Queensland and West Australian ballet companies of one mind in 2020

Queensland Ballet announced its 2020 season in mid-September; West Australian Ballet in this past week. The nation’s leading state ballet companies are different in scale and usually in repertoire but their seasons next year have some striking similarities. West Australian Ballet offers a repeat season of Krzysztof Pastor’s full-length Dracula in September 2020 after its…

The Australian Ballet and Queensland Ballet reveal 2019 programs

Alice Topp was yesterday named The Australian Ballet’s fourth resident choreographer, joining Stephen Baynes and Stanton Welch, (both appointed in 1995) and Tim Harbour (2014). Topp, a coryphée with the company, is the second woman to be given the title following Natalie Weir. It’s been a long time between drinks: Weir held the post for…

Together Live 2017

Sydney City Youth Ballet with the SYO Philharmonic. The Concourse, Chatswood, Sydney. September 23. The room is always full of hope and desire when student performers take to the stage, particularly if they are dancers or classical musicians. Some will have started as young as four or five and certainly by eight or nine. In…

Swan Lake, Queensland Ballet

Queensland Performing Arts Centre, May 5. Queensland Ballet’s Swan Lake had a 42nd Street quality on opening night as junior company member Joel Woellner was chosen to dance Prince Siegfried alongside the seasoned Odette-Odile of QB principal artist – and former top-ranked star at the National Ballet of Cuba – Yanela Piñera. Piñera has presence…

Flying high

Queensland Performing Arts Centre, June 26. TREY McIntyre is a prolific American choreographer who has made more than 100 works – he is only 45 – and is widely known and admired in the US. When he announced last year he was closing his Trey McIntyre Project as a fulltime ensemble to concentrate on a…

Daring smoke-and-mirrors act

Queensland Ballet, Playhouse, QPAC, Brisbane, August 1. ONE masterwork, a party piece and two relatively new dances that look far better than they are provide an entertaining but creatively uneven program at Queensland Ballet. Very much on the plus side is that the company looks energised despite the rigours of the Romeo and Juliet season…

QB Nutcracker; David Hallberg at the AB

The Nutcracker, Queensland Ballet, Playhouse, QPAC, Brisbane, December 7 Cinderella, The Australian Ballet, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, December 14 IN many places in the northern hemisphere, but particularly in the US, seeing The Nutcracker at Christmas is as necessary as having gifts and dressing a tree. There’s another necessity too: so popular has The Nutcracker…

Elegance, Queensland Ballet

Queensland Performing Arts Centre, August 2 EMMA Lippa is one of Australian ballet’s hidden treasures. She developed her formidable skills as an accompanist at the Bolshoi Ballet then used her gifts for two decades at the Australian Ballet. Lippa has retired from the AB but not from the piano or from ballet, as Queensland Ballet…

Cinderella

Queensland Ballet, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, April 5 QUEENSLAND Ballet’s ambitious Cinderella has much to say about what new artistic director Li Cunxin wants for his company and a little something to say about Li himself. Li’s story is well known. He was plucked from deepest obscurity in rural China to be trained in ballet…