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Kenneth MacMillan's 1966 Concerto was originally created for Berlin's Deutsche Oper Ballet; but The Royal Ballet has made it very much its own. The choreography responds to the rhythms, intricacies and playfulness of Shostakovich’s Piano concerto No 2 in F major, Op 102. It’s a joyous work, its upbeat energy highlighted by designer Jürgen Rose’s simple costumes: bright orange for the soloists, lemon yellow for the corps de ballet, and deep red for the three couples that shadow the soloists.
Here's a taster, with Anna Rose O'Sullivan and James Hay as the soloists in a section from the First Movement.
The Second Movement, Andante, was inspired by one of MacMillan’s most influential muses, Lynn Seymour, and brings a complete change of mood. A couple, here principals Yasmine Naghdi and Ryoichi Hirano, dance a lyrical, unhurried pas de deux.
It’s a moment when time stops; but the buoyant mood is restored in the final Allegro Movement, where the gusto and pinpoint accuracy of Mayara Magri’s solo work are framed by a large ensemble tackling the increasing speed of the score with total confidence.
Fresh and modern, this is a work we never tire of watching.
The Royal Ballet works still available to watch for a £3 fee as part of the ROH #OurHouseToYourHouse programme:
• The Sleeping Beauty (2020) until Sunday 28 March
• Elite Syncopations (2020) until Sunday 11 April
• The Dream (2017) until Friday 18 April
|What||The Royal Ballet, Concerto stream|
|Where||Online | MAP|
26 Mar 21 – 23 Apr 21, 19:00 and available for four weeks after first stream. Dur.: 40 mins approx