Rupert Christiansen

The award-winning choreographer who fell foul of the mob

Ebullient, articulate and eminently sensible, Rosie Kay never wanted to be a martyr to the culture wars. A modern dance choreographer with an impressive track record – including 5 Soldiers, an award-winning exploration of army life, contributions to the closing ceremony of the 2012 Olympics and a fellowship at Oxford – she would rather be

Can everyone please shut up about Maria Callas?

One thing that exasperated me intensely during my many years as an opera critic was the assumption that I must be a passionate admirer of Maria Callas. She is the only prima donna who most people have heard of, and her supreme status has long been taken for granted, to the point at which the

Can ballet survive the culture wars?

Through several phases of the culture wars, ballet has served as a canary in the coal mine, its intense and exposed physicality highlighting all the issues surrounding sexuality, gender and power that have currently become our unhealthily narcissistic preoccupation. Perhaps the warnings started with the phenomenon of Vaslav Nijinsky. Against the defined masculinity and femininity

Distressingly vulgar: Royal Ballet’s Cinderella reviewed

Despite its widespread rating as one of his masterpieces, Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella is chock full of knots, gaps and stumbling blocks – all of which the Royal Ballet’s new production throws into relief. Ashton isn’t altogether to blame: Prokofiev’s graphic score dictates an excessive amount of time given over to knockabout for the Ugly Sisters