Author: Graham Watts

Dance Writer/Critic. Member of the Critics' Circle, Chairman of the Dance Section and National Dance Awards Committee. Writes for leading dance magazines & websites - in UK, Europe, USA, Japan & cyberspace. Graham is based in London.

Under are the articles written for DanceTabs. Reviews on Balletco
English National Ballet in Pina Bausch's The Rite of Spring.© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Pina Bausch, William Forsythe, Hans van Manen bill – London

★★★★★   One cannot help but observe that while the programmes of other companies both hit and miss, in terms of their critical appreciation and popular appeal, ENB is continually raising the bar…

Trisha Brown.© Marc Ginot and courtesy Trisha Brown Company. (Click image for larger version)

Obituary: Trisha Brown, 1936-2017

Trisha Brown leaves the most enormous legacy of repertoire and ideas, such that it is impossible to imagine the development of modern dance without her…

Sergei Polunin and Natalia Osipova in Narcissus and Echo.© Alastair Muir. (Click image for larger version)

Project Polunin – Icarus, The night before the Flight; Tea or Coffee; Narcissus and Echo – London

★★✰✰✰   I begin this notice with a codicil. Let this preamble show my unbounded admiration for the spirit and rationale of Project Polunin.

Compania Manuel Linan.© Marcos G Punto. (Click image for larger version)

Compania Manuel Liñán – Reversible – London

★★★★★   Liñán is one of flamenco’s great innovators; driving the art forward through the twenty-first century…

Manuel Liñan.© Marcos G Punto. (Click image for larger version)

5 Questions to Manuel Liñán, Flamenco dancer and choreographer

Manuel Liñán will be very busy during this year’s Flamenco Festival London. He is directing the annual Gala Flamenca (23-25 February) and also his company will close the Festival…

Wayne Parsons.© Nicole Guarino. (Click image for larger version)

5 Questions to Wayne Parsons about his latest work – Vestige (and more…)

Wayne Parsons interviewed about his choreographic practice and latest work – Vestige – to be premiered at London’s Rich Mix on 25 Feb.

Olga Smirnova and Semyon Chudin in La Belle.© Alice Blangero. (Click image for larger version)

Les Ballets de Monte Carlo – La Belle – Monte-Carlo

★★★★✰   Maillot has succeeded in giving perhaps the most authentic retelling of Perrault’s story in dance with his tale of love overcoming the darkest evil…

Liam De Paor in El Principito.© Alvaro Maldonado. (Click image for larger version)

Pasodos Dance Company – El Principito – Palma

★★★★✰   Although ostensibly a children’s story, El Principito is a philosophical fable, parodying the world at war during the time that Saint-Exupéry was writing (1942) and it is also to some extent autobiographical…

Alina Cojocaru and Cesar Corrales in Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Nutcracker – London

★★★✰✰   For all the recent innovations that Tamara Rojo has brought to the English National Ballet, including three stunning full-evening programmes of her own devising, the Nutcracker is still the heart of every season…

Oleg Gabyshev and Lyubov Andreyeva in Up & Down.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Eifman Ballet – Up & Down – London

★★★✰✰   In truth, the ballet is up and down (or, more accurately, down and up) for, overall, the second act is a huge improvement on the first.

Botis Seva's Women of Sun.© Chris Nash. (Click image for larger version)

Botis Seva – Women of Sun – London

★★★✰✰   It is rare to find young choreographers developing a distinctive movement language and Seva is certainly one of the most original emerging talents in UK.

Lee Yin-ying in Beckoning.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Cloud Gate 2 – Wicked Fish, The Wall, Beckoning – London

★★★✰✰   One can only marvel at the flowing control of these excellent dancers and the simple beauty and purity of the dance they presented.

Jasmin Vardimon.© and courtesy Jasmin Vardimon. (Click image for larger version)

5 Questions to Jasmin Vardimon concentrating on her latest work and tour – Pinocchio

jasminvardimon.com Full details of Pinocchio tour The Jasmin Vardimon Company has built up a remarkable repertoire of physical theatre and contemporary dance, since the company was founded, almost 20 years’ ago. The principal…

Lucy Balfour and Luke Ahmet in The Creation.© Johan Persson. (Click image for larger version)

Rambert – The Creation – London

★★★★✰   This is the largest production yet mounted by Rambert – celebrating its 90th Anniversary, this year – accounting for over 110 performers, including 70 musicians and singers.

Rambert in Malgorzata Dzierzon's Flight.© Johan Persson. (Click image for larger version)

Rambert – Contemporaries: Flight, Frames, Hydrargyrum – London

★★★✰✰   Malgorzata Dzierzon, Patricia Okenwa and Alexander Whitley are all at different stages of their emergence as choreographers. Each of them has progressed with the active support of Rambert’s choreographic development programme…

Vincent Dance Theatre in Virgin Territory.© Bosie Vincent. (Click image for larger version)

Vincent Dance Theatre – Virgin Territory – London

★★★✰✰   Our rapidly changing world lies at the heart of Charlotte Vincent’s Virgin Territory, which concentrates all its attention on the sexualisation of children; by society, by predators, by parents and …by themselves.

Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company in Inter_rupted.© Nirvair Singh. (Click image for larger version)

Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company – Inter_rupted – London

★★★✰✰   This ideal of taking the traditional forms of Kathak and placing the music and movement within a contemporary context gives Inter_rupted its rationale.

Jérôme Bel's Gala.© Josefina Tommasi. (Click image for larger version)

Jerome Bel – Gala – London

★★★★✰   Jérôme Bel’s Gala turns the performer/spectator dynamic and the act of performance itself, inside-out…

China National Peking Opera Company in The Legend of the White Snake.© China National Peking Opera Company. (Click image for larger version

China National Peking Opera Company – Legend of the White Snake & The General & The Prime Minister – London

★★★★★   …put together, over two very different performances – one highly comedic, the other, much more serious – all of this imagery, profound drama, great singing, hilarious comedy and so much more, is easily enough to justify my very first five star-rating of 2016.

Arch8 in Erik Kaiel’s Tetris.© Erik Korzo. (Click image for larger version)

Erik Kaiel / Arch 8 Dancers – No Man Is An Island, Tetris – London

★★★✰✰   Despite my reservations about joining in, this show was a lot of fun to watch; and it was clearly loads of joy for the young people – whatever their actual age – to take part in.

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