Reviews
Carys Staton, Rachel Poirier and Alexander Leonhartsberger in Swan Lake/Loch na hEala.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Teac Damsa / Michael Keegan-Dolan – Swan Lake/Loch na hEala – London

★★★✰✰   This is Swan Lake in name only. There is no Tchaikovsky… there are no tutus… there is no-one called Odette, Odile, Siegfried or Rothbart, although there are several characters called McLoughlin…

Wendy Whelan, Brian Brooks and Brooklyn Rider in Some of a Thousand Words.© Nir Arieli. (Click image for larger version)

Wendy Whelan, Brian Brooks and Brooklyn Rider – Some of a Thousand Words – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   I very much like Brooks’ work, particularly his approach to rebound, points of contact in partnering and his nuanced use of accumulation…

Vincent Dance Theatre in Shut Down.© Bosie Vincent. (Click image for larger version)

Vincent Dance Theatre – Shut Down – London

★★★✰✰   Shut Down is a hard-hitting work about men. Actually white privileged men. It portrays a bleak landscape of absent fathers, depressed teenagers and confused blokes.

J'aime Crandall in Raymonda.© Henrik Stenberg. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Danish Ballet – Raymonda – Copenhagen

★★★✰✰   All up, I think this production demonstrated the strengths and weaknesses of “Raymonda” as a ballet. It certainly is a fabulous looking (and listening) calling card which might tour well…

Marianela Nunez and Vadim Muntagirov in Sylvia.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Sylvia – London

★★★★✰   Sylvia makes a welcome return to the repertoire, reacquainting dancers and audiences with Ashton’s sensibility and complex choreography. It’s a joy but not a masterpiece, as he well knew…

RAWdance Co-Artistic Directors Wendy Rein and Ryan T. Smith.© Margo Moritz. (Click image for larger version)

RAWdance presents – CONCEPT 21: Chamber & works in progress by Bay Area choreographers – San Francisco

★★★★✰   Designed, curated and hosted by RAWdance’s co-Artistic Directors Ryan T. Smith and Wendy Rein, the CONCEPT series invites San Francisco dance enthusiasts to experience an intimate showing of local performances and choreography.

Liam Francis and Hannah Rudd in Ben Duke's Goat.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Rambert – A Linh Curva, Symbiosis, Goat – London

★★★★✰   There is a cocksure, swaggering confidence about this company and these dancers, in this programme.

Svetlana Zakharova and Bolshoi friends in Strokes Through the Tail.© Jack Davant. (Click image for larger version)

Svetlana Zakharova – Amore: Francesca da Rimini, Rain before it Falls, Strokes Through the Tail – London

★★★✰✰   Happy for Zakharova who ultimately curated an interesting night, very happy to see her retinue of Bolshoi dancers and happy to see Donlon provide such final good cheer.

Men in Motion flyer.© Nick Knight. (Click image for larger version)

Ivan Putrov – Men in Motion (2017) – London

★★✰✰✰   All the ingredients seemed promising but the evening was disappointing, struggling to recover from the tedium of the dire opening item…

Rena Butler in Pavement.© Steven Schreiber. (Click image for larger version)

Kyle Abraham / Abraham.In.Motion – Pavement – London

★★★✰✰   Pavement, from 2012, takes as its touchstone the 1991 film Boyz n the Hood, John Singleton’s hard-hitting coming-of-age drama…

Okwui Okpokwasili in Hunted.© Caroline Ablain. (Click image for larger version)

Maud Le Pladec & Okwui Okpokwasili – Hunted – London

★★✰✰✰   Munyaneza rises to the challenge of the show with her provocative, fearless performance, but it’s still difficult to sit through.

H2Dance in Staging Ages.© Benedict Johnson. (Click image for larger version)

H2Dance – Staging Ages – London

★★✰✰✰   …but item follows item in quick succession without cumulatively registering a bigger impact. It feels ultimately insubstantial.

Protein in Border Tales.© Chris Nash. (Click image for larger version)

Protein – Border Tales – London

★★★✰✰   Is this depiction of divisive ‘insider/outsider’ British society really a true reflection?

Aditi Mangaldas (Darbar Festival supplied publicty image).© Dinesh Khanna. (Click image for larger version)

Darbar Festival London: Indian Adventures of Sitar and Dance bill with Mangaldas, Khoo and Banerjee

★★★★✰   The Darbar Festival has been celebrating Indian classical music for a number of years, but now at Sadler’s Wells it has an additional dance component curated by Akram Khan, showcasing different forms…

Solene Weinachter, Eve Ganneau and John Kendall in The North.© Nicole Guarino. (Click image for larger version)

Joan Clevillé Dance – The North – London

★★✰✰✰   The opening scene of The North, a new dance theatre work from Dundee-based troupe Joan Clevillé Dance, starts with a scene plucked straight from a Scandi noir…

Natalia Osipova in Arthur Pita's The Wind.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Illustrated ‘Farewell’, The Wind, Untouchable – London

★★★✰✰   Kevin O’Hare is commissioning choreographers who want to make use of what the Opera House can offer; he’s not setting out to declare where ballet ought to be heading and he’s not playing safe.

Cia Maduixa in DOT.© Jorid Pla. (Click image for larger version)

Cia Maduixa – DOT – London

★★★★★   What makes the show so seductive is the smooth and slick integration of visual effects with movement.

Emma Love Suddarth and William Lin-Yee in Crystal Pite’s Plot Point.© Angela Sterling. (Click image for larger version)

Pacific Northwest Ballet – Her Story: Her Door to the Sky, Afternoon Ball, Plot Point – Seattle

★★★★✰   Suspense be damned. I’m just going to give away the ending of this review: Crystal Pite’s Plot Point, which closes Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Her Story triple bill, is a terrific piece of dance-theater.

Tzu-Chao Chou in ‘Still Life’ at the Penguin Café.© Andy Ross. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Arcadia, Le Baiser de la fée, ‘Still Life’ at the Penguin Café – London

★★✰✰✰   Bintley’s ‘Still Life’ at the Penguin Café saves a dispiriting evening by providing nimble demi-character dancing with a timely message, first delivered nearly 20 years ago.

Jessica Lang Dance in Stabat mater.© Karli Cadel. (Click image for larger version)

Jessica Lang Dance – Stabat mater – New York

Jessica Lang Dance White Light Festival: Stabat mater ★★★★✰ New York, Rose Theater 2 November 2017 www.jessicalangdance.com www.lincolncenter.org/venue/rose-theater Despite the fact that Christians make up about a third of today’s global population, compared…

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