Gorgeous.  That's all that need be said about Ballet Met's sweet "Beauty and the Beast," which just opened Thursday night at the Ohio Theater, and which will play through Sunday, March 14.  

The music is lovely, the dancing divine, the costumes breathtaking, the sets entrancing. David Nixon's choreography and concept both work admirably well.   The lead performances by Carrie West and Richard Tullius were also fine, as were the efforts of the rest of the cast and the orchestra.  It's a piece that rises or falls on its grace and emotional pull, and in its opening night, the whole thing worked.

That goes for my four-year-old Shoshanna as well.   After restraining her from rushing the stage (she doesn't yet understand the differential between performers and spectators), we retreated to a corner of the balcony, where she could dance in peace.  Many of the wonderful classic tunes she recognized from Disney's Fantasia, all of them rendered admirably by the CSO under Gary Sheldon.   The story line, of course, varies a bit from the Disney rendition, and from the super-glitzed "Beast" that toured through here a few years ago.

But this one feels like home.  Go see it.  Bring the kids.  Over the weekend, they'll actually be allowed on stage, which is fitting for an all-around beautiful show.

Photo: Jason Hartley as the Beast. Photo by Will Shively.