Choreographer Matthew Bourne is renowned for his cutting-edge productions and sharp wit so his adaptation of Edward Scissorhands is sure to pierce hearts when it visits Milton Keynes Theatre from Tuesday.
Edward Scissorhands, the touching tale of the boy with a full set of paper-cutters on the end of each arm, was first premiered by Bourne’s company, New Adventures, in 2005. Since then, the production has carved a place in the hearts of thousands across the world, enjoying sell-out performances in Europe, America, Asia and Australia.
This spectacular modern fairy tale has now returned to the UK in its first major revival and, after seasonal success at Sadler’s Wells over Christmas, the show is stopping off in the new city to give theatregoers here a slice of the cleverly-choreographed action. Blending contemporary dance with drama, Bourne’s work has widespread appeal and Lez Brotherston’s stunning sets always add to the theatrical magic.
Dancer Tim Hodges has featured in pop videos, performed in the West End and toured the UK and beyond in hit musicals.
Currently cast in Matthew Bourne’s production of Edward Scissorhands, Tim found time between rehearsals to talk to Georgina Butler about how this witty, modern fairytale carves a place in audiences’ hearts.
Inspired to pursue dance professionally after seeing videos of Mikhail Baryshnikov, Tim Hodges began dancing as a youngster in Milton Keynes at the Woollard Tiffin School of Performing Arts before winning a place at Tring Park.
Now, aged 29 and starting to inspire the next generation of dancers through his own teaching, Tim Hodges is thrilled to be touring the United Kingdom as part of Matthew Bourne’s company, New Adventures, in Edward Scissorhands.
I spoke to Tim before he attended today’s class and afternoon rehearsals to learn more about his life as a dancer and quiz him on what makes this Bourne show “a cut above” the rest.
A flock of muscular, lyrical, completely masculine creatures took to the stage at Milton Keynes Theatre last night in Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, a contemporary re-imagining of an iconic ballet.
Bourne’s Swan Lake is an original take on an age-old favourite. His cheeky re-write ruffled a few feathers among balletomanes when first performed in 1995 but has since collected over thirty international theatre awards and is now regarded as a modern classic.
Traditionally, the ballet is associated with tutu-clad female corps de ballet dancers gliding gracefully en pointe in carefully coordinated formations. Bourne replaces these bourréeing beauties with an ensemble of powerful, bare-chested, male dancers decked out in baggy, feathered, knee-length trousers and shuns the standard prince/princess pas de deux for a duet between two male performers.
SHOWTIME: AN INSPIRING EVENING SHOWCASING EMERGING CHOREOGRAPHERS.
Fresh. New. Talented. Evolving. Emerging. Whatever buzzword you opt for, Cloud Dance Festival’s opening Showtime line-up encompassed the most innovative up-and-coming new works from the world of contemporary dance.
Cloud Dance Festival (CDF) was founded in 2007 by Chantal Guevara to provide a platform for the ground-breaking choreographers and dance companies of the future. Showtime, held at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre, North London, is CDF’s first festival funded by Arts Council England.
Themes of the festival centred on striving to improve, finding your own path and being true to yourself. All while also developing as a young creative (whether a dancer, choreographer, dance writer, photographer or videographer).
Choreographer Jo Meredith (publicity shot by Mikah Smillie).
Milton Keynes-based writer, journalist and dance reviewer Georgina Butler was selected as an emerging dance writer for Cloud Dance Festival: Showtime in London.
Here, she reviews choreographer Jo Meredith’s newest work, Chimera…
Having carved out a niche role reviewing the dance productions at Milton Keynes Theatre, a writing opportunity at choreographic showcase, Cloud Dance Festival: Showtime, was too good to miss.
I have been a dancer and a writer for as long as I can remember. Ballet classes are a necessity in my week (not forgetting jazz, contemporary – any excuse to have a bop) and writing has always been my ‘thing’ – from excelling at essays to reporting for Milton Keynes’ favourite newspaper.
Hopefully, regular readers enjoy my reviews but I am always keen to improve and broaden my understanding of both dance and writing. Imagine this journalist’s excitement, then, to be selected as an emerging dance writer for Cloud Dance Festival: Showtime, held in London over three days (Friday 15th to Sunday 17th November). This thrice-yearly gathering allows groundbreaking choreographers to share their work. As part of this latest festival, Cloud Dance held professional development workshops in dance writing, dance photography and dance filming, led by industry experts.
So, on Friday, I joined four fellow wordsmiths with a keen interest and background in dance at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre in North London for a four-hour writing workshop.
CREATIVE VISION: Dancers rehearse Jo Meredith’s Chimera (Photo by Chantal Guevara)