Jimi Hendrix is the key to Christopher Bruce‘s first work for the Royal Ballet and his first creation since retiring as Director of Rambert Dance Company. One can confidently assert that the a couple of years rest has done Bruce a lot of good, since the quality of the choreography is exceptional and it sits gratefully on the bodies of the Royal Ballet company.
The music is the violinist Nigel Kennedy‘s interpretation of the music of Jimi Hendrix – “Third Stone From The Sun, Little Wing, Fire“ – and the 1960s theme is taken up in the costume designs by Marian Bruce featuring the essential colours of the period: red, burgundy, brown, black and the essential purple. Crushed velvet and satin appear in the form of flared trousers and bolero jackets and fringed shawls tied around waists. The ballet is an evocation of a period, a zeitgeist, with allusions to Hendrix himself but the sensibilities shaping the piece are predicated on the values of 21st Century abstract dance.
The three principal women, Zenaida Yanowsky, Tamara Rojo and Deirdre Chapman hold the stage initially, with Yanowsky’s solo featuring a memorable leaning motif. Then the three men, Gary Avis, Johannes Stepanek and ...