Ballet Cymru 2 – Made in Wales
Fri 22 Mar, Dance House, Cardiff
Ballet Cymru 2 is the pre-professional company of Ballet Cymru. The pre-professional course is only two years old, but is already showing ambition, intent, and artistry from its international members, and creative team.
The evening opened with work from Darius James OBE, and Amy Doughty, Artistic Directors of Ballet Cymru. Excerpts from Child’s Christmas was a reworking of material performed by the dancers on the recent Ballet Cymru tour. Each dancer was given the time and space to articulate themselves, and their movement vocabulary. It was a warm, and generous opening, revealing something of the personalities we were about to watch.
As We Are by Emma Lewis was a highlight of the evening, an articulate, subtle meeting of ballet and contemporary dance that explore the nature of being with others. The fluid, detailed vocabulary gave a clear sense of individuals finding their place in a community learning how to support each other.
In Concerto Jenkins choreographer Alex Hallas created a technical and strident response to the score. Patterns of dancers shifted across the stage with force and precision, offering an abstracted visualisation of the music. The dancers approached the work with strong focus, and dynamic energy.
Jack Philp’s Ex Situ began with an exquisite duet, and quickly established a connection to the choreographic practices of Wayne McGregor. From a starting point of ‘dislocation’ Philip guided the dancers through a playful journey of partnering and virtuosity with intermittent shifts in technical approach. Intense moments, fast footwork and weaving limbs were punctuated with simple walking, the dancers delighting in the physical puzzles they were exploring.
Divided We Stand reflected a few themes already explored in the program; community, strength, and displacement. Patrica Vallis took a socio-political stance to show the impact of divisions and difference.
It was a fine night all in all. I hope that in future years Ballet Cymru 2 can be seen widely to share and celebrate the high standard of dance training in wales.
words Gundija Zandersona