Brave. Bright. Beautiful. Choreographers from three continents share New Zealand stages this winter in Bold Moves – a magnificent mixed bill of daring works by the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Definitive danceworks from three different decades, each piece offers a rare glimpse into bold and boundary-defying choreographers who captured the zeitgeist through dance.
Returning to our shores after more than 40 years, Balanchine’s iconic Serenade from 1934 marries structure with fluidity as 26 dancers float across the stage to Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings. Moving through time and space in perfect patterns, architectural yet organic, supremely structured yet somehow free, Serenade has an inner light, a tranquillity and a deeply felt emotion that has spoken to generations of dancers and audiences. One of the few ballets that can truly be held iconic, it is American ballet’s founding document.
Where Serenade is all moonlight; William Forsythe’s Artifact II is a blast of neon and strobe. This rebellion to the classical art of dance splices Bach with electronica in a mesmerising and unforgettable work. Created in 1984, this work was Forsythe announcing himself as a distinctive new voice in ballet with bright colour, pulsating beats and a larger than life American athleticism.
Completing the line-up is Andrea Schermoly’s 2018 choreography, Stand to Reason, returning to the stage in a bold ode to the tenacity, courage and spirited sisterhood of the brave women who won the vote in New Zealand. It shines a light on democracy then and now: wide awake women, ready to take on the world.
Bold Moves is a rare opportunity to see landmark international danceworks onstage in New Zealand. It premieres in Wellington on August 16 and tours to Auckland, Palmerston North, Christchurch, Dunedin and Napier until September 15.