The Royal Ballet's mixed programme for the 2015/16 season combines a selection of three very different works. Resident choreographer Wayne McGregor's new one-act ballet, “Obsidian Tear,” sits alongside a revival of Kenneth MacMillan's “The Invitation” and the return of Associate Choreographer Christopher Wheeldon's “Within The Golden Hour.”
Feminism, queer theory, ontology, postcolonialism—these subjects and more cropped up in the whirlwind 90 minutes I recently spent interviewing Cecilia Lisa Eliceche ahead of the UK premiere of her latest work, “Unison.”
One of the greatest challenges—and for me, joys—of being a dance critic is navigating the not infrequent clash between contemporary values and those embraced in classical ballet, a centuries-old institution that venerates ‘tradition’ in all its old-world, patriarchal glory. What messages of value can women divine from stories that glorify female fragility and are primarily written and directed by men?
As long as those of us with deep knowledge of dance fail to develop a “universal without which there would be no [dance],” ignorant formulations will fill the gap, guaranteeing dance’s low status and poor representation among the arts.