Saturday, 7 March 2009

Ballet in the Park

It being another beautiful Saturday here in Madrid, we decided to go for a walk in the massive Parque de Buen Retiro, the former Royal Retreat that became public property in 1868. It's essentially an outdoor art gallery, recreation ground, picnic site, tourist trap and arboretum rolled into one.
We strolled about the walk ways around pools and ponds, admiring fountains and terrapins, the trees still largely bare, but there were a few flowers and sunbathers out. In one of the pavilions was a small contemporary art display - Espacio para un Universo Isla by Josiah McElheny - of hanging silver chandeliers representing galaxies strung out in space. Really rather beautiful.
Finally, after an ice cream each, we decided to settle by the boating lake to play backgammon (old habits die hard) where we caught a rather excellent and novel busking display. They love their street theatre here in Madrid, and we've seen some excellent hammer-piano, flamenco, magic, music shows, but ballet was a first for us. A lovely finish to the afternoon.

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