Jump to content


This site uses cookies. By using this site, you agree to accept cookies, unless you've opted out. (US government web page with instructions to opt out: http://www.usa.gov/optout-instructions.shtml)

Liam Scarlett (Royal Ballet) doing a piece for Miami City Ballet


  • Please log in to reply
10 replies to this topic

#1 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 29 August 2011 - 04:05 PM

Liam Scarlett of the Royal Ballet has been in Miami choreographing a piece for Miami City Ballet. He was invited by Edward Villella, who saw him working with dancers at the Royal Ballet.

The ballet premieres in Miami in January, with additional performances in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Naples (Fla.) over the next weeks. Based on the brief YouTube interview, with shots of Scarlett working with MCB dancers, both the movement quality and the music -- Lowell Liebermann, Piano Concerto No. 1 -- seem promising.

Has anyone seen Scarlett's previous work in London? Or know something about it?



#2 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 15 September 2011 - 04:27 PM

I'm bumping this up, with a new MCB blog video. Scarlett certainly seems to have engaged and charmed the MCB dancers. Here's Jeanette Delgado's account of what it was like to work with Scarlett.



Another appeal: does anyone know Scarlett's work or reputation?

#3 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,275 posts

Posted 15 September 2011 - 11:11 PM

I'm bumping this up, with a new MCB blog video. Scarlett certainly seems to have engaged and charmed the MCB dancers. Here's Jeanette Delgado's account of what it was like to work with Scarlett.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mp_p9v9m53Q&feature=player_embedded

Another appeal: does anyone know Scarlett's work or reputation?


Jeanette's laughing is so contagious..! For those who don;t know her, that's just the way she's onstage. As bubbling and energetic and VITAL. (I'm sure she would make a wonderful "Fille"...hint-hint! :wink: )

Anyway..thanks, bart for the clips. I would also like to know who's this person Scarlett. Any clue...anyone..? :dunno:

#4 variated

variated

    New Member

  • New Member
  • Pip
  • 7 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 04:38 AM

I must confess that I haven't yet seen Liam's piece for the Royal Ballet on the mainstage (Asephodel Meadhows) but it was pretty well received last year, and is being revived so I hope to see it this season. I have seen some pieces he made for the Royal Ballet school over the past couple of years and while they are perfectly "nice" in a politely neo-classical way, I can't say that I found them particularly exciting. Nothing objectionable but not much new or surprising either.

#5 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 05:29 AM

Thanks, variated. Delgado, in the clip above, describes an amazingly laid-back style of working with dancers. Perhaps this carries over into the choreography itself, as niceness and nothing-special?

On the other hand, his style seems to have generated strong and sincere enthusiasm among the dancers who worked with him.

I Googled Asphodel Meadows and found a number of reviews, including this generally positive one from the Times (London):

Making a piece for the main Royal Opera House stage is a rite of passage that defeats many a fledgeling choreographer. Not so Liam Scarlett. Amazingly, this young man — just 24 and in the junior ranks as a dancer with the Royal Ballet — approaches his task with the assurance and ambition of a seasoned veteran. His premiere, rather enigmatically entitled Asphodel Meadows, is an elegant and haunting one-act ballet that captures the romantic spirit and atmospheric colours of its chosen music, Poulenc’s Double Piano Concerto. And it does so with sophistication, ingenuity and a consistent classical sheen.

http://entertainment...icle7118496.ece

I'm guessing that this is the work that Villella saw in London (either in performance or while being worked on) that convinced him to ask Liam to come to Miami.

The choice of Poulenc is a hopeful sign, for me at least. I wonder what music he is using for the Miami piece.

#6 Simon G

Simon G

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 564 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 08:02 AM

The problem with Scarlett's work is that it suffers from that generic "meh" politeness that a lot of choreography by new choreographers tends to do.

It's like ballet chow mein, a bit of fancy footwork to show you've got Ashton down, (especially important if you're Royal Ballet trained) a pas de deux or two where people seem to be having a really hard time of it for no clear reason in a nod to Macmillan, some fancy syncopated jazz groups to give it that Robbins flava, the obligatory gynaecological crotch splitting camel-toe extensions and a couple of lifts turning women upside down with their legs split to show you know your Balanchine.

Mix it all together with some full cast shenangigans and set it to either screechy violins or pop music scored for a classical orchestra and you have a nice piece of modern choreography, inoffensive and guaranteed to sandwich nicely in betweeen a Balanchine, one act Ashton or if you want to be edgy a Mcgregor.

And if you're British everyone loves you, because we have that great accent and dry sense of humour.

Blah.

#7 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,275 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 09:42 AM

...the obligatory gynaecological crotch splitting camel-toe extensions...
Blah.


:rofl:

#8 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 10:30 AM

Simon, I understand and tend to agree with your point about "new choreographers" as a generalization.

Do you exclude, in Scarlett's case, the promise of growth? What, for example, if you move from a company you know well (like Scarlett at the Royal) to another company with a very different spirit and style (like MCB)? Do you think that Scarlett has the capacity for growth of vision, structure, significance, etc.? I've twice heard Edward Villella -- and artist and a canny showman -- speak about how impressed he was by Scarlett on a visit to London. He decided quickly that he wanted him for Miami.

As for the music -- "set it to either screechy violins or pop music scored for a classical orchestra" -- are you referring to a generic type, or to specific choices made by Scarlett in the past? Poulenc's Double Piano Concerto seems of a rather different order than what you describe.

#9 puppytreats

puppytreats

    Gold Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 751 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 11:22 AM

the obligatory gynaecological crotch splitting camel-toe extensions...suffers from ... politeness... inoffensive


Not even a "dry British sense of humor and British accent" can save that juxtaposition.

#10 Simon G

Simon G

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 564 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 12:06 PM

Simon, I understand and tend to agree with your point about "new choreographers" as a generalization.

Do you exclude, in Scarlett's case, the promise of growth? What, for example, if you move from a company you know well (like Scarlett at the Royal) to another company with a very different spirit and style (like MCB)? Do you think that Scarlett has the capacity for growth of vision, structure, significance, etc.? I've twice heard Edward Villella -- and artist and a canny showman -- speak about how impressed he was by Scarlett on a visit to London. He decided quickly that he wanted him for Miami.

As for the music -- "set it to either screechy violins or pop music scored for a classical orchestra" -- are you referring to a generic type, or to specific choices made by Scarlett in the past? Poulenc's Double Piano Concerto seems of a rather different order than what you describe.



Hey Bart,

The music part I was generalising. Jokes and frolics aside, what I've see of Scarlett's work is really pretty, he knows how to make a nice dance, admittedly I've only seen two of his works, but then he's only done two or three.

I think the problem is you compare the one act works which are being produced today and often they're put on bills with a Balanchine, an Ashton, Robbins etc and the "contemporary" work is just left in the dust. You see why Ashton is Ashton, Balanchine, Balanchine etc there's just a genius that courses through the work, whether or not Scarlett is given the time and opportunities to really do something visceral I suppose is up to Mason and whoever else hires him. He can make dances that's for sure.

#11 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 12:42 PM

Thanks, Simon. I really appreciate your insights into this.

I think the problem is you compare the one act works which are being produced today and often they're put on bills with a Balanchine, an Ashton, Robbins etc and the "contemporary" work is just left in the dust. You see why Ashton is Ashton, Balanchine, Balanchine etc there's just a genius that courses through the work,

Scarlett's new work is currently listed to be the opener for a program that includes Robbins' In the Night and Balanchine's Ballet Imperial, in that order. Sounds like smart programming order, possibly designed to minimize the "comparison effect" that you mention.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


Help support Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers year round by using this search box for your amazon.com purchases (adblockers may block display):