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 Post subject: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2004 11:20 pm 
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<img src="http://www.sadlerswells.com/whats_on/2004_2005/images/side_swan.jpg" alt="" />

Swan Lake
Matthew Bourne’s gender-swap Swan Lake left audiences shocked and in awe. Will its animal magic work again, asks Clifford Bishop in The Sunday Times


Among the many headlines that greeted Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake when it first appeared in 1995, the one Bourne most expected — Prince Charles on Stage in Gay Ballet — was strangely absent. “I felt sure that’s what the tabloids would pick up on,” he says, “but apart from the odd mention about ‘dysfunctional royal families’, that aspect was totally ignored.” There was, in any case, no shortage of things to talk about. In this Swan Lake, the tutu-ed female swans and cygnets of the classical ballet were replaced by men.

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<small>[ 08 August 2004, 02:13 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2004 11:41 am 
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For cast information on the upcoming Swan Lake production see:
www.matthewbourne.org/news


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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2004 7:48 am 
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Jason Piper
From The Stage

A pianist by heart but a dancer by trade, 28-year-old Jason Piper decided last year that as his life was lacking structure and a regular wage he would audition for a part in the first big dance show that came along, that would contract him for a while.

“I wanted a nice little earner - something that was easy, dancing around with the corps de ballet in the back.” He ended up with the lead role in Matthew Bourne’s ground-breaking all male version of Swan Lake. “Matthew asked me to come to the principal’s week of auditions and said lots of nice things about my dancing. My ego got the better of me and the rest is almost history.”

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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Sat Nov 13, 2004 5:23 am 
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How the fit and fabulous stay that way: Jason Piper, 28
Jason Piper, 28, gave up rugby for fear of injury - but finds ballet dancing more dangerous
INTERVIEW by AMBER COWAN for The Times


How do you feel about dancing a part traditionally played by a bird? Although I’m wearing distressed silk and feathery pants, the show isn’t camp in the slightest. To counteract the fact that Swan Lake is traditionally a female ballet, they’ve gone for reasonably butch-looking guys for the all-male corps de ballet. We all run around with our tops off — something the Kirov ladies never did, sadly.

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***********************

Quote:
The much-celebrated, all-male version of Swan Lake comes back for another encore

by CHARLOTTE CRIPPS
the Independent

How does it feel to have created a modern-day classic? "It feels strange that my production is seen as so important," says Bourne. "It's certainly a historical piece - it's now mentioned in encyclopaedias."
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<small>[ 12 December 2004, 10:21 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 12:33 am 
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Quote:
Swan Lake

By JUDITH MACKRELL
The Guardian
December 09, 2004

Is it wrong to mourn those few days, back in 1995, when Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake was still a little show poised unknowingly on the brink of huge success? Despite the celebrity guest lists, the fake snow and feathers adorning its current revival, it is, after all, essentially the same work. And but the sublime ingenuity of Bourne's story-telling is still startling.
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 2:16 am 
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Swan Lake
By Debra Craine for The Times


SINCE we first saw it at Sadler’s Wells in 1995 Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake has acquired almost legendary status. It has conquered the West End and Broadway, winning the top awards; it has travelled the world and given almost 900 performances; and it has confirmed Bourne as one of the most significant figures working in dance today.

And, remarkably after all that, its lustre is undimmed. Its tenth anniversary production is breaking records at the Wells — it has taken more than £1.5 million at the box office — and Tuesday’s opening night was a triumph.

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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 5:24 am 
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Quote:
Next stop, Hollywood

By JUDITH MACKRELL
The Guardian
December 07, 2004

In 1995 Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake made its all-male cast famous. Can the revival do the same? Judith Mackrell talks to its past and present stars.
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 11:10 pm 
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Quote:
Swan Lake Sadler's Wells, London

By CLEMENT CRISP
The Financial Times
December 10, 2004

The management at Sadler's Wells has provided box-office statistics to tell us about the runaway success of Matthew Bourne'sSwan Lake in its theatre as the production starts a tenth anniversary season and plays until mid-January.
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 11:15 pm 
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Quote:
Swan Lake, Sadler's Wells, London

By ZOE ANDERSON
The Independent
December 09, 2004

Nine years after its premiere at Sadler's Wells, Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake returns to the same theatre with fanfares. This revival has already broken box-office records, taking more than £1.5m. Performances have become broader in those nine years; although the piece has lost some of its power, Bourne's production still stands up.
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2004 11:37 pm 
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Quote:
A new star takes flight in an enduring masterpiece

By ISMENE BROWN
The Daily Telegraph
December 09, 2004

When Matthew Bourne first unveiled his reinterpretation of Swan Lake at the cramped old Sadler's Wells nine years ago, he was one of modern dance's little guys. In a rare fit of accurate prophecy I wrote: "If this were a West End show, one would declare, 'This will run and run.' "
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 1:58 am 
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Should this be its swan song?
The ‘male’ Swan Lake is wearing thin, , but Birmingham’s Nutcracker is superb. By David Dougill for The Sunday Times.


It is almost 10 years since Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake was premiered by his Adventures in Motion Pictures company at the old Sadler’s Wells. Subsequently, it has conquered the world. Yet there are, of course, people who have not seen it, and they are the ones who keep referring to it — enthusiastically but erroneously — as the “all-male” Swan Lake. All-male it isn’t, and never was: there are a number of women in the ballet, as I often have to point out in conversation.

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<small>[ 12 December 2004, 03:04 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 4:59 am 
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Moved from another topic:

Danscraft posted 12 December 2004 04:27 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Matthew Bourne, Story teller! Choreographer?

I agree with Judith Mackrel that Bourne is a good story teller, and in factI would go much further, I remember the days when mr Bourne was on the fringe with the collective (as it was then) AMP. His work in those days really showed more of his actuall lack and maybe frustration at trying to Choreograph movement and consequently resorting to forms of lovely comedia d'arte type theatre with a form of intimate stage / Ballet acting reinvention, this I think is what he ultimatley does best. Another key point his how he was asking me questions at the time, of what and why is good choreography admiring Richard Alstons use of 'steps', but hanging on my every word to find out what was in or out at the time as he respected me as a Dancer, and why? so he could be accepted in the 'Dance World'It is high time that the world of Theatre payed for these shows allowing the small amount of money available for Dance to go to the struggling Choreogrpahers who are still trying to develop 'Movmement' so to speak i.e. David Massingham who was also part of that AMP collective and has become one of our most under rated Choreographers in our time along with a whole host of other facinating and well under funded Choreographers. Mr Bourne is famous enough to look after himself now and stop dominating the Dance audiences with Story telling, he should in my opinion get more Film work and Plays to do and be a big comercial success in that way (funded through his Hollywood connections) which would allow the real starving artists to get some exposure.

<small>[ 12 December 2004, 06:00 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Sun Dec 12, 2004 7:45 am 
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Quote:
The swan that I want

by JANN PARRY
the Observer

What seemed a daring act of iconoclasm 10 years ago is now accepted as a valid alternative: loving one version needn't mean spurning the other.

In his newly reworked account, Bourne has spelt out the plot machinations more clearly. Here is a royal house hold not unlike our own (or Monaco's).
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 Post subject: Re: New Adventures - "Swan Lake" 2004-5
PostPosted: Wed Dec 22, 2004 4:22 am 
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Location: London, England
Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake
Sadler’s Wells
17/12/04

Ballet likes to stretch the realms of possibility. Whether that’s gravity-defying leaps, painful pointe-work or in the case of Swan Lake, the idea that a man might fall in love with a swan – the fantastical has a home here. Yet perhaps the reason why Prince Siegfried’s avian amour seems so plausible is that in a traditional Swan Lake, Odette is always ballerina first, swan second.

In Matthew Bourne’s version however, the prince and the swan might be the same sex but they are discernibly different species.

Former ENB and NBT dancer, Neil Westmoreland plays the awkward, repressed prince, stultified by court life and in oedipal awe of his mother. Westmoreland acts his heart out, occasionally coming out camp compared with the opaque presence of Jose Tirado, the swan. As the wild bird, Tirado feels like an unknown quantity; dangerous, unpredictable and physically far more powerful than the slim prince.

When he appears as The Stranger in Act III, these qualities are transferred to human form, as a heartless heartbreaker. Not the kind of man you’d take home to meet your mother – because he’s likely to seduce her as well. Which he does, of course.

In this production, the relationship between the prince and the swan is not a meeting of souls, but a disturbing obsession, which transforms the prince and then destroys him.

The supporting cast provides light relief, especially Sophia Hurdley as the prince’s trashy girlfriend, confused by love and royal protocol. Hurdley visibly develops the character throughout the show, unlike Nicola Tranah’s queen, who wears her regal mask throughout.

The set pieces, particularly the club scene, are packed with action and comic characters and there’s relatively little filler, although it's possible that Bourne's ability to make a plot gallop along works to his detriment when the pure dance sections occasionally seem slow in comparison.

Tchaikovsky’s score is given cinematic intensity by the brooding swans, the prince’s psychological drama and the giant shadows looming on the white walls of the asylum where the prince is ultimately incarcerated. Yet however stylised the world on stage, it is still recognisably our own, and that’s what makes Bourne’s version of the story more powerful than any fairy tale.


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