sat 20/07/2024

Boy George and rapper Wale to sing live in Royal Ballet's upcoming premiere | reviews, news & interviews

Boy George and rapper Wale to sing live in Royal Ballet's upcoming premiere

Boy George and rapper Wale to sing live in Royal Ballet's upcoming premiere

Alison Mosshart, Jonny Pierce, Hero Fisher, Andrew Wyatt, Wale and Black Cobain in Wayne McGregor's creation

Ballet material: Boy George, Gareth Pugh's designs, rapper Wale

Boy George will be in a live line-up of singer-performers for the latest Royal Ballet premiere by Wayne McGregor. Mark Ronson's cycle of nine love songs, orchestrated by Rufus Wainwright, will be performed by the former Culture Club New-Romantic (he's now 50), alongside Alison Mosshart of The Kills, Jonny Pierce of The Drums, Hero Fisher, Andrew Wyatt of Miike Snow, and rappers Wale and his protégé Black Cobain during the six-performance run next month.

The singers will apparently be onstage with the dancers in the work, called Carbon Life, and designs by Gareth Pugh, whose flamboyant club styles are worn by Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Kylie Minogue, and admired by Vogue editor Anna Wintour. Reflecting the opera house's desperate wish to democratise its expensive, exclusive image, ticket prices start at a mere £3, rising to £42,

Carbon Life is one of two premieres on the bill, the other being by the neo-classicist Liam Scarlett, whose yet untitled ballet is designed by the superb John Macfarlane and has music by Rachmaninov. Neither premiere has casting yet revealed.

Christopher Wheeldon's masterly Polyphonia, set magnetically to Gyorgy Ligeti piano music, completes the bill (and sets the bar very high indeed).

The programme could be a teaser of what to expect in the future from the Royal Ballet. Wheeldon and McGregor are to be the two creative associates in the Royal Ballet's new directorship headed by Kevin O'Hare when he takes over from Dame Monica Mason this autumn.

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