might want to re-read his marvelous tale for yourself, it has been ages since I last read Andersen’s work, it is still quite captivating.

Although I may prefer more conventional interpretations,


After seeing the “trailer” from the Kneehigh production, the 1947 film version seems particularly insipid.

In the end, I really enjoy how our cultural heritage is so open to interpretation; this doll shocked and intrigued me, still not sure what I feel about it.


a bit of a stretch from this…

Putting this together I was thinking of my kind friend Kendra of the truly wonderful blog Porcelains and Peacocks. We share a love for the work of Andersen, and many other great tales from our childhood. I want to share my favorite  HCA story with Kendra ( and whoever else may be interested)  The Old House. It is a viually rich story of the life and death of an old house, creeky, outdated, richly ornamented, it seemed magical when I was a boy. Andersen had a special gift in making inanimate object seem sentient, because of that empathy, I became more inclined to be sensitive. Often when I am brash and self centered I remember Andersen’s tales of doomed houses and chipped mandarin tchotchke.

Have a great weekend,

Babylon Baroque


4 Responses to “The Red Shoes in Brooklyn”

  1. LG, I love this post and am very honored by the mention. I actually enjoyed the 1948 film but maybe that was because of Moira Shearer’s brilliant red hair. I look forward to reading The Old House tonight. xo, Kendra

    • Oh I love it too! How couldn’t you?
      It was just so startlingly different from the nightmarish production going on in Brooklyn. Perhaps it is best I am so very far away,

  2. I had no idea the Cornish based Kneehigh had got as far as New York! Good for them.

  3. I didn’t know they had Cornish roots,

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