Ballet pops with at­ti­tude

Di­rect from Cuba, the is here at last, writes

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - SHOWS -

AFIERY mix of con­tem­po­rary dance, ballet, street dance and hip-hop that warmed up the win­ter night when it ex­ploded on stage in Bris­bane last week­end, Ballet Revolu­cion lands at The Gold Coast Arts Cen­tre next week.

stand-out fe­male vo­cal­ist, male rap­per and six Cuban mu­si­cians shake up ex­pec­ta­tions from the open­ing strains of the show’s Latin-in­fused, pop sound­track of hits by Bey­once, Shakira, Usher, En­rique Igle­sias, Prince and J-Lo, quickly be­com­ing crowd favourites with their rhyth­mic de­lights and au­di­ence in­volve­ment.

Billed as ‘‘ballet with at­ti­tude’’ Ballet Revolu­cion show­cases 20 Cuban dancers dis­play­ing equal mea­sures of el­e­gance and sex ap­peal. The ath­leti­cism and break­danc­ing skills of the per­fectly-chis­elled male dancers are matched by the grace and street-style grandeur of the fea­tured fe­male per­form­ers.

High­lights in­clude a not-so-G-rated rou­tine to Cee Lo Green’s ‘‘clean edit’’ of For­get You, fea­tur­ing a girl and her en­tourage of male ad­mir­ers, fol­lowed by a heart­break­ing dance with two cou­ples each seated on a chair, ex­plor­ing the make-up of love and loss and de­fy­ing grav­ity with their weight­less af­fec­tion.

The per­form­ers gar­nered a stand­ing ova­tion at the Bris­bane pre­miere – and can’t wait to get to the Coast on Wed­nes­day, says Aus­tralian pro­ducer and Ballet Revolu­cion cre­ator Mark Brady.

‘‘So many great things have hap­pened for the show since we had our world pre­miere in Aus­tralia two years ago,’’ he says.

‘‘The show has per­formed sell-out sea­sons through­out Europe in (the) ma­jor cities of Paris, Zurich, Ber­lin, Frank­furt and Vi­enna.

‘‘We had the amaz­ing hon­our of be­ing in­vited to per­form in the pres­ence of Queen El­iz­a­beth for the Royal Va­ri­ety Con­cert on Novem­ber 19 last year. In­ter­na­tion­ally, the show con­tin­ues to wow au­di­ences no mat­ter where we per­form, so bring­ing it back to Aus­tralia, and this time to the Gold Coast, is ex­cit­ing.’’

Chore­og­ra­pher Aaron Cash, who be­gan danc­ing with Clar­rissa Hill in Bris­bane when he was eight, has per­formed with Cher, Twyla Tharp and Mikhail Barysh­nikov and was an orig­i­nal Tap Dog. He says he was thrilled to be asked to work on Revolu­cion.

‘‘ Ballet Revolu­cion dif­fers from other forms of ballet as it’s fused with con­tem­po­rary dance and danced to pop mu­sic,’’ he says.

‘‘It’s very ac­ces­si­ble, it’s high en­ergy, has great mu­sic and it’s def­i­nitely a feel­good show.

‘‘It’s a cel­e­bra­tion of what the hu­man body is ca­pa­ble of through dance. Within that, we look at love, lust, be­trayal – the usual good stuff.’’

Ballet Revolu­cion plays The Arts Cen­tre Gold Coast from Wed­nes­day to July 6.

Ballet Revolu­cion – Pic­ture: PETER WAL­LIS

Dance with a dif­fer­ence: on­stage in Bris­bane.

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