Wow! What a fabulous new, greatly extended Thomas Dixon Centre! What a creative way to tee off with three challenging contemporary ballets!
Choreographer Petros Treklis takes us to a dark world in “Tethered”. The dancers confront us with the idea of the unknown and our other selves. With a strong corps de ballet as “shadows”, Sophie Kerr shines as one of the Jette Parker Young Artists.
The multi-award winning Australian choreographer Stephanie Lake also explores the subterranean forces that shape our lives in “Biography”. Lake describes her artistic goal as wanting “audiences to be transported somewhere during the show” in the hope that “it is to a place of imagination “ and that it “makes them squirm in their seats”. There is however a sublime passage where the squirming can give way to heavenly transcendence in the “Ave Maria” by Johann Sebastian Bach.
The third work “”A Rhapsody in Motion” by Greg Horsman pays homage to the time all ballet dancers spend at the barre each day they dance. It is joyously set to Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini”.
If ballet is to be living art form and not merely a recitation of the great classics, then opportunities like “Bespoke” are essential. They give vent to the creative urges of dancers and choreographers in a rapidly changing world.
The transformation of the Thomas Dixon centre has been a $100 million investment by state and federal governments as well as private sponsors. It is a worthy investment indeed. The cause of ballet in Queensland has been mightily enhanced by this new facility incorporating the 350 seat Talbot Theatre which will complement QB’s customary performance space at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre.
On dress rehearsal night is was good to hear artistic director Li Cunxin pay tribute to the legacy of great dancers of the Queensland Ballet. We are fortunate indeed to have had such outstanding, world-class dancers as Rachael Walsh and Michelle Giammichele whose beautiful artistry and virtuosity have enriched our lives.
Music composed by James Brown, Stefando Landi, Rosemary Standley, Dom La Nena, Johann Sebastian Bach, Robin Fox, Sergei Rachmaninoff
Performance time 2 hours 15 minutes with two 15 minute intervals
Runs 20-30 July 2022