wed 08/12/2021

Dance

Starstruck, Scottish Ballet review - smart, sassy and cinematic

How do you picture Gene Kelly? Most likely in his effervescent screen persona, either as the burly ex-GI of An American in Paris, or as the hoofer without a raincoat in Singin’ in the Rain.You’re less likely to picture him peering through a movie...

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Past Present, Linbury Theatre review - historic, but very much alive

Not so long ago, a few decades at most, anyone with a passing interest in dance knew what “modern” looked like. It was earthbound, usually barefoot, and it focussed on mundane movements such as walking or lying down as often as it looked like dance...

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Ballet Black, Linbury Theatre review - an essential part of the landscape

The colour of a shoe might seem a trivial thing. But when in 2018 the dancewear manufacturer Freed launched the UK’s first range of pointe shoes to match darker skin tones, true equal opportunity in British ballet came a big step closer....

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Curated by Carlos, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Sadler's Wells review - a star turn

When a great performer takes on the running of a ballet company, the effect on its dancers can be transformative. It happened when Mikhail Baryshnikov took on American Ballet Theatre in the 1980s. It’s been happening at English National Ballet since...

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Royal Opera House lullabies for Little Amal

“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...

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L'Heure Exquise, Linbury Theatre review - an exquisite tragedy in miniature

Ballet dancers, even the greatest, don’t expect longevity. There are no Maggie Smiths or Helen Mirrens in the ballet world – there just aren’t the roles. So the news that Alessandra Ferri was to mark the 40th anniversary of her association with the...

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Bernstein Double Bill, Opera North review - fractured relationships in song and dance

Leonard Bernstein’s one-act opera Trouble in Tahiti enjoyed a relatively trouble-free gestation, at least compared to his other stage works. Its seven short scenes last around 50 minutes, Bernstein providing his own libretto and completing much of...

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The Dante Project, Royal Ballet review - a towering achievement

Unless you happen to be a student of Italian language or culture, the significance of the 14th-century poet Dante Alighieri’s insights into the human condition may have passed you by, albeit that this year marks 700 years since his death. Where...

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Romeo and Juliet, Birmingham Royal Ballet & Royal Ballet review - a storming start to the season

Two households, both alike in dignity … and both launching their respective seasons with a production of Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet. For neither the Royal Ballet nor its midlands sibling Birmingham Royal Ballet is this a surprising...

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The Midnight Bell, New Adventures, Sadler's Wells review - dance theatre at its most compelling

The British author Patrick Hamilton is best known for two highly successful plays, Rope (1929) and Gaslight (1939), which in turn became highly successful films. But it’s Hamilton’s novels, set among the fog-bound pubs and clubs of 1930s Soho, that...

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RIP dancer and photographer Colin Jones - obituary

In the ballet world, Colin Jones, who died on 22 September aged 85, was famous for being married, for a while, to the great Royal Ballet ballerina Lynn Seymour, during his brief career as a dancer with the company. In the wider world, however, Jones...

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Creature, English National Ballet, Sadler's Wells review - bombastic and unreadable

If a new ballet can be doomed by the weight of expectation, then Creature didn’t stand a chance. First scheduled to appear in the spring of 2020, then again last autumn, the publicity drive over the past weeks has had the air of marketing a used car...

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