Thursday, July 21, 2011
ATA ALLSTAR ARTISTS PTY LTD. THE WOODLAND PRODUCTION COMPANY PTY LTD. MAXIMO PRODUCTIONS. BB GROUP. Present BALLET REVOLUCION at The State Theatre, Sydney.
The program notes for this production says it all. And not much of it is hyperbole:
"BALLET REVOLUCION is an explosive fusion of ballet, contemporary dance and modern hip- hop, performed by an Elite company of Cuban dancers with unbridled passion, pure energy and athletic skill… This is a truly unique opportunity to see some of the world's most talented classical and contemporary dancers perform way beyond their normal repertoires. The dancers are musically soulful,reeking of sensuality… BALLET REVOLUCION is a powerful blend of styles and genres set against a blend of sounds meshed with classic Cuban, modern Latin American and RnB hits …It's an evolution of Ballet as much as a Revolution."
Note: thankfully, the music accompanying the above youtube clip is NOT the actual music used in this show.
Choreographers Aaron Cash and Roclan Gonzalez Chavez have gathered seventeen dancers of extraordinary skill and harnessed their gifts into a dance program that is dynamic, thrilling and utterly, utterly admirable - even the jaded dance palette. For a novice to dance, as my young guest was, BALLET REVOLUCION will set a benchmark of future expectation and a hungry appetite for more of it. Backed by a thumping , rippling live orchestra of six and two vocalists + "it will blow your mind", said my "novice' guest
Don't be put off by snobbery about the range of type of dance promised, rather go and become engulfed with this fusion of genre that is executed with inexhaustible energy, passion and straight up sexuality, by dancers of dazzling and sometimes nearly incomparable skill. This is no fob to entertainment alone, there is some high art here if classical training and execution is what you want, it is here. If Brazilian Samba, Contemporary Ballet or Argentinean Tango and Salsa is what you want – you will find all this too.
Maybe The Australian Ballet scouts should be raiding this talent - a bit of this company's zest and thrill would only enhance their work. Certainly, Mr Bonachella should be throwing out a contract or two. The Sydney Dance Company would be empowered with some of these gifts at hand, for sure. The flexibility of most of these dancers into the various style genres is jaw droppingly ponderous.
The first act is a tour de force of startling dance, mostly ensemble. The second half features some mixes of quartets and solo along with further company ensembles. Moises Leon Noriega, Juan Carlos Hernandez Osma, Alejandro Peres Fernandez, Dannys Gonzalez Medina, Jesus Elias Almenares and Ariel Himeliz Mejica are leaders of some of the technical thrills and joy. But the choreography is shared out and the company allows all the dancers the chance to shine and not one of them lets you down.
This is pure entertainment with a very good quality dance technique. Shake in personality, generosity and the apparent joy of performing as a gift for and to the audience and you will have truly a memorable night at the theatre.
Last year, I caught COME FLY AWAY, the Twyla Tharp dance entertainment on Broadway, and although this show does not have the equal production budget, it certainly as the equal to dance sensation.
The Ambassador of Cuba to Australia, Pedro Monzon says, "We are really happy that BALLET REVOLUCION is presented in Australia. I am sure that this show will be the best of all the ambassadors and will contribute to build a solid bridge of cultural communications between our two countries. Thanks for the opportunity."
When compared to the shabby gift from China THE LAST EMPEROR, also shown at this tiny venue - and the lazy political exchange of written aspirations between our Prime Minister and that country, Cuba reveals a respect and care to present itself through its arts at the highest standard. Welcome and congratulations.
When will the NSW Government come to see that Sydney does not have an international stage of proper scale to attract and present the world's great companies in? Melbourne wins hands down!!!
Thoroughly and enthusiastically recommended. A warm if not hot date on a winter's night worth getting out to. Go.