Magazine article Out

A Swan Reborn

Magazine article Out

A Swan Reborn

Article excerpt

Matthew Bourne's all-male Swan Lake gets a welcome revival.

Matthew Bourne, an acolyte of musical theater, was 19 when he saw his first ballet - a Scottish production of Swan Lake at London's Sadler's Wells Theater. He remembers thinking how cool it was not to have to wait for the dance numbers. "It was literally like, Oh, it's a musical where they dance all the time,' " he recalls. "I loved it so much that I went to see it again the same week, but in another production that was completely different. I suppose that set me off in a way."

And how. Eight years later, Bourne was melding his various enthusiasms into a series of attention-grabbing dance pieces as director of his own company, Adventures in Motion Pictures. In Spitfire, his first production, four men cavorted in tighty-whities in a delicious send-up of underwear ads and male vanity; Deadly Serious was a comic paean to Hitchock; his Nutcracker', came with an exclamation point (inspired by Oliver!) and was set in a Dickensian orphanage.

So, when Bourne's all-male version of Swan Lake premiered in 1995, critics could be forgiven for expecting comic swans failing to execute their pas de deux. …

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