Four signatures of excellence for the “contemporary evening” at the Theater Alla Scala: Dawson, Duato, Kratz & Kylian

A splendid occasion, both for the value of the invited choreographers and for the value on an international level of the ballet company of the Scala directed with elegance by the maestro Manuel Legris.

by Michele Olivieri
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A group of trained soloists and principal dancers, beautiful, courageous, precise and above all young, trod the Milanese stage, with a prodigious poetic tension that immediately reached those present. The program didn’t appear easy: a succession of steps with a change of registers and languages, amalgamated by professional conscience and transparent love for dance.

Not only did the technique or abstractionism reach the spectators but the full charm of this dreamlike art reached. It is difficult to concentrate the four pieces performed in a few words, which basically were experienced as a single adventure of beauty, suitably linking the modern repertoire.

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Four signatures of excellence for the “contemporary evening” at the Theater Alla Scala

There hasn’t been a failure or a flaw. David Dawson has his own personal conception of total theater and dance: the creation has a sonorous, luminous, powerful, sensitive image, with clean lines, with enthralling Ezio Bosso music. All this was seen in the flow of the charismatic piece “Anima Animus”.

The multiple forms elaborated by the British choreographer build that uninterrupted pulsation of privileged moments that make up his acclaimed style. In fact, dance is not only the art of movement, but above all the knowledge of movement. Not only the graceful gesture, but the inner strength of things that modify shapes and make dance a perennial discovery. Dance which is also the reflection of a universe – the Terpsichorean one – in continuous transformation. Deserved applause for Nicoletta Manni, Maria Celeste Losa, Gioacchino Starace, Rinaldo Venuti, Mattia Semperboni, Christian Fagetti, Alessandra Vassallo, Letizia Masini, Linda Giubelli, Marta Gerani.

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The second piece is signed Nacho Duato, which saw the palpitating expectation of most of the spectators for the performance of the étoile Roberto Bolle

The second piece is signed by the Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato, entitled “Remanso”, which saw the palpitating expectation of most of the spectators for the performance of the étoile Roberto Bolle, in a fantasy that exploits emotions and singing the love for life, according to a precise aesthetic line that is typical of Duato, in the desire to fully exploit human relationships and their “interweaving”. Created in 1997 at the American Ballet Theatre, it is now presented for the first time at La Scala.

From a purely choreographic point of view, the piece involves, in many points, but not exclusively. Nacho Duato used the rose and hands as a symbol of passion, love and sensuality. Alongside the étoile two young men with evident talent, such as Domenico Di Cristo and Darius Gramada. The three dancers appear from a large panel of canvas that changes colour, as a separé, positioned in the center of the stage, and then disappear behind. The conception moves between oppositions, grips, reflections, symmetries and asymmetries in which the axes and lines are broken and then recomposed. It is playful, as indeed is the hopeful flower. To embellish the creation the elegant Maestro Takahiro Yoshikawa with his equally elegant execution on the piano of the “Valses poéticos” by Enrique Granados.

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The curtain opened on “Solitude Sometimes” by the German choreographer Philippe Kratz in its first ever performance

Afterwards, the curtain opened on the piece “Solitude Sometimes” by the German choreographer Philippe Kratz in its first ever performance. His experiences at the German Tanztheater and later at Aterballetto led him to an evident deconstruction and recomposition of the concept of movement. His dance is done with the body and in the body, the rhythm becomes the counterpart of the breath, rustling and androgynous in the steps on the tables of the stage. The musical choice of electronic matrix finds in the singer-songwriter Thom Yorke and Radiohead a synchronic parallelism between the two arts.

Added to this is the “physical” tool that lays bare the instinct of man and artist. In intimacy, each dancer, isolated from the rest, assumes his own identity according to his own feelings and his own path. The twenty-five minute ballet brings together a large number of performers: fourteen artists who highlight the descent into Hell of Ra, the god of the sun, who purifies himself during the night and re-emerges on the surface giving life to a new day.

A modern phoenix, sprinkled with glamor, which is reborn from its ashes after death, young and beautiful, to symbolize the power of resilience. We are transported with evocative references to ancient Egypt, especially in the steps lowered into symmetrical positions and to the melodic impulses, perhaps to embody the vibrations of nature with its spiritual energy. Praise to the dancers Navrin Turnbull, Nicoletta Manni, Camilla Cerulli, Alessandra Vassallo, Stefania Ballone, Linda Giubelli, Timofej Andrijashenko, Domenico Di Cristo, Franck Aduca, Andrea Crescenzi, Saïd Ramos Ponce, Andrea Risso, Gioacchino Starace, Rinaldo Venuti. All so ductile, multifaceted and above all in great shape.

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Jiří Kylián, The Czech choreographer, is one of the most prolific and inventive from the post-war period to today

The last ballet in the program saw the scene dressed up with curtains in continuous movement, from top to bottom, from right to left, which in a geometric hide-and-seek become small, then large, slide, rise, change the shot , go down, box the backdrop to then restore the wide visual field again. All this in “Bella Figura” by Jiří Kylián. The Czech choreographer, one of the most prolific and inventive from the post-war period to today, plays with the concepts of performance, modeling the chosen dancers as if they were clay (Stefania Ballone, Chiara Borgia, Chiara Fiandra, Benedetta Montefiore, Giulia Schembri, Emanuele Cazzato, Andrea Crescenzi , Matteo Gavazzi, Andrea Risso) developing the creation on the concept full of theatricality.

Movements, dynamics, displacements, intentions and gestures go hand in hand with beauty. There is a Baroque flourish as if the dancers were parts of a sculpture or elements of a pictorial fresco, in the gaudy colors of the costumes, and in those of semi-nudity connected to the color red, synonymous with vitality, passion and energy. Between ideas, surprises and feelings there is a harmonious accord in which the nine interpreters express themselves with naturalness, frankness, and self-confidence. The harmony between classic and contemporary was solemn in all four choreographies presented.


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