Tread Softly/Carnival of the Animals/Comedy of Change Ballet Rambert Sadlers Wells 6 November


The evening started with ‘Tread Softly’, in fact tread softly on Mahler’s arrangement of the ‘Death and the Maiden’ quartet.


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I don’t know what choreography would add to such music, but this wasn’t it–it was all rather over-literal doubling of what the music did (with some suggestive thrusting), on a bare stage and with the dancers in what appeared to be rehearsal costumes.  And one of the girls softly trod on three of the blokes lined up for her.

Then it was ‘Carnival of the Animals’.


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The choreography did have some cutting edge this time, and there were jokes in both the choreography and the music, but they didn’t really coincide and the (rather better I thought) ones in the music went begging.  I daydreamed about my tea quite extensively.

And finally we had ‘Comedy of Change’, an allegedly Darwinian piece with a bespoke score by Julian Anderson and black-and-white clad dancers emerging from chrysalis-style things at the beginning.


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There was good coordination between the music and action, but what it was all about I couldn’t make out.  They made a cocoon out of aluminium foil and squashed it flat at the end…The pieces were arranged in order of decreasing running time (strangely enough), so we were let out earlier than I had feared.  And I would have had plenty of time to make my tea if I’d not forgotten about my trains being rearranged.

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