Tag: Romeo and Juliet

NEWS: The Australian Ballet’s 2016 PROGRAM LAUNCH

Performances to entrance and transcend

By Narelle Wood

I’ve been a subscriber with the Australian Ballet for the last six years and each year I’m left wondering how exactly they will manage to top, or even equal, that year’s season. This was especially the case after the year’s Australian premiere of David McAllister’s Sleeping Beauty; one of the most exquisite and luxurious performances I’ve seen. The 2016 season plans to be just as exciting and enthralling, but for completely different reasons.

Vitesse at The Australian Ballet 2016

The five works have been selected because they in some way encapsulate the transformative nature of ballet, either through stretching the dancers, the audiences or the very idea what ballet should be. The Melbourne season begins with Vitesse, part of the contemporary mix, providing a selection of ballets ranging from the chic and sleek of “In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated”, to the the Edvard Munch-inspired “Forgotten Land” to the speedy and fabulous “Danse a Grande Vitesse”, the performance’s namesake. The 2016’s classical repertoire includes a reprise of Stephen Baynes’ 2012 Swan Lake, an Australian premiere of Stanton Welch’s Romeo and Juliet and the comedic and playful fun of Coppelia.
The showcase piece for the Australian Ballet’s 54th season is John Neumeier’s Nijinsky. It was apparently fourteen years ago artistic director David McAllister first broached the idea of staging this ballet, and in 2016 this finally becomes a reality. Described as ‘a biopic of a legend’, this ballet celebrates the accomplishments and mastery of Russian dancer Nijinsky and his ‘unprecedented on-stage intensity’.

While Coppelia may be the only ballet here with lightness at its heart, the program sounds every bit intriguing as it does transformative. There is no doubt that the Australian Ballet will once again exceed all expectations by taking the audience on a completely different, and at times, unexpected journey. As always, I find it hard to pick what I am looking forward to most; the opulent costumes and sets, the unparalleled athleticism, the stories and music, or the grace and elegance of the dancing. 2016 is promising to be another season of exquisite, and world-class, ballet.

Season: Melbourne season begins 11-21st March
Performance Details: Available at australianballet2016.com.au

Review: EMMA CLAIR FORD in Butterscotch

“Fall down seven times, get up eight”

By Maxine Montgomery

The quotation is a good motto we should all take into life, and one that Emma Clair Ford has taken to heart in writing her latest solo cabaret work, Butterscotch.

At the top of the show, Ms Ford entered the show room of the Butterfly Club with a great deal of poise and a dash of mystery, silently stalking down the centre aisle towards the intimate stage.

With her entrance, she created a mood of intrigue and simplicity all at once. She gave away nothing and kept the audience fully engaged as she took us on a journey, on “an adventure within an adventure”.

Ms Ford has crafted a very clever and well-structured script, and at all times, she was in control of its pace and delivery. Her careful choice of words painted very vivid pictures of childhood memories, tales of an oft-broken heart, and time in foreign lands.

I very much enjoyed her repeated use of one scenario, presented in two entirely different veins, to bookend a climactic moment of the show.

The music Ms Ford has chosen throughout the cabaret is so well matched to the progression of the through line that the songs could have been purpose written for the show.  Myself, I will never again be able to listen to “Six Months in a Leaky Boat” in quite the same way!

Emma Clair’s voice is clear, well controlled, and most adaptable in handling the music of the show. Her versatility extends from a music theatre belt to a sweet, pure tone which she introduced as she sang “Vieni a mia diletto” (Come, my delight) – the song was a perfect choice as she told of her desire to visit Juliet’s famous balcony in Verona.

Butterscotch is a unique cabaret, expertly created and delivered. Ms Ford deserves every success as she takes this show across to the 2012 Adelaide Cabaret Fringe Festival this month.

The second and final Melbourne preview is on Wednesday February 22nd at 8pm at the Butterfly Club in South Melbourne, but look out for details of another Melbourne season later in the year.

For tickets, please visit http://thebutterflyclub.com