sat 02/03/2024

dance

First Person: Ten Years On - Flamenco guitarist Paco Peña pays tribute to his friend, the late, great Paco de Lucía

Paco Peña

There are moments that forever remain imprinted in our consciousness, engraved on the general map of our lives. I cannot forget the excitement of seeing snow for the first time in Córdoba, aged three or four, rushing to walk on it only to slip straight away and fall on my behind! Or when I discovered the sea, in Cádiz.

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First Person: pioneering juggler Sean Gandini reflects on how the spirit of Pina Bausch has infiltrated his work

Sean Gandini

I am a juggler. My wife Kati Ylä-Hokkala is also a juggler. Our life for the last three decades has been juggling. We have been fortunate to be practising this art form at a time when mathematical and creative developments meant that our vocabulary went from about 30 patterns to thousands. The Golden Age of juggling.

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First Person: Pulitzer Prize winning composer David Lang on the original Jewish love story

David Lang

I wouldn’t say that I am super religious, but I am definitely religion-curious. It is a big part of my family background, and, to be honest, a big part of the history of my chosen field, Western classical music. For the past 1000 years, the church has been the most powerful commissioner of Western music, and its most active employer of musicians.

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Hunting legendary treasure with ballet's Indiana Jones - Pierre Lacotte 1932-2023

Ismene Brown

As any archaeologist knows, digging up a sarcophagus is a nailbiting business. How small are the chances that inside the shredded linen wrappings will lie a recognisable body with some vestiges of its former life upon it?

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'You want to cry from loving to do it so much' - Lynn Seymour 1939-2023

Ismene Brown

As a critic, I’ve rarely felt compelled to mourn publicly about an artist. Mourning goes somewhere beyond the usual sense of loss and gratitude when someone's death has been announced. But it's the only word when the departed is one of the very few individuals - or their songs or books or pictures - who get in your bloodstream, who get into your optic nerves or your inner ear, who magnify and sharpen your experience of being alive.

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Royal Opera House lullabies for Little Amal

David Nice

“I want to tell her that people will be good,” Tewodros Aregawe of Phosphoros Theatre confided to us as Little Amal closed her eyes on the giant bed made up for her in the Paul Hamlyn Hall, “that all the people with kind eyes who have walked alongside her and listened to her story will be louder than those who wish she wasn’t there”.

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The Royal Ballet - variations on a comeback

Jenny Gilbert

Like the British high street, the once richly diverse landscape of dance in the UK is likely to look very different once lockdown is fully lifted. There will be losses, noticeably among the smaller companies whose survival was always precarious. There will be downsizings. There will be painful gaps where a major talent has given up the fight, retired to run a flower shop or become a hill farmer.

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'She was Paris': RIP Zizi Jeanmaire (1924-2020)

Ismene Brown

"You talk like Marlene Dietrich, you dance like Zizi Jeanmaire, your clothes are all made by Balmain, and there’s diamonds and pearls in your hair…" .

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'If they had been any closer my face would have misted up': filming 'Men at the Barre'

Richard Macer

“That’s Marcelino Sambé, he’s wonderful,” said the artistic administrator of the Royal Ballet as I followed her down one of the many corridors that weave throughout the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. “He’s a newly promoted Principal, a very special talent indeed!” I looked over my shoulder at the figure disappearing through some doors.

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The deathless Alicia Alonso, in person

Ismene Brown

The magnificent, controversial Cuban ballerina Alicia Alonso, who asserted that she would live to 200, died yesterday in Havana, aged nearly 99.

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