fri 20/09/2019

Sadler's Wells

Alvin Ailey, Programme C review - black, beautiful, brilliant

The Ailey company is that rare thing – a dance legend that’s even better than you remember. While no one forgets their first encounter with America’s No.1 touring troupe and its unique mix of ballet, modern, jazz, street, and all-round athletic...

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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Sadler's Wells review - Still more Revelations

There is no equivalent of the Ailey phenomenon. This is a modern dance company with a New York square named after it. It’s a dance company that has performed at the inauguration of two presidents. Its calling card, Revelations, a suite of dances...

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Matthew Bourne's Romeo and Juliet, Sadler's Wells review - heart-stopping drama

Your first thought on hearing there's a new Matthew Bourne Romeo and Juliet might well be 'doesn't it exist already?' So obvious does this marriage of high drama, lush iconic score, and Britain's premier dance maker seem that you might well be...

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Ballet Flamenco Sara Baras, Sadler's Wells review - storming opening to flamenco festival

Crowned queen of the percussive heel and the trouser suit, Sara Baras has the audience on its feet long before the final number of her show Sombras (Shadows). The Spanish superstar is a familiar presence at Sadler’s Wells, having fronted its annual...

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San Francisco Ballet, Liang/Marston/Pita, Sadler's Wells - elemental, ethereal and kitschy, too

Sun, snow, and some unadorned silliness danced to the music of Björk: no one can accuse San Francisco of casting an insufficiently wide tonal (or climatic) net in this second of four programmes on view from San Francisco Ballet as part of their...

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'I wrote a letter to Björk in Icelandic and it did the trick': Helgi Tomasson on an intervention that saved a ballet

Visits from major foreign ballet companies are always news, but a two-week London season by one of America’s “big three” is something to get excited about. San Francisco Ballet doesn’t rest on its laurels. Eight of the 12 pieces offered in the...

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Mitten wir im Leben sind, De Keersmaeker, Queyras, Rosas, Sadler's Wells review - Bach-worthy genius

All Bach is dance, a teacher once told me. The justifiable exaggeration switched on a light; leaping to the Brandenburg Concertos followed. This great work of kinetic art is of a different order. Choreographer and performer Anne Teresa De...

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She Persisted, English National Ballet, Sadler's Wells review - a must-see triple bill

She does indeed persist, that remarkable Tamara Rojo. Dismayed by the fact that, in 20 years as a dancer, she had never performed a ballet made by a woman, she mounted a triple bill called She Said, featuring only work by and about women. That 2016...

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Victoria, Northern Ballet, Sadler's Wells - A queen re-instated, once again

Given that the life of Queen Victoria spanned the best part of a century, the first task for any biographer is to hack a path through the mountain of facts. It ought to help that the queen was a prolific diarist. Too bad for choreographer Cathy...

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The Thread, Russell Maliphant & Vangelis, Sadler’s Wells review – an inspiring marriage of old and new

In The Thread Russell Maliphant attempts what, at first sight, appears a foolhardy project – the juxtaposition of contemporary and traditional Greek dance. The two genres seem poles apart, the one being collective and in unison, the other more...

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Bon Voyage, Bob, Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch, Sadler's Wells review - interminable ennui

It's a decade since Pina Bausch sadly died, and during that time her company has kept her memory alive by revisiting her amazingly rich legacy. Inevitably, though, the time would come for them to embark on a new phase; but how? The unique mix of...

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Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake, Sadler's Wells - vivid, enchanting

The Matthew Bourne Swan Lake has become a classic. And – lest that word conjure up dusty tomes and a niggling sense of obligation – this is definitively not the old-but-worthy, improving-but-dull kind of classic. This is the "where has this been all...

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