Rambert, Britain’s national dance company, makes a welcome return to Bath to perform Christopher Bruce’s contemporary masterpiece Ghost Dances as part of a triple bill also featuring two new works: Ben Duke’s Goat, inspired by the music and spirit of the legendary Nina Simone, and Aletta Collins’s The days run away like wild horses. Appearing at the Theatre Royal from Thursday 2nd to Saturday 4th November, Rambert will be accompanied by live music performed by the critically acclaimed Rambert Orchestra.
Rambert’s Artistic Director Mark Baldwin said: “Bath has a hugely significant part in Rambert’s touring story and continuing our 74 year-old history with the theatre I am thrilled to present Ghost Dances, Rambert’s enduring masterwork, which returns after 13 years to move new generations of dance lovers. On this special occasion, this programme also includes two diverse and dynamic works: Ben Duke’s new work Goat sees him explore in his own way the psyche, songs and characters of the incomparable Nina Simone, both joyous diva and malcontent; in The days run away like wild horses the theatrical Aletta Collins aligns her witty and agile choreography to the rhythmic excitement of Arturo Marquez’s Cuban-inspired music. I’m so proud to be showing this brilliant collection of dances here”.
Originally created for Rambert in 1981, Ghost Dances is Christopher Bruce’s response to political oppression in South America, and has returned to the company’s repertory for the first time in over ten years. Ghost Dances depicts stories of love and compassion, as death – in the form of the iconic ‘ghost dancers’ – interrupts the daily lives of a series of ordinary people. Set to Latin American folk music arranged by Nicholas Mojsiejenko, the piece makes visual reference to the ‘Day of the Dead’. Bruce created the choreography and set design for the work, with costumes by Belinda Scarlett and lighting design by Nick Chelton. Christopher Bruce returned to Rambert to teach his choreography to the current company, which revived the work in November 2016.
Aletta Collins’s The days run away like wild horses is a witty and vivid depiction of the moments that make up a life. Taking its title from a poem by Charles Bukowski, the choreography is set to Arturo Márquez’s pulsating Cuban-inspired Danzones 1, 2 & 3. Aletta Collins’ third work for the company, the performance premiered at Sadler’s Wells this May. With designs by 2017 Olivier Award-winner Katrina Lindsay, the piece is created in collaboration with and commissioned by Daniel Katz with lighting by Andreas Fuchs.
Completing the programme, award-winning choreographer and rising star Ben Duke presents his first work for Rambert. Goat, inspired by the music and spirit of world famous singer, songwriter, pianist, arranger and civil rights activist Nina Simone, features a selection of her best-loved songs performed live onstage. Duke’s work explores the overlap between dance and theatre. His most recent work, the critically acclaimed one-man-show Paradise Lost (lies unopened beside me), toured the UK in 2016 and won him the Critic’s Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Male Performance.
All three original dance works showcase the trademark quality of Britain’s national dance company and display its staggering range and abundance of talent
Whilst at Bath’s Theatre Royal, Rambert will host a free, pre-show talk on Friday 3rd November at 6.30pm; tickets for the talk can be booked via the Box Office.
Rambert: Ghost Dances and Other Works appears at the Theatre Royal Bath from Thursday 2nd to Saturday 4th November. Tickets are available from the Theatre Royal Bath Box Office on 01225 448844 and online at www.theatreroyal.org.uk