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Found 13 results

  1. I thought to set up this topic for reviews of The Dante Project, as this week finally sees the commencement of this new full length ballet choreographed by Wayne McGregor for the RB, long delayed due to Covid. The opening night is on Thursday 14th, with 9 more performances up to the end of October. The last performance on 30th October is also the last here for the brilliant Edward Watson and is sure to be a memorable event. Streaming online from 29 October (recorded 26 October). Looking forward to all the BcF feedback! (Unless I have missed something there has been no advertised General Rehearsal available for Friends to attend....but perhaps this is normally the case for new RB ballets)?
  2. https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2020/aug/14/edward-watson-to-retire-as-royal-ballet-principal-dancer
  3. Selling 1 x Amphitheatre ticket & programme voucher for The Dante Project on Saturday 30th October at 11.30am (Watson, Lamb) Seat H-58 £39.00.
  4. I hasten to say that the title of this topic is the title given by the organisers for this triple bill at the Coliseum performed 7 and 8 December 2019 and not one of my own making! This programme, which I saw on 7 December 2019, is one in which the choreographers rely heavily on the beautiful fluidity of movement and pliant bodies of their classically trained dancers with varying results. It is hard to believe that the first piece on the programme, “Radio & Juliet” is already fourteen years old and only now having its UK première, such is the immediacy of the wonderfully rhythmic and intriguing choreography. As there was no programme on sale in the theatre, with only a free cast list being available, I am glad I read an online synopsis beforehand so that I was aware this was not a straightforward telling of “Romeo and Juliet” but rather flashbacks entering Juliet’s mind in no particular order, apart from the final, heartbreaking moment. Costuming was contemporary and, as the title suggests, the ballet was set to music by Radiohead. Juliet was ENB’s Katja Khaniukova in a triumphant début and Romeo was the Mariinsky’s Denis Matvienko, with very strong support from five male dancers from Slovenia’s Maribor company who represented other character such as Mercutio, Tybalt and Friar Laurence. Much use was made of a black and white film projected onto the backcloth but, as effective as it was, I felt it went on for a little too long at the beginning before the dancers appeared. However, I enjoyed the filmed ‘replay’ of the very effective choreography for the fight between the Capulets and Montagues. Another high point was the choreography for the death throes of the character I assume was Mercutio. Overall, the sometimes quirky choreography contained motifs which seemed to draw on street-dancing for the various arm movements and undulations of the mid-torso, and was quite repetitive but this repetition had a strangely hypnotic effect. In one scene, the men, all dressed in black suits with open jackets revealing their bare chests, donned surgical masks and I gradually realised this was a reference to the Capulets’ masked ball in which Romeo and Juliet meet for the first time. I really liked the moment here in which the two of them are left alone at opposite sides of the stage and, in a series of blackouts, they gradually move closer to each other and finally Romeo takes off his mask. Although lit only in silhouette, it was in this beautiful moment of stillness, with the tiny Khaniukova looking up into the eyes of the much taller Matvienko that their love for each other was clearly visible in their body language, because the lighting in other scenes frustratingly obscured facial expressions at times during the various pas de deux. These were not pas de deux in the conventional ballet sense in that they were not passionate like MacMillan’s, but there was a quiet beauty to them, reflecting the fact that Juliet was playing back these lost feelings in her mind. There was also no pointework involved for Juliet but Khaniukova’s own exquisite sense of line and footwork made it seem as if she were en pointe instead of a very high demi-pointe. Juliet is costumed only in a corset and the briefest of shorts, reminiscent of Jiri Kylian’s “Petite Mort”, which emphasised her vulnerability, particularly when surrounded by the much taller men, but it did not stop Khaniukova showing us Juliet’s headstrong nature, particularly at the beginning, with wonderfully strong, dynamic movements which contrasted at other times with her beautiful legato quality. Poignancy is also something Khaniukova does extremely well, which made her final solo of grief over Romeo’s dead body heartbreaking as despair overcame her whole body but in a dignified, almost resigned way. “Faun” is only the second piece I have seen by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, the first being the disastrous (in my opinion) “Medusa” for the Royal Ballet last season. Set to Debussy’s ravishing score with interpolations by Nitin Sawhney of what sounded like chanting, this appeared to be the confrontation of the faun and the nymph, with costumes vaguely reminiscent of those for Jerome Robbins’ version but without the beauty of movement contained in his choreography. It was energetically danced by Anastasia Stashkevich and Vaycheslav Lopatin of the Bolshoi but, for me, there was rather too much entanglement of bodies in a somewhat clumsy manner and certainly not enough choreographic invention to keep my interest for the whole fifteen minutes. From the rapturous applause and standing ovation given to the final piece by those in the centre of the Stalls, I think the final piece was the one they had really come to watch. This was a collaboration between Wayne McGregor and fashion designer Thierry Mugler, unimaginatively entitled “McGregor + Mugler” and created for ballet stars Olga Smirnova and Edward Watson to a thumping soundtrack reminiscent of music used for the catwalk at fashion shows. Mugler dressed the two dancers in flesh-coloured bodystockings with a fishnet-type design and plenty of bling placed in strategic locations, gold for Watson and silver for Smirnova, which sparkled in the very bright lighting. The bling on the lower legs, and the helmets and masks were gradually stripped away so that we could finally see Smirnova’s arabesque in all its glory, although Watson was left with a ponytail which unfortunately covered his face for the rest of the piece. However, by this time, I had had enough of this style of ‘contemporary’ choreography and longed for the much more expertly created “Radio & Juliet” which I would happily watch again.
  5. Edward Watson is appearing in a triple bill at the Coliseum on 7th and 8th December 2019. He is dancing in a world premiere by Wayne McGregor with Olga Smirnova: https://www.broadwayworld.com/westend/article/A-Thrilling-Triple-Bill-Comes-To-The-London-Coliseum-20191108 The programme also includes Radio and Juliet and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui's Faun.
  6. This one had rather slipped under the radar, until a kind friend sent it to me! 7 pm at the National Portrait Gallery. (Happens to be the same day as the Royal Ballet in Studio events, if anyone's coming down for those, and might be useful to anyone who missed a presumably related event at the ROH) https://www.npg.org.uk/whatson/friday-lates/in-conversation-11012019 "Edward Watson, Principal at The Royal Ballet, and photographer Rick Guest talk to Dance Critic Sarah Crompton to celebrate the publication of a landmark portfolio of portraits that honour both his career and spirit."
  7. Start the Week, Radio 4, 21:30, Mon 12th December, about the Bolshoi, 'collision between art and politics'.
  8. Dear ballet lovers, we only have 2 places left on our 2nd Principal week. ( the 1st is sold out). As always their are only ever 12 places. So we can offer exceptional care as well as tuition. You will be taught by amazing teachers including. Edward Watson MBE, Principal dancer with the Royal Ballet. Anita Young F.I.S.T.D A world renown teacher who currently teaches 1st year girls at RBS upper school Ricardo Cervera Ballet Master of the Royal Ballet Olivia Cowley Soloist of the Royal Ballet. Our aim is to inject positivity and encourage young dancers to be the best they can be. We help inspire and guide the next generation of dancers. Last but not least its Summer School and some fun must be had so we visit the theatre in a limo and have a photo shoot. Thanks for reading Kindest Regards Nicola Moriarty
  9. Ed Watson will be the guest on Radio 3's Private Passions on Sunday 18 December: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0855ynh
  10. Hello my name is Nicola Moriarty. I am the principal of Woodside Dance Retreat We have just released an exciting new International Summer School. Edward Watson, Mara Galeazzi, Sarah Wildor and David Yow are the tutors. There are only 12 places to maximise learning and attention. All food is prepared on site and is nutritionally balanced organic and where possible locally produced. As well as 6 days of classes we visit the theatre and have a photo shoot. This is just a brief guide. Kind regards Nicola Moriarty
  11. Full casting is now on ROH site. Nice to see that Laura Day is dancing a couple of performances. Preferences § 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = Backspace Tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ] Return capslock a s d f g h j k l ; ' \ shift ` z x c v b n m , . / shift English Deutsch Español Français Italiano Polski Português Русский alt alt Preferences
  12. The highly applauded Arthur Pita's The Metamorphosis returned to the Linbury Theatre yesterday. I am sure there will be lots of comments here. Meanwhile a couple of pictures from the General Rehearsal. Edward Watson as Gregor Samsa in Arthur Pita's The Metamorphosis Gregor Samsa - Edward Watson and Mrs Samsa - Nina Goldman More pictures on www.johnrossballetgallery.co.uk
  13. After it's very successful brief first run in 2012, The Metamorphosis returns for another week, also a sell-out. Edward Watson as Gregor Samsa Gregor Samsa, Edward Watson and Mrs Samsa, Nina Goldman More… John Ross: The Metamorphosis - 32 photos Discussion of this production is here
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