"London" tag
Tamara Rojo and Ivan Vasiliev in Le Jeune Homme et la Mort.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Le Jeune Homme et la Mort, La Sylphide – London

★★★★✰   One great privilege of Rojo being both director and dancer must be the opportunity to choose her own partners and this year’s returning guest is Ivan Vasiliev…

Tamara Rojo in Le Jeune Homme et la Mort.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – English National Ballet in Le Jeune Homme et la Mort

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

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…

Arancha Baselga and Brandon Lawrence in The Nutcracker.© Annabel Moeller. (Click image for larger version)

Birmingham Royal Ballet – The Nutcracker – London

★★★✰✰   Peter Wright’s glorious ballet might not shine quite so magically in its Bintley/Albert Hall version but the dancers certainly do…

Corey Annand and Valentina Golfieri in The Little Match Girl.© Phil Conrad. (Click image for larger version)

Arthur Pita – The Little Match Girl – London

★★★★★   Of all the shows I’ve seen this year this probably had the least dance content and yet as a package it really delivers on the wonder and thoughtful difference that theatre can make to all our lives. Charmed I was…

Benjamin Ella and Isabella Gasparini in Crystal Pite’s Flight Pattern.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Memorable Performances of 2017 – London

Head and shoulders above other new work this year was Crystal Pite’s Flight Pattern for the Royal Ballet…

Ashley Shaw in Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

New Adventures – Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella – London

★★★✰✰   While the production is supremely stylish and the characters well-observed with expressive and romantic choreography, the narrative is padded out in order to fill the music, particularly where traditional elements of “Cinderella” have been excised.

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…

Ashley Shaw in Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – New Adventures in Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Senri Kou in Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – English National Ballet in Nutcracker

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Ljiljana Velimirov, Tom Waddington & Sergei Polunin in Satori.© Tristram Kenton. (Click image for larger version)

Project Polunin – Satori, First Solo, Scriabiniana – London

★★✰✰✰   In truth Polunin’s latest show at the London Coliseum, although it has its moments, isn’t such a great advertisement for him as a dancer or as a creative mixer of the ballet pot.

Steven McRae and Sarah Lamb in The Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Nutcracker – London

★★★★★   When Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker for the Royal Ballet was given its premiere on 20th December 1984, gala guests were treated to free champagne and souvenir booklets. No expense was spared…

LIVEVIBE at The Place 2017.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

LIVEVIBE at The Place – Samples & Interpolations – London

★★★✰✰   What to take away from this evening? It seemed odd to present sampling as something that needed explaining – but maybe that’s me showing my age.

Gary Avis and Francesca Hayward in The Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

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…

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.

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

Gallery – Teac Damsa in Michael Keegan-Dolan’s Swan Lake/Loch na hEala

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

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…

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.

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