UK’s only all-male dance company, BalletBoyz, founded by former Royal Ballet lead dancers Michael Nunn and Billy Trevitt, returned to Victoria’s Royal Theatre with two new commissions on January 20 and 21, 2017. The double bill, called Life, premiered at Sadler’s Wells in April 2016 and features new works by internationally renowned choreographers Pontus Lidberg and Javier de Frutos.The company thrills audiences and critics the world over with its distinctive style, fusing spectacular dance both energetic and graceful, with stunning music and film. Ten young dancers, handpicked through open auditions across the country, feature in an evening of exhilarating dance, stunning music and awesome talent.
Featuring music by Henryk Górecki, Ben Foskett and Donna Summer, the two works in Life take a provocative look at life and death. Rabbit by Pontus Lidberg is a comedic ode to childhood. Lidberg opens his narrative with a young man dancing with someone in a rabbit mask, both dressed in public schoolboy attire with long socks. More rabbits enter the stage and with them questions around acceptance, loyalty, loneliness, conformity and more.
For Fiction, Javier de Frutos imagines himself being fatally injured by a piece of falling scenery during the work’s premiere, and commissioned the critic Ismene Brown to write his obituary. Her narrated text provides part of the work’s score. The 10 dancers, grouped around a rehearsal barre, react to the literal meaning of the words with comic, confused expressions, and dance to the words’ rhythms in ensembles of complex movements.
Photos by Hugo Glendinning