"Lynn Seymour" tag
Constance Devernay and Sophie Martin in Le Baiser de la fee (The Fairy's Kiss).© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

MacMillan Celebrations – Le Baiser de la fee (SB), Concerto (BRB), Jeux (RB) – London

  In the first of the mixed bills celebrating Kenneth MacMillan’s ballets, 25 years after his death, “Le Baiser de la fée” intrigued me because the questions it posed about his development as a choreographer…

Javier Torres, Antoinette Brooks-Daw and Riku Ito in Kenneth MacMillan's Gloria.© Lauren Godfrey. (Click image for larger version)

Northern Ballet – MacMillan bill: Las Hermanas, Concerto, Gloria – Bradford

★★★★✰   Gloria was Nixon’s first choice because he felt it showed MacMillan at his moving best. It contrasts Poulenc’s choral setting of the Latin text from the mass in praise of God with the toll of human lives in the First World War.

Gary Harris' costume sketches for The Fairy's Kiss.© Gary Harris. (Click image for larger version)

Bringing back Kenneth MacMillan’s Le Baiser de la fée – The Fairy’s Kiss

Scottish Ballet will be performing Kenneth MacMillan’s “Le Baiser de la fée” as part of the celebrations marking the 25th anniversary of his death. It will be the first revival of the ballet in 30 years – Jann Parry on the return of an important work.

Natalia Osipova and Edward Watson in Mayerling.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Mayerling – London

★★★★★   Edward Watson and Steven McRae casts both reviewed. “…the Royal Ballet is doing MacMillan proud, coming up to the 25th anniversary of his death…”

Book cover - Peter Wright: Wrights and Wrongs – my life in dance.© Oberon Books. (Click image for larger version)

Book – Peter Wright: Wrights and Wrongs – my life in dance

His is an insider’s account, complete with waspish comments and cameos of the famous people he encountered…

Gary Avis and Francesca Hayward in The Invitation.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Obsidian Tear (premiere), The Invitation, Within the Golden Hour – London

★★★★✰   The range of roles shows the Royal Ballet dancers, up-and-coming soloist, established principals and character artists, at their very best.

Natalia Osipova in rehearsals at the ROH for A Month in the Country.© ROH, 2014. Photographed by Tristram Kenton. (Click image for larger version)

Frederick Ashton Remembered – Ashton Foundation Masterclasses & In Step with Fred film screenings

As The Royal Ballet prepares to celebrate Frederick Ashton with an all Ashton quad bill, two other events have also been celebrating the work of the Royal Ballet’s founder choreographer…

Never Far from Dancing book cover.© Routledge. (Click image for larger version)

Book – Never Far from Dancing, Ballet artists in new roles by Barbara Newman

While some of the views expressed may not chime with your own, the fascination of this book is to understand how contentious maintaining and developing ballet as vibrant theatre often is.

Shevelle Dynott and Nancy Osbaldeston in Petrushka.© Dave Morgan (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Tribute to Rudolf Nureyev – London

The Tribute bill is a well-chosen one… The season has been so short that the dancers haven’t had time to grow into their roles. They look as though they’re remembering instructions rather than relishing the ballets.

PRESS RELEASE: New Artistic Director of The Royal Ballet School announced

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Christopher Powney to the new post of Artistic Director Designate. Christopher will take up his position in April 2014.

David Wall as Crown Prince Rudolf and Leslie Collier as Mary Vetsera in The Royal Ballet production of Mayerling.© Leslie E Spatt, 1980, courtesy ROH. (Click image for larger version)

David Wall RIP (1946 – 2013)

David Wall, member of The Royal Ballet and English National Ballet, sadly died on 18 June 2013 – he was 67.

Alina Cojocaru and Jason Reilly in Onegin.© Bill Cooper, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

The Royal Ballet – Onegin – London

Cojocaru is as great a dance-actress in the final scene as any I’ve been privileged to see – and that includes Lynn Seymour, Natalia Makarova and Ekaterina Maximova.

Royal Ballet in Raymonda Act III.Dancers, l-r (men first): Brian Maloney, Johannes Stepanek, Valeri Hristov, Alexander Campbell, Dawid Trzensimiech, Kenta Kura, Eric Underwood, Valentino Zuccheti, then ladies - Melissa Hamilton, Helen Crawford, Fumi Kaneko, Yasmine Naghdi, Yuhui Choe, Emma-Jane Maguire, Itziar Mendizabal, Hikaru Kobayashi.© Dave Morgan, by kind permission of the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Firebird, In the Night, Raymonda Act lll – London

It’s the Royal Ballet’s varied and unique repertoire that has kept me loyal to the company through some very thin times as well as the golden seasons, and this programme is a nice example of what a flick through its back – catalogue can produce.

Royal Ballet – Concerto, Las Hermanas, Requiem – London

It’s an interesting evening, showing both choreographer and company at their best and at somewhat less than that.

Bob Lockyer at 70. © Elliott Franks at www.elliottfranks.com. (Click image for larger version)

Interview: Bob Lockyer at 70, Mr Dance when the BBC did dance

In a life at the BBC the director, Bob Lockyer, was an outstanding champion of dance for the camera. Now 70, he is still indefatigable in his enthusiasms

Birmingham Royal Ballet – Daphnis & Chloe, Two Pigeons – London

…the evening really belonged to Robert Parker, giving his last performance in London and challenging memories of almost any of his predecessors. Whilst being very, very charming he also has some of the toughness which I think Ashton originally intended, and the sincerity of his regret at the end was entirely convincing. He will be sadly missed.

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