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annamk

Mark Morris Dance Group - Pepperland - UK tour Spring 2019

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I enjoy Mark Morris and I usually go and see the company when they are in London but I had decided not to book for this because I'm not particularly a fan of the Beatles music. However, I was lucky to have an opportunity to go to the rehearsal this afternoon and I enjoyed it enormously. 

The quirky, witty and inventive choreography was performed by 15 dancers dressed in an array of bright costumes. I had assumed the music would be all Beatles sound tracks but in fact it was only 6 tracks from the album and 6 by the live band and they melded well together. 

An hour of joy that will leave you with a warm smile on your face - highly recommended ! 

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Thanks, Anna.  I'd been thinking I'd give this one a miss, but may change my mind.

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I have been a great admirer of Mark Morris in the past but sadly I really didn't get on at all well with Pepperland.  I actively disliked what had been done to the music and the singing. It all felt curiously inconsequential. I couldn't recommend it I'm afraid. 

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I saw this during its premiere week in Liverpool a couple of years ago and reported back here, including a couple of reviews:

 

 

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On 20/03/2019 at 19:19, alison said:

I'd been thinking I'd give this one a miss, but may change my mind.

 

Do!

 

Also touring to Bradford, Birmingham, Salford, Edinburgh, Canterbury, Cardiff, Plymouth, Southampton, Norwich, Newcastle and Dublin.

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On 20/03/2019 at 18:23, Lynette H said:

I have been a great admirer of Mark Morris in the past but sadly I really didn't get on at all well with Pepperland.  I actively disliked what had been done to the music and the singing. It all felt curiously inconsequential. I couldn't recommend it I'm afraid. 

I felt pretty much the same way when I saw it in Toronto

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I really enjoyed it. I've been listening to the album since 1967 , but, understanding this would be a tribute to, rather than the real thing, I enjoyed the music for what it was. It worked well for the concept of a 'show' - which was bright, funny, fun and very well danced.

Within You and Without You as the 'slow number' was really moving, and the 'When I'm 64' number with musicians and dancers locked in weirdly mad antics to two different times was brilliant.

My only problem was being attacked with a fit of giggles at the thin wailing of the theremin on occasion, which I had to stifle in my scarf.

 

I can easily imagine it would not appeal to lots of people- you would just have to go and find out. But at least it wasn't dancers in grungy leotards writhing miserably on the floor to long atonal noises.

 

It was great to see Mr Morris at the end, resplendent in a pink shawl,  take a curtain call that was a little dance in itself.

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I saw the performance in Bradford last night.

 

When I first saw Pepperland during its opening run in Liverpool 2 years ago I went in cold and the music was something of a shock.

 

Last night, knowing what to expect, I enjoyed the performance even more this time around.  The band played and sang wonderfully and really added to the performance of the fabulous dancers.

 

I loved the deconstructed Tiller Girl lineup during "When I'm 64" all over again!  I loved the introduction to some of the characters featured on the album cover and realised how cleverly the dancers went into a pose that made the named person recognisable.

 

The choreography just flows and the dancers make it look ridiculously easy.  It is witty and elegant.

 

At the Q&A afterwards one of the dancers said that it had been a real departure for Mark Morris as he doesn't choreograph to pop music.  Well he certainly did here and with, for me, great success.

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