This summer, the internationally lauded dance troupe BalletBoyz will make its West End debut with its critically-acclaimed Them/Us, an innovative double bill and a brand-new collaboration from the company’s own dancers and the Olivier Award-winning choreographer Christopher Wheeldon. A co-production with Sadler’s Wells, Them/Us played at Sadler’s Wells in March as part of a recently completed UK tour. The production will run from 3-15 June at the Vaudeville theatre, with opening night for press on 3 June.
BalletBoyz is known worldwide for its ground-breaking live performances, films and TV appearances. The new productions are both set to original scores by world-class composers and ask where we see ourselves in relation to the “other”.
A first in the history of BalletBoyz, Them is the work of the company’s very own in-house talent, and set to a score by emerging composer Charlotte Harding. Us is inspired by the critically-acclaimed Christopher Wheeldon duet featured in the company’s last show, Fourteen Days. With an extended score by cult singer/songwriter, Keaton Henson, Christopher Wheeldon develops this new work which explores the possibilities of before, during and after.
BalletBoyz Artistic Directors Michael Nunn and William Trevitt said: “We’re thrilled to bring BalletBoyz to the West End stage for the very first time. Our philosophy has always been to make dance accessible for all, from providing opportunities for young dancers to get into the industry to staging contemporary dance in a welcoming atmosphere for audiences old and new. Them/Us shows off the versatility of the company featuring choreography from our incredibly talented dancers alongside work by Christopher Wheeldon, culminating in a great evening of entertainment.”
Charlotte Harding recently composed for Craig Revel Horwood’s The Indicator Line in BalletBoyz’ Fourteen Days. She studied at the Royal College of Music with Mark Anthony Turnage, and has since written works for an eclectic mix of contemporary classical ensembles. Her works have received performances at leading concert halls, including Cadogan Hall and King’s Place, London, and Colston Hall, Bristol (Simple Things Festival). Spring 2019 sees the world premiere of her work ‘Convo’ at the Royal Albert Hall, a commission from the RAH, Royal College of Music and Triborough Music Hub. Charlotte is also passionate about the role of music in health and education and is a regular accompanist for the BalletBoyz programme Parkinson’s Can Dance.
Keaton Henson is an English folk rock musician, visual artist and poet from London. Henson has released six studio albums. His music video for “Charon” was shortlisted for a UK MVA award in Best Budget Indie/Rock Category. “Small Hands” won Best Music Video at the Rushes Soho Shorts Film Festival in 2012. In November 2012, Henson designed a t-shirt for the Yellow Bird Project to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Henson also composed the score for the multiple Award-nominated film Young Men by BalletBoyz and BBC 2.
Christopher Wheeldon is a British choreographer who trained at The Royal Ballet School and danced with the Company between 1991 and 1993. With the New York City Ballet he performed as a soloist and became the company’s first-ever artist in residence and first resident choreographer. Christopher has created productions for all the world’s major ballet companies, and in 2007 he founded Morphoses/The Wheeldon Company and became the first British choreographer to create a new work for the Bolshoi Ballet. His awards include the Tony Award for Best Choreography for An American in Paris, and he was made an OBE in 2016. Christopher has worked with BalletBoyz on numerous occasions in the past, including Mesmerics.
The current BalletBoyz Company includes: Benjamin Knapper, Harry Price, Liam Riddick, Dominic Rocca, Matthew Sandiford and Bradley Waller.
Benjamin Knapper recently graduated from Rambert School of Ballet & Contemporary Dance and has worked with choreographers including Richard Alston, Mark Baldwin and Ashley Page. Ben has also performed with Rambert Dance Company on their spring and autumn tours performing A Linha Curva choreographed by Itzik Galilli.
Harry Price has previously performed in the international tour of Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake across Asia, Australia and Europe. He joined BalletBoyz in 2015, has toured globally with the company and has been involved in various film and TV projects. This will mark his fifth season with the company. Harry trained with Italia Conti Theatre Arts, Elmhurst Ballet School and the English National Ballet School. He has performed with the Baltic Dance Theatre and in national tours with English National Ballet and ENBII.
Liam Riddick is BalletBoyz’ newest member, joining this month. He trained with London Contemporary Dance School and has toured nationally and internationally with the Richard Alston Dance Company for eight years. He received 7 nominations for the Critics Circle National Dance Awards, and in February 2018 won Best Male Dancer. He has also danced for James Cousins Dance, and featured in Rick Guest’s exhibition and book What Lies Beneath.
Dominic Rocca began dancing with the National Youth Ballet Company and continued his training at Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance. After graduating he joined Mark Bruce Company for the 2018 production of Macbeth. He has also worked with choreographers including James Cousins for Sisters Grimm, Jack Philp, and Thomas Small (Shaper/Caper) as part of the opening celebration of the Dundee V&A Museum. Prior to joining BalletBoyz, Dominic performed in the Royal Opera House production of La Traviata.
Matthew Sandiford joined BalletBoyz in September 2012 and will now make his seventh season with the company. As part of BalletBoyz, he has toured the UK, Europe, the USA and Australia, performing work by Kristen McNally, Christopher Wheeldon and Alexander Whitley amongst others. Matthew has also danced with Charlie Dixon Dance Company and was a featured dancer in the London 2012 Closing Ceremony.
Bradley Waller trained at the NECB School and Rambert School for Ballet and Contemporary Dance. Originally joining as an apprentice, Bradley became a full-time member of BalletBoyz in three months and is now also one of the directors of the Dancer’s Course. He has toured nationally and internationally during his five seasons with the company.
Notwithstanding the limitations of Them the second half of the show, Us, after the interval is so satisfying you leave elated, amazed all over again by the impact of great contemporary dance when it happens in front of you again. 4-Star Review
Presented by BalletBoyz
404 Strand, Covent Garden, London WC2R 0NH
First performance: 3 June
Press Performance: 3 June
Final performance: 15 June
Performance schedule: Monday to Saturday at 7.45pm, and Wednesday and Saturday matinees at 3pm