tue 21/05/2024

Ballets Russes

La La La Human Steps, New Work, Sadler's Wells

The first half-hour of Edouard Lock’s nameless new piece is some of the most thrilling dance imaginable; dynamic, mercurial, as men and women convulsed with frenzy fight each other in stark spotlights in the dark. They’re dressed in black, so that...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Poulenc, Saint-Saëns, Stravinsky

Claire Chevallier and Jos van Immerseel: pungent in Poulenc

There's a Gallic flavour to this week's new releases, with two unusual recordings of orchestral music played on period instruments. And there's a set of seminal 20th-century ballet scores, played by a wonderful French orchestra under their much-...

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Homage to Fokine, Mariinsky Ballet, Royal Opera House

Mikhail Fokine, choreographer to both West and East, looked forward and back, too. He studied in the old Imperial Theatre School when the tsars ruled Russia, and he was also Diaghilev’s creative genius at the Ballets Russes, moving dance into the...

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Rattigan's Nijinsky/ The Deep Blue Sea, Chichester Festival Theatre

Terence Rattigan’s art of concealment is what makes The Deep Blue Sea so rich and true an observation of the way people behave. Being deprived of his concealing mask is the crucial idea of the interesting new play partnering it at Chichester to mark...

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Contemporary Dance Weekend, BBC Four

A night in with contemporary dance on telly: Too much explanation

Yesterday was a day when male physicality and the science of movement preoccupied - when you watch Rafa Nadal or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, you can’t help thinking about the contrasts of grace that achieve the same athletic needs; Nadal the pouncing...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Mahler, Schubert, Stravinsky

Thomas Zehetmair lays down his fiddle to conduct kindred spirits Schubert and Gál

A 20th-century Austrian symphony receives a memorable first recording, coupled with a witty, rarely played slice of Schubert. Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony is heard in a powerful reading recorded in the Royal Festival Hall. And we’ve an...

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Thamar/ Sheherazade, Les Saisons Russes, London Coliseum

Irma Nioradze as Thamar: Laser light show and see-through pink leopard spots all part of the new Diaghilev experience

We’ve been so well educated or so roundly brainwashed to expect a certain high standard of Russian ballet that to experience the first two programmes of the three offered by the “Russian Seasons" team at the Coliseum, so-called tributes to...

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The Blue God/ The Firebird, Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle, London Coliseum

Ilze Liepa as the goddess in the Lotus Flower entwined with Nikolai Tsiskaridze's Blue God

Anyone who feels, as I do, that the Aesthetic Movement's "cult of beauty" now on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum can't compare with the fabulous Ballets Russes exhibition which went before it can dine again on a feast of Russian colour at...

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The Ballets Russes Return to Russia

Ninety-nine years ago, there were sights and stars seen upon the ballet stage as had never been dreamed of. A young genius of 32 was the driving engine of Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes - the choreographer Mikhail Fokine, who created fantasies of...

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Black & White, English National Ballet, London Coliseum

'Suite en blanc': Astronomically stylish as only French classical ballet can be

At the 11th hour (as we all know from the current telly series), English National Ballet has pulled a gorgeous plum out of its back catalogue that throws open vistas of what a ballet company should be: Serge Lifar’s sumptuous Suite en Blanc. Why...

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Hoppé Portraits: Society, Studio and Street, National Portrait Gallery

British Museum Underground Station: 'a terrific evocation of a lost world'

If you’ve seen pictures of the Ballets Russes, then you’ve seen Hoppé photographs. But then, if you’ve seen any society pictures from the 1920s and 1930s, then you’ve seen Hoppé. And famous writers. In fact, for portrait photography in Britain...

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Photo Gallery: Ballet in Focus

A display of rarely seen photographs of key ballet dancers from the start of the 20th century goes on display at the National Portrait Gallery. The gallery holds the largest surviving archive of the once-fashionable Bassano Studio, London, including...

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