Louise Levene

Almost triumphs over the absurdity of its premise: Northern Ballet’s Victoria reviewed

16 March 2019 9:00 am

Blame Kenneth MacMillan. The great Royal Ballet choreographer of the 1960s, 70s and 80s was convinced that narrative dance could…

Pounds of flesh: Takayasu throws Takakeisho to the ground to win the 2018 Kyushu tournament in Fukuoka

The balletic, bum-baring rituals of sumo

12 January 2019 9:00 am

An early morning in late November in the peaceful glades that surround an ancient temple complex. A Shinto priest in…

Joseph Caley and Alina Cojocaru in English National Ballet’s Manon

Why does the English National Ballet bother taking Manon to the provinces?

27 October 2018 9:00 am

Like it or not, provincial ballet audiences love a story they can hum and any director planning to tour a…

Bravura piss-taking from Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo

29 September 2018 9:00 am

‘Ballet is woman’ insisted George Balanchine, but ballet can also be a big man in a dress as any fan…

Artists of the Royal Ballet against the easel-worthy backcloths of John Macfarlane’s ravishing designs for Swan Lake

Proper tutus, gorgeous designs, first-rate dancing: Royal Ballet’s new Swan Lake reviewed

26 May 2018 9:00 am

The Royal Ballet’s 2016 Frankenstein was a masterclass in how not to make narrative dance and the news that Liam…

Dancing feat: Fred Astaire and Bing Crosby rehearsing choreography for Blue Skies

From buck dancing to Happy Feet: a short history of tap

12 May 2018 9:00 am

Fire up YouTube on the iPad, tap in ‘tap’, then wave goodbye to the rest of your day: clip after…

How do these Shaolin monks square six shows a week with monking?

How do these Shaolin monks square six shows a week with monking?

14 April 2018 9:00 am

The Shaolin monks are no strangers to the stage. Their home in Dengfeng is a major stop on the Chinese…

Paying homage to the seated diva: a still from the 2016 documentary about La Chana

Louise Levene meets the tormented queen of flamenco, who bewitched Dali & Peter Sellers

3 March 2018 9:00 am

A frail old woman sits alone on a chair on a darkened stage. There are flowers in her hair. She…

The men give the women little to work with: Giselle reviewed

24 February 2018 9:00 am

A bumper fortnight for Covent Garden florists thanks to a 20th-anniversary flower shower for the Royal Ballet’s Marianela Nunez and…

ENB’s La Sylphide resembles a lock-in at a Royal Mile souvenir shop

27 January 2018 9:00 am

Gurn loves Effy, Effy is engaged to James but James is away with the fairies: a recipe for love tragedy.…

The nymphs are hit and miss, but Osipova is a witty, multifaceted Sylvia: the Royal Ballet’s Sylvia reviewed

16 December 2017 9:00 am

You can pay homage to a ballet classic or you can tear it up and reinvent it. Both approaches were…

Reducing the lead to an demented rape victim is just what ballet needs: The Wind reviewed

18 November 2017 9:00 am

A kindly cowboy, an East Coast bride, adultery, murder and madness. The Wind, Dorothy Scarborough’s 1925 Texas gothic novel (and…

Wayne’s world

28 October 2017 9:00 am

Ballet would have been an obvious revenue stream for Sadler’s Wells when it reopened back in 1998 but straight-up classics…

Dancers of the Royal Ballet in Christopher Wheeldon’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Pretty vacant

7 October 2017 9:00 am

Alice is at it again. Christopher Wheeldon’s 2011 three-act ballet began another sell-out run at Covent Garden last week. It’s…

The glorious Grand Pas from Paquita, part of the Mariinsky’s triple bill

Not vintage Mariinsky

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Not really a vintage Mariinsky season — an odd choice of repertoire and some hit-and-miss male casting — but the…