"A Midsummer Night’s Dream" tag
Christy Funsch and Nol Simonse in the beauty and ruin of friends, of bodies.© Robbie Sweeny. (Click image for larger version)

Nol Simonse and Christy Funsch – the beauty and ruin of friends, of bodies – San Francisco

★★★★✰   Choreographed by Nol Simonse, in collaboration with Christy Funsch, and performed by the incomparable pair, a myriad of ideas and themes were at play during the sixty-minute work. But one concept was particularly striking: time.

Beniamin Citkowski surrounded by “The Brides of Dracula” in Eros Thanatos.© Krzysztof Mystkowski. (Click image for larger version)

Bialy Teatr Tanca Izadory Weiss – Eros Thanatos – Warsaw

★★★★✰   Biały Teatr Tańca (it means White Dance Theatre), is a new vehicle for the work of the uber-talented choreographer, Izadora Weiss, a protégé of the great Jiri Kylian…

Sarah Steele in Ethan Stiefel's Frontier.© Theo Kossenas Media 4 Artists. (Click image for larger version)

Washington Ballet – Lilac Garden, The Dream, Frontier (premiere) – Washington

★★★✰✰   Ethan Stiefel’s Frontier, his first significant commission, had all the right ingredients… Yet the ballet, with its space travel theme, didn’t leave much of an impression…

Baltic Dance Theatre in Tristan and Izolde.© K Mystkowski. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – Tristan and Izolde, Death and the Maiden – Gdansk

★★★✰✰   What is different is the profound impact of Weiss’s choreography over this sixty-minute piece. Her movement is always busy and intensely musical but generally it is a means to an end…

Suzanne Farrell.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

Interview: Suzanne Farrell – Artistic Director

We talk to Farrell about her summer program, her approach to teaching aspiring ballet dancers, her studies and work with George Balanchine and also about her her company and its new season at the Kennedy Center, which runs 30 Oct – 1 Nov 2015.

Sarah Thompson in Schaufuss' La Sylphide.© David Kelly. (Click image for larger version)

A Heads-Up on Queensland Ballet, La Sylphide and company director Li Cunxin

Jann Parry on the award winning Peter Schaufuss “La Sylphide”, not seen in the UK in decades, and Li Cunxin’s Queensland Ballet who are bringing it to London this summer. Includes an interview with Cunxin…

Teresa Reichlen in A Midsummer Night's Dream.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – New York

George Balanchine’s Midsummer Night’s Dream is really two ballets, layered one upon the other.

Tura Gomez Coll as Ariel in The Tempest.© K. Mystkowski. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – The Tempest – Gdansk

Weiss is taking Baltic Dance Theatre on a journey that needs to be seen outside as well as inside Poland.

Patricia McBride on the red carpet.© Margot Schulman. (Click image for larger version)

Patricia McBride Honoured at The 37th Annual Kennedy Center Honours

McBride joined the New York City Ballet in 1959, and two years later, at the age of 18, she was promoted to the rank of principal, becoming the youngest principal dancer in the troupe’s history.

Baltic Dance Theatre in Jiri Kylian's Falling Angels.© K. Mystkowski. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – Netherlands bills 1 & 2 – Gdansk

Baltic Dance Theatre have just presented two Netherlands inspired nights of dance with local premieres by Izadora Weiss (director), Jiri Kylian and Patrick Delcroix. Graham Watts with a comprehensive report…

Vicktoria Tereshkina in A Midsummer Night's Dream.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Mariinsky Ballet – Apollo, A Midsummer Night’s Dream – London

Viktoria Tereshkina has a warm personality and this enhances her dancing. She has long thin limbs and offers expansive port de bras, while her legs whip up effortlessly but with control.

Amelia Forrest (Servant) and Filip Michalak (Master) in Light by Izadora Weiss.© Sebastian Cwikla. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – Netherlands 1 bill: Clash, Fun, Light – Gdansk

The big event was Light, set to the music of Phillip Glass and based upon Symborska’s poem about “that woman from the Rijksmuseum” (a reference to the servant girl that Vermeer painted pouring milk).

Mariinsky Ballet – London season including Casting

Casting Released for Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Apollo, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Firebird, Marguerite and Armand, DSCH, Cinderella (and remember all casting can change…)

Baltic Dance Theatre in The Rite of Spring.© Krzysztof Mystkowski. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Rite of Spring – Warsaw

This is as powerful as dance theatre gets and a bill that connects and chimes with us all.

Greta Hodgkinson and Guillaume Cote in Giselle.© Aleksandar Antonijevic. (Click image for larger version)

National Ballet of Canada – Giselle – Saratoga

Quibbling and Côté aside, these were both terrific performances, bursting with energy …I wouldn’t mind seeing the Canadians become regular visitors to Saratoga

Poster for A Midsummer Night's Dream with Sayaka Haruna as Puck.© Sebastian Cwikla. (Click image for larger version)

Baltic Dance Theatre – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Gdansk

Ultimately this was a very human take on the ‘Dream’ – full of emotional punch, fun and bold movement in a clever modern staging. It’s a production that you could take anywhere…

Valeria Martynyuk in Don Quixote.© Natasha Razina. (Click image for larger version)

Mariinsky Ballet – Gala – Baden-Baden

The Mariinsky Ballet’s annual Baden-Baden tour is something of a balletomane’s winter retreat and, with mild weather to boot over Christmas, provided yet another opportunity this season to catch up with the St. Petersburg company.

Troy Schumacher.© Henry Leutwyler. (Click image for larger version)

Troy Schumacher – Satellite Ballet & New York City Ballet – Choreographer and dancer

Dance is a difficult thing to experience outside of the theatre, but for the sustainability of the artform it has to find a way to make itself more widely available.

Nathalie Harrison and Elizabeth Harrod in Liam Scarlett's Viscera.© Dave Morgan, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Viscera, Infra, Fool’s Paradise – London

After the urban angst of Infra, Fool’s Paradise concludes the evening on a sigh of pleasure. This triple bill is proof indeed that contemporary ballet is alive and thriving.

Teresa Reichlen as Titania, with Bottom (Henry Seth) in Balanchine's A Midsummer Night’s Dream. © Paul Kolnik.

New York City Ballet – A Midsummer Night’s Dream – New York

In the second act, storytelling gives way to pure dance, the highpoint of which is one of the most delicate, poetic pas de deux ever made – an allegory of love, danced by an unidentified couple. It is a Balanchinean vision of absolute trust and partnership…

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