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  1. How lucky we were to be in Edinburgh for the opening dates of Northern Ballet's The Great Gatsby. The week was a bittersweet time as it marked David Nixon's final days with the company and Ashley Dixon's retirement from principal roles as he takes up his new post as assistant ballet master and character artist. I will say from the outset that Northern Ballet are absolutely ON FIRE at the moment and we saw 4 incredibly heart-wrenching performances of Gatsby. In my opinion David has created a great interpretation of Scott Fitzgerald's novel. The characters are introduced at the start and I've found the story easy to follow (although it may have helped that I read the book before the premiere in 2013). I love the way David portrays the stillness of Gatsby and his obsessive looking out for Daisy while hosting his parties in the hopes that she would come. Speaking of parties, the Charleston party in act 1 is one toe-tapping party that we would all love to attend! Act 1 ends on a high with Gatsby and Daisy reuniting thanks to Nick Conway. Act 2 has a more sombre tone as the story reaches its tragic conclusion but the tango party at the start is visually stunning with some gorgeous choreography. The ending has been particularly poignant this time around. Anyway, Thursday evening was so special it will live on in my memory banks forever. The cast was led by Joseph Taylor as Gatsby and Abigail Prudames as Daisy. It has been a joy to watch these 2 dancers as their careers have progressed and they are just breath-taking to watch as they have such a special on-stage rapport. The whole performance was absolute MAGIC. At the curtain calls, David Nixon was persuaded to come on stage and Abby made the most beautiful and heartfelt speech before Joe presented him with a framed photo-collage. Of course we all stood and cheered! Friday evening's cast was the same as Thursday and the performance was again outstanding. Minju Kang is a very seductive Myrtle with Riku Ito as her lovelorn husband George. Lorenzo Trossello was quite vicious as Daisy's husband Tom but he was broken by the death of Myrtle. Sean Bates was very effective as Nick Conway. On Saturday afternoon we were very luck to see Lorenzo Trossello and Minju Kang making their debuts as Gatsby and Daisy. Lorenzo was very intense as Gatsby. Gavin McCaig was a very macho and vicious Tom and Aerys Merrill made a touching debut as Myrtle with the always outstanding Kevin Poeung as George. Gosh, yet another wonderful performance! Saturday evening was another one of those special evenings that Northern Ballet does so well. It was an evening sprinkled with magic dust as Ashley Dixon gave his final leading performance before his move onto the ballet staff. Antoinette Brooks Daw came out of retirement to dance Daisy. They were just magical together. Ashley's wife, the beautiful Rachael Gillespie, was fabulous as Myrtle. At the curtain calls David came on stage and made a very moving speech about Ashley. Ashley has danced with Northern Ballet for 18 years, having started on a temporary 3 month contract! I have loved watching his performances with his lovely technique (especially his amazing ballon) and fabulous acting since I saw him creating the role of The Shadow in Peter Pan right at the start of his career. He has so much knowledge of the company's rep and the company is very fortunate that he is continuing his career with them in his new role. Thank you Northern Ballet for all these wonderful memories.
  2. Apologies if this has been posted elsewhere but I got this email from Trafalgar Studios with details of new cinema cultural events. Some of them are plays and Metropolitan Opera season but there is the 2021/22 Bolshoi ballet season as well. https://outlook.live.com/mail/0/inbox/id/AQMkADAwATYwMAItZGQAMzQtOTFjMC0wMAItMDAKAEYAAAO%2FXQFqTsSFTrjvHgqOeEmSBwCPA1%2Fr9w2lRZyeVAuTnF7CAAACAQwAAAB4WvjRaiXXTIQShAX9COQgAAP%2FRTZNAAAA If this doesn't work (it is linked to my email) this is the Bolshoi link. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1FhxDwQIygZV9rHUGy69T83cS02Yn8NH-/view Spartacus Nov 7 2021 Nutcracker Dec 19 2021 Jewels Jan 23 2022 Swan lake Mar 6 2022 Pharaoh's daughter. May 1 2022
  3. I was in Nottingham on Saturday full of anticipation to see the world premier of Northern Ballet's Merlin, choreographed by Drew McOnie. There was a palpable sense of excitement in the audience and speaking to a couple of people I hadn't seen since the world premiere of Geisha in March 2020 perhaps one of the reasons was that it was their first visit to a theatre since lockdown started. The front cloth is absolutely gorgeous and it set the scene for the rest of the ballet with it's delicate, golden colourways. The music (by Grant Olding) is very tuneful and played wonderfully by the orchestra. The set is just fabulous. It is mostly black box with gorgeous lighting and the odd prop brought on unobtrusively by dancers or flown in. There is one major set piece which is the fabulous tree that lights up like a tree of life with Merlin's help. The synopsis in the programme is 2 pages long and seemed very complicated but it was actually very easy to follow (although I would suggest people either read the synopsis on the website before they go or buy a programme). Here's a link to the synopsis: https://northernballet.com/merlin/story Basically Merlin tells the story of a conflicted young man (born of gods enjoying rumpy pumpy) , a warrior princess who is spurned in love (and is very annoyed by that) and a famed warrior and young princess from the opposing kingdom who fall in love. There is some terrific choreography with tender duets between The Blacksmith and her foundling son Merlin and between Uther and Ygraine. There are plenty of war-like scenes with soldiers training and battling. Merlin meets a puppet dragon and there are some tender scenes between him and the dragon (which is absolutely fabulous and which I would happily bring home with me!). Merlin is a spectacular production in a West-end sort of way. The action is non-stop. The performances by the company are scintillating. It really is a very watchable, enjoyable production. Merlin's power is expressed by him being able to make things perform by using his mind, for example turning the handle of the forge and by his expert yielding of Excalibur. Kevin Poeung is just remarkable as Merlin. He is a conflicted young man who does not realise contentment with his until the end. Minju Kang is a caring and concerned mother to Merlin. Antoinette Brooks Daw is very convincing as the warrior princess Morgan and her presence dominates the stage when she is on. Lorenzo Trossello and Rachael Gillespie are just sublime together as Uther and Ygraine (the famed warrior and princess from opposing kingdom). Javier Torres just fills the stage with his presence as Vortigern, the king. The dragon handler was Ashley Dixon who was so expert at the task that you tended just to see the dragon, who may be fierce but is really very cute. Merlin's birth parent gods are danced by Abigail Prudames and Greig Matthews. I think Merlin is definitely aimed at families and there is much for everyone to enjoy. If you need something light and uplifting during the current dark times we are living in then Merlin is the ballet for you (but I do believe it will have a life in normal times too). The audience was very enthusiastic at the end of Act 1 and even more so during the curtain calls. When Kevin came on the stage it seemed that nearly everyone in the stalls leapt to their feet to give him the acclaim he deserved for his outstanding performance as Merlin. I am looking forward to seeing this production again in a couple of weeks.
  4. On Tuesday 1st June 2021 I was back in a live theatre to watch a ballet performance for the first time since October last year and over a year since the premiere of Geisha, which was the last "normal" ballet performance I saw. I felt really emotional filing into the theatre. The Lowry has really gone to town on social distancing. Fortunately it was a warm sunny evening as we queued up outside to be told the rules as we went into the barriered queuing area to have out temperatures taken, order a drink (if we wanted) and have our tickets scanned - all before we got into the enormous space of the foyer areas. I was chatting to a couple of friends when we were asked to move to our seats as the foyer areas were being kept clear. None of the inside bars and cafes were open. There were tannoy announcements asking us to stay in our seats during the interval unless collecting pre-ordered drinks or using the facilities. The seats in the auditorium were very well spaced out. I couldn't say if the performance was sold out but I couldn't see any empty seats that weren't cordoned off. And so to the performance... This is the third iteration of Dangerous Liaisons that David Nixon has put on for Northern Ballet. The first had a narrator on stage, the second had replaced the narrator with a small corps of Parisian sybarites and, for me, was close to perfection. This more concert style production, done for the Covid world, was parred to the bone and a real chamber production using only 11 dancers (2 of whom were only walk on parts as servants). For me it really worked. There is a tiny amount of narration to introduce the characters. The narration uses the voices of David Nixon as Valmont and Pippa Moore as the Marquise and, much to my surprise, it worked well. The main features of Christopher Hampton's play were all included and I found it very easy to follow without using the synopsis on Northern Ballet's website. Act 1 introduces and builds up the characters and tragedy from Gercourt leaving the Marquise and starting her overwhelming need for revenge. The action is mostly duets with some ensemble scenes allowing Valmont to try and persuade the devout Madame de Tourvel to give in to him; the Chevalier Danceney's hopeless courtship of Cécile, Valont's seduction of Cécile and finally his conquest of Tourvel who falls headlong in love with him. Act 2 covers the consequences with the Marquise dallying with Danceney, forcing Valmont to reject Tourvel and the fatal duel. There is some terrific choreography in the duets which can be playful (as with the wonderful scene where Valmont uses a courtesan as a writing desk) brutal (as in Valmont's rejection of Tourvel and his seduction of Cécile) and beautifully tender (Valmont's seduction of Tourvel). I found that I couldn't breathe from Valmont's "It is beyond my control" scene to the end of the piece and it wasn't because I was wearing a mask! There were 3 casts on show this week, all subtly different. I really couldn't choose between them. There was a small standing ovation after every performance and the audience was really enthusiastic. It is interesting that the audience sounded so loud when usually at The Lowry a full house sounds muted but it must have been really gratifying for the company given how long they have been waiting to get back on stage. Thank you Northern Ballet for a wonderful series of performances (I saw 5 out of the 6). It was so good to be back!! For anyone going to see this at Sadler's Wells in the coming week the show runs for 1hr 40 mins including the interval. The casts are already on the company website along with a digital programme, a separate synopsis and a page of the characters (which is useful if you are not familiar with the dancers as it can be used to identify the costumes and thus the characters).
  5. From the Company's website: With a new season just around the corner we are pleased to announce the following dancer promotions: Abigail Prudames becomes a Premier Dancer Minju Kang and Joseph Taylor both become Principal Soloists Sarah Chun and Riku Ito are promoted to Leading Soloist Lorenzo Trossello and Jonathan Hanks become First Soloists Heather Lehan becomes a Coryphée Archie Sherman becomes a Dancer We hope you will join us in congratulating these artists on their much deserved promotions. This season we also welcome two new dancers to the company, Kirica Takahashi and Katharine Lee. Following recent auditions, we'll be announcing more new joiners soon. Isabella Gasparini will also return to Northern Ballet as a Guest Artist for David Nixon OBE's Dangerous Liaisons at Leeds Playhouse. Isabella danced with us from 2007 - 2013 before joining The Royal Ballet in 2014.
  6. Northern Ballet has issued an End of Season announcement. The dancers leaving the company have been listed but they have stated there will be no promotions due to the C-19 pandemic and new dancers cannot yet be announced. https://northernballet.com/blogs/northern-ballet/20-07-01/2020-leavers I feel so sad for the dancers who have retired having missed their valedictory performances due to the pandemic. Of course this has affected many dancers in many companies. The leavers are Hannah Bateman (retiring), Nicola Gervasi (retiring), Nina Querioz da Silva, Abigail Cockerell, Ayça Anil and Ommaira Kanga Perez. I send them all my best wishes for the future.
  7. Friday 27 March 2020 For immediate release Northern Ballet announces Pay As You Feel Digital Season Productions featured include: Jonathan Watkins’ 1984; Mariana Rodrigues’ Little Red Riding Hood; extended highlights from Northern Ballet’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Gala; andDavid Nixon OBE’s Dracula. Kenneth Tindall and Dan Lowenstein’s dance film EGO will also be released. northernballet.com/pay-as-you-feel Due to the impact of COVID-19, many of Northern Ballet’s upcoming performances have been cancelled or are under threat of cancellation. Whilst the Company is not performing live at this time, aselection of ballets from Northern Ballet’s repertoire plus a new original dance film will be available to watch online or on television as part of the Company’s Pay As You Feel Digital Season. Over the next few weeks people will be able to tune into 1984, Little Red Riding Hood and Draculafrom the comfort of their home. The Company will also release a new dance film, Kenneth Tindall and Dan Lowenstein’s EGO plus the extended highlights of their 50th Anniversary Celebration Gala which took place at Leeds Grand Theatre at the beginning of the year. Northern Ballet are asking audiences to consider making a donation as they watch content from the Pay As You Feel Digital Season to support the Company, their people and work during these unprecedented times and the significant financial hardship the Company is facing. Lost income from cancelled performances could affect Northern Ballet’s ability to pay their workforce, many of whom are freelancers, as well as their ability to present new ballets, including Merlin which is planned to première this autumn. Those who wish to support the Company can donate at northernballet.com/pay-as-you-feel. Kenneth Tindall and Dan Lowenstein’s new dance film EGO kicks off the season and will be available to watch online today, Friday 27 March, from 7pm at northernballet.com/ego. EGO explores parallel versions of one couple's relationship. At first appearing the perfect Hollywood romance, the couple’s alter egos tell a different story filled with raw animalistic emotion, asking ‘How much does your ego control your behaviour?’ First premièred in 2015 to critical acclaim, Jonathan Watkins’ award-winning 1984 will be available to watch from Friday 3 April at northernballet.com/1984. Based on George Orwell's masterpiece, the ballet follows the story of Winston Smith and his life of conformity under the watchful eye of Big Brother. CBeebies will screen their special version of Mariana Rodrigues’ Little Red Riding Hood on Friday 10 April at 9.30am. Created especially for children, Little Red Riding Hood retells the classic fairytalewith a Northern Ballet twist. From Friday 17 April, extended highlights from Northern Ballet’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Gala will be available to watch at northernballet.com. This sell-out performance featured excerpts of productions from Northern Ballet’s history and brought together dancers from The Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Scottish Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet and Phoenix Dance Theatre alongside Northern Ballet’s dancers. After wowing audiences during its live to cinema performances last Halloween, David Nixon OBE’s Dracula will make its television debut as part of the BBC’s Culture in Quarantine Season. Seducing countless generations, Bram Stoker’s legendary vampire lives on in this extraordinary ballet which will be available to watch in the coming weeks on BBC Four and iPlayer. To find out more about Northern Ballet’s Pay As You Feel Digital Season, please visit northernballet.com/pay-as-you-feel. -ENDS- Notes to Editors Pay As You Feel Digital Season northernballet.com/pay-as-you-feel Kenneth Tindall and Dan Lowenstein’s EGO Available from Friday 27 March at 7pm northernballet.com/ego Jonathan Watkins’ 1984 Available from Friday 3 April northernballet.com/1984 Mariana Rodrigues’ Little Red Riding Hood Friday 10 April, 9.30am CBeebies 50th Anniversary Celebration Gala - Extended Highlights Available from Friday 17 April northernballet.com David Nixon OBE’s Dracula Part of the BBC’s Culture in Quarantine Season Available in the coming weeks BBC Four / iPlayer About Northern Ballet In 2020 Northern Ballet is celebrating its 50th Anniversary. Northern Ballet is one of the UK’s leading ballet companies and the widest touring ballet company in the UK. Bold and innovative in its approach, Northern Ballet is prolific at creating new full-length work with a unique blend of strong classical technique and impressive storytelling. Northern Ballet’s repertoire embraces popular culture and takes inspiration from literature, legend, opera and the classics, pushing the boundaries of what stories can be told through dance. A champion for the cultural exports of the North, Leeds-based Northern Ballet is dedicated to bringing ballet to as many people and places as possible, under the leadership of Artistic Director David Nixon OBE. Northern Ballet’s Company of 43 dancers performs a combination of its full-length ballets and specially created ballets for children at more than 40 venues annually.
  8. given some of the ardent Northern Ballet fans on the site i'm surprised there isn't a post ( that I can find) about this yet https://northernballet.com/victoria/hannah-bateman-celebration
  9. I’ve had an email inviting me to buy tickets for this 50th Anniversary Celebration Dinner on 5th or 6th November 2020. However. I don’t know much about Northern Ballet not have I visited Leeds. At £100 per ticket, I’d welcome any input/feedback from those who are familiar with NB as to whether this event may be worth leaving my Home Counties comfort zone for? Thanks
  10. Pathé Live is showing the 2019-20 season of Bolshoi broadcasts, but for some reason only in French at the moment: https://www.pathelive.com/programme/ballet-du-bolchoi-19-20
  11. The world premiere of Northern Ballet's Victoria, by Cathy Marston, is next Saturday - 9th March. Of course my friends and I will be there! Please use this thread for thought s on performances etc. As a little teaser NB have issued a rehearsal snippet:
  12. Did anyone else get to see Dracula in their local cinema this evening? Wasn't it wonderful? Although we are lucky enough to live close enough to Leeds to see Northern Ballet regularly, it was perfect on a work night to be able to stay close to home and see it in our wonderful local independent cinema with a mug of tea in hand. I really hope there will be many more live broadcasts by Northern Ballet.
  13. Tonight, at the New York Metropolitan Opera House, American Ballet Theatre will stage the US premiere of Cathy Marston's Jane Eyre, first commissioned by Northern Ballet and toured in the UK during 2016. I hope we might hear reactions from any members over there, in addition to newspaper reviews picked up in Links. For now, Playbill has published a useful introduction.
  14. Hi Im new here so not sure where to post! I have a daughter who is auditioning for associates at Northern Ballet Leeds, I have had confirmation they have received her cheque and form, I also have a younger daughter who would like to audition but her form was sent later. We haven’t heard anything back from them so I’m worrying they haven’t received it and the closing date was yesterday. So my question is , has anyone else sent the form and payment but not heard anything back yet?!
  15. Paris Opera Ballet: Thanks, Bruce! I'm not sure what the geographic spread of these outside France is, but thought we should record it anyway.
  16. For immediate release 31 January 2019 Northern Ballet to go live on the silver screen [Download high resolution images] Dracula LIVE in cinemas 31 October 2019 Victoria in cinemas 25 June 2019 Northern Ballet is to make its live cinema debut with David Nixon OBE’s Dracula streamed direct to cinemas from the newly redeveloped Leeds Playhouse on Halloween. In addition, Northern Ballet has also announced that Cathy Marston’s Victoria will be screened in cinemas on 25 June 2019 following the ballet’s world première tour. Both productions will be available in cinemas throughout the UK and marks Northern Ballet’s first venture into cinema with its full-length productions. This announcement follows Northern Ballet’s cinema debut at the weekend with children’s ballet Tortoise & the Hare. This is due to be followed by screenings of two more of the Company’s children’s ballets, meaning that Northern Ballet will offer a total of five different ballets for cinema audiences during its first year of presenting its productions on the silver screen. David Nixon OBE, Artistic Director of Northern Ballet, said: ‘As the widest touring ballet company in the UK, Northern Ballet goes further to provide world-class ballet on the doorsteps of people throughout the UK. However, it is not possible to reach everybody with our live tour and so I am delighted that we will be offering Victoria and Dracula to cinema audiences throughout the country to enable even more people to access our productions. We pride ourselves on being innovative storytellers, pushing the boundaries of what stories can be told through dance and these two ballets are excellent demonstrations of that. In the hands of one of the most exciting choreographers of today, Cathy Marston’s Victoria takes the life of one of our most iconic monarchs and presents her story in a way never seen before. Whilst Draculasees Bram Stoker’s legendary vampire brought to the stage in a ballet full of sensuality and darkness; perfect viewing for Halloween. We hope that through these cinema screenings, not only will ballet fans have more opportunities to see us perform but that others who may have never seen a ballet before will give it a try and discover a new passion for our art form.’ John Travers, Head of Distribution for CinemaLive, said: ‘For over 10 years now, CinemaLivehave been providing audiences worldwide with access to incredible events through their local cinema. We are delighted to be working in partnership with Northern Ballet to distribute these two exciting productions to cinemas in 2019. Their innovative approach to storytelling looks beyond traditional ballet titles and we are proud to bring this unique and inventive content to the big screen. We look forward to seeing both Victoria and Dracula connect with cinema audiences across the UK and Ireland this year.’ This new project has been made possible by the support of Northern Ballet’s longstanding sponsors first direct bank. Joe Gordon, Head of first direct, said: ‘As proud digital pioneers ourselves, first direct is thrilled to support Northern Ballet’s new digital programme and become their National Stage & Screen Sponsor. It will bring their world-class dance and passionate storytelling to diverse new audiences around the UK and represents an exciting evolution for our new innovative partnership.’ Tickets for Victoria and Dracula in cinemas are on sale now. To find your closest participating cinemas and to book tickets visit northernballet.com/cinema -ENDS- Northern Ballet Cinema Screenings (Full-length) Victoria 25 June 2019 (One night only) Cinemas nationwide northernballet.com/cinema Dracula (LIVE) 31 October 2019 (One night only) Cinemas nationwide northernballet.com/cinema Northern Ballet Cinema Screenings (Children’s) Tortoise & the Hare From 26 January 2019 Cinemas nationwide northernballet.com/cinema Elves & the Shoemaker From 23 February 2019 Cinemas nationwide northernballet.com/cinema Three Little Pigs From 23 March 2019 Cinemas nationwide northernballet.com/cinema Northern Ballet Artistic Director – David Nixon OBE Northern Ballet is one of the UK’s leading ballet companies and the widest touring ballet company in the UK. Bold and innovative in its approach, Northern Ballet is prolific at creating new full-length work with a unique blend of strong classical technique and world-class storytelling. Northern Ballet’s repertoire embraces popular culture and takes inspiration from literature, legend, opera and the classics, pushing the boundaries of what stories can be told through dance. A champion for the cultural exports of the North, Leeds-based Northern Ballet is dedicated to bringing world-class story ballets to as many people and places as possible, under the leadership of Artistic Director David Nixon OBE. Northern Ballet’s Company of 43 dancers performs a combination of its full-length ballets and specially created ballets for children at more than 40 venues annually. For more details of Northern Ballet's tour, on sale dates and booking information, please visit northernballet.com/whatson National Stage & Screen Sponsor Image: Abigail Prudames and Mlindi Kulashe at Everyman Cinema Leeds. Photo Justin Slee.
  17. Northern Ballet is currently advertising for three non-executive directors. Included in the information pack on the website there is a paragraph about the Company's 50th Anniversary Celebrations (the Company turns 50 at the end of November next year) which look as though they are going to extend throughout the following year: 50th Anniversary Our 50th Anniversary will be a unique opportunity to celebrate everything that is great about Northern Ballet with a range of exciting events planned. The year of celebrations will include: 2 new full-length productions A new children’s ballet Gala performance and dinner at Buckingham Palace Gala performance in Leeds Commissioning of a commemorative art work Digital Book https://northernballet.com/sites/default/files/downloads/vacancies/2018-board-member_0.pdf
  18. For immediate release 11 June 2018 Northern Ballet announces promotions and joiners for 2017/18 season Northern Ballet will welcome ten new dancers for the 2018/19 season and has also announced promotions for existing members of the Company. Joining the Corps de Ballet are: Ayça Anil (Central School of Ballet); Adam Ashcroft (Estonian National Ballet); Harris Beattie (Central School of Ballet); Helen Bogatch (Estonian National Ballet); Kyungka Kwak (Universal Ballet, Korea); George Liang (The National Ballet of Canada); and Nina Queiroz da Silva (Ballet Nacional Sodre, Uruguay). Matthew Morrell joins as an Apprentice from the Academy of Northern Ballet’s Professional Graduate Programme, alongsideformer Professional Graduate student Julie Nunès who joins from the corps de ballet at The Phantom of the Opera, Stockholm, and Oscar Ainscough from Tring Park School for the Performing Arts. In addition, a number of Northern Ballet’s existing company dancers have been promoted: Mlindi Kulashe, Ayami Miyata, Abigail Prudames and Joseph Taylor to First Soloists; Nicola Gervasi and Matthew Koon to Soloists; Sarah Chun, Riku Ito, Minju Kang and Dominique Larose to Junior Soloists; and Filippo Di Vilio to Coryphée. This year the Company will also be saying goodbye to the following dancers: Dreda Blow is returning to her native Canada to study physical theatre and pursue acting, teaching and creating her own work; whilst Giuliano Contadini and Victoria Sibson have retired from the stage; the three have collectively been performing with Northern Ballet for over 35 years. Mathilde Lambert leaves to join Columbia Classical Ballet, USA; Jesse Milligan has joined the West End cast of The King and I at the London Palladium; Liam Morris is joining Estonian National Ballet; Alexander Yap is joiningBirmingham Royal Ballet; Archie James leaves to study Sports and Injury Therapy; and Kiara Flavin, Thomas Holdsworth, Darragh Hourrides, Carlotta Pini and Ailen Ramos Betancourt are also moving on to new things. Northern Ballet’s new season will commence in September with a new Mixed Programme in Leeds and Doncaster followed by the return of David Nixon OBE’s The Three Musketeers and The Nutcracker which will both tour nationally.For details see northernballet.com/whatson -ENDS- Notes to Editors Northern Ballet – Company List 2018/19 Premier Dancers Pippa Moore Javier Torres Leading Soloists Hannah Bateman Antoinette Brooks-Daw Ashley Dixon First Soloists Mlindi Kulashe Ayami Miyata Abigail Prudames Joseph Taylor Soloists Nicola Gervasi Rachael Gillespie Matthew Koon Kevin Poeung Junior Soloists Sean Bates Sarah Chun Riku Ito Minju Kang Dominique Larose Matthew Topliss Coryphée Filippo Di Vilio Jonathan Hanks Dancers Miki Akuta Eneko Amorós Zaragoza Ayça Anil Adam Ashcroft Harris Beattie Helen Bogatch Abigail Cockrell Ommaira Kanga Perez Natalia Kerner Kyungka Kwak Heather Lehan George Liang Harriet Marden Gavin McCaig Nina Queiroz da Silva Dale Rhodes Mariana Rodrigues Teresa Saavedra Bordes Andrew Tomlinson Lorenzo Trossello Apprentices Oscar Ainscough Matthew Morrell Julie Nunès Northern Ballet Artistic Director – David Nixon OBE Northern Ballet is one of the UK’s leading ballet companies and the widest touring ballet company in the UK. Bold and innovative in its approach, Northern Ballet is prolific at creating new full-length work with a unique blend of strong classical technique and world-class storytelling. Northern Ballet’s repertoire embraces popular culture and takes inspiration from literature, legend, opera and the classics, pushing the boundaries of what stories can be told through dance. A champion for the cultural exports of the North, Leeds-based Northern Ballet is dedicated to bringing world-class story ballets to as many people and places as possible, under the leadership of Artistic Director David Nixon OBE. Northern Ballet’s Company of 44 dancers performs a combination of its full-length ballets and specially created ballets for children at almost 50 venues annually. For more details of Northern Ballet's tour, on sale dates and booking information, please visit northernballet.com/whatson National Tour Sponsor
  19. https://northernballet.com/media-releases/2018-05-31/kenneth-tindall-appointed-to-artistic-staff
  20. Northern Ballet's Casanova has its world premiere in Leeds on Saturday. Please use this thread to give us your thoughts on the production. Northern Ballet has got a comprehensive mini-site with photogallery, scenario, trailer and more: https://northernballet.com/casanova/mini#firstFrame The BBC has also published a photogallery: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/in-pictures-39179575 I will be reporting back after the premiere!
  21. Northern Ballet is in Bradford from 05-07 October with their mixed programme "A Celebration of Sir Kenneth MacMillan" comprising Concerto, Las Hermanas and Gloria. Please use this thread to record your thoughts on the performances. Here is a short film released by the Company:
  22. On Saturday night Northern Ballet continued its innovatory trajectory by showing ten works of eleven of its dancers. There had only been a four week period for creation, interspersed with rehearsals for different works in the main repertory to be shown in Leeds and on tour. The workshop was co-curated by David Nixon, the director, and Kenneth Tindall, former NB dancer, now an increasingly successful choreographer. They both spoke before the performances. They stressed the need to be 'relevant', so some of the works related to political developments and current social issues. They talked of the increasing importance of film and digital developments. Consequently there were several films of the new works. David Nixon stressed how valuable the active engagement of the dancers had been in the creative process, even stating that in the future, instead of 'dance artists' he would call his dancers "collaborative dancers'. Surprisingly, perhaps, given NB's tradition of dramatic classical ballet, the company had brought in as teachers for a week each, a former Forsythe dancer and an Akram Khan assistant. This influence was evident as a number of the works were more contemporary than pure classical, most notably in the work by Sean Bates, one of the most classical dancers in the company. His work, Khadija, was influenced by the Grenfell Tower tragedy, and at the opening his use of a group of dancers was not unlike that of Crystal Pite. There were only a couple of classical style works, one, by Nicola Gervasi, inspired by words by Margaret Atwood, and portraying coping mechanisms in experiences of trauma, passionately danced by Victoria Gibson and Dreda Blow amongst others. Dreda Blow provided the most hilarious piece, funny despite her comments that it was initially inspired by Trump and widespread misogyny. Three of the most charismatic male dancers cavorted around in original movements. Other works were also influenced by reaction to Trump- Gavin McCaig's piece, which was also shown at the start as a film, used clips of Trump, Garage and others. Other social issues that inspired pieces included the personal alienation (my word) caused by undue dependence on digital communication (Data Flow, by Mariana Rodrigues) using quite mechanical movements, plus others focusing on sexual harassment If this account makes the evening sound rather worthy, it wasn't, it was very varied. All pieces were interesting, the dancers were very well rehearsed and showed their technical and performing qualities, The music was varied, one piece was to Tchaikovsky, others to Rachmaninov, one to minimalism (possibly Nixon in China: unfortunately there was no information on the cast sheet on the composers), others to popular music. One piece, by Mlindi Kulashe, was danced in silence. He told us that he was preparing a ballet for the mixed bill of new ballets programmed for September. This season has seen Northern Ballet develop in exciting new ways, with new works and the excellent MacMillan triple. This workshop demonstrated that the company is continuing to evolve , investing in its future.
  23. Northern Ballet has just announced that they will be dancing 3 of MacMillan's one act masterpieces to commemorate him: Concerto, Las Hermanas, Gloria. Performances will take place in Bradford (October5-7, 2017) and Leeds (March 16-17, 2018)
  24. It is the world premiere of Northern Ballet's Little Mermaid in Southampton on Thursday. If any members are going to see this production please put your thoughts here. The Company have released a short film of Abigail Prudames talking about creating the title role:
  25. Thread for all the mixed-company MacMillan celebrations at the Royal Opera House this autumn. It kicks off tonight with Birmingham Royal Ballet in Concerto, Scottish Ballet in Le Baiser de la fée (or The Fairy's Kiss, if you prefer) and a mixed-company performance of Elite Syncopations, if I'm not mistaken. And to start us off, here's a link back to David's notes on Le Baiser de la fée
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