All stories by Neil Norman on BroadwayStars

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Project Polunin – Satori review at the London Coliseum – ‘a messy affair’ by Neil Norman

Satori is the Japanese Buddhist term for ‘awakening’ or ‘seeing into one’s true nature’. And if anyone needed a lesson in self-awareness,

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Wednesday, December 6, 2017

The Nutcracker review at Royal Opera House, London – ‘skips along’ by Neil Norman

Is it my imagination of have there been some excisions in this venerable Nutcracker? I missed the naughty boys wielding wooden swords

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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Ivan Putrov’s Men in Motion review at London Coliseum – ‘an incoherent programme’ by Neil Norman

Thirteen dance works in one evening may seem like a bargain. But for this latest programme curated by Ivan Putrov to explore

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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

A Linha Curva/Symbiosis/Goat review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘a masterpiece’ by Neil Norman

Rambert’s latest triple bill delivers on many fronts. The louche-limbed La Linha Curva is a riot of Brazilian-inspired carnival movement set to

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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The Illustrated Farewell/The Wind/Untouchable review at Royal Opera House – ‘a variable triple bill’ by Neil Norman

There are two ways of programming mixed bills: either locate a common theme and encourage choreographers to riff around it or take

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Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Twyla Tharp: ‘My first language is ballet’ by Neil Norman

In a career spanning more than 50 years, the acclaimed choreographer has been tireless in her pursuit of excellence and pushing the

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Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Aladdin at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘full of Eastern promise’ by Neil Norman

Originally made for the National Ballet of Japan, David Bintley’s Aladdin is an efficacious antidote to the panto versions at this time

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Friday, October 27, 2017

Gloria/The Judas Tree/Elite Syncopations review at Royal Opera House – ‘staggering’ by Neil Norman

The third and final programme celebrating the legacy of Kenneth MacMillan sees Northern Ballet performing his First World War masterpiece Gloria at

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Monday, October 23, 2017

Choreographer Ben Duke: ‘Surrounded by violence, I wanted to explore who we’re angry with’ by Neil Norman

Ben Duke is a true original. Having trained as an actor and dancer he discovered his calling lay both outside those disciplines

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Friday, October 20, 2017

Trois Grandes Fugues review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘illuminating’ by Neil Norman

Take three female choreographers and set them the challenge of interpreting the same piece of music in their own fashion. Beethoven’s Die

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Thursday, October 12, 2017

Hair review at the Vaults, London – ‘energetic but toothless’ by Neil Norman

It is five decades since Hair, the hippy musical, first shook its baubles, bangles and beads. Its claim to be the first

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Friday, October 6, 2017

Yukio Ninagawa’s Macbeth review at Barbican Theatre, London – ‘horrific and deeply moving’ by Neil Norman

The death of the great Japanese director Yukio Ninagawa in 2016 robbed the international theatre scene of one its most original and

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Company Wayne McGregor – Autobiography review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘bewitching and bewildering’ by Neil Norman

Wayne’s world is increasingly informed by science. The thinking man’s choreographer, McGregor had his entire genome sequenced by the Genetics Clinic of

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Friday, September 29, 2017

Acosta Danza: Debut review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘a promising start’ by Neil Norman

Only a churl would deny Carlos Acosta the chance to let his hair down. And there is plenty of evidence in his

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Monday, September 25, 2017

Carlos Acosta: ‘People see me as a mirror that reflects themselves’ by Neil Norman

From humble beginnings in Cuba, Carlos Acosta beat extraordinary odds to become one of the world’s greatest classical ballet dancers. As his

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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Footloose the Musical review at Peacock Theatre, London – ‘well past its dance-by date’ by Neil Norman

This is the production of Footloose where all the cast play instruments on stage. As well as dance and sing. I would

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Hofesh Shechter Company: Grand Finale review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘mature and magnificent’ by Neil Norman

One could never accuse Hofesh Shechter of lacking ambition. His latest work is inspired by nothing less than the Apocalypse; it’s the

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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Miss Saigon review at Birmingham Hippodrome – ‘an assault on the senses’ by Neil Norman

There is a movie in my mind. I see a jungle enveloped in napalm fire. I see helicopter gunships strafing small villages.

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Monday, August 14, 2017

Wayne McGregor’s +/- Human review at London’s Roundhouse – ‘engaging experiment in human-to-drone interaction’ by Neil Norman

Seven white globes come gliding into the central space of the Roundhouse. Small propellers whirring, they dance in the air of the

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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Contrasts review at the Royal Opera House, London – ‘Mariinsky Ballet shows versatility’ by Neil Norman

As a reaction to the conservative choices of the Mariinsky season (including Swan Lake and Don Quixote), this triple bill is positively

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Paco Pena’s Flamencura review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘outstanding’ by Neil Norman

It began as a concept: a flamenco show in search of duende – the elusive, transcendent connection between dancer, musician and spectator.

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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

ENB’s Romeo and Juliet review at Royal Festival Hall – ‘drab and lifeless’ by Neil Norman

Over-choreographed and underwhelming, Rudolf Nureyev’s Romeo and Juliet has always suffered in comparison with versions by MacMillan, Cranko and even Ashton. Created

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Nina review at Young Vic, London – ‘a searing one-woman show’ by Neil Norman

While Josette Bushell-Mingo’s one woman show about Nina Simone may invite comparisons with Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill, currently at

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Peter Mumford: ‘Lighting dance in the 1970s has influenced everything I’ve done’ by Neil Norman

From fringe shows in London to a musical version of King Kong in Australia, Peter Mumford is at home working on productions

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Thursday, July 13, 2017

Dorrance Dance – ETM: Double Down review at Sadler’s Wells – ‘playful and exciting’ by Neil Norman

Michelle Dorrance is tapping into technology in this show that made its debut in New York last year. A revolutionary tap choreographer,

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Friday, July 7, 2017

Displacement review at Lilian Baylis Studio, London – ‘lean and hungry’ by Neil Norman

This is lean and hungry work. Part of the Shubbak Festival celebrating contemporary Arab culture, Mithkal Alzghair’s Solo and Trio are two

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Monday, June 19, 2017

Scottish Dance Theatre: Dreamers/TutuMucky review at the Place – ‘controlled fury’ by Neil Norman

Beneath dim and shuddering light figures move in shadow; heavily muscled male torsos unfurl like Rodin sculptures coming to life while music

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Thursday, June 15, 2017

Taj Express review at Peacock Theatre, London – ‘a colourful tribute’ by Neil Norman

The guitarist calls himself Flash. Which is as good a description of this tribute to the prolific Bollywood composer AR Rahman as

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Thursday, June 8, 2017

Scottish Ballet review at Sadler’s Wells, London – ‘remarkably adventurous’ by Neil Norman

One of Crystal Pite’s greatest virtues is that she knows when to stop. The Canadian choreographer’s Emergence is stuffed with ideas and

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Friday, May 12, 2017

Zippos Circus: Jigit review at Brockwell Park, London – ‘infinite variety’ by Neil Norman

The problem with contemporary circus is that it doesn’t smell. Circus should smell of animals and popcorn and candy floss, hot dogs

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Friday, May 5, 2017

60 dancers, 44 tutus and two washing machines: on the road with Birmingham Royal Ballet by Neil Norman

The logistics of taking a large-scale ballet on tour can be mind-boggling. Key backstage workers and performers from Birmingham Royal Ballet tell

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