Rupert Christiansen

A haunting masterpiece: Northern Ballet’s Adagio Hammerklavier reviewed

Plus: at Sadler's Wells, Alvin Ailey's 60s classic Revelations hits the spot

Northern Ballet dancers in Hans van Manen's audacious Adagio Hammerklavier. Photo: Emily Nuttall

One could soundly advise any choreographer to avoid music so transcendentally great in itself that dance can add nothing except banal images. Only a handful of exceptions sneak past the rule: MacMillan’s setting of Song of the Earth, perhaps, and also Hans van Manen’s Adagio Hammerklavier, his audacious attempt to visualise the infinitely slow movement of Beethoven’s epic piano sonata Op.

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