Rambert Dance Company
Festival Theatre, Edinburgh, Wed 7–Fri 9 Nov
Grace, finesse and refinement – three things every Rambert dancer has at their disposal. But the arrival of Australian choreographer, Garry Stewart this summer, turned the company on its head – literally.
Known for the gymnastic and boisterous work he creates with his own company, Australian Dance Theatre, Stewart took no prisoners. And while the end result may not be quite as punishing as the moves he creates back home, Infinity has still taken the Rambert dancers in a new direction.
‘Our dancers are very British in their training,’ explains Rambert’s artistic director, Mark Baldwin. ‘With lots of ballet and contemporary technique, so they’re very finely tuned in terms of detail and articulation. And what Garry did was rough the whole thing up with a different way of thinking.’
Part of a quadruple-bill, featuring Christopher Bruce’s classic Swan Song, a new abstract work by New Yorker, Karole Armitage and a debut from Rambert dancer, Melanie Teall, Infinity has an animal quality which blends the company’s inherent style with Stewart’s energetic pace. All wrapped up in skin-like costumes designed by concept artist and taxidermist, Georg Meyer-Wiel.
‘Garry’s made a very athletic piece - I knew he would,’ says Baldwin. ‘And although I was nervous about the challenges that brings, our dancers have risen to the occasion very well. I think we’ve added the finesse of dance to his rough and ready tumbling, so it’s exciting and very theatrical.’