"Don Quixote" tag
Federico Bonelli and Akane Takada in Swan lake.© Tristram Kenton ROH. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Back on Stage – London

The entire Royal Ballet were back on stage and performing for a live audience last Friday in a gala style show which was/is also streamed. Jann Parry was mightily impressed with the dancing and repertoire (★★★★★) if not so much with the live audience experience in a Covid aware Opera House (★★★✰✰)

Book cover of David McAllister's "Soar: A Life Freed by Dance".© Thames & Hudson. (Click image for larger version)

Book – Soar: A Life Freed by Dance – by David McAllister

David McAllister, about to step down as the artistic director of Australian Ballet, has just released his memoir and it proves enlightening and candid reading about both the company and the man himself…

The 220 ENB Emerging Dancer finalists: Ivana Bueno, Carolyne Galvao, Miguel Angel Maidana, Victor Prigent, Emily Suzuki and William Yamada. © Karolina Kuras. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer 2020 Competition – 5 Questions to 6 Finalists

English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer Competition is unique in British ballet in throwing the spotlight on more junior dancers or “the excellence of the Company’s young talent,” as ENB put it. This year’s competition is live-streamed from ENB’s London studios on 22 September and ahead of the that we talk to the finalists – Ivana Bueno, Carolyne Galvao, Miguel Angel Maidana, Victor Prigent, Emily Suzuki and William Yamada…

Carlos Acosta.© Man Yee Lee. (Click image for larger version)

Carlos Acosta in Lockdown

Carlos Acosta chats to Graham Watts about how things are going after his first few months at the artistic helm of Birmingham Royal Ballet & the impact that Covid-19 has had on his plans…

Ekaterina Kondaurova and Timur Askerov in Grand Pas Classique.© Kristyna Kashvili. (Click image for larger version)

Ballet Icons Gala 2020 – London

★★★★✰   The annual Icons gala provides the chance to see dancers who don’t often appear in London…

Isaac Hernandez, Shiori Kase, Joseph Caley & ENB artists in Harold Lander's Etudes.© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – 70th Anniversary Gala – London

★★★★✰   For those of us that have been involved with the company, no matter how small a part, it is clear that the ‘happy family’ that is English National Ballet, reveres and appreciates all who have been part of its 70 year existence.

San Francisco Ballet in London: Jennifer Stahl in Snowblind by Cathy Marston. © Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Some Memorable Performances of 2019 – London

Lynette Halewood with some reflections on London dance performances over the last year – the good and the less good…

Bethany Kingsley-Garner in The Snow Queen.© Andy Ross. (Click image for larger version)

Scottish Ballet – The Snow Queen – Edinburgh

★★★★✰   Hampson has created a naturalistic and, above all, a graceful and harmonious set of steps. It’s all so unforced, but it feels right and creates a beautifully rounded and satisfying production.

Margarita Shrainer and Igor Tsvirko in Don Quixote (rehearsal).© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Bolshoi Ballet – Don Quixote – London

★★★★✰   The reason the Bolshoi’s Don Quixote is so enjoyable is the gusto with which it is performed. It doesn’t aim to be remotely authentically Spanish or even respectful of the original 1869 version…

Eleonora Sevenard and Artemy Belyakov in Don Quixote (rehearsal).© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Bolshoi Ballet in Don Quixote (dress rehearsal)

Featuring pictures of 2 casts: Margarita Shrainer/Igor Tsvirko & Eleonora Sevenard/Artemy Belyakov. Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Daria Khokhlova & Igor Tsvirko in The Bright Stream (rehearsal).© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Bolshoi Ballet – The Bright Stream – London

★★★★★   A wildly surreal comic turn involves a dog riding a bicycle, both cunningly choreographed. He’s actually a tractor driver in disguise, disrupting sexual assignations.

The Dancing Under The Southern Skies book cover, featuring Leanne Benjamin, in a photo © Jason Bell.© Australian Scholarly Publishing. (Click image for larger version)

Book – Dancing Under The Southern Skies: A History of Ballet in Australia – by Valerie Lawson

Although Valerie Lawson’s context is wide-ranging, she brings individuals into focus with personal details, shining a spotlight onto their roles in Australian dance history. Lavishly illustrated with photographs from Australian archives, her book gives vivid life to long-gone personalities.

Olga Smirnova in Swan Lake.© Damir Yusupov. (Click image for larger version)

The Bolshoi Ballet in London, Summer 2019 – All you need to know (and more!)

The Bolshoi Ballet are in London this summer with Spartacus, Swan Lake, The Bright Stream and Don Quixote. One of the world’s greatest companies, here are Jann Parry’s thoughts on an important visit…

Sarah Lane and Carlos Gonzalez in Harlequinade.© Doug Gifford. (Click image for larger version)

American Ballet Theatre – Harlequinade – New York

★★★★★   To my eye, this Harlequinade may be the most well-rounded of Ratmansky’s historically-minded stagings of Petipa.

Carlos Acosta CBE with Dance Section Charirman Graham Watts (left) and Mark Shenton, President of the Critics Circle.© Peter Hogan. (Click image for larger version)

Carlos Acosta splendidly summed up as he collects his Critics’ Circle Services to the Arts award

I was at the recent Critics’ Circle lunch when Carlos Acosta won his latest award and was struck by Graham Watts citation – it seemed to splendidly sum up Carlos, both the man and his illustrious career… and why exactly we all admire him. BM, Ed.

Julia Conway - Emerging Dancer Award winner.© ASH. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Emerging Dancer Competition 2019 – London

★★★✰✰   The 2019 winner is London-born Julia Conway and her success was well deserved.

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2019 Gala group photo.© Jack Devant. (Click image for larger version)

Russian Ballet Icons Gala 2019 – London

★★★✰✰   The annual Ballet Icons gala, now in its 14th year, aims to promote Russian culture while providing a Sunday evening’s entertainment for Russians in London and ballet-lovers…

Wona Park in Tomasson's The Sleeping Beauty.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – The Sleeping Beauty – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   The performance was thrilling …because it marked the Aurora debut of soloist Wona Park, whose Kitri debut in the season-opening Don Quixote got loads of buzz. At just 19, she dances with an ease beyond her years…

Marianela Nuñez in Don Quixote.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Don Quixote – London

★★★★★   With Marianela Nunez and Vadim Muntagirov… Theirs was a performance that caught up everyone in the sheer pleasure and excitement of spectacular dancing.

Marianela Nuñez and Vadim Muntagirov in Don Quixote.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet’s Marianela Nuñez & Vadim Muntagirov in Don Quixote

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

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