Dance

Akram Khan in Mirella Weingarten’s starkly stupendous set

A smidge of self-indulgence amid the power and grace: Akram Khan's Xenos reviewed

9 June 2018 9:00 am

‘Sunil Lanba, Salman Quaraishi, Omar Syed…’ Names play from a crackling gramophone. We hear what they were before the war.…

Artists of the Royal Ballet against the easel-worthy backcloths of John Macfarlane’s ravishing designs for Swan Lake

Proper tutus, gorgeous designs, first-rate dancing: Royal Ballet’s new Swan Lake reviewed

26 May 2018 9:00 am

The Royal Ballet’s 2016 Frankenstein was a masterclass in how not to make narrative dance and the news that Liam…

How do these Shaolin monks square six shows a week with monking?

How do these Shaolin monks square six shows a week with monking?

14 April 2018 9:00 am

The Shaolin monks are no strangers to the stage. Their home in Dengfeng is a major stop on the Chinese…

The men give the women little to work with: Giselle reviewed

24 February 2018 9:00 am

A bumper fortnight for Covent Garden florists thanks to a 20th-anniversary flower shower for the Royal Ballet’s Marianela Nunez and…

ENB’s La Sylphide resembles a lock-in at a Royal Mile souvenir shop

27 January 2018 9:00 am

Gurn loves Effy, Effy is engaged to James but James is away with the fairies: a recipe for love tragedy.…

The nymphs are hit and miss, but Osipova is a witty, multifaceted Sylvia: the Royal Ballet’s Sylvia reviewed

16 December 2017 9:00 am

You can pay homage to a ballet classic or you can tear it up and reinvent it. Both approaches were…

Reducing the heroine to a demented rape victim is just what ballet needs: The Wind reviewed

18 November 2017 9:00 am

A kindly cowboy, an East Coast bride, adultery, murder and madness. The Wind, Dorothy Scarborough’s 1925 Texas gothic novel (and…

Company Wayne McGregor — Autobiography at Sadler’s Wells

Dancing the genetic code, big girls’ blouses and a ballroom bitch: Sadler’s Wells roundup

28 October 2017 9:00 am

Ballet would have been an obvious revenue stream for Sadler’s Wells when it reopened back in 1998 but straight-up classics…

Dancers of the Royal Ballet in Christopher Wheeldon’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Royal Ballet's Alice is a joy to look at - if only it weren't such a bore

7 October 2017 9:00 am

Alice is at it again. Christopher Wheeldon’s 2011 three-act ballet began another sell-out run at Covent Garden last week. It’s…

The glorious Grand Pas from Paquita, part of the Mariinsky’s triple bill

I’m glad the Mariinksy don’t airbrush La Bayadère’s dodgy local colour

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Not really a vintage Mariinsky season — an odd choice of repertoire and some hit-and-miss male casting — but the…

The Mariinsky’s first British principal looked nervous – would his legs carry him through Swan Lake?

5 August 2017 9:00 am

Tall, handsome boys with long legs and beautifully arched feet do not grow on trees (if only). Every ballet director…

They like to move it: voguing at Club a la Mode, New York, 1998

A short history of voguing – an art, a sport, a way of life

15 July 2017 9:00 am

It’s dance — but not as you know it. A giddy mass of flying limbs, sashaying hips and pouty faces.…

Bennet Gartside as Bottom and Akane Takada as Titania in Frederick Ashton’s The Dream

Ashton’s Dream is a must-see: Royal Ballet’s Triple Bill reviewed

10 June 2017 9:00 am

Thrilling debuts, starry guests and a tear-stained farewell at Covent Garden this week as the Royal Ballet closed the season…

Royal Ballet’s mixed bill is a mixed bag

3 June 2017 9:00 am

A Covent Garden barfly was scanning her programme during the first interval: ‘Oh yes, the one about the gynaecologist.’ She…

Edward Watson as Crown Prince Rudolf and Natalia Osipova at Mary Vetsera in Royal Ballet’s Mayerling

Intelligence, nuance and white-hot energy: Royal Ballet’s Mayerling reviewed

6 May 2017 9:00 am

A tragic flaw is one thing — every hero should have one — but Mayerling’s Rudolf, a syphilitic drug addict…

This is England: Paris Fitzpatrick and Daniel Collins in ‘Town and Country’ from ‘Matthew Bourne’s Early Adventures’

A warm-beer-and-bicycles take on all things English: Matthew Bourne’s Early Adventures reviewed

15 April 2017 8:00 am

‘Modern’ dance was no laughing matter in 1987. Harold King, director of the now-defunct London City Ballet, cattily typified it…

Balanchine’s fiendishly difficult Jewels is brilliantly danced by the Royal Ballet

8 April 2017 9:00 am

A trio of dazzling scores, the soft clack of gemstones on hips and collarbones, a glittering parure of solos, duets…

Sergei Polunin in his spangled merkin performing Narcissus and Echo at Sadler’s Wells

What's missing from Project Polunin: taste

25 March 2017 9:00 am

There was a nasty sound of pens being sharpened last week as Royal Ballet runaway Sergei Polunin prepared to unveil…

The mechanicals: the dancers in Wayne McGregor’s ‘Tree of Codes’ interlock but they never really interact and we are left humming the scenery.

Music and dance are totally eclipsed by the setting: Tree of Codes reviewed

18 March 2017 9:00 am

The exit signs were switched off and the stalls were in utter darkness. One by one, 15 invisible dancers, their…

Too much redemption, not enough damnation: Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes reviewed

14 January 2017 9:00 am

From a film about ballet to a ballet about film. In reworking the 1948 Powell and Pressburger classic The Red…

Natalia Osipova as Anna Anderson and Thiago Soares as Rasputin in ‘Anastasia’

If only Kenneth MacMillan had left Anastasia alone

5 November 2016 9:00 am

The Romanovs were a hot topic in 1967: it was the 50th anniversary of the Russian Revolution, memories of Ingrid…

Viscerally exciting: Alina Cojocaru and Issac Hernández in Akram Khan’s ‘Giselle’

Akram Khan's choreography is breath-catching: ENB's Giselle reviewed

8 October 2016 9:00 am

Giselle endures in the collective imagination as a charming, sorrowful, supernatural love story. Premièred in Paris in 1841, this keystone…

From spiritual transcendence to gender warfare: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater review

17 September 2016 9:00 am

For a regular dancegoer in New York City, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater seasons arrive with the comforting predictability…

At times utterly gripping: Crystal Pite at the Edinburgh International Festival reviewed

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Crystal Pite, the Canadian dancemaker who combines intellectual, emotional and physical intelligence in rare degree, is classically trained, but her…

In her final column, Ismene Brown salutes the Bolshoi’s real stars: the corps de ballet

20 August 2016 9:00 am

The second half of the Bolshoi tour brought much fresher fare than the first: following the ubiquitous warhorses Don Quixote…