Friday, April 19, 2013


at the Civic Theatre

Always a sense of excitement ahead of Ballet Central's annual visit.
This is clearly a strong year, and we saw some excellent work in eight pieces by very different choreographers. And four local dancers this time out - Bethany, Tom, Joshua and Abigail – plus a crowd-pleaser top-of-the-bill from Central alumnus and Essex boy Christopher Marney.
This was Anon!, the story of bookish, bespectacled girl – winningly danced by Bethany Pike – and the hunky mailman [Reece Causton] who brings her escapism in a cardboard box. Strong narrative, and great scenas – ball gowns to Shostakovich, ball game to Delibes, and an underwater world to Saint-Saens' Aquarium.
The evening began with a geometric, gymnastic work by Kenneth Tindall [another son of Central] to music by Philip Feeney; there was a strong traditional strand, including the Fireside Pas de Deux from Cinderella, choreographed by Christopher Gable to Feeney's music, and the Florestan Trio, delicately danced in powder pink by Léa Bridarolli, Giulia Pazzaglia and Thomas Edwards. And stylish show dancing, too, in smoke and sparkly black dresses, to Beyoncé's Live on Top.

But perhaps the most memorably innovative piece was Darshan Singh Buller's Mapping #3, a vaguely oriental, dynamically danced work, which, just when it seems to have explored everything, uses back projection to turn the stage through 90 degrees, showing floor work as vertical – an amazing, weightless effect, climaxing with tennis balls and a stepladder. Superbly performed by eight young dancers at the threshold of their career ...

1 comment:

Mary Redman said...

After 30 years of existence and 28 years of touring their final year students to give them experience of life on, off and back stage plus front of house, the Central School of Ballet fields a particularly strong field of dancers this year.
Groomed to within an inch of their lives and immaculately presented these young people on the verge of becoming professional dancers perform with coolness, strength and vivacity. They wear a wide variety of costumes in modern, cabaret and classically romantic styles by fabric genius Richard Gellar. Dancing to music both recorded and played live with great strength and thrumming rhythms by pianist and composer Philip Feeney.
Their show opens with Kenneth Tindall's lively Signature 31/30 a dynamically athletic work exploring comfort zones and what happens when they are invaded. Then comes the softly flowing romantic, passionate, yearning beauty of Christopher Gable's Fireside Pas de Deux from Cinderella.
The spell is broken by Michael Buble's Cry Me A River and Beyonce's Love on Top choreographed by Stacey Haynes and dancing to emphasise rhythm and diversity by a team in black sequins for the girls and formal black trousers with white shirts and black ties for the boys.
Vocalise by Resmi Malko with music by Rachmaninoff is a duet about falling in love which is followed by Darshan Singh Buller's exciting Mapping #3. The Florestan Pas de Trois from The Sleeping Beauty is another opportunity for the cast to show off their classical heritage in exquisitely bejewelled tutus and
Leanne King and Sara Matthews's contemporary piece Insinuare with music by Philip Feeney which emphasises fluidity and smoothness.
And finally the work we've been waiting for as local dancer/choreographer Christopher Marney using music by Delibes, Shostakovich, Saint-Saens and Philip Feeney shows off his latest work called anon. This work has everything. Breathtaking costumes ranging from childlike simplicity to elaborate ball gowns, shown off with panache, wit and a great sense of fun. A lot of this inspiration is innate but also encouraged by working closely with the inspired Matthew Bourne for whom he has performed in Dorian Gray and The Sleeping Beauty, and is now an associate choreographer.

Post a Comment