The Vienna Festival Ballet company have triumphed again with their latest national tour of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. As I along with every other member of the audience that filled The Radlett Centre witnessed a visually stunning piece of art that held the full attention of everyone present from curtain up till the well-deserved curtain call, it was plain to see how the artistic director and world renowned former ballet dancer Peter Mallek has built such a huge following since he founded The VFB … [Read more...]
Reviews of Ballet in London
If you are planning to visit London to see a ballet in London, then maybe our London ballet reviews section can be of help? Read one of the latest reviews or use the search button to find and view one of our previous reviews of ballet. We use a star rating system on our site.
William Forsythe – A Quiet Evening of Dance
Take the title of choreographer William Forsythe’s A Quiet Evening of Dance literally. For the first forty-five minutes of this show, the only sound you’ll hear is a sometimes soundtrack of distant birds singing quietly and the dancers breathing. The house lights are left up, you’re visible and there’s no set. It’s all black on black with occasional highlights of grating colour in the form of what looks a lot like coloured rubber gloves. The consequence is the audience is left uncomfortable, exposed physically and emotionally in their familiar Sadler’s seats, tested on an actual appreciation of choreography with no comfort blankets and nowhere to hide.
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Review of English National Ballet’s She Said
Principal dancer Tamara Rojo is now over four years into her reign as Artistic Director at English National Ballet, throughout which time she has transformed the company from a regular touring company predictably relaying the classics, to a daring company showcasing new work from emerging choreographers and performances designed to appeal to younger dance fans. Notably in 2014, Lest We Forget, a triple bill commissioned to mark the anniversary of World War I, was a huge success and I approached … [Read more...]
English National Ballet’s Lest We Forget at Sadler’s Wells
I was lucky enough to see Lest We Forget just under eighteen months ago when it first premiered at The Barbican. Back then I left the theatre moved by the power and poignancy of these brave new works. So it was a joy to return months later with the works still sitting vividly in my mind to see how they have developed. Liam Scarlett’s No Man’s Land is an emotive and sensual story of absence. The piece begins with the women’s silent screams at the departure of their partners, as they each wrap … [Read more...]
St Petersburg Ballet Theatre – Swan Lake (Irina Kolesnikova)
Whether a ballet novice or connoisseur, certain expectations come with viewing a Russian ballet company’s Swan Lake. St Petersburg Ballet Theatre don’t come with the renown or prestige of the Mariinsky or the Bolshoi but the arrival of the “Irina Kolesnikova Season” in London, certainly suggests they have no lack of confidence in their principal dancer. Kolesnikova is a temptress even as Odette, her strong physique is powerful and commanding. However, for the most part she is a machine that … [Read more...]
Review of Dutch National Ballet’s Cinderella by Christopher Wheeldon
I really should go to the ballet more often. It’s a rare treat, but one that never fails to enchant me. And I wasn’t the only one feeling the love at last night’s UK premiere of Christopher Wheeldon’s Cinderella, performed by the Dutch National Ballet and the Royal Ballet Sinfonia. The story is one we all know well… and yet at the same time, it’s not. Wheeldon took as his inspiration the Brothers Grimm version of the fairy tale rather than the more traditional Charles Perrault story. So … [Read more...]
5 star Ballet Boyz Young Men at Sadler’s Wells
Ballet Boyz' new work has no ballet in it. It is a visceral and gripping piece of dance theatre, with dancers who are strong, energetic and virile with a tremendous sense of drama. The opening is immediately disturbing: low lights, ominous, unsettling, sinuous music and young men running, competing in clusters of three in the background while a girl moves among them alone, bemused and fearful. The men play games that are not really games but masculine expressions of tension and aggression, … [Read more...]
Review of Royal Swedish Ballet Mats Ek’s Juliet and Romeo Sadler’s Wells
No, there isn’t a typo in the show’s title. Choreographer Mats Ek says in the programme notes, that an early draft of Shakespeare’s tale of star-crossed lovers had Juliet’s name first and so that is why this version has the names in the order it does. The swapping of names is the first big step away from a traditional staging of this ballet. The second is the use of Tchaikovsky’s score, rather than the more usual, and much better known, Prokofiev version. To add fuel to the fire for … [Read more...]