Theatre in Wales

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Startling and Dynamic

Acosta Danza – Evolution

The Dance Consortium , Wales Millennium Centre , March 6, 2020
Acosta Danza – Evolution  by The Dance Consortium In January this year Havana born Carlos Acosta was appointed Director of The Birmingham Royal Ballet but for this performance he has brought together under the umbrella of The UK’s Dance Consortium fellow dancers from Cuba. No doubt this brings a special flavour to this brilliant and exciting evening of dance.

“The Evolution programme was named by Carlos to reflect how much his company has grown since he founded it four years ago.” It is traditional ballet but it isn’t, it is Modern dance but it isn’t. It is a unique blend of dancing forms created by Acosta and his choreographers that both surprises and delights us all.

The music for the first piece, ‘Paysage, Soudain, la nuit’ is choreographed by Pontus Lidberg from Sweden. The music is by Cuban composers with touches of Rumba bouncing through, an indication of the international flavour bought to this evening of fine dance and precision.
It is an ensemble work, danced with a preciseness that continues throughout every dance.

Most times the dancers move very smoothly and quietly across the stage, the ‘sound’ is all in the movement. And there are so many different movements. We seem to be looking at two people but as the extraordinary, versatile Zeleidy Crespo untwined and sprang into life, she captivated us all with both the vigour and clarity of her movement in ‘Impronta’, choreographed by Maria Rovira, enhanced by Pedro Benítez inspired lighting.

A lot of humour is derived from the jerking movement of some of the male dancers. Heads and hands wiggling backwards and forwards, chickens! Choreographer Christopher Bruce’s Rooster is danced to seven Rolling Stones’ recordings, starting with ‘Little Red Rooster and ending with ‘Sympathy for the Devil’! This is the closing work and we get to experience and appreciate the power and excellence of Carlos Acosta’s dancing. Though dancing seems too inadequate a word to describe his performance.

‘Faun’ choreographed by world renowned Flemish Moroccan, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui is danced with great energy and beauty by Crespo and Yasser Domiguez to Debussy’s’ Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune’, with additional music by Nitin Sawhney, who was awarded in 2017 with the Ivor Novello Lifetime Achievement Award.

Everything moved forward with such pace and energy that it all seemed to be over far too soon.

Reviewed by: Michael Kelligan

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