Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB), Britain's second ballet company, has hit the ground running under the dynamic directorship of Carlos Acosta. The Cuban ballet superstar, who took over as artistic director in January, had great plans to mark his first year in charge, and in the process significantly raise the profile of his company.
Then, of course, Covid-19 intervened and plans for a summer festival of dance were put on the back burner. Undaunted, BRB became the first ballet company to announce its return to the stage, obviously under socially distanced conditions.
And while we await its Lazuli Sky triple bill, BRB raises the curtain on the work of its younger dancers with Solos and Pas de Deux, a programme filmed over the past week in the company's Birmingham studios.
Some pieces will be seen in performance, others in workshop. The dancers are coached by Carlos Acosta himself and ballet master Dominic Antonucci, and the programme allows us to see the actual coaching process. Music is provided by company pianist Ross Williams.
The one-hour programme is made up of nine solos and pas de deux from various repertoire works, ranging from the pure classicism of Sleeping Beauty, to Kenneth MacMillan's Concerto and Elite Syncopations, Ashton's Sylvia, and the Latin fireworks of Acosta's own choreography for Don Quixote.
So, now that the weather has turned decisively wintry, what better way to spend a dark evening than watching some of BRB's up-and-coming dancers being put through their paces?
|Birmingham Royal Ballet, Solos and Pas de Deux
|Online | MAP
01 Oct 20 – 08 Oct 20, Available on demand Dur.: 1 hour and 10 mins