Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB) - Triple Bill 2011
Birmingham Royal Ballet's current triple bill 'Autumn Glory', focuses on 3 contrasting pieces, 'Checkmate', 'Symphonic Variations' & 'Pineapple Poll'. 'Checkmate' starts off the show, and tells the tale of a game of chess in dance. With stunning, sharp and strict choreography by Ninette De Valois, the large cast for this piece of dance stood out with energy and fast moves. This abstract piece originating from 1937 tells the tale of a classic game of chess, performed by sticking to the game rules, and the tale of the red and black kings and queens competing between life and death.
Credit goes to BRB's 55 piece orchestra! It was a pleasure to sit through 3 ballets and listen to this fabulous band. Percussionists, violinists, every instrument playing through the Theatre Royal's auditorium was a pleasure to listen to, and to be accompanied by the on stage performances hit the nail on the head!
The second ballet performed was 'Symphonic Variations'. Personally, this was my favourite ballet out of all three. This short 20 minute performance was a simple and most beautiful dance with only 6 dancers, a piano and some clarinets! Appreciative and beautiful is how I would describe this piece, the story of 6 puppets who begin the show in stillness, and finish the show still, this visually beautiful ballet is a highlight of this triple bill, simple music score, simple set, simply beautiful.
Our third performance of this Triple Bill was 'Pineapple Poll'. This classic take on Gilbert and Sullivan (ballet style) delivers a clear storyline and an energetic finale to the evening. The tale of a hearty sailor who wins a village worth of girls' hearts, a story of disguise, confusion and confidence. This other glorious piece stands out in this Triple Bill, which over all is a must see.
- Nick Anderson