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Found 5 results

  1. Ballet Cymru has revived Darius James and Amy Doughty's Cinderella which is my favourite work in the company;s repertoire and IMHO the best Cinderella anywhere. I say that for several reasons. It is very faithful to the Grimms' tale which is short and tight as us the ballet. I also love Jack White's simple but very moving score, James and Doughty's choreography and of course the cast. I caught the show at the Waterside Arts Centre in Sale last night . I was enchanted by Bethe Meadway;s performance as Cinderella. Link Xander Parish and Kevin O'Hare she comes from Hull and they would have been proud of their fellow cod head. Great performances also from Robbie Moorcroft, Isobel Holland, Dan Morrison, Miguel Fernandes, Eka Mastrangelo and Alex Hallas. I noticed a few changes since the last run in 2015 most of which I liked. The company uses lighting in place of sets and [ properties since it does a lot of touring and it has acquired some new projections. If anyone is interested, I have written a longer review in my blog,
  2. I've started a new topic as the other one is focused on casting. QPAC's YouTube channel has several film clips re: Royal Ballet events. This one gives an overview of their Made on the Body choreography exhibition.
  3. On Thursday Gita Mistry and I were guests of Chancery Dance Company at their rehearsal studios in Grantham, We attended their company class and a rehearsal of Vincent - a stranger to himself which is part of a double bill that the company is taking on tour later this month. The company will visit Grantham, Stamford, Birmingham, Worcester, Halifax and London. I understand that their opening night is already sold out. Also, they have just received an excellent mention in the London Ballet Circle's latest newsletter. The company has come a long way in the three years since it was founded, It is on its second national tour. Since the last one its principals, Paul Chantry and Rae Piper, have worked in Japan, at Covent Garden and the Rome Opera Theatre, performed or held workshops, schools, care homes and prisons, established their own school which will actually teach the students how to get work after they graduate and have recruited three talented young dancers: David Beer, Rebecca Scanlon and Sorel de Paula Haniks. Vincent which is Chantry and Piper's latest work quite bowled me over. Rarely have I been more excited by a new ballet. It is about the life and work of Vincent van Gogh. There is a gripping narrative and powerful choreography constructed around a beautiful musical compilation which includes Satie's Gymnopedies which has been used no less effectively than in Ashton's Monotones. After the rehearsal Gita and I explored Grantham which has a magnificent parish church with a massive spire and a chained library, a pub called The Beehive with a hive of living and no doubt stinging bees as its inn sign, the school where Sir Isaac Newton studied and the corner shop where the late Baroness Thatcher was born. If you have not been to this town it is surely worth a visit. I am looking forward to seeing the double bill in Halifax on 26 Sept and I shall review the show here afterwards. If anyone is interested I have posted a few articles about Chantry Dance here and many more in my blog.
  4. On Friday I spent one of the most enchanting evenings ever in the theatre. The Brazilian dance troupe Grupo Corpo performed Sem Mim and Parabelo at the Alhambra theatre in Bradford. Both works were choreographed by Rodrigo Pederneiras. The dancers' bodies clad in gorgeous costumes created wonderful shapes and patterns to hauntingly beautiful sounds. An impression of the performance can be gained from the the video and sound clips on the company's website. The works that they chose for us exemplified the history and cultural diversity of Brazil.Sem Mim was inspired by the 13th century Galician minstrel Martin Codax while Parabelowas based on folk songs from the interior. At one point I thought I heard bagpipes and later the men appeared in tartan kilts. In a question and answer session with the director and two of the dancers after the show I asked: "Why the kilts and bagpipes". I was told that they are part of the culture of Galicia. I googled "Galicia" and "bagpipes" and discovered a clip of pipers in Santiago de Compastela. "Such a sweet sound", I thought, "so different from the Scots and Irish instruments". Until the show I never knew that kilts were worn in Spain but there is actually a website about Galician kilts and tartans. The Celtic influence was just one of many. My companion whose heritage is Indian was reminded of the rhythms of Gujarat in another part of Sem Mim. Founded in 1975 the company seems to have created its own unique dance style which is not quite ballet and not quite contemporary but blends the two. They dance in shoes with legs turned out as in ballet. There choreography incorporates the jumps and turns of classical ballet but rarely, if ever, en pointe. In one pas de deux I believe I saw the woman en pointe but the stage was dimly lit and she may well have been en demi. The most remarkable feature of their technique is that their bodies seem to ripple and shimmer with the sound and light their feet and hips moving forward, their legs and upper bodies going back and their heads loose. Almost like shadows flickering in the light. My companion asked them how they achieved that effect in the Q & A and one of the dancers rose to her feet and demonstrated it. Another member of the audience asked whether they had rehearsed Sem Mim under water for that was the impression they had created. In the Q & A another of the questioners asked them whether they dance the ballet classics. They answered "no, Ballet is not their "language" though it is part of their training. One of the dancers explained that she had been attracted to dance by Michael Jackson but she learned ballet in the course of her training and they still do class each day. Certainly they have the grace and show the precision of classical dance. Grupo Corpo is approaching the end of a gruelling nationwide tour which began at Sadler's Wells at the beginning of the month and which has already taken them to Southampton, Cardiff, Salford and Plymouth. Their appearance in Bradford was the company's only visit to North East England. Although the audience greeted them enthusiastically with several members rising to their feet at the end of the show, our seats in the front stalls and there were more than a few empty seats in the auditorium. Their next stop is the Hippodrome where Birmingham Royal Ballet is based. Then on to Belfast which is their only appearance in Ireland and finally the Festival in Edinburgh where Scottish Ballet perform. I do hope they draw the crowds in those cities. If you live anywhere near those venues you will be richly rewarded if you see the show, Bringing them to Bradford was quite a coup for the theatre management as they might easily have gone to Leeds or Newcastle instead. In the Q & A a young Brazilian woman expressed her pride in her nation's artistes but I have to say that I am also proud of the Alhambra theatre of which I am now a Friend. It has brought some top notch shows to West Yorkshire in the past and I hope that it continues to do so. Its manager is clearly a dance fan. I very much appreciate the chance to meet the dancers and director after the show which to my knowledge has been done at least once before at the Alhambra.
  5. The Royal Ballet sets off on tour tomorrow, first stop Moscow. Here's a Bolshoi promotional video (complete with busbies): Here's their full schedule. The Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow, June 17-22 TETRACTYS 17, 18 June - Federico Bonelli, Lauren Cuthbertson, Nicol Edmonds, Paul Kay, Sarah Lamb, Steven McRae, Marianela Nuñez, Natalia Osipova, Thiago Soares, Akane Takada, Eric Underwood, Edward Watson RHAPSODY 17 June - Laura Morera, Steven McRae 18 June - Yuhui Choe, Valentino Zucchetti DGV: DANSE À GRANDE VITESSE 17 June - Zenaida Yanowsky, Natalia Osipova, Marianela Nuñez, Natalia Osipova, Thiago Soares, Akane Takada, Eric Underwood, Edward Watson 18 June - Tierney Heap, Akane Takada, Melissa Hamilton, Beatriz Stix-Brunell, Ryoichi Hirano, Tristan Dyer, Matthew Golding, Valentino Zucchetti MANON 20 June - Manon, Marianela Nuñez; Des Grieux, Federico Bonelli 21 June (mat) - Lauren Cuthbertson & Matthew Golding 21 June - Sarah Lamb & Steven McRae 22 June - Natalia Osipova & Carlos Acosta National Theatre, Taipei, June 27-29 ROMEO AND JULIET 27 June - Romeo, Federico Bonelli; Juliet, Lauren Cuthbertson 28 June - Thiago Soares & Marianela Nuñez 29 June (mat) - Edward Watson & Melissa Hamilton 29 June - Valeri Hristov & Sarah Lamb Shanghai Grand Theatre, Shanghai, July 3-5 DON QUIXOTE 3, 5 July - Basilio, Thiago Soares; Kitri, Marianela Nuñez 4 July - Federico Bonelli & Sarah Lamb 5 July (mat) - Matthew Golding & Akane Takada ROH press release
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