Lucire

Lucire: News

Share 


November 20, 2014

Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season

Jack Yan/14.23

Pin It




Stephen A’Court

Top Samantha Vottari and Tynan Wood in Double Stop. Centre Wessel Oostrum’s The Speech, danced to the words of Charlie Chaplin. Here, Jeremy Beck dances. Above The challenge of dancing the Balanchine Ballet, Concerto Barocco, here with Samantha Vottari and Tynan Wood. Choreography by George Balanchine, and copyrighted to the George Balanchine Trust.

The New Zealand School of Dance’s Graduation Season for 2014, at Te Whaea Theatre in Wellington from November 19 to 29, is a must for anyone who appreciates dance and wants a glimpse of the next generation of performers.
   The six performances show vitality and variety, from the challenging Balanchine Ballet, Concerto Barocco, to the modern and energetic Trigger II: One Thing Leads to Another, created by the students themselves. While every dancer was on the money with their expertise, technique and stamina, we noted in particular Law Lok Huen in Concerto Barocco, William Keohavong in his solo in The Speech, Amanda Mitrevski in three of the pieces in the final Purcell Pieces, and Mason Kelly, who elicited spontaneous applause after his dance to Purcell’s ‘The Frost Scene’ from the opera King Arthur.
   Balanchine ballets are tough and are especially demanding with their technique, and the Graduation Season opened with one: Concerto Barocco, performed to Bach’s Concerto for two violins, strings and continuo in D minor, BWV 1043. We hadn’t expected to see a ballet but the principal dancers—in tonight’s case, Law Lok Huen, Megan Wright and Jack Bannerman—acquitted themselves expertly, especially as one of the techniques is to move “against” the music.
   In the first set, it was The Speech that captivated us, danced by William Keohavong. Choreographed by Dutch choreographer Wessel Oostrum, Keohavong’s movements were poignant, against the words from Charlie Chaplin’s finishing monologue from The Great Dictator. They were negative when Chaplin’s speech dwelled on negative subjects; more optimistic as they reflected on liberty and freedom. The words, too, seem very fitting for our times, when we question whether corporate greed is driving supposedly free societies. While Oostrom intended The Speech as a tribute to those who lost their lives in World War I, the contemporary choreography coupled with the Tramp’s monologue made it the most socially relevant performance of the night.
   Trigger II: One Thing Leads to Another got the second set off to an energetic start, with 18 dancers (from all years at the School) involved. Students appeared in dull greys and blues initially, and the costumes became more colourful and vibrant as the dance went on. This was an entertaining piece that any lover of modern dance will enjoy, thanks in good part to the direction of Malia Johnston, artistic director of the Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art award show. However, it was Val Caniparoli’s romantic Double Stop, where Samantha Vottari and Tynan Wood gave a poetic duet. We were spellbound with their dance, and it was not surprising to see Qi Huan’s credit as répétiteur. Formerly with the Royal New Zealand Ballet, Huan took up a teaching role earlier this year, after having appeared in some of our favourite lead roles over the years. Caniparoli had already created a beautiful ballet to Philip Glass’s ‘Song II’ that had premièred in 2011, but Vottari and Wood danced this with such passion that belied their status as students of the School of Dance.
   Excerpts from Rapt, which closed the second set, saw alumnus Craig Bary, who was in the original cast in 2011, return to teach the chosen sections to the NZSD dancers, before Douglas Wright, who created the original dance–theatre performance, and his assistant Megan Adams (an NZSD alumna) added the nuances. Being excerpts rather than the full 80-minute work, we focused more on the nine dancers’ considered and precise execution. Once again, we were impressed.
   With two sets having gone extremely well, the third, entitled Purcell Pieces, had to be of a very high quality to keep the audience happy. The School did not disappoint. Choreographed by Nils Christie, and a collaboration between the New Zealand School of Dance, the Queensland Ballet and Singapore Dance Theatre, Purcell Pieces is set to the music of Henry Purcell, but giving each piece a modern interpretation in dance. Loose, colourful costumes designed by Annegien Sneep and Noelene Hill and flowing movements characterized these final dances, with Amanda Mitrevski’s two appearances notable for her expressiveness, and Mason Kelly conveying the sense of solitude and coldness in his performance to ‘The Frost Scene’. Kelly was the stand-out for nearly the entire audience in the third set, judging by the applause. Purcell Pieces ended with rose petals coming down onto the stage, finishing the night on a high.
   The Graduation Season runs at Te Whaea: National Dance & Drama Centre, 11 Hutchison Road, Newtown, Wellington, New Zealand, till November 29, with performances nightly at 7.30 p.m., excepting Sunday and Monday. Matinees will take place on Sunday, November 23 and Saturday, November 29, at 2 p.m. Tickets are NZ$29 for adults, NZ$24 for students and seniors, and NZ$16 for children under 13. Tickets can be booked at www.nzschoolofdance.ac.nz.—Jack Yan, Publisher

Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Delicious Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Digg Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Facebook Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Fark Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Google+ Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on LinkedIn Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Newsvine Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Orkut Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Pinterest Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on reddit Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on StumbleUpon Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Twitter Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on vk.com Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Email Share 'Expertly executed: the New Zealand School of Dance’s 2014 Graduation Season' on Print Friendly
November 3, 2014

News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests

Lucire staff/22.02

Pin It


Theo Wargo/Getty Images


Stanley Moss

Top Olivia Wilde, Jordan Hewson and Jessica Alba at the 2014 Global Citizen Festival to end extreme poverty by 2030, in Central Park on September 27. Above Paula Sweet photographs exclusively in Morocco for Lucire: the secrets of Berber Saffron Tea. From left to right, Amanjena GM Gabriel Louzada, Paula Sweet, Abdelhadi.

In an upcoming edition of Lucire: letter from Marrakech. An exclusive report from travel editor Stanley Moss which includes a private visit behind closed doors at the original home of Yves Saint Laurent in the Medina, then the lost recipe for saffron tea, a Berber delicacy prepared for our readers at Amanjena in Marrakech.
   In beauty news, Jessica Alba has publicly declared her love of Jane Iredale’s real gold shimmer powder in OK. Says Alba, ‘If I’m going to show some leg, I’ll mix a little into my body lotion too. It creates a subtle shimmer that makes cellulite lumps and bumps a tad less noticeable.’ The powder is the headline product commemorating the brand’s 20th anniversary year. And they really mean ‘real gold': it contains 24 ct gold leaf and mica, and it’s available alongside silver and bronze shimmers in a limited-edition Jane’s Signature Gilded Collection tin (£32). The gold and silver can be used on top of the cheekbones as a highlight, while the bronze can be applied over the body.
   Meanwhile, publisher Jack Yan has been testing more cars in the ‘Living’ section in Lucire. There’s the BMW 116i here, a real driver’s car for those seeking something small, while he dons his halo and channels his Simon Templar in his test drive of the Volvo S60 T6 AWD R Design Polestar.





Paula Sweet

Above, from top One of several hidden courtyards at Saint Laurent’s house. An elegant sitting room in St Laurent’s home in the Medina. Saffron, rarest of spices, more expensive than gold, used in an exclusively brewed tea at Amanjena, Marrakech. An elegant tabletop displaying traditional tea-making ingredients at Amanjena.


Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Delicious Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Digg Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Facebook Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Fark Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Google+ Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on LinkedIn Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Newsvine Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Orkut Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Pinterest Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on reddit Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on StumbleUpon Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Twitter Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on vk.com Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Email Share 'News round-up: letter from Marrakech teased; Jessica Alba favours Jane Iredale; our road tests' on Print Friendly
October 30, 2014

The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs A Christmas Carol, the feel-good ballet of the season

Jack Yan/14.03

Pin It


Ross Brown/RNZB

The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s final season for 2014, sponsored by Vodafone, sees Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol brought to life. Created for the Northern Ballet, it’s a true crowd-pleaser and the perfect family outing.
   The RNZB’s Christmas performance has often been a spectacular that audiences of all ages can enjoy, and A Christmas Carol is no exception. The familiar Yuletide tunes and original music by American-born composer Carl Davis, CBE make A Christmas Carol musically accessible. Davis’s work will be familiar to television and film audiences (he scored The French Lieutenant’s Woman, the 1995 TV adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, and, most recently, an episode of the 2012 continuation of Upstairs, Downstairs), and he brings a similar lyrical, orchestral style to the ballet.
   The familiarity of Dickens’ novel also helps: the characters are well known, especially to children, and this version, created for the Northern Ballet, stays close to the original Victorian setting. The humour is distinctly English: the second act’s dance between Mr and Mrs Fezziwig (played by Rory Fairweather-Neylan and Brontë Kelly on opening night) is Carry on in nature, while the Ghost of Christmas Present’s (MacLean Hopper) tendency to throw glitter made him the least frightening of the trio that visit Ebenezer Scrooge.
   Paul Mathews, in the lead, exuded energy and still yielded surprises despite the well known storyline, but it was the flashback scene with a pas de deux between Young Scrooge (Shane Urton) and Belle Fezziwig (Lucy Green) that was the most touching and graceful in the ballet.
   Belle, knowing the relationship had come to an end, expressed a lifelessness as she moved en pointe away from Young Scrooge, ever focused on finance.
   The loss of love between the two was poignant, and the point at which Scrooge became the miserable character at the beginning of the story. It gave an extra element, almost a humanity, to Scrooge, that was seen in the novel.
   Bob Cratchit, played by Kohei Iwamoto, was perfectly cast.
   Each set was lovingly created, with production design by Lez Brotherston, the backdrops faithful to the emerging industrialization of the Victorian era, and the lighting by Jon Buswell (presumably following the original design by Paul Pyant) was used to eerie effect on two occasions: the emergence of Scrooge’s business partner’s ghost (light streamed up in a ghostly form before the dancer playing Marley appeared) and the Ghost of Christmas Past (who appeared to float as he visited Scrooge). Transitions between sets were cleverly handled, particularly Scrooge’s grave in the last act.
   This is the first performance Lucire attended where the company sings, and young Wilson Jack, as Tiny Tim Cratchit, performs a touching solo of ‘How Far Is It to Bethlehem?’ (and never mind that it was composed outside the Victorian era). Nigel Gaynor, conducting Orchestra Wellington, excelled handling this extra dimension.
   It was the finalé that was the most upbeat of any recent Royal New Zealand Ballet season, something that could be seen not just with the lengthy applause but the smiles on the audience’s faces as members began departing the St James Theatre.
   The Wellington performances began October 30 and run till November 8 inclusive; Dunedin is from November 15 to 16; Christchurch from November 20 to 22. A Christmas Carol then returns to the North Island, in Palmerston North on November 26, Napier on November 29 and 30, Auckland on December 3 to 7, and Takapuna from December 13 to 14. Full details of dates and venues can be found on the Royal New Zealand Ballet website.
   The late Christopher Gable directed the original production for the Northern Ballet, with choreography by Massimo Moricone; Daniel de Andrade serves as producer. It is the first ballet by the RNZB performed after the appointment of its new artistic director, Francesco Ventriglia, who takes up his new position during the run.—Jack Yan, Publisher


Bill Cooper

Above An image from the Northern Ballet’s production of A Christmas Carol.

Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Delicious Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Digg Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Facebook Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Fark Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Google+ Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on LinkedIn Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Newsvine Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Orkut Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Pinterest Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on reddit Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on StumbleUpon Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Twitter Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on vk.com Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Email Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet performs <i>A Christmas Carol</i>, the feel-good ballet of the season' on Print Friendly
October 12, 2014

David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts

Lucire staff/11.00

Pin It



Visitors to the Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art award show on Sunday night got an extra treat, as furniture and lighting designer David Trubridge showed off a crowdsourced artwork constructed from bamboo plywood to commemorate the concept of “memorable firsts”.
   The theme ties in not only to the World of Wearable Art, but from Brancott Estate’s pioneering heritage as the first to establish a vineyard in New Zealand’s South Island in the 1970s.
   Trubridge and Brancott Estate asked the New Zealand public to submit photographs representing a memorable first. The 500-plus submissions—which the company says ranged from weddings and a first trip abroad to the first blossom of spring—were printed using a red-and-white duotone effect on to lightweight bamboo plywood sheets, which formed the “feathers” in Trubridge’s giant winged creation.
   The artwork was revealed in a performance that resembled a bird taking off on its maiden flight, one of the inspirations Trubridge had. ‘The first thing that jumped into my mind was the image of a young gannet sitting on the edge of the cliff. The first time it flies is the start of its journey all the way to Australia. It takes off and it doesn’t stop,’ he says. The wearer gradually flexed before revealing the full form and all the images with arms outstretched.
   Trubridge had the help of his family in creating the performance, including his wife, Linda, who is an artist, and his son, Sam, who is a member of the performing arts’ faculty at Massey University.
   The wings were held together with twine, and move with the wearer. It presented a new challenge to Trubridge, as he was not accustomed to creating something that would be worn.
   ‘The process of creating this artwork has taken my team and I on an amazing creative journey and exploration that has led us to many creative firsts. It’s a project I’m very proud to have taken part in,’ says Trubridge.
   ‘It’s not a single pendant, fixed light or object, it requires a degree of flexibility. Creating something that can transform from a cloak to a wing was a challenge as my work is usually a closed form. We had to have the ability for it to go from one shape to another and flex and move with the figure and that’s a whole new, exciting, pioneering first for us.’
   ‘David has combined memorable firsts from the New Zealand public into a poetic, moving, kinetic piece of wearable art. The final creation truly embodies the pioneering spirit of Brancott Estate and WOW,’ says Brancott Estate’s chief winemaker, Patrick Materman.
   The artwork was shown at the Brancott Estate bar at the TSB Arena, and a filmed performance can be seen on the website at www.brancottestatewow.co.nz.

Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Delicious Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Digg Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Facebook Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Fark Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Google+ Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on LinkedIn Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Newsvine Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Orkut Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Pinterest Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on reddit Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on StumbleUpon Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Twitter Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on vk.com Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Email Share 'David Trubridge shows off artwork at World of Wearable Art celebrating Brancott Estate’s firsts' on Print Friendly
September 29, 2014

The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform A Christmas Carol for its final 2014 season

Lucire staff/13.15

Pin It


Ross Brown/RNZB

The Royal New Zealand Ballet will perform A Christmas Carol for its final season in 2014, in a version created for Northern Ballet in the UK. Northern Ballet’s master, Daniel de Andrade, is in New Zealand to stage the production.
   Based on the Charles Dickens story, the ballet is expected to surprise, with large sets, 650 costume elements, 75 characters and music by television composer Carl Davis that incorporates well known Christmas carols.
   De Andrade said in a release, ‘This evocative production has been a hit in the UK for over 20 years and such was its success that the BBC televised the production. The stunning sets and costumes transport audiences to Victorian England where Dickens’ classic characters are beautifully brought to life by talented dancers who not only dance but sing and act. It’s a narrative masterpiece and you couldn’t find a truer Christmas ballet.’
   Christopher Gable directed the original Northern Ballet version, with choreography by Massimo Moricone, production design by Lez Brotherston, and original lighting by Paul Pyant.
   Nigel Gaynor conducts the New Zealand performances.
   The ballet opens at the St James Theatre in Wellington on October 30 and tours the country, finishing in Takapuna on December 14. Notably, the company will perform at the newly restored Isaac Theatre Royal in Christchurch for the first time, on November 20.
   The dates are: Wellington, October 30 and 31, and November 1, 2, 6–8; Dunedin, November 15 and 16; Christchurch, November 20–2; Palmerston North, November 26; Napier, November 29 and 30; Auckland, December 3–7; and Takapuna, December 13 and 14. Full details can be found on the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s website.

Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Delicious Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Digg Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Facebook Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Fark Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Google+ Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on LinkedIn Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Newsvine Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Orkut Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Pinterest Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on reddit Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on StumbleUpon Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Twitter Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on vk.com Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Email Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet to perform <i>A Christmas Carol</i> for its final 2014 season' on Print Friendly
September 26, 2014

The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay

Lucire staff/11.00

Pin It



World of Wearable Art Awards

Top Kate MacKenzie’s winning Poly Nation, which took top honours at the 26th World of Wearable Art Awards; Show tonight in Wellington. Above Runner-up Gothic Habit, by San Francisco designer Lynne Christiansen.

Hawkes Bay designer Kate MacKenzie is the winner of the 2014 Brancott Estate Supreme WOW award, at the 26th World of Wearable Art Awards’ Show held in Wellington tonight.
   MacKenzie’s Poly Nation is an inventive design, telling the story of travel and made from leather and cardboard suitcases. The inspiration centred on the idea of ‘If suitcases could talk, they would carry stories of travel, culture and integration.’ It tells the story of people drawn to New Zealand with new ideas and beliefs.
   The design has netted MacKenzie NZ$30,000 in prizes.
   She also took out the Air New Zealand South Pacific section.
   MacKenzie had come third, along with Deidre Morgan, last year in the American Express Open section.
   Lynne Christiansen of San Francisco, Calif. took second place. She has entered seven times, and has won awards before, including the 2013 International Americas Award. Christiansen’s Gothic Habit was made from laser-etched felt and wood, constructed from 2,300 individually cut pieces to form a gothic cathedral. Christiansen also won the Open Section.
   In the individual categories, My Gradational Body by Zhujun Zhu of China won the Avant-Garde section; Fenced off by Luiz Fernando Sereno Penna of New Zealand won the children’s section.
   The Spark Creative Excellence section, with the Airborne theme this year, was won by Annkathrin Selthofer of Germany with her Waving Gorge design. Sebastian Denize of New Zealand won the Bizarre Bra section with Re-Decked, while Mark Dobson, also of New Zaland, won the Weta Costume and Film section (judged by Weta’s Sir Richard Taylor) with Sakana No Senshi.
   Emily Valentine Bullock of New Zealand took home the WOW Factor Award with her Sulphur Crested Frockatoo; the Shell Sustainability Award was won by Laura van Staveren of the Netherlands with Appearance. Shell also sponsored the Student Innovation Award, which was won by Tess Tavener Hanks of Australia with Baroque Living Room.
   The first-time entrant award was scooped by Ali Khan and Frida Khan of Qatar with Bling Warrior. Pop Cultural by Nicki van Asch of New Zealand won the New Zealand Design Award.
   The four Wellington International Awards, one being awarded to each geographic region, were won by Back to the Future: Chrome Queen, by Joanna Peacock of the UK, for Europe; Girl in Ribbons, by Julian Hartzog of the USA for the Americas; Odette by Lulan Huang of China for Asia; and Fenghuang (phoenix) by Svenja XX of Australia for Australia and the South Pacific.
   Wellington designers (Ross Hardie, Rachel Hardie, Hannah Goldblatt, Dylan Mulder, Kris Eriksen, Ian Loveridge, Liz Ritchie, Paula Rowan, Rénée Louie and Emily Valentine Bullock) netted the lion’s share of prizes this year, taking three section awards, four honourable mentions and one special award.
   Founder Dame Suzie Moncrieff, designer Vicky Taylor, and sculptor Jeff Thomson judged.
   Lucire fashion editor Sopheak Seng will have further thoughts from the designers as he files his report from awards’ night at WOW.














World of Wearable Art Awards

Above, from top My Gradational Body, by Zhujun Zhu. Fenced off, by Luiz Fernando Sereno. Waving Gorge, by Annkathrin Selthofer. Re-Decked, by Sebastian Denize. Sakana No Senshi, by Mark Dobson. Sulphur Crested Frockatoo, by Emily Valentine Bullock. Baroque Living Room, by Tess Tavener Hanks. Bling Warrior, by Ali Khan and Frida Khan. Pop Cultural, by Nicki van Asch. Back to the Future: Chrome Queen, by Joanna Peacock. Girl in Ribbons, by Julian Hartzog. Odette, by Lulan Huang. Fenghuang, by Svenja XX.

Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Delicious Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Digg Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Facebook Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Fark Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Google+ Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on LinkedIn Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Newsvine Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Orkut Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Pinterest Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on reddit Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on StumbleUpon Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Twitter Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on vk.com Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Email Share 'The 2014 Brancott Estate World of Wearable Art awards: Supreme Award goes to Hawkes Bay' on Print Friendly
August 15, 2014

The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Allegro journeys from classical to science fiction

Jack Yan/15.57

Pin It


Ross Brown

Top A classical approach for Allegro Brillante. Above Larry Keigwin’s Megalopolis.

The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Allegro: Five Short Ballets, was a bittersweet performance, knowing it would be the last time many in the audience would see the company’s principal guest artist, Gillian Murphy, dance.
   Murphy and her fiancé, RNZB artistic director Ethan Stiefel, are set to return to the US, and she kept a composed, dignified air after the performance when Lucire wished her well for her future.
   The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Andrea Tandy noted that Auckland audiences, who had seen Allegro prior to Wellington’s for a change, gave the five productions a wonderful reception.
   In the first ballet of the five, Allegro Brillante, Murphy and Kohei Iwamoto led a small cast of 10 to Tchaikovsky’s Third Piano Concerto, with choreography by the late George Balanchine. Russian-born Balanchine’s works have been staged by the RNZB from time to time, and Allegro Brillante was performed in 1999 and 2001. With a classical structure and technique, staged by Eve Lawson, it proved an endearing opening to the performances on the first night in Wellington.
   As skilful as the dancers were, Qi Huan’s presence was missed opposite Murphy—Huan moved on to the New Zealand School of Dance, teaching classical ballet, telling us earlier that he could not pass up the opportunity.
   The simple settings allowed Nigel Percy’s lighting to set a very different mood each time.
   Les Lutins, which followed, was a particularly enjoyable comedic ballet. It would be the only one with live music of the five, performed by the impressive Benjamin Baker on violin, and Michael Pansters on piano, while Rory Fairweather-Neylan, Arata Miyagawa and Lucy Green played the role of the goblins, in trousers and braces, with simple, carefree choreography by Johan Kobborg. The interaction between the dancers and Baker was cleverly staged, and the neatly executed jetés and tours en l’air from Fairweather-Neylan and Miyagawa deserve mention.
   Satellites, after the first interval, brought a scientific theme, conveying the equilibrium that satellites maintain in orbit: as dancers go off, new ones emerge. Graphically, orbits appear in the background, designed and animated by Jac Grenfell, dancers held circular mirrors, while electronic music by Jan-Bas Bollen emphasized the high-tech feel. Kinetic sculptures by Jim Murphy continued the theme (segmented planets hanging in the air), as did Donnine Harrison’s costumes (the discs worn by two ballerinas again reflecting the circular theme). Daniel Belton, who was behind the concept and choreography, was inspired by the Bauhaus movement, with its practitioners Oskar Schlemmer, Paul Klee and Moholy-Nagy, successfully blending the geometry and modernistic approach of the school with balletic expression. For once, those who are disciples of, or simply aware of, Bauhaus principles have a ballet that translates those ideas.
   Mattress Suite, choreographed by Larry Keigwin for his own company, delighted in a simple, playful setting, with a mattress as the one prop, telling the story of newlyweds who drift apart, the groom discovering he is homosexual. It is the only one with mature themes and popular songs (‘Ain’t No Sunshine’ as sung by Stevie Wonder, and ‘At Last’ by Etta James) and the mattress itself was used as everything from a wall to a trampoline in six short dances. Cheekily, the dance with a gay threesome is called ‘Straight Duet’.
   The RNZB is the first to perform Mattress Suite outside of Keigwin & Company.
   It was Keigwin again for the finalé, Megalopolis, which went beyond science and into science fiction, blending the cinematic Flash Gordon and Studio 54 into a single ballet, finding great favour with the audience. Megalopolis was certainly energetic—RNZB finalés often are, and rightly so, when presenting a series of ballets—while Fritz Mason’s costume design, in black with silver details, was a retrofuturistic delight.
   Allegro: Five Short Ballets continues in Wellington till the 17th at the St James. Invercargill follows on August 20 at the Civic, while Dunedin’s Regent Theatre plays host on the 23rd inst.—Jack Yan, Publisher

Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Delicious Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Digg Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Facebook Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Fark Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Google+ Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on LinkedIn Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Newsvine Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Orkut Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Pinterest Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on reddit Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on StumbleUpon Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Twitter Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on vk.com Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Add to Bookmarks Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Email Share 'The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s <i>Allegro</i> journeys from classical to science fiction' on Print Friendly
August 14, 2014

Mana Wahine: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history

Jack Yan/4.40

Pin It



Alex Efimoff

Mana Wahine, which had its première in June in Rotorua for Matariki, arrived in Wellington last night with the first of a brief series of performances (until August 16), with a powerful celebration of womanhood by the Okareka Dance Company.
   Mana Wahine tells the story of Te Aokapurangi, who was captured in battle but returned later to save her people from slaughter.
   The production began with the image of the storyteller, Tūī Matira Ranapiri-Ransfield, a descendant of Te Aokapurangi, appearing on the curtains prior to the show, a foretaste of the clever use of lighting and imagery projected on the dance floor and walls. Her evocative waerea incantation from the first scene led to powerful, purposeful choreography performed by five dancers, Bianca Hyslop, Maria Munkowits, Nancy Wijohn, Chrissy Kokiri and Jana Castillo.
   Graceful and strong, the quintet were chosen for their experience as women and those from whom they have descended.
   Mana Wahine blends different genres of dance, captivating the audience between its sets so seamlessly, and is a beautiful tribute to Te Aokapurangi while shining a light on the proud people in our country’s past.
   Even without knowing the historical aspect one has to admire the authentic and sincere performances of the five dancers.
   The production was inspired by a conversation between cousins Tui Matira Ranapiri-Ransfield and Okarewa artistic director Taiaroa Royal, on their ancestry and the Ngāti Ohomairangi of Te Arawa, namely the matriarch Kearoa and Te Aokapurangi of Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Tapuika. Both women were responsible for saving their people, demonstrating in New Zealand’s history the power and role of women.
   Ranapiri-Ransfield researched the story, and wrote the lyrics and composed the music for the karanga, waerea and patere, and it is her voice that the audience hears. Victoria Kelly composed the rest of the score. Malia Johnston, with her extensive choreographic experience, co-authored Mana Wahine. Taane Mete directed Mana Wahine, calling it one of the ‘most rewarding experiences I have ever encountered.’ The collaboration between the talents, including technical production manager Jonny Cross, producer Rachael Penman, rehearsal director Natalie Clark and administrator Jesse Wikiriwhi, have resulted in a real, enriching production.—Jack Yan, Publisher

Mana Wahine runs till August 16, with daily performances at 7.30 p.m., and one matinee on Saturday at 2 p.m., at Te Whaea, New Zealand National Dance and Drama Centre, 11 Hutchison Road, Newtown, Wellington. Tickets are $20–$40, plus booking fees. Bookings can be made by telephone on 0800 BUY-TIX or visit www.eventfinder.co.nz.

Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Delicious Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Digg Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Facebook Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Fark Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Google+ Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on LinkedIn Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Newsvine Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Orkut Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Pinterest Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on reddit Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on StumbleUpon Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Twitter Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on vk.com Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Add to Bookmarks Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Email Share '<i>Mana Wahine</i>: a powerful celebration of womanhood and history' on Print Friendly
Next Page »

 

Get more from Lucire

Our latest issue

Lucire 33
Check out our lavish print issue of Lucire in hard copy or for Ipad or Android.
Or download the latest issue of Lucire as a PDF from Scopalto

Lucire on Twitter
Lucire on Instagram