It’s a world of challenges this new perfectly balanced ballet performance: fourteen talented dancers, the young rib of the Ballett Zürich, who bend themselves among three new choreographies created inside the company: Eva Dewaele, ballet mistress, Filipe Portugal, soloist of the Company, and Christian Spuck, director of Ballett Zürich. Three New Creations interspersed by the light and playful atmosphere of Les Bourgeois by Ben Van Cauwenberg and Itzik Galili’s The Sofa, all magically danced in the precious frame of the stunning Opernhaus.
The program opens with Passing by by Eva Dewaele, excellent dancer, ballet mistress at Ballett Zürich, and now also young choreograph who uses the deep fresh tensions of these seven young dancers to explore neat dynamics, changing points of view, and soft body lines that can easily turn into broken ones. The dancers keep pace with the high technique – especially an amazing Michelle Willems – even if the male part still need sometimes to forge the music ensemble. The piece seems to mark a passage from straightness and confidence to a personal search of movement and rhythm, passing through an asymmetric and contemporary use of space, sight and lines.
The central performance, Paysage obscure, is signed by the cunning renowned choreographer Christian Spuck, also director at Ballett Zürich since 2012. His choreography is centered on Franz Schubert’s final chamber work, the String Quintet in C major D 956 (which adds an extra cello), creating on the sublime Adagio with its contrasts between outer tranquillity and inner turbulence. The whole piece is mastery orchestrated, from the background scenography composed by a dark bunch of stacked chairs, to the light design that simply and geometrically delimitates the stage. The dancers are black figures that emerge from the dark background like musical instrument to play their tensed part. An apparent simple structure that conceals kaleidoscopic readings, full of melody and poetry. This time the dancers are always perfectly on music, becomes part of it, like notes that take life from their stave, while the huge scenography is a constant dark presence that keeps on reminding the tragic fatal end.
Third new creation, which closes the evening, is Tauwetter, a work for thirteen dancers elaborated by the soloist dancer Filipe Portugal. It’s a romantic aerial choreography, also in the use of light pastel costumes and point shoes. A continuous standing out from the shade of interlaced duos where each one is searching and sustaining the other, while an angel-like woman breaths and palpitates as an intangible spirit of the wind.
In the last piece it’s easy to notice again the talent of the young Japanese dancer Surimu Fukushi, who is also protagonist of the solo Les Bourgeois, the famous ironic jumping tour choreographed by Ben Van Cauwenbergh in 2003 on Jacques Brel’s song. Maybe his acrobatic talent is still too much elegant and too little insolent, but his young naughtiness and pure movement enchant the audience.
Another funny choreography is The Sofa by Itzik Galili (1995), this time on Tom Waits’s song Nobody. Again the three dancers involved in this playful change of roles play well an clean the ironic seducing game, launching themselves into the yellow coach as well as in the new possible relations, always keeping their young fresh almost chaste malice.
“New Creations” with Ballett Zurich – Junior Ballett
@ Opernhaus Zurich on 21/02/2015 (world premiere on 17/12/2014)