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May 8, 2015

Two world premières form part of the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Salute, ahead of an international tour

Lucire staff/2.36

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Ross Brown

Top Neil Ieremia’s Passchendaele with RNZB dancer William Fitzgerald. Above Kirby Selchow dances Andrew Simmons’ Dear Horizon.

The Royal New Zealand Ballet has revealed more about Salute, its commemoration of World War I, that premières in Wellington on May 22, with a nationwide tour after its stint there. As revealed in Lucire earlier this month, two of the specially commissioned pieces having their world première in Wellington will also be seen abroad, with the Royal Ballet hosting the RNZB in November 2015 at the Royal Opera House. Leeds, Canterbury and Roma are on the list of stops for the tour, Francesco Ventriglia, the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s artistic director revealed today.
   The two premières, both commissions by the RNZB, are from choreographers Neil Ieremia and Andrew Simmons, set to scores by Dwayne Bloomfield and Gareth Farr, respectively. The world-class New Zealand Army Band will also collaborate on Salute, touring to each of the seven centres on the national tour.
   Ieremia’s Passchendaele, with the Bloomfield score, will also feature works by Auckland artist Geoff Tune, inspired by his artist grandfather’s World War I diaries and recent visits to Gallipoli and Passchendaele.
   Ieremia said in a release, ‘The grotesque and brutal nature of war robs humans of humanity—my intention is to do what little I can to remind us of our own. From the haunting journey through the music, to the refined expression in the dancers’ bodies, encapsulating the very human impact of war—this creative process has already left an indelible mark on my spirit. I feel I have grasped a very, very small insight into something that should never be forgotten.’
   Simmons’ Dear Horizon is a new commission and his fifth for the company, and features a specially commissioned score by Farr, written for the New Zealand Army Band and cellist Rolf Gjelsten of the New Zealand String Quartet.
   Simmons said, ‘It is a very special honour to have been asked to create something for the company as part of this commemorative programme. War cannot really be celebrated and fêted, however the human aspect and participation should always be remembered. I wanted to create a work that reflects upon emotions of those affected by conflict.’
   The set and costumes for Dear Horizon have been designed by Tracy Grant Lord, who also designed the RNZB’s Cinderella (2007) and Romeo and Juliet (2004).
   As detailed last month, the Salute programme also features Johan Kobborg’s Salute and Jiří Kylián’s Soldiers’ Mass.
   Salute has been supported by the Lottery Grants Board, New Zealand Defence Force, Qantas, the Göthe-Institut, the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, national sponsor Vodafone, and Pub Charity.
   Dates for Salute are May 22–4 in Wellington; May 28–30 in Christchurch; June 3 in Dunedin; June 10 in Hamilton; June 13 in Takapuna; June 17–20 in Auckland; and June 24–5 in Napier.
   Further information can be found on the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s website at rnzb.org.nz.

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April 22, 2015

The Royal Ballet announces its 2015–16 programme, including four world premières

Lucire staff/22.32

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Above Steven McRae as Florizel in Christopher Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale, which will be revived for the Royal Ballet’s 2015–16 season. Photograph copyright ©2014 by Johan Persson.


Above Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet, performed in 1965. Photograph copyright ©1965 by Leslie E. Spatt.

The Royal Ballet has announced its 2015–16 season under its director, Kevin O’Hare, with four world premières, including the first main-stage, full-length narrative ballet by artist-in-residence Liam Scarlett based on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein; new one-act ballets from resident choreographer Wayne McGregor and artistic associate Christopher Wheeldon; and a new production of Carmen by principal guest artist Carlos Acosta.
   The first production of the season is Kenneth MacMillan’s production of Romeo and Juliet, originally created in 1965 for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable, and performed by Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev at its première, which famously met with 43 curtain calls. It is the first work in the Royal Opera House Live Cinema Season for 2015–16.
   Acosta’s new adaptation of Carmen is set to the Bizet score with a new arrangement by Martin Yates. Acosta will dance the Don José and Escamillo roles at certain performances. Tim Hatley is behind the set and costume designs, and Peter Mumford has created the lighting. Scarlett’s Viscera, Jerome Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun and George Balanchine’s Tchaikovsky pas de deux form the rest of the mixed programme, and part of the ROH Live Cinema Season.
   McGregor’s Raven Girl will be revived in October in a double bill with Alastair Marriott’s Connectome. In May 2016, McGregor premières a one-act ballet set to Nyx, a one-movement orchestral work by Esa-Pekka Salonen. The programme also features a revival of MacMillan’s The Invitation.
   In February 2016, the company premières a new ballet by Wheeldon set to a commissioned score by Mark-Antony Turnage, alongside a mixed programme featuring After the Rain and Within the Golden Hour. Designs are by Bob Crowley and lighting by Natasha Chivers.
   Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale will stage its first revival in April 2016. The original was nominated for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance and won the Critics’ Circle Award for Best Classical Choreography. It has also been nominated for a South Bank Sky Arts Award for Dance.
   Scarlett’s full-length narrative ballet based on Frankenstein premières in May 2016, with a score by Lowell Liebermann with designs by John Macfarlane and lighting by David Finn. It will be broadcast live to cinemas on May 18, 2016.
   Mixed programmes of Frederick Ashton’s work will feature this season, the first being The Two Pigeons, created in 1961 for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable, appearing in November 2014, alongside Monotones I and II, set to Erik Satie’s Trois Gnossiennes and Trois Gymnopédies. It returns in January 2016 in a second double-bill alongside Rhapsody, created by Ashton for Lesley Collier and Mikhail Baryshnikov in honour of the Queen Mother on the occasion of her 80th birthday. It will be shown in cinemas on January 26, 2015.
   Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker, with design by Julia Trevelyan Oman, will be the Royal Ballet’s Christmas programme, while Wright’s Giselle returns in February.
   A summer tour to Japan is planned for 2016.
   As part of the Royal Ballet’s Linbury Studio Theatre programme, the Royal New Zealand Ballet is set to tour in the UK in November 2015, making its Royal Opera House début, performing a mixed programme, including a world première by Andrew Simmons. UK audiences will be delighted to see Anatomy of a Passing Cloud by Javier de Frutos, Selon Désir by Andonis Foniadakis, and Passchendaele by Neil Ieremia.
   Others to be hosted include Cas Public, which also makes a début at Linbury, presenting Symphonie Dramatique, inspired by Romeo and Juliet, and coinciding with the Royal Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet on the main stage.
   The Phoenix Dance Theatre will perform Until.With/Out.Enough, choreographed by Itzik Galili, a co-commission by the Royal Ballet. The company’s artistic director Sharon Watson will present TearFall in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust, exploring the complexities of crying, and Caroline Finn’s Bloom examines ‘a surreal universe with tragi-comic characters.’
   Former Royal Ballet and American Ballet Theatre principal Alessandra Ferri will make her Linbury début in Chéri, directed and choreographed by Martha Clarke, and inspired by the novella by Colette. Chéri will feature American Ballet Theatre principal Herman Cornejo.
   Will Tuckett’s Elizabeth will make its Linbury début, based on the life of Queen Elizabeth I, and featuring Carlos Acosta and Zenaida Yanowsky, set to a score by Martin Yates, derived from Elizabethan compositions by Dowland, Tallis and Morley.
   Keon Kessels succeeds Barry Wordsworth as music director; Wordsworth becomes principal guest conductor.
   Further information can be found at the Royal Opera House’s website at www.roh.org.uk.

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April 19, 2015

It’s all about the eyes with the Body Shop’s latest releases

Lucire staff/5.19

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The Body Shop focuses on the eyes with its latest releases. It has launched two Matte Kajal eyeliners, in white and black. One complaint we often see at Lucire with kohl eyeliners is the difficult application, especially as some need three or four passes before getting any colour. The Body Shop’s Italian-made Matte Kajals—the Body Shop has opted for the Hindi term—don’t suffer from that problem: they are easy to apply and smudge, and enriched with Community Fair Trade beeswax from Cameroon. Each retails for NZ$25 and appear at the Body Shop’s New Zealand retail outlets and online from Monday, April 20.
   The Body Shop suggests that the white can come in handy to counteract redness and help make the eye look larger, and it can enhance eye-shadow colours. It can also be used under the brow, blending downards to create an eye-lift, while defining the brow.
   The look can be completed with the new Super Volume Mascara from the Body Shop, retailing at NZ$27·50. Like the Matte Kajals, the pigmentation is good and smudge-free, and stays on well during the day, though care is needed with the brush. The Body Shop adds that contact lens wearers won’t have any trouble with it. Knowing that it hasn’t been tested on animals is a huge bonus for our times, and it features Community Fair Trade marula oil from the Eudafano Women’s Cooperative in Namibia, an initiative that helps 1,750 women in the region.
   The company is also releasing its Velvet Gel Pen (NZ$19·95), Skinny Thin Felt Liner (NZ$22·95) and Bold Oversized Felt Liner (NZ$22·95).

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April 14, 2015

Lucire TV: Kimye baptize North; MTV Movie Awards’ highlights; Gemma Arterton on the red carpet at Olivier Awards

Lucire staff/11.44

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Olivier Awards

From top Gemma Arterton (Made in Dagenham) in Dsquared² on the red carpet at the Olivier Awards. Dame Judi Dench and Kevin Spacey with his award, recognizing his contribution to the London theatre. Best supporting actress winner Dame Angela Lansbury (Blithe Spirit).

After a five-day tour of their Armenian homeland, Kim Kardashian and husband Kanye West arrived in Israel, and had their daughter, North, baptized. The couple, along with Kardashian’s sister Khloë, had the service at St James’ Cathedral, a 12th-century Armenian church in the old walled city in Jerusalem, in what was described as a ‘minimalist’ ceremony. West wore white, while Kardashian wore a peach and beige ensemble.
   Gemma Arterton got plenty of notice at the Olivier Awards at the weekend, wearing a Dsquared² black dress with a plunging neckline. Arterton was nominated for her role in Made in Dagenham, but lost to Penelope Wilton, who won the best actress award for Taken at Midnight. But it was Dame Angela Lansbury who was the winner getting most of the attention at the end of the ceremony at the Gielgud Theatre in the West End: at 89, she took home the best support actress award for Blithe Spirit. Other celebrities walking the red carpet were nominees Gillian Anderson (A Streetcar Named Desire) and Nicole Scherzinger (Cats), and Kevin Spacey, who received an award for his contribution to the London theatre from Dame Judi Dench.
   Our final video today is from the 2015 MTV Movie Awards at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles, hosted by Amy Schumer. Fashion highlights on the red carpet were from Jennifer López in a black blazer with a plunging neckline and Scarlett Johansson in hot pink. Shailene Woodley (with four awards), Robert Downey, Jr and Mark Ruffalo also feature. We’ll have our report from the pre-awards’ suites very shortly.

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April 13, 2015

Triumph launches animated Find the One film for the perfect bra, starring Hannah Ferguson

Lucire staff/15.03

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A departure from the usual approach of showing top models in intimate apparel, Triumph has launched an animated movie, Find the One (hashtag #FindTheOne), to promote the perfectly fitting bra.
   The two-minute spot, which will air from April 13 in Germany, the UK and Italy, evokes a romantic, Disney-esque style that many wearers will be familiar with, along with a memorable musical number entitled ‘Find the One’. However, instead of finding Prince Charming, the song is about the ‘life-changing experience’ (Triumph’s words) of finding the right brassière.
   The main animated character, Hannah (right), is based around Triumph and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue model Hannah Ferguson, who appears in real-life form at the end of the spot.
   In true fairy-tale form, Hannah appears with her friends Tammy and Mara, who head to the boutique with her, Fred the Frog and the Fairy Godmother, who appears as a dress form.
   Stories AG’s Tobias Fueter and Yves Bollag were behind the animation and the characters. Fueter said, ‘Triumph is a fantastic brand for which to create an emotional story. Women easily identify with animated characters, which explains the success of animated fairy tales all over the world.’
   The score was composed by Tony Award-winning composer, Jason Robert Brown, with the vocal performed by three Broadway singers. The Prague Filmharmonic Orchestra performed the score.
   Eszter Szijarto, Head of Brand Marketing at Triumph, said, ‘It is really important for us to find new ways of bringing to life the bra finding journey so that we continue to inspire customers to go for a fitting and find the perfectly fitting bra—“The One”.’
   Through the spot, Triumph wishes to encourage women to look at getting properly fitted for a bra as part of its campaign, aiming to help 500,000 women this year.
   To celebrate the spot, Triumph is running an international competition for its customers, with the hashtag #animateme. The winners will receive an illustration of themselves in the animated style of the film. Details of the competition will be revealed on April 22 and will run through May 13.
   Ferguson wears the Triumph Magic Wire bra at the conclusion of the film. The innovative, award-winning bra features silicone instead of underwire, making it more comfortable to wear.
   Triumph’s Find the One page can be found at triumph.com/findtheone. Customers can visit a Triumph boutique for a fitting or book online.



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April 9, 2015

St Regis Ä°stanbul launches sumptuous, car-inspired Bentley suite

Lucire staff/4.05

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Eric Laignel

The St Regis İstanbul hotel has débuted a Bentley suite, named for the car brand, its interior inspired by the current Continental GT model.
   A collaboration with St Regis Hotels & Resorts, the suite features a balcony overlooking Maçka Park with views of the Bosphorus and the city. There are floor-to-ceiling windows showcasing Ä°stanbul’s sights.
   Bentley design cues are present in the living room, bedroom, the one and a half baths, the dressing room and powder room.
   The entrance’s mirrored ceiling reflects the marble floor, inset with a Continental GT wheel-inspired design. The living area’s veneer walls are meant to evoke the Continental’s interior, and the living room’s sofa’s leather is shared with the car’s. Bentley’s diamond upholstery is present on the sofas, which have two champagne bottle coolers, while the light installation evokes the Continental’s jewelled headlights. The curves of the Nürburgring race track are suggested in the way the rug has been cut, and both the living area and bedroom rugs capture the Bentley grille in abstract form.
   The wet bar, with olive ash, is inspired by the Bentley’s dashboard, and the bar doors reveal three Breitling clocks. The humidor in the bar set-up has been hand-crafted in Bentley’s own wood shop. Items from the Bentley home collection feature throughout the suite, including the chaise in the bedroom.
   The work desk sits alongside a 40-inch pop-up television, while the bed base, tailor-made from burgundy hide and bright engine spin, also conveys the lines of the Bentley Continental GT’s interior. Controls for the room are accessed via a touch panel and Ipad.
   The master bathroom has a dual-basin sink, glass-enclosed rainforest shower, and free-standing glass-enclosed bathtub. There is a 19-inch mirror TV and an adjacent dressing room. The suite also has an additional full bathroom and powder room.
   Naim Audio equipment, which is available on the Bentley as an option, appears throughout, with the SuperUniti player in the living room, and the Mu-so wireless system in the bedroom.
   The new hotel has been designed by Emre Arolat in the art-déco style. Wolfgang Puck’s Spago restaurant and the Iridium Spa also appear at the new property.



Eric Laignel

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April 7, 2015

Dove encourages women to see themselves as beautiful with new campaign; summit session announced

Lucire staff/21.08

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Dove wants to change the way women think about themselves with its new campaign, called Choose Beautiful. According to its 2010 research, 96 per cent of women do not choose the word beautiful to describe how they look. Its new five-minute film, shot in San Francisco, Shanghai, New Delhi, London and São Paulo, encourages women to choose beautiful to describe themselves, to radiate their inner confidence and become happier.
   The film shows a building with two doorways: ‘Average’ and ‘Beautiful’. Those who chose the latter reported that they felt better, having made a statement publicly about how they viewed themselves.
   It ties in with Dove’s #SpeakBeautiful campaign to encourage women to understand how words impact on self-esteem and confidence.
   Dove will partner with Women in the World this year, a summit that brings together inspirational female leaders to discuss women’s issues. This year’s summit in New York, on April 22–4 at the David H. Koch Theater, includes Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren, Freida Pinto, Thandie Newton, Ashley Judd, former senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Diane von Furstenberg, Barbra Streisand, Christiane Amanpour, Obiageli Ezekwesili (Bring Back Our Girls), author Elif Shafak, North Korean human rights’ activist Yeonmi Park, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Zainab Salbi and others. Dove will host a session on the 24th, ‘The Beautiful Brain’, discussing beauty and choice with Newton, Dr Stacie Grossman Bloom, Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Physiology at the NYU Langone Medical Center, and Dr Rénée Engeln, Professor of Psychology, Northwestern University.
   The five-minute film is shown below, and Dove has set up a site on Tumblr.

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April 1, 2015

Jaguar launches second-generation XF saloon: lighter, roomier, more class-leading tech

Lucire staff/13.10

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A week after previewing the new XF in a high-wire stunt over Victoria Docks in London, Jaguar has released images and details of the car as it enjoyed its official début at the New York Auto Show.
   The second-generation XF is recognizably Jaguar, stylistically an evolution of the 2007 X250 model that brought the company’s saloon car range into the 21st century. Prior to the XF, Jaguar saloons had been stuck in a sort of time warp, reminding customers regularly of the 1968 XJ6. The original XF changed that, with its fresh, fastback styling and, in the interior, the rotary dial gear selector, which helped give the cabin a feeling of airiness.
   But underneath the svelte styling, the XF did not share the aluminium-intensive construction methods of the larger XJ, something which the second-generation model remedies. Now up to 190 kg lighter than the outgoing model, the use of aluminium has allowed Jaguar to create a more rigid, refined car that’s also more fuel-efficient, according to the company’s figures. Jaguar cites carbon dioxide emissions of 104 g/km and the new four-cylinder Ingenium diesel gets 71·7 mpg (Imperial) in fuel economy, though it remains to be seen just how well it will fare in the real world.
   The weight saving means that the new XF is cleaner, and Jaguar claims it is 80 kg lighter than the competition, using the base model for comparison. In terms of environmental impact, Jaguar Land Rover uses a form of aluminium alloy called RC5754, which is predominantly made from recycled material, for its pressings.
   The body is also more slippery, helping with efficiency, with the drag coefficient dropping from 0,29 to 0,26 on the new model.
   The company is emphasizing its leadership in aluminium usage, especially extending it from the large XJ saloon down to its entry-level XE, launched last year.
   By increasing the wheelbase by 51 mm while cutting overall length, Jaguar has increased the interior room, and with the sixth light added in the design, the car now appears lighter and roomier inside.
   The cockpit is dominated by a configurable 10·2-inch touch-screen, while the maps for the sat-nav are stored on a 60 Gbyte solid-state hard drive.
   The front suspension is modelled after the F-type sports car’s, with the company claiming segment-leading handling for the new model.
   Other goodies include parking assist for bay and parallel parking, adaptive cruise control, and even reverse traffic detection, to warn drivers of fast-approaching traffic. The laser head-up display is also sharper than comparable TFT systems, with higher contrast; the unit is also a third lighter, which helps the XF save weight.




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