Joelle Bouvier's version of "Romeo and Juliet," performed at Jacob's Pillow this week by Switzerland's Ballet du Grand Theatre de Geneve, is as potent and distilled as the sleeping draught Juliet drinks. The star-crossed lovers, the warring families, the tragic ending and even Sergei Prokofiev's score for the ballet all remain, but Bouvier has stripped the tale down to its most essential characters and its most elemental emotions.The evening-length work unfolds in a world that transcends a specific time or place: The dancers wear street clothes (dresses for the women, slacks with button-down shirts or suit jackets for the men) and the only setpiece is a large, curving ramp that the dancers slide down, hide behind or run across. Romeo, Juliet, Mercutio and Tybalt are clearly defined, and the rest of the company embodies both their feuding dynasties and a sort of chorus that witnesses their story.In the gorgeous, almost eerie first section, which seems to serve as a prologue or overture, Romeo (Damiano Artale) and Juliet (Madeline Wong), nearly without volition, are moved and manipulated in slow motion by two groups of dancers. Brought close together and then separated over and over again, they are at the mercy of forces beyond their control -- tribal loyalties, fate, the hand of death.The pace speeds up for the party scene, but the lovers are still kept apart; Bouvier brilliantly employs the other dancers as tangible obstacles to their union. When at last they are alone together, however, their pas de deux disappoints -- there's nothing unexpected in their blithe lifts, leaps and embraces. It's only later, when they intersect in a tender, erotic duet, and when she repeatedly launches herself like an arrow into his arms, that we feel their longing for each other.The fight scenes between Tybalt (the striking Loris Bonani) and Mercutio (Nathanael Marie), and between Romeo and Tybalt, are nearly as intimate as the love duets; the men charge and embrace each other with equal power. No mimed stabbings or melodramatic death throes for Bouvier -- instead, we watch the life quietly run out of her heroes. The final moments of the piece are similarly piercing yet understated. Romeo dances a desperate duet with Juliet's limp body before sinking to his knees, across the stage from his now-awake love, who takes the same defeated pose.What's missing in this masterfully rendered, intensely fraught work are the moments of lightness and comic relief, for which Shakespeare could always be depended upon. He understood that a steady diet of exquisite beauty and undiluted passion could get monotonous.