‘Goat’ & Other Dances: Rambert Presents Three Dances Inspired by our Times

One of Britain’s best dance companies, Rambert, returns to Theatre Royal with a trio of dance works created in the past year, all inspired by the turbulent and ever-changing world around us. Rambert have made their name by presenting new and historic danceworks all over the country performed by world-class dancers. They have the most extensive national touring programme of any UK contemporary dance company – so catch your chance to see them while they are here!

The trio of dances come courtesy of Ben Dukes, Julie Cunningham and Andonis Foniadakis. The dances greatly vary on content and style but the running theme of reflection and self-expression binds the three into one flowing tale from different perspectives. ‘Goat’ is a dance theatre piece created by Lewes based, Westbourne raised choreographer Ben Dukes. During a turbulent and dramatic summer in London, Dukes found himself inspired by Nina Simone’s music and her mentality that an artists duty is to reflect the times.

The narrative of the piece comes from a  reflection of Duke’s own childhood traditions with the performer stating “I grew up in a village near Chichester called Westbourne. There was a tradition there on New Year’s Eve of writing on a piece of paper two things you wanted to rid yourself of – it could be something bad that happened to you, or something bad that you had done. The pieces of paper were placed inside a can which was tied to the tail of a goat. The goat was supposed to disappear over the horizon and take our sins with it. Usually it ran for give seconds or so then stopped to eat some grass. Some years it came running back towards us…”

The second, and perhaps most poignant, piece comes from Julie Cunningham & Company entitled ‘To Be Me’. Cunningham reflects and explores her own experience of her identity and gender in a world that is often not accepting. The performance is set to Kate Tempest’s hip-hop and rhythmic re-working of the ancient mythological character Tiresias. The ancient prophet was turned from male to female for seven years and is featured throughout classical mythology dating as far back as The Odyssey. Tempest’s delicate re-telling of the story goes hand in hand with Cunningham’s own narrative, featuring lines such as “Watching his body like it wasn’t his/He pushed his new shape to the edge of the clearing…Suddenly boy again/Soon to be man.”

Finally, Greek National Ballet dancer Adonis Foniadakis will take to the stage with his presentation ‘Symbiosis’. Foniadakis is known for his technically detailed dance works full of energy and power, with his new high velocity piece inspired by the energy created in cities each day in an era fuelled by digital technology. The piece will be set to a specially commissioned score by the acclaimed ‘Stardust’ composer Ilan Eshkeri. His piece will demonstrate and celebrate his own extraordinary technical skills and is an exciting chance to see a reflective piece based on an interpretation of our digital age.

‘Rambert presents…’ runs from the 21st-24th March at Theatre Royal Brighton. Tickets are available here.

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