Magazine article Pointe

Talkin' 'Bout My Generation: Young Choreographers at Covent Garden

Magazine article Pointe

Talkin' 'Bout My Generation: Young Choreographers at Covent Garden

Article excerpt

Talkin' 'Bout My Generation: Young Choreographers At Covent Garden

The founder of England's Royal Ballet, Ninette de Valois, had her recipe for a balanced repertoire. It included classics, contemporary works and novelties, all in proportion. The company's current director. Monica Mason, has spent her tenure getting the classics back in order. It was time Io tackle the other ingredients in de Valois s stew by presenting two new works by young English choreographers, along with a Balanchine masterpiece, in November at the Royal Opera House at Covcnt Garden.

Though the program notes spout grandly about neuroscience and "freedom space," Wayne McGregor's work can have the depth of a music video. However, his new piece for 10 dancers, Chroma, would have de Valois checking "topical novelty" off her list in approval. Shortly after this performance, Mason announced McGregor's appointment as resident choreographer-not the proportion de Valois imagined.

Chroma took place in a brilliant setting, lit by Lucy Carter and designed by noled architect John Pawson. Entering through a dark alcove at back, the dancers wore Montz Junge's unisex, flesh-toned sarongs. McGregor's musical response can be a blunt instrument, but the range of moods in JodyTalbot's music-tenderness as well as aggression-forced adagio sections on McGregor. including a rich pas de deux tor Alma Cojocaru and Edward Watson. Nobody looked quite like Watson in the wriggling, shaking and violent partnering. His manic fury set the tone of uncertainty and conflict and made the choreography unique.

Watson's perfect qualities for Chroma are a near-disaster in The Four Temperaments, however, where his Phlegmatic seemed psychotic. …

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