December 2012
Sergei Polunin in Narcisse.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

2012 Dance Memories – London

Lynette Halewood with her personal selection of London dance memories this last year…

Poster image for the 2012 festival. © Festival Internacional de Ballet de La Habana 2012. (Click image for larger version)

23rd International Ballet Festival of Havana, 2012

The festival was as intensive as ever, with three performances running on seven days, four on one day, some concurrently. The range and quality of dance overall was impressive.

Assis Carreiro.© Sylvaine Poitau. (Click image for larger version)

Assis Carreiro – Royal Ballet of Flanders – Artistic Director

Five Questions for Assis Carreiro on taking over as Artistic Director of the Royal Ballet of Flanders…

City Contemporary Dance Company in The Comedy Of K.© Conrad Dy-Liacco. (Click image for larger version)

City Contemporary Dance Company – The Comedy Of K – Hong Kong

City Contemporary Dance Company’s closing show of 2012 was a welcome revival of Helen Lai’s 2004 The Comedy of K, a seminal work which shows this celebrated choreographer at the height of her powers.

Gudrun Bojesen.© Henrik Stenberg. (Click image for larger version)

Gudrun Bojesen – Royal Danish Ballet – Principal

Gudrun Bojesen, the Royal Danish Ballet’s leading classical ballerina, is at an interesting stage of her career…

Royal Ballet in Raymonda Act III.Dancers, l-r (men first): Brian Maloney, Johannes Stepanek, Valeri Hristov, Alexander Campbell, Dawid Trzensimiech, Kenta Kura, Eric Underwood, Valentino Zuccheti, then ladies - Melissa Hamilton, Helen Crawford, Fumi Kaneko, Yasmine Naghdi, Yuhui Choe, Emma-Jane Maguire, Itziar Mendizabal, Hikaru Kobayashi.© Dave Morgan, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Firebird, In the Night, Raymonda Act lll – London

It’s the Royal Ballet’s varied and unique repertoire that has kept me loyal to the company through some very thin times as well as the golden seasons, and this programme is a nice example of what a flick through its back – catalogue can produce.

HKB in the Waltz of the Flowers from The Nutcracker.© Conrad Dy-Liacco. (Click image for larger version)

Hong Kong Ballet – The Nutcracker – Hong Kong

This new production of Nutcracker is ambitious with a complicated but intelligent libretto which makes a welcome change for the audience.

Olesya Novikova and Kimin Kim in Swan Lake.© Sunkyung Jang. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Mariinsky Ballet in Swan Lake

27 pictures by Sunkyung Jang

Agnès Letestu and Hervé Moreau in Woundwork 1.© Anne Deniau / Opéra national de Paris. (Click image for larger version)

Paris Opera Ballet – William Forsythe / Trisha Brown bill, Don Quixote – Paris

The middle piece, O Zlozony/O Compsite, is a beautiful work by Trisha Brown, made for the company in 2004. Bizarely it always reminds me of Ashton’s Monotones…

Mark Morris Dance Group perform The Hard Nut.© Stephanie Berger. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – The Hard Nut – San Francisco

I always enjoy The Hard Nut even though there isn’t a lot of choreography.

Artists of Ballet West in The Nutcracker party scene.© Luke Isley.

Ballet West – The Nutcracker – Washington

From start to finish this Nutcracker …is a true Christmas gift for children and adults alike – one of the most satisfying versions of the holiday classic I have ever seen.

From the Fresh promo video - Khronos performing For Queen & Country?.© The Place.

The Place presents – Fresh – London

People talk about wanting to get new and younger audiences in for dance and this was really a great way of achieving it.

Ana “Rokafella” Garcia.© Yu Wadee.

SF International Hip Hop Dancefest and Clas/sick Hip Hop – San Francisco

Sitting through both a matinée and an evening performance of the 14th Annual San Francisco International Hip Hop DanceFest on November 18th is the perfect antidote to the memorial service I attended the day before. Both celebrate life…

Poster image with Delia Matthews as Cinderella.© Tim Cross. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Cinderella – Birmingham

As a young partnership Delia Mathews and Tyrone Singleton really are exceptionally good.

Mara Galeazzi and Edward Watson in The Firebird.© Dave Morgan, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Firebird, Raymonda Act 3 and In the Night

36 pictures by Dave Morgan…

Rachel Rawlins and Colin Peasley farewell curtain calls.© Jess Bialek. (Click image for larger version)

Australian Ballet – Rachel Rawlins and Colin Peasley bid farewell

Rawlins, 39, shared the numerous curtain calls with Colin Peasley, who must surely have broken some records for the longest full-time dancing career with one ballet company in history. His first appearance with the Australian Ballet was in Swan Lake in November 1962…

Roberta Marquez and Steven McRae in The Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

The Royal Ballet – Nutcracker live screening in cinemas – Everywhere

There were revelations on-screen, too. …How many first-time spectators spot that the Biedermeyer-period Christmas cake in the Act 1 party provides the marzipan-and-icing set for Act II?

Snowflakes in The Nutcracker (in 2010).© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – The Nutcracker, Kase and Vargas cast – London

This wasn’t Shiori Kase’s debut in the role, but it was remarkably polished and complete for one so young.

Vadim Muntagirov in The Nutcracker.© Patrick Baldwin. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – The Nutcracker, Klimentova and Muntagirov cast – London

….the performance done, Muntagirov was promoted live on stage by new Director Tamara Rojo to the highest rank in the company – Lead Principal. A pleasant surprise, but in fact no surprise at all – it was only ever a question of time.

Julien Cottereau.© Julien Cottereau. (Click image for larger version)

Julien Cottereau – Imagine Toi – London

…a one-man show from a former Cirque du Soleil clown intrigued for being targeted at the entire family at a time when everybody does Nutcrackers and I’m feeling crackered out. You might well be too, so read on…

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