"Joseph Caley" tag
Isaac Hernandez and Jurgita Dronina in La Sylphide.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Song of the Earth, La Sylphide – London

★★★★✰   The pairing cannily indulges our need for vivid material on these bleak mid-winter nights while also steering us down from the high of the Christmas circuit, with its sugary Nutcrackers and other family-friendly fare.

Tamara Rojo, Joseph Caley and Fernando Carratala Coloma in Song of the Earth.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – English National Ballet in Song of the Earth and La Sylphide

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Shiori Kase and Joseph Caley in Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Nutcracker – London

★★★✰✰   One of the ballet’s biggest departures from tradition is having the same dancer play Clara and the Sugar Plum Fairy. The reasoning is unclear, but Kase proves versatile enough to pull it off…

Jurgita Dronina and Isaac Hernandez in La Sylphide.© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Song of the Earth, La Sylphide – Manchester

★★★★✰   The ENB production of La Sylphide has been staged by three luminaries of Danish ballet, Frank Andersen, Eva Kloborg and Anne Marie Vessel Schlüter, and is, therefore, one supposes, as authentic to the August Bournonville ideals, as possible…

Akane Takada in The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude.© Robbie Jack. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Opening the New bill – Hull

★★★★✰   The Royal Ballet’s away-day to Hull, this year’s UK Capital of Culture, was dramatic in its scale: 17 pieces presented over three hours…

Iain Mackay (Prospero) in David Bintley's The Tempest.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – The Tempest – London

★★★✰✰   Bintley has treated Shakespeare’s drama as a masque, full of spectacle, music and dancing, with elusive characters that are more allegorical than realistic. It doesn’t work as a narrative ballet because the sub-plots are too complicated…

Tyrone Singleton (Caliban) in David Bintley's The Tempest.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – The Tempest (premiere) – Birmingham

★★★✰✰   In a nutshell Bintley’s Tempest is a visual triumph but feels slight choreographically and you’d be well advised to mug up on the story before seeing it.

Joseph Caley (Ferdinand) and Jenna Roberts (Miranda) in David Bintley's The Tempest.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Birmingham Royal Ballet in The Tempest

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Karla Doorbar and Joseph Caley in The Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Birmingham Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Gallery by Dave Morgan of Sir Peter Wright’s much admired production now being danced on its 25th anniversary…

Birmingham Royal Ballet in Balanchine's Theme and Variations.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Themes & Variations, Enigma Variations, The King Dances – London

The 28-strong cast rose to the challenge of Themes and Variations, with its tricky footwork and complicated formations…

Momoko Hirata in Sylvia.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Sylvia – Birmingham

David Bintley’s Sylvia is a great piece of classical dance and escapist fun.

Celine Gittens in Sylvia.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Birmingham Royal Ballet in Sylvia

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Birmingham Royal Ballet in Les Rendezvous.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Les Rendezvous, Kin., Elite Syncopations – Nottingham

Les Rendezvous is 21 minutes of classical movement perfection, but Alexander Whitley comes surprisingly close to besting it with his 20-minute more modern take on ballet – Kin.

Momoko Hirata and Joseph Caley as Sugar Plum Fairy and Prince in The Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Birmingham Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Birmingham Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker, photographed by Dave Morgan at the Birmingham Hippodrome…

Birmingham Royal Ballet in Kin.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Les Rendezvous, Kin., Elite Syncopations – High Wycombe

I was suitably sent home happy.

Jenna Roberts in Alexander Whitley's Kin.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet at IDFB 2014 – Quatrain, Kin., Façade – Birmingham

Choreographically Alexander Whitley’s ‘Kin.’ was probably the best new thing I’ve seen BRB premiere these last 4 years…

Momoko Hirata (Princess Belle Sakuma) and Joseph Caley (Salamander Prince) in The Prince of the Pagodas.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Prince of the Pagodas (Caley/Hirata) – London

In his programme note, Bintley claims to have foregone sexual romance in favour of ‘something more mystical and subtle’, connected with Japanese veneration of its Imperial family. It doesn’t resonate in this royal kingdom.

Artists of Birmingham Royal Ballet as Yokai in The Prince of the Pagodas.© Roy Smiljanic. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Prince of the Pagodas – Salford

Bintley has created a solidly entertaining family work that never bores but never soars to another emotional level, either…

Birmingham Royal Ballet in 'Still Life' at the Penguin Café.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – E=mc2, Tombeaux, ‘Still Life’ at the Penguin Café – London

What the programme showed was that, unlike most of other ballet choreographers in Britain today, Bintley’s work isn’t primarily about the pas de deux.

BRB Coppelia publicity image.© Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Coppelia and Mid-scale Tour – Birmingham, High Wycombe

Birmingham Royal Ballet are busy at the moment – we catch up with them touring a mixed bill, and at home in Coppelia – happy times…

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