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Subject: "Mark Morris premiere 16/10/01" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences What's Happening Topic #2181
Reading Topic #2181
Alison

17-10-01, 03:30 PM (GMT)
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"Mark Morris premiere 16/10/01"
 
   (I posted something about this immediately after the performance, but it
doesn't seem to have gone through properly):

No time to do a review, just a very quick visit to say that, as feedback
from New York indicated, the new Mark Morris premiere, "V", is gorgeous - do
go and see it if it's being performed near you. (And I certainly
appreciated Grand Duo a lot more on a second viewing, as well).
Note for those going to Sadler's Wells - security checks are causing serious
delays, so do try and get there well ahead of the scheduled starting time.


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: Mark Morris premiere 16/10/01 Lynette H 18-10-01 1
     ... and a view from the Prom floor alison 22-10-01 2
         ... and Woking alison 24-10-01 3

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Lynette H

18-10-01, 04:32 PM (GMT)
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1. "RE: Mark Morris premiere 16/10/01"
In response to message #0
 
   LAST EDITED ON 18-10-01 AT 04:32 PM (GMT)

Do get to see this if you possibly can. Musically, this is a particularly luscious evening, complemented by some terrific performances from the dancers. Morris's musical instincts are unmatched - everything is marvellously danceable, and the steps seem to have grown out of the music as naturally as breathing.

Morris himself appears in a solo, Peccadillos, set to Satie. The indefatigable music director, Ethan Iverson, plays the world's smallest, tinkliest piano onstage, while Morris himself, possibly the largest dancer to grace Sadlers Wells’ stage, sketches out a dance both whimsical, childlike and touching. He was sending himself up a little in the process but he is still lighfooted and agile with beatiful, eloquent, twirling hands.


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alison

22-10-01, 06:37 PM (GMT)
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2. "... and a view from the Prom floor"
In response to message #1
 
  
I prommed for the first time at Sadler's Wells for Mark Morris last week,
and a very different experience it was, too. (For those who don't know, the
front 10 or so rows of stalls seats are removed to create a promming area
for 400 people). The audience was noticeably younger, and it was very warm,
with so many bodies in such close proximity, but fascinating being so close
to the performers, especially Morris himself in Peccadilloes, where his
facial expressions were so much clearer, and in Grand Duo, where you could
see so much better how intensely the dancers were involved in what they were
dancing. (Not to mention the excellent musicians, in particular playing up
a storm in Grand Duo). The only problem was that despite the floor being
raked, unless you stand in the front row you'll almost certainly have
people's heads blocking your line of vision, which does adversely affect
your perception of the pieces as a whole. In fact, it did occur to me
during the first interval, when everyone was sitting down, that it might be
better for sightlines to have the audience sitting on the ground as they
used to do at the Royal Opera House Proms (NB: ROH, what about reinstating
those?), although that would probably mean that fewer people could be
accommodated as a result.

Morris' new work, "V", suffered slightly from being seen from such a low
vantage point: to get the most from it, you really need to view it from
above, as otherwise you can't see the patterns, made by two sets of dancers
in different-coloured outfits, which are such a major element of the piece,
but it was still sheer joy. Or, more accurately, 3 movements of sheer joy
and one which was rather darker and more foreboding, with dancers proceeding
across the stage at a funereal pace, cockroach-like on all fours, reminding
me of a particular lithograph by Escher in which the animals become sharper
and more real until they manage to crawl out of the picture altogether. It
may just have been my original response to this section, but with the
dancer's bodies blocking the view to a much greater extent I wasn't struck
by the feeling of a struggle to drag themselves back from crawling to an
upright position which I had noticed when viewing the work from above. It's
one of Morris' more balletic works (it struck me that I could see English
National Ballet doing it on one of their smaller-scale tours - after all,
Matz Skoog is on record as saying that he'd like to include some Morris in
the repertoire), and also one of his most responsive to the music. I tend
not to listen to chamber music, and don't think I'd heard the Schumann piece
before, but because the choreography matched and drew such attention to the
music, even after only two hearings I feel that I known much of it virtually
note-perfect, and indeed I wonder if I shall ever be able to hear it again
without seeing the choreography in my mind's eye, so clearly is the
association imprinted on my brain. I gather it's not being toured in
Britain, but if you get a chance to see it elsewhere you should take it!


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alison

24-10-01, 01:16 PM (GMT)
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3. "... and Woking"
In response to message #2
 
   A similar programme went down very well last night in Woking - review when I get a chance. Don't know if there are any seats left for tonight - there weren't last night, but that was the Friends' discount night.


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