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Rambert's Rooster


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The day before I trekked up to Edinburgh I found myself in Manchester. I was there for work which finished at 18:45 so I phoned The Lowry and found they still had some good seats available.  Upon that intelligence I took the first Metrolink over to Media City.

 

I love my ballet (and contemporary dance) and always try to find something positive in a performance but I rarely have such a good time as I had watching Rambert's mixed programme last Friday. The evening started with Mark Baldwin's The Strange Charm of Mother Nature which I had expected to be about wildlife but turned out to be about sub-atomic particles. The choreographer had been inspired by a trip to CERN and every movement of the piece was marked by a beam of light at various heights and in different colours which, I assume, represented a plasma stream.

 

Next came Richard Alston's Dutiful Ducks danced by Adam Blyde. Like Christopher Bruce's Ten Poems it was performed to words rather than music but the two works were very different. Dutiful Ducks is performed for its rhythm and metre while Dylan's poems are freighted with meaning.

 

Sounddance followed and it was good. Dane Hurst (one of my favourite dancers) came on stage and conjured up his comrades. This was an energetic and exuberant work by Merce Cunningham and it was my favourite of the evening. With sounds of bird song, animal cries and insects as a score this was an exciting work.

 

Top of the bill was Christopher Bruce's RoosterEverybody's favourite Stones songs including my song.  The costumes were lovely, particularly Ruby's long red dress in Ruby Tuesday. Though not every song was light hearted I think everyone in the audience left the theatre smiling and happy. And I don't think it was just the crowd who liked it. The dancers seemed to have loved it too.

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I was at the Lowry on Friday night for Rambert's Rooster programme and I thought it was one of the better evenings I have spent with Rambert in recent years.

 

Rambert always has wonderful dancers and it is always a pleasure to see them, especially when I am enjoying the works on show!

 

The Strange Charm of Mother Nature opened the evening and showed the musicality of Mark Baldwin.  I liked the lithe and lyrical movements of the dancers in this piece.  A note on the cast sheet explained that the Stravinsky and Bach sections had been switched around.  The Bach section was my favourite of the three.

 

Dutiful Ducks is a witty solo danced with elegance by Adam Blyde.

 

I absolutely loved sounddance and really want to see it again.  There is so much going on on the stage that it is quite hard to take it all in.  At one point I noticed Josh Barwich standing in a pose for what seemed like forever as other dancers draped around him, it looked fiendishly difficult and I am sure Josh's muscles must have been screaming out!  In fact, with its electronic noises score and so many different movements going on alongside each other on stage it must be fiendishly difficult altogether but very rewarding to watch as a member of the audience!

 

Rooster finished off the evening in grand style.

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